Anyone who has used a computer or stared at their 40-inch gaming tv for an extended period will know all about the side effects that come with it.
After an all-night gaming marathon or an intense pro tournament, your eyes are likely to be reminiscent of the Sahara desert: dry, burning, and blurry.
Luckily, there is a solution. The best gaming glasses will help prevent the painful symptoms that come with staring at a computer screen for an extended period.
A History of Digital Eye Strain
According to a study in 2012 and 2013 by The Vision Council, nearly 70 percent of all Americans suffer from some form of digital eye strain.
Caused by staring at devices such as televisions and computers for hours on end, this strain can range from annoying to full-on pain. It’s no surprise that so many are suffering from this. According to the same survey, over 50 percent of Americans spend 6 or more hours staring at a screen on a regular basis.
Eye strain isn’t the only health factor caused by staring at screens. The Vision Council also confirmed that dry eyes, blurred vision, headaches, and even back and shoulder pain can occur as a result of staring mindlessly at a screen for hours on end. As the sun sets and natural light diminishes, usually between the hours of 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., digital eye strain is at its worst.
Those headaches you get while playing games after work? Those aren’t work-related migraines. They are likely due to digital eye strain from staring at your gaming monitors for the entire course of the day. Over 60 percent of adults don’t know about this form of strain and are likely to attribute it to something else, which is why solutions to this problem aren’t more commonplace.
Why does staring at a computer screen cause such a huge degree of irritation? The answer may shock you. In simple terms, the artificial blue light that computers and gaming tv screens emit is harmful to your eyes when viewed for extended periods of time.
Since we’re a society that just started staring at screens, our eyes have not adjusted or evolved to handle the artificial light in high doses. Also, most workplaces aren’t set up to alleviate eye strain. Remember, over half of America’s population doesn’t even know digital eye strain exists.
Fortunately, there is a way to combat digital eye strain so you can game without pain: A high-quality pair of gaming glasses.
What Are the Benefits of Gaming Glasses?
In layman’s terms, gaming glasses are shades designed for the sole purpose of reducing eye strain caused by computer and television screens. Gaming glasses feature a unique yellowish tint that offsets the artificial blue light that monitors produce and largely eliminates the strain of looking at a screen regardless of the length of time.
Let’s break down exactly how gaming glasses can benefit you:
- The lenses help to sharpen objects on the screen, rendering them in better detail
- The lenses are specifically designed to block high-frequency blue light
- The lenses allow you to better focus on the screen, leading to relaxed eye muscles
- The lenses filter out harmful UV rays that pose a threat to your eyes.
- The coating on the lens filters out additional blue light
- The design of many gaming glasses are a tight fit to reduce incoming air and humidity
Gaming glasses are the result of many years of scientific research, designed to give gamers a way to keep their eyes healthy. You’ll instantly notice the difference when you slip on a pair of gaming glasses and start to the game. Many gaming glasses are both waterproof and scratchproof, ensuring that they will last you for at least one console generation, if not longer!
No matter your age or gender, there is a pair of gaming glasses for you, with many manufacturers providing a plethora of options for men, women, and children alike. If you consider yourself a gamer, these glasses are as much of a must-own accessory as an extra controller.
Are There Prescription Gaming Glasses?
If you already wear glasses, swapping out to a regular pair of gaming glasses isn’t going to help: You’re just going to trade digital eye strain for standard eye strain if you can see at all. Luckily, many manufacturers of gaming glasses, such as GUNNAR, do provide prescription gaming glasses.
The downside is that you’ll need to order these directly from the manufacturer after supplying a prescription or through a licensed optical retailer. Any pair of gaming glasses you order through a retailer such as Amazon will always be a non-prescription pair of gaming glasses.
There are also gaming glasses that are clip-on which you can simply place over your prescription glasses. These can easily be flipped upwards whenever you don’t need them, and downwards over your prescription glasses when you do. And you don’t need to worry about having too much extra weight on your face since clip-on gaming glasses like those produced by GameKing are usually very lightweight.
Other options open to those with prescription glasses include gaming glasses that are wide and come with full frames that you can simply wear over your prescription glasses. Long story short, there’s no need for you to feel left out if you already have prescription glasses; lots of options exist to accommodate you.
Are Gaming Glasses Just for Gamers?
The term ‘gaming glasses’ only refers to a small subset of specialized glasses, as the broader term for the product is computer eyewear, and is usable by everyone. For example, non-gamers who work in an office setting can significantly benefit from a pair of computer eyewear, especially those who spend all day staring at a screen in a cubicle.
In fact, some manufacturers of gaming glasses, such as GUNNAR, claim that these glasses can help improve productivity in the workplace due to filtering out fluorescent lighting.
Keep in mind that ‘gaming glasses’ isn’t just a fancy term for computer eyewear, and the two aren’t necessarily interchangeable. Gaming glasses are specifically designed for the wider angles that video games utilize. While gaming glasses can double as a pair of computer eyewear, a pair of computer eyewear will not double as a pair of gaming glasses. In addition, many gaming glasses are specifically designed to be used with a headset or headphones, whereas computer eyewear is not.
Are Gaming Glasses Just for Televisions and Computers?
These days, gaming is everywhere; while previous generations were confined to television screens and monitors, today gamers can play games on anything with a display. Tablet, smartphones, and even watches, all have access to games and apps to play while on the go. Your gaming glasses will also help reduce digital eye strain on these devices. If it has a screen and you can play games on it, gaming glasses will help combat eye strain.
Can I Use Them Outside?
While you can wear your gaming glasses outside, be aware that some of them aren’t designed to provide protection from the sun. Many gaming glasses feature adequate UV protection, but those that do not are best reserved for indoor use. If you’re spending a considerable amount of time outdoors, it’s worth buying a dedicated pair of outdoor sunglasses and leaving your gaming glasses at home.
The Best Gaming Glasses 2020
Now that you know the ins and outs of gaming glasses, it’s time to check out some products for yourself. Below is a chart and list of our picks for the best gaming glasses on the market this year, guaranteed to help eliminate digital eye strain when gaming.
No matter which product you choose, you’re getting a high-quality pair of gaming glasses which will drastically improve your gaming experience.
The Gunnar Optiks INT-00101 Intercept Full Rim Advanced Gaming Glasses are one of the very best gaming glasses you can get in terms of quality and design.
Not only do these glasses come in a stylish frame that looks good enough to tempt you to take them outside for a spin, but they are also designed to sit comfortably on your nose thanks to their comfort curved nose rests. Their wide format design and lightweight nature serve to ensure that when you wear them they fit comfortably on your nose and cause no irritation on your face or around the eyes.
These glasses don’t just make a fine fashion statement though. The lenses come with an external hard coat that helps to reduce glare and reflection so that you experience less eye strain.
Speaking of eye strain, the Gunnar INT-00101 actually magnifies the things you look at by a 0.25 magnitude. This may not seem like much, but it is the same magnitude that eye doctors prescribe for reading glasses and other types of glasses to relieve eye strain.
It doesn’t stop there; the optical centers of these Gunnar gaming glasses are decentered, meaning they are placed slightly apart from where they would normally be in regular glasses. Optical centers are the points in a lens through which you would look at an object straight ahead.
By decentering them, these glasses reduce the muscle fatigue among the muscles on the outside of the eye, since you no longer have to turn your eyeballs in towards each other in order to focus on the gaming screen in front of you.
Finally, there is the blue light protection that is built into these glasses. Blue light poses a number of health hazards, one of which is struggling to sleep at night. But the Gunnar Optiks INT-00101 Intercept Full Rim Advanced Gaming Glasses come with amber-tinted glasses that filter out blue light and UV rays, replicating natural light even when you stare directly at a screen. By using them, you will no longer have to worry about struggling to sleep after playing your favorite games before bedtime.
Along with all the above, you get a 30-day return policy and a one-year warranty, so that you are never left feeling unprotected at any time in your quest for a better, safer gaming experience.
The Gamma Ray Optics FlexLite Reader is perfect for those of you who are suffering from eye fatigue and strain, and with no option of reducing your screen time.
Some people sit in front of a screen all day at work and then return to their games afterward for several more hours of screen time. Many things make the Gamma Ray an attractive option for gaming glasses. First of all, they are affordable when compared to other gaming glasses with similar features that exist on the market.
But you would be wrong to mistake low-price with low quality as these glasses come in ultra-lightweight plastic frames that are sturdy, durable, and comfortable against the skin so that you would have no problem wearing them over extended periods of time. Don’t be surprised when your friends start commenting about you looking smarter when you put them on either. These glasses are designed to merge simplicity and style in a way that gives off an air of professionalism every single time.
As far as protecting your eyes are concerned, the Gamma Ray Optics FlexLite Reader comes with an amber tint on the lenses to help alleviate the effect of fluorescent lights and blue light emitted from digital screens. The glasses also come with UV400 protection and anti-glare properties for added protection while you go about your day.
We’ve already seen an entry from Gunnar Optiks on our list of best gaming glasses, so you might be wondering why we have another one. Well, the truth is that as a leader in the field of gaming glasses, this company simply has so many products that stand out and cater to different budgets.
The Gunnar Riot would qualify as mid-range budget glasses, but even at that moderate price range, you can still expect a surprisingly excellent product.
These glasses can almost be mistaken for regular glasses because of their lower yellow tint. But they still are able to achieve an impressive 65% of harmful blue light reduction. They come with an anti-glare coating over the lenses, which does a great job of eliminating reflected light and UV light—something you should be excited about if you work under the sort of harsh lights that exist in traditional office settings.
From an aesthetic point of view, these glasses are also built to look good on the wearer. Their 3-barreled steel design makes them very durable, and you can rest assured that they are built ergonomically sound enough to feel comfortable on your face for any amount of time.
Duco has been making inroads into the gaming glasses market recently. When you look at the Duco 302, it is not hard to see why. On the surface, these are rather plain-looking glasses, however, they have a lot more going for them if you take the time to pay attention.
For example, the lenses are made of ultra-pure material and are amber-tinted so that there is no distortion when you use them. They are superb at eliminating glare, blue lights from digital screens, and harsh overhead lights. You can expect to have sharper, clearer vision once you start using these Duco glasses.
Now, what use are gaming glasses if they don’t make you look good while playing the games you love or whilst working at your office? The field of aesthetics is where the Duco 302 really shines and sets itself apart.
The frame is really good, made of flexible, shatter-proof material that even allows you the option of fitting your own prescription lenses later on if you want to.
These are some of the most customizable gaming glasses you can find, and the fact that they actually do a good job at protecting your eyes makes whatever price you pay worth it. And to sweeten the deal, these gaming glasses come with a 1-year warranty after purchase.
The GameKing Classic Clip-On is one of the best gaming glasses you will find on the market today. And this is in keeping with the traditions of the manufacturing company which was formed specifically to combat the harmful effects of technology on our eyes, given the high number of hours we spend in front of screens.
There are a lot of things that make these gaming glasses stand out. First of all, they are not whole-frame glasses per se. They are merely clip-on extensions, to be added to your existing glasses, which you can flip up and down as you like and choose. That way, you don’t have to feel overwhelmed or constrained to live in an amber haze all the time.
In addition to being versatile, they are effective.
Gaming glasses usually block out between 55%-65% of harmful blue light while you use them. GameKing goes beyond that to block out 85% of harmful blue light, as well as 100% of UV400 waves. Your eyes will know rest like never before while using these glasses.
Your face will also notice a difference because these glasses are so lightweight—given the fact that they have no frames. Gameking clip-on gaming glasses weigh just 12g on their own.
The lenses themselves are coated so that they are scratch-resistant, fog-repellent, oil-repellent, and stain-repellent, all of which are good features because the last thing you want is to have to end up cleaning two separate sets of glasses.
All in all, if you already have glasses and are not looking to add yet another pair you have to clean and take care of, GameKing has your back. After purchase, you get a 30-day money-back guarantee and a 1-year breakage warranty to cater to any manufacturing defects.
Altec Vision gaming glasses are proof that you don’t need to pay an arm and a leg in order to play video games and use your computer in safety.
Altec Vision glasses look pretty ordinary in appearance and they cost significantly less than other gaming glasses on our list. But don’t let that fool you into thinking these glasses haven’t earned their place. They are perfectly capable of handling the everyday demands that come with sitting regularly with a console at your feet, staring at rushing images on your gaming TV.
These glasses are able to block UV rays, blue light, and glare while allowing up to 90% of visible light to pass through. This means if you use them, objects will not appear much darker than they would if you did not have the glasses on.
Structurally, the single upper rim that holds the lenses are made of stainless steel, while the handles are plastic. The slight yellow tint of the glasses will be unnoticeable to many people who will easily think your new glasses were nothing out of the ordinary.
Affordable, effective, and stylish, what more could anyone want from their gaming glasses?
The J+S Vision Blue Light Shield Computer Glasses bills itself as essential gaming gear, and it’s easy to see why. These gaming glasses contain the following features:
- They block 90 percent of all blue light from a screen
- The low color distortion lens provides a balance between viewing quality and color
- The frame is both stylish and comfortable
- The unisex design means these glasses look awesome on both men and women
- The glasses are one size fits most thanks to the spring-loaded temples
J+S is not as well known as brands like GUNNAR, but with products like the J+S Vision Blue Light Shield Computer Glasses, they are quickly making a name for themselves in the gaming glasses field.
GameKing are making a name for themselves in this field by consistently churning out quality product after quality product ever since they launched, and the GameKing Mega Oversize continues that fine tradition.
The anti-blue light capabilities built into the headpiece are able to keep out 85% of harmful blue light and 100% of UV rays. In addition to that, their amber-tinted glasses also work well in reducing eye strain, enhancing image depth perception, improving contrast, and eliminating eye fatigue. You can expect to be able to concentrate more and be more aware of what is happening on your gaming screen or computer screen when you have these on.
While they can be described as wide, these glasses actually sit comfortably on your face, causing no discomfort. They are designed to be lightweight, flexible, and pretty much unbreakable—these are not made from your regular plastic materials. And to top it all off, they look good when you put them on, which is important if you intend to take them outside.
The lifetime breakage warranty and 30-day money-back guarantee following the purchase, make the GameKing Mega Oversize an option for which you really want to take a pause and consider.
True Dark is a health and wellness technology company that is obsessed with improving health and performance through light. Much of this objective involves eliminating the effects of ‘junk light’ in our daily lives.
What is junk light? Many things actually, but among their number can be found the type of light which is emitted from screens—computer, television, tablets, and phone screens—we stare at all day. These affect our sleep, cause eye strain and fatigue, induce brain inflammation, among others.
True Dark Junk Light Blocking Eyewear combats all that by blocking the worst blue light we receive from LED screens and other electronic screens. This helps eliminate up to 75% of eye strain, improve sleep, and reduce jetlag during travel by synchronizing your circadian rhythm.
These glasses are a premium product, costing more than any other on our list. They come with scratch-resistant lenses and an anti-glare coating so that you don’t have to worry about buying another pair for at least a few years.