Can You See the Eclipse With Polarized Sunglasses? How to View the Eclipse Safely

You should only wear authenticated solar eclipse glasses during the eclipse.

Lauren Wellbank - Author

Apr. 8 2024, Published 11:21 a.m. ET

Woman looks at sky and waits for the eclipse to begin while wearing sunglasses
Source: Getty Images

Viewing a solar eclipse can be a fun and exciting moment for people, especially for those who haven't had the pleasure of witnessing this type of celestial event in the before. After all, these rare occurrences happen just once every three years, and they can only be viewed in certain parts of the world when they do happen. For some, seeing a solar eclipse (and a total solar eclipse at that) can be a once in a lifetime event!

Article continues below advertisement

No matter whether this is your first time or your fifth, one thing remains true for everyone: Using the correct eyewear is an absolute must. This knowledge has left some wondering if their polarized sunglasses count as proper eyewear to view the eclipse, or if polarized glasses can be used in a pinch. Read on to find out the answer, and what types of eyewear are recommended by the experts.

People grab their NASA approved eclipse glasses
Source: Getty Images
Article continues below advertisement

Can I use polarized glasses of sunglasses for the solar eclipse?

The short answer is no, polarized sunglasses do not provide adequate protection from the sun's UV and IR radiation rays, which can cause serious damage to your eyes. Without using the right kind of glasses, you run the risk of experiencing a special kind of sun damage known as solar retinopathy or eclipse blindness, both of which can cause short or long-term vision loss!

Article continues below advertisement

What kind of glasses can I wear for the eclipse?

When it comes to safely viewing the eclipse, it's recommended that you wear a pair of solar viewers from a vendor included on the American Astronomical Society's (AAS) list of reputable manufacturers. Glasses from this list should also contain an International Organization for Standardization (ISO) number, like ISO 12312-2 or ISO 12312-2:2015.

If you already have a pair of eclipse glasses but you're unsure of where they came from, you can always test them by taking them into a dark room and wearing them while looking at a lamp. If you can see the glow of the bulb, the glasses aren't dark enough to be used for the eclipse.

And if you don't have eclipse glasses, learn how you can watch the eclipse with a cheese grater or colander here.

Viewing the solar eclipse may be a once in a lifetime opportunity for some, but no matter how rare the occurrence is, you don't want to risk doing permanent damage to your eyes by using polarized sunglasses to view it.

More from Green Lovers

Latest Health & Wellness News and Updates

    © Copyright 2024 Green Lovers. Green Lovers is a registered trademark. All Rights Reserved. People may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Offers may be subject to change without notice.