Here I review something that will supposedly keep my eyes from getting messed up. I kind of need my eyes for later.
“Been a long time… shouldn’t have left you…”
It’s been over 6 months since COVID-19 shut down the borders in the U.S. Do you miss traveling yet?
I don’t and I do.
I’ll admit, these days (in the midst of the COVID-19 global shutdown), it’s hard to remember what traveling the world was like. After all, it’s now October, and this is the longest time I’ve spent stateside in at least 7 years. I have had to find other gigs besides daydreaming, traveling the globe, and writing about traveling the globe, and that’s fine. It’s kind of a reality check, but also a chance to create some epic plans for the “comeback vacay”.
While working a desk job full-time and scheming about the future, I’ve realized one thing that I’ve forgotten for a long time- working at a desk is horrible, and the strain it puts on your eyes is even worse. Combine that with the amount of time we usually spend looking on our phones, our TVs and Netflix, and you’ve got a losing combination.
Blue Light Glasses: An Interesting Solution
So, I went looking for a solution. Blue light glasses seem to be the most popular solution out there these days. If you’re not familiar with the concept, these glasses are designed to filter blue light from artificial sources. This blue light is the reason that computer and phone screens irritate our eyes so much, and can even lead to vision loss over time.
I did a bit of searching and happened on a company from Miami called TheBlueSpec, which sells exactly two models of glasses (“Italian design”, the page says) in several different colors. Their Facebook page says that more models are coming in the future, but their signature model of frame (“Moderna” model, not to be confused with the orange-in-chief’s favorite medical company) is pretty trendy, and does seem like something you’d see someone wearing in Milan. You know how they say in Italy: if you can’t make it to Cinque de Terre, you might as well wear Cinque de Terre on your head.
Long story short, I opted for the blue version of the frames, and they arrived about a week after my order (with free shipping, to boot).
The glasses came in a sturdy translucent blue hard shell carrying case that’s about half the size of most eyeglass cases. As a matter of fact, it was a little harder to put the glasses back in than I’m used to, but once I figured it out, it was no problem. They also came with a microfiber cleaning cloth, as promised on the website. The frame of these glasses is a stylish translucent light blue- and while they are lightweight (less than a few sheets of paper, according to the marketing), they don’t feel cheap (See pic above).
I’m not sure what’s the best way to test out whether glasses like these work, but I will say that the first night using these, I certainly had an easier time going to sleep once I was finished with all my work. I didn’t have that feeling that comes sometimes when you know you’re not going to be able to sleep because you’re on your phone and wired, even though your body feels tired and it’s 2:00 AM. I also woke up refreshed and laying on my back, which is pretty impressive because I’m not a sound sleeper.
How are these a great travel accessory?
Well, if I understood what blue light does to our bodies early on in my international travel career, I would have used that to my advantage to help regulate my circadian rhythm. Honestly, for the first month or so of quarantine, I realized that my sleep schedule is garbage, and it’s probably from traveling for weeks at a time for work. These glasses have helped me get that under control, even despite my late night IG habits.
Also, this product is very travel-able. The hard case is sturdy, and the glasses are clearly made to bend and not break- which is a welcome relief for those of us who are used to the thrills of gas station sunglasses. I could imagine that this would be a welcome addition to anyone’s briefcase or laptop bag. If you’re going to enjoy a vacation, even if it’s for work, you need quality sleep. This seems like a great way to do that.
TheBlueSpec Moderna glasses (as reviewed here) are available from thebluespec.com and select other retailers.