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The Best Safety Glasses To Keep Your Eyes Intact

We all need to take extra care to ensure proper eye safety while working because it only takes a single speck of dust scratched across the cornea for a free trip to the emergency room. Unfortunately, many people seem to believe wearing regular glasses/sunglasses will be enough to protect them while in the shop but this is far from the truth.

The first factor to consider when buying safety glasses is the strength of the lenses. All the list of the best safety glasses in 2021 that we’ve included below utilize ANSI rated lenses so you can wear them confidently knowing they’ll offer real protection when needed. Next, we considered area of coverage with the safety glasses presented here wrapping around your eyes to protect them from stray particles and not just those coming straight at your face. Lastly, we’ve listed pairs which are durable and will stand up to repeated use and wear. If lenses on a pair of safety glasses are easy to scratch then you aren't going to be able to see your work clearly, which is very unsafe. Similarly, it doesn't matter if the lens can take a beating if the frames fall apart, so buying quality safety glasses like these from the start makes a big difference.

Compare The Best Safety Glass Of 2021

US Safety Products Protective Safety Glasses - Best Safety Glasses Overall

If you're like me, sometimes you’ll find yourself suspended upside down at the top of a truss frame and you need your glasses to stay put. Excellent stability on the face makes this a great pair of safety glasses perfect for jobs requiring lots of movement or work at awkward angles. The fit is super comfortable and the foam inserts can be replaced if they ever wears out. The ability to replace that foam means you don't have to ditch the pair when this eventually occurs. Shop around a bit and you can find these for a very reasonable price. An available RX insert means you don't have to choose between your prescription and safety.

3M Secure Fit Anti-Fog Safety Glasses - Runner Up

3M safety glasses feature a sleek and comfortable design great for long term wear but it’s the adjustable nose piece which really sold me on this brand. The bridge of my nose is where pain hits first if you’re wearing a poorly fitted pair of safety glasses and this feature helps alleviate this issue. I also appreciate the inclusion of a micro-fiber storage bag and a lanyard to keep these glasses in good condition and also within reach. I've lost several sets of safety glasses over the years and if I weren't too stubborn to buy a lanyard I could have saved a few of them. These glasses solve that problem nicely.

Bolle Tracker Safety Glasses - Honorable Mention

Similar to the US Safety Hornet, these comfortable glasses are stable on the face and offer protection really only outmatched by full goggles and face masks. The price is a little higher than average but it's more than reasonable given their quality. These safety glasses can be easily adapted for RX users with the addition of a prescription insert. The anti-fog feature works decent well but it's not perfect because of a rubber seal which if worked loose, diminishes the effectiveness of this capability.

Global Vision Escort Safety Glasses - Consider

Escort by Global Vision offers excellent versatility given the level of protection offered. They’re a bit expensive but worth the money thanks to how well-designed they are. These safety glasses fit the face nicely while allowing you to wear smaller sets of prescription glasses; a great option if you've ever had to decide between safety and being able to see your work.

Your peripheral vision won’t be too hindered because of side lenses made from the same polycarbonate as the main lenses. I would prefer a wraparound lens for optimal clarity but the use of flat lenses on the side means they don’t sacrifice strength and there’s no peripheral vision distortion either.

MSA Safety OvrG Over-the-Glasses Protectors

MSA Safety OvrG Over-the-Glasses Protectors - Best Safety Glasses

Designed for use with small RX glasses, these cheap and comfortable safety glasses are made entirely from durable plastic and conform to the face nicely. The price is very reasonable and allowing anyone to have a few pairs around the shop to make sure your eyes are always protected. There are more comfortable glasses on this list but I'll choose protection and affordability over total comfort any day.

Buyer's Guide

Best Safety Glasses

What to Consider Before Buying Safety Glasses?

Safety glasses are a must in construction environments but they are just as useful for DIY projects around the home. Before you hit buy, there are a few things to watch out for.

Lens Material

Impact resistant material is essential for a good pair of safety glasses as this type of eyewear must be able to sustain the kind of beating that regular glasses are unlikely to encounter.

The most popular material lens material for this item is polycarbonate. This is the ideal candidate because it’s light but very strong and able to withstand all manner of potential eye threatening impacts. What’s more, polycarbonate doesn’t fog easily, maintaining visibility in a variety of conditions.

A second option is Trivex. Trivex has gained popularity lately because it brings all of the perks of polycarbonate with a few extras such as scratch resistance, better visibility and can even respond to light changes.

The frame durability is also important but the frames are usually made from hard plastic and tested independently. They’re less likely to be hit by stray projectiles but it’s nonetheless important that they’re strong and tightly molded to hold the lenses.

Safety Certifications

The American National Standard Institute or ANSI is the body that ensures that safety glasses are manufactured according to standards and that they’ll be able to withstand the kind of stress and strain necessary in order to qualify as quality protective equipment.

In the United States this is subsequently enforced by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) which ensures that all professional environments where people should be wearing safety glasses are wearing appropriate ones. If you don’t want to know much else about the best glasses to get, purchasing ANSI certified ones is going to be your safest bet.

Comfort

It’s hard to tell when you’re choosing a pair of glasses online but looking at dimensions can be another important step in ensuring that you’re getting a product that is right for you. There will be times when you’ll have to wear them for an extended period of time so make sure to choose something that fits your head and, if possible, something that has a soft nose piece and rubber around the temples.

Cover the Periphery

Whatever you’re working on there’s a good chance that projectiles will be coming from all directions. That’s why it’s important that the glasses that you choose are able to protect you from all directions. Choose a pair with lenses that cover the sides of your face as well in a snug but comfortable fit.

Hearing protection

If you’re anticipating working in noisy environments with decibels well above what would be recommended for the human ear, keep in mind that some safety glasses come with added hearing protection which can come in handy whether you’re a professional or enthusiastic hobbyist.

Durability

Nobody likes purchasing tools or accessories that break after just a few uses. Depending on how much money you invest in them, sometimes even having them breaking after a year can be a disappointment. But when it comes to safety goggles purchasing a sub par pair can be downright dangerous. Usually, as long as the glasses are ANSI certified and made from either polycarbonate or trivex you should be safe. However, if you’re getting anything else, make sure to check reviews and do thorough research on the material before clicking the buy button.

UV Protection

UV protection can be extremely useful for those who will be undertaking jobs outdoors. Different DIY projects will require you to twist yourself into weird positions that might have you squinting in almost direct sunlight. UV light can be damaging to the eyes, especially with prolonged exposure. If you think this type of work is in your future, opt for glasses with UV protection.

Scratch Resistance

Trivex is a great option for scratch resistant material, as we’ve mentioned. But if you’re still looking for something more specialized, look for diamond-like carbon or polycrystalline diamond lenses, if this is a must for you. Be advised that opting for any of these materials is likely to drive the price of the item up. But it is worth it in the long wrong as scratch resistant lenses make for a more durable and comfortable product.

Know Your Work

At the end of the day, the most important aspect of choosing the best pair of safety glasses for your needs is to know what conditions you will be using under. Whether you will need hearing protection or extra comfort for extended use or UV protection or other tints all depends on the type of work you’ll do. At the end of the day, basic glasses made from ANSI certified lenses should suit most people. If you want to make your life easier, however, gather your requirements and see how various brands can accommodate them and for what budget.

FAQ

What are OSHA approved safety glasses?

Osha approved safety glasses are protective glasses that have undergone the certification process from the American National Standards Institute which ensures that the protective equipment can withstand the conditions it claims to. You can tell if a pair has this certification by markings that you can find on the lenses and frames.

Are tinted safety glasses OSHA approved?

Yes, tinted safety glasses can be OSHA approved. Be sure to check the frames and lenses for the appropriate markings.

Is wearing safety glasses all day bad for your eyes?

Presently there is no research to suggest that wearing plastic safety glasses can affect your vision or damage your eyes. This is a myth.

Do I need safety glasses if I wear glasses?

Yes, because prescription glasses are not manufactured to withstand the conditions that safety glasses are. You can opt to wear safety glasses over your prescription set or put in contacts for the duration of your work, when safety glasses are needed.

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