Aesthetics or Eye Safety?

Sure, kids with sunglasses are adorable, but do they really need them? To put it simply: yes. Everyone should protect their eyes from the sun’s harmful rays, and this is especially important for babies, as their eyes are much more sensitive, as is the skin around their eyes.

Children’s sunglasses protect the eyes of little ones both at an early age and during growth and, not to be underestimated, can play an important role in the development of healthy habits that will accompany them even in adulthood. That’s why it’s so important to choose sunglasses with effective UV protection (which can help prevent long-term damage) that fit and fit well on your baby’s face.

Knowing how children’s sunglasses work to protect the eyes, as well as the best types and where to buy them, can help you find the right pair.

Why children need sunglasses

Babies and children under the age of 10 have very sensitive eyes. Because their eyes are still developing, the lens in a child’s eye cannot filter ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun the way adult eyes do. This means that the more harmful blue ultraviolet rays can get into their eyes, which can make babies more susceptible to damaged retinas and other vision problems.

Children's sunglasses protect the eyes
Children’s sunglasses protect the eyes at an early age and during growth

Unfortunately, the sun damage caused by UV exposure cannot be avoided. Even short periods of exposure of the eye to the sun can cause damage, including macular degeneration, dull complexion, cataracts or even, in less widespread cases, a rare form of eye cancer. In addition, it should be considered that a child’s eyelids and the skin around the eyes are very delicate. Even if a child closes his eyes to protect himself from the sun, his thin eyelids can burn causing very painful discomfort. And because the skin is so transparent, some sunlight can still reach the retina.

When Should Children Start Wearing Sunglasses?

Babies under the age of six months should not be exposed to the sun, even for short periods. To keep them safe, you can use the canopy of the stroller, an umbrella, the shade of a tree or a building ledge.

Modern children's sunglasses
Children need sunglasses because they have very sensitive eyes

From six months onwards it is safer for babies to stay in the sun, but it is still very important to protect them from harmful rays. The best way to protect a child from the sun during this age is to use a hat with a brim, sunscreen and sunglasses.

A pediatric eye doctor can help you find the best children’s glasses and sunglasses for children – they’ll tell you which sunglasses adequately protect your child’s delicate eyes and skin, and which ones will suit his face best.

What to consider when buying sunglasses for children:

Effective UV protection

This is the most important thing to look for in any pair of sunglasses. Make sure kids’ sunglasses block 100% of UVA (long) and UVB (short) rays or absorb UV rays up to 400nm. There should be a sticker or label indicating the percentage of UV protection.

Children's in a water with sunglasses
Children need sunglasses because child’s eye cannot filter ultraviolet (UV) rays from the sun the way adult eyes do

Proper Fit

Babies tend to squirm and take off their clothes and accessories and sunglasses are no exception. To keep sunglasses on your face, look for a pair that offers a snug fit – they should wrap it around your face and over your ears. Make sure the sunglasses completely cover the skin around the eyes and cheeks. This not only protects their delicate skin, but prevents UV rays from sneaking in from the side. For children, larger sunglasses are generally better.

Make Sure the Kids Wear Sunglasses


Test the frames before you buy them and look for ones that can bend a bit without breaking. As for the lenses, while neither lens is completely shatterproof, plastic and polycarbonate lenses are a viable choice as they are less likely to shatter and cause damage to your baby’s face. Most non-prescription lenses are plastic, but some get scratched, so look for lenses with a scratch-resistant coating.

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