Helping You Choose Safety
Wearing safety eyewear eliminates the majority of eye injuries both in the workplace and outside of it. In fact, 90% of eye injuries would not have happened had appropriate safety eyewear been worn. Yet, getting workers to wear them consistently can be a problem. In addition, many people fail to even consider wearing them at home or during recreational activities.
Reasons for this neglect stems from not understanding why safety eyewear is important and from not having properly-fitting eyewear. Another major reason involves problems with fogged lenses. Fortunately, both of these issues are solved when workplaces and individuals take the time to choose the eyewear that best meets their needs.
Understanding Why You Should Wear Safety Eyewear is the first step. That step involves realizing why wearing safety eyewear is the best defense against injuries and how it saves time and money in the long term through injury prevention and healthier eyes.
Next, gaining knowledge on Selecting the Right Safety Eyewear is important. Knowing the basics and the various options available is key to finding eyewear that will actually be worn regularly. Equally important is answering the question How Do You Choose the Best Lens Tint? since doing so optimizes performance, provides better visibility and increases eye comfort.
Yet, even with all of this knowledge, choosing the best eyewear can seem like a daunting task. After all, there are thousands of styles to choose from along with a plethora of brands and retailers. So, how can you narrow it down? It’s certainly not easy without help. Plus, do you even have the time to do so? Many people don’t.
Fortunately, we’ve taken the time to narrow it down for you by compiling this list of the top safety eyewear from 2017.
Top Safety Eyewear of 2017
The items on this list are not ranked against one another; instead, they represent the highest-rated and most-purchased safety eyewear of this past year. We’ve included a lot of variety, so everyone is sure to find something to meet their needs.
DeWalt Concealer Goggle
The only true goggles on our list, the DeWalt Concealer was on almost every list of top safety eyewear we could find. There are two lens options, clear and smoke anti-fog, and they’re priced at just under $14. The adjustable strap allows for a comfortable fit for almost anyone, and the goggle style provides high-level protection against dust and debris. They’re also vented for breathability, which provides even more fog protection.
Individuals who have purchased the DeWalt Concealer tout their anti-fogging ability along with their great fit even over prescription eyeglasses. In addition, they say the Concealer provides stellar protection against dust and debris along with being very comfortable even after being worn for several hours.
3M Virtua Safety Glasses
The 3M Virtua AP provides both a classic look and classic safety protection to give a fit that will meet most general safety eyewear needs. They come in several lens options including clear, amber gray and light blue tints. An indoor/outdoor lens and anti-fog coating are also available.
The 3M Virtua CSS provides the same protection as the AP but with an additional feature: slots on the end of the temple for corded earplugs. The AP also has a removable foam gasket for use when dust and debris are in play. Lens options include clear, gray and indoor/outdoor anti-fog.
The 3M Virtua AP cost around $3, and the AP range from $10-$19.
Radians Extremis Safety Glasses
The Radians Extremis offer a modern styling in a foam-lined frame. They all come with anti-fog lenses, and there are five lens options: indoor/outdoor, clear, silver mirror, smoke and low IR.
The low IR lenses provide protection for those who are near but not directly exposed to IR radiation, which means it protects against harmful arc flashes but should not be used for any type of welding application. The low IR-lens version are also great for use under a welding helmet.
Reviewers of the Radians Extremis say they are not just stylish but comfortable too. This eyewear is also considered an outstanding value because of their high quality. One reviewer cautioned that they are warm because of the foam but still comfortable and lightweight.
Pyramex Intruder Safety Glasses
The Pyramex Intruder comes in as the lowest priced safety eyewear on our list. Yet, low price certainly does not equate to low quality when it comes to these glasses. They are lightweight and scratch resistant and provide ample impact protection. Lens options include gray, amber, infinity blue, clear, indoor/outdoor and silver mirror. Some lenses are anti-fog and one even comes without any coating to provide the very basic in eye protection, making them great to keep on hand for visitors. There’s even a bifocal lense that cost just $3.25.
These glasses can also be purchased in bulk. One safety professional said they are so comfortable, stylish and functional that they are disappearing quickly at his plant. The six different frame colors offer variety, especially in situations where color coding is necessary.
Other individuals reviewing the Pyramex Intruder give some interesting insight into these glasses. One said they were perfect protection after her cataract surgery, and another commented on how the Mini Intruder worked well for his 8-year-old grandson. Yet another said she has purchased this eyewear for the last 10 years and plans to continue using them. Finally, a jewelry designer found them perfect for embellishing. These reviewers certainly show the versatility these safety glasses offer.
Bolle Rush Plus Safety Glasses
The Bolle Rush Plus enter our list as one of the options offering the most variety. They’re super sporty and come in several color options. They provide protection for many applications from the workplace to target practice to a day at the beach. Plus, they have anti-fog and anti-scratch coatings on both sides of the lens to guarantee stellar protection in all conditions. Add the foam and strap kit to any Bolle Rush Plus, and you’re also protected against dust and flying debris.
Three of the Bolle Rush Plus also come with a CSP lens that provides an effective solution for varying light and temperature conditions. This basically means they can filter blue light, combat fog, and provide visual comfort in changing conditions. These lenses are recommended for extreme hot or cold conditions.
Those who have worn this eyewear say it is both light and a good fit. One reviewer likes the fit of the small glasses with the white/pink temples, saying they are perfect for a woman’s face frame. A bicyclist recommends the CSP indoor/outdoor for riding on a cloudy day.
Bouton Traditional Safety Glasses
The vintage look of the Bouton glasses make them a popular choice. They come with three lens options: IR 3.0, smoke anti-fog, and clear anti-fog. The IR 3.0 filter lens is commonly used in outdoor applications to protect from excessive glare. Another unique feature of these glasses are the wire mesh side shields that helps keep debris away from eyes.
Reviewers tout the great fit of the Bouton Traditional. One repeat customer said he wears them daily and likes the rugged design and anti-fog feature. He did note that the side guards sometimes break when locking them into place, so be careful. Otherwise, they are a terrific pair of safety eyewear.
Elvex OVR-Spec II Safety Glasses
Not your ordinary over-RX safety eyewear, the Elvex OVR-Spec II offers a more updated design. The side windows aid in peripheral vision and the rubber temple trim gives them a snug and comfortable fit. These glasses are also tested to US Military standards, which means they are impact-resistant to 640 feet per second (four times the industrial ANSI Z87 standard).
Reviewers for the Elvex OVR-Spec II help express the versatility of this eyewear. One individual wears them while playing golf and says they work great when the wind blows, especially during pollen season. Another says they fit well even without prescription eyewear underneath, and a third says they fit well over reading glasses too.
At a cost of just under $5, these are the only exclusive over-RX safety glasses on our list.
Jackson Nemesis Safety Glasses
Yet another pair of safety glasses that reviewers describe as comfortable and that several have repurchased over the years. Add to this the sporty design and multiple lens and frame color options, and you have safety eyewear that is sure to please a wide variety of people.
Frame colors for the Jackson Nemesis range from black to blue to camo. Lens options include bronze, indoor/outdoor, clear, amber and smoke. Lenses also come in Shade 3 and Shade 5, which are designed for light to medium soldering, brazing, cutting or welding. These shades are NOT intended for arc welding, but they do offer good protection from nearby flash exposure.
Crews Law 2 Safety Glasses
Another wraparound style of safety eyewear, the Crews Law 2 comes in several lens tints to again represent another variety of options on our list. Tints include: clear anti-fog, indoor/outdoor, gray anti-fog, gray IR 3.0 and 5.0, silver and silver mirror, amber and blue. There’s even a gray anti-fog version that also comes with a foam seal for protection against dust and debris.
Reviewers of this inexpensive eyewear see them as a great option for employees who seem to always come up with excuses for not wearing safety eyewear. One university student even uses the Crews Law 2 in the lab and says they stay comfortable for extended periods of time. She says they do not give her headaches and fit her small face frame well.
Smith & Wesson Elite Safety Glasses
Last but certainly not least are the Smith & Wesson Elite safety glasses. These glasses are not only functional, but they offer a unique style with a bit different look than most other wraparound eyewear. The lenses come in smoke, clear and amber anti-fog as well as in blue mirror, orange and teal. Frames come in black or platinum.
Reviewers for the Smith & Wesson Elite tout their anti-fog feature and say they are comfortable, durable, cool and lightweight. They’re a great, inexpensive option at between $10-$12.
Your Next Step?
The above list gives you some terrific options for purchasing safety eyewear that will actually be worn. We know this because those who have purchased them before have found them to meet their needs and exceed their expectations, and many have repurchased the same eyewear over the years. Plus, all of the eyewear on our list meets or exceed ANSI Z87 standards as well as protects against the sun’s harmful rays.
Oh, and all the eyewear on our list is also under $20 a pair too! With so many options at such reasonable prices, there’s simply no good reason not to protect your eyes at work, at home and during your recreational time.
Hey Mike! I get dirt and debris in my eye all the time whether at work or around the house doing odds and ends. I am the prime example of murpheys law with eyes. I’m willing to pay decent money for a full seal that will almost never fog and looks good. Suggestions?
Matt, there are many options for safety eyewear that are generally intended to be a full seal design, but that don’t always achieve that. It really comes down to the wearer’s face shape and, with that, it’s tough for us to narrow it down without seeing you. Click the link for Foam-Padded Safety Glasses.
These are my favorites based on fit:
Nearly any foam padded style from Wiley X with the exceptions of SG-1.
Elvex Go-Specs Pro
Guard Dogs G100
Edge Caraz (convertible)
Crews Law 3
If you have a wider face, you might prefer these:
Elvex Go-Specs or Go-Specs II
Pyramex I-Force, V2G, V3G, XSG, XS3