If you play video games for any length of time, you may have experienced the blur, headaches, eyestrain, dry eye and/or neck and back strain that goes with the territory.
GUNNAR Razer RPG Gaming Glasses
Gamma Ray Blue Light Blocking Glasses
Gaming glasses were developed to address some of these issues. While they can help with eyestrain, blur and potentially the ensuing headaches, they won’t help with dry eye or neck/back pain.
Gaming glasses have various combinations of tint, anti-reflection coating, blue light blocking, ultraviolet light (UV) protection and/or magnification.
Various tints can help with contrast and blue light blocking:
- Anti-reflection coatings, just as they sound, reduce reflections, enabling more comfortable vision.
- Blue light filters can ease eyestrain and minimize the effects that computer use can have on the sleep cycle.
- UV filters help to protect the eyes while outside.
- Magnification can be helpful to those who have trouble seeing up close, which tends to happen with age
Here are eight great gaming glasses to consider:
1. GUNNAR Razer RPG Gaming Glasses
GUNNAR is the leader in gaming glasses. The GUNNAR Razer RPG Gaming glasses are made of a lightweight aluminum-magnesium frame.
They come with adjustable nose pads, which are useful to achieve an optimal fit over the bridge of the nose. They feature an anti-reflective coating, scratch-resistant coating, ultraviolet (UV) light blocking and their 65 blue light protection factor amber lens.
They have what they call “GUNNAR Focus” lenses, which is a very subtle magnification. They are also available with a prescription, if necessary.
Pros: They have a very small amount of magnification, which some people may appreciate. They’re available with a prescription.
Cons: The frame only comes in one eye size, 62 mm, which is quite large. The small amount of magnification in these lenses may not be enough for some people.
2. Gamma Ray Blue Light Blocking Glasses
The Gamma Ray Blue Light Blocking glasses are a great option for first-time buyers. They are affordable, unisex and come in a variety of frame styles. Their lenses are a light amber tint with blue light blocking capability. They also have an anti-reflective coating and UV light protection. They’re available with a variety of magnification options, from 0-4X.
Pros: These glasses are very affordable. The frames are simple, lightweight, and stylish. They offer magnification options.
Cons: These glasses are not available with a prescription. Also, the frame only comes in one size.
3. Swanwick Classic Day Swannies
These stylish glasses are not specifically designed for gaming. They have a fashion-forward look appropriate for the office. The frames are unisex and come in three colors: black, tortoise and two-tone. They also come in three sizes: small, medium and large. They have an anti-reflective coating, as well as blue blocking capability and a UV filter. They tout their lenses as being virtually clear, unlike many other gaming glasses. This is because they only block the most harmful range of blue light. They are also available with a Rx.
Pros: Swannies frames are the most environmentally friendly gaming frame on the market. They are made from acetate, a plant-based, hypoallergenic plastic without BPA. They are available in three sizes for more versatility in fit. They are available with a prescription.
Cons: These lenses may not block as much blue light as other lenses do. They also don’t have a magnification option.
4. ANNRI Blue Light Blocking Glasses
The ANNRI Blue Light Blocking Glasses are designed for extended computer use. ANNRI offers a multitude of frame options, with both unisex and gender-specific frames. They offer many frame colors and lens selections, including prescription options. The lenses have blue-blocking capability, UV filtering and an anti-reflection coating. They are available with a prescription if desired.
Pros: ANNRI provides numerous options esthetically in terms of frame color and size, appealing to many different preferences. They are cost-effective and offer prescription options.
Cons: The lenses are made from polycarbonate, which is impact-resistant but can be slightly more difficult to clean than a plastic lens. They don’t offer a magnification option.
5. HyperX Gaming Eyewear
Designed with serious gamers in mind, the HyperX Gaming Eyewear provides top-notch protection from blue and UV light. The lenses also have an anti-reflection coating.
These glasses are specifically designed to be comfortable when worn in conjunction with gaming headsets. There are four unisex frame styles made of different materials and colors, including one that is youth-specific. The others come in various sizes. Lenses are clear, unlike many other blue-blocking lenses.
Prescription options are available. The Spectre React offers the option of adding a polarized sunglass clip-on.
Pros: The frames are stylish and versatile and designed for comfort while wearing a headset. The option to add a prescription is available. They have a youth-specific frame style.
Cons: HyperX Gaming Eyewear is less affordable than some other options.
6. GAMEKING Clip-On Computer Glasses
GAMEKING’s Clip-On Computer Glasses are designed to clip directly onto your prescription glasses, so there’s no need to change pairs when you settle in front of the screen! The lenses feature an anti-reflective coating, blue blocker and UV filter. They will only fit rectangular frames that are no more than 39 mm in height. There are two style options: one that flips up and another that doesn’t.
Pros: These are incredibly thin and light, weighing between 8-12 grams, depending on the style. They come with a lifetime warranty against breakage and a 30-day money-back guarantee for any reason.
Cons: These are only a good option if you already wear prescription glasses, due to the clip-on feature. In addition, they will only fit certain frames.
7. STAMEN Blue Light Blocking Glasses
Stamen’s Blue Light Blocking Glasses are designed as a fashionable, unisex option for gamers. They have four frame options of various colors, sizes and material. They provide blue blocking capability that only filters out the most harmful wavelengths.
Pros: Silicone nose pads are an added comfort feature.
Cons: They don’t specifically state that they have an anti-reflective coating. Without this feature, glare could still be a significant issue. They also don’t specify that they block UV light, so this may be an issue for those who want to wear them outdoors. They also don’t block out as much blue light as darker lenses do. The option to add a prescription is not available either.
8. J+S Vision Computer & Gaming Glasses
J+S gaming glasses are designed with low-color distortion lenses, for those looking to avoid the potential distraction of tinted lenses. They do this by only blocking the most harmful range of blue light. They offer five unisex styles with various lens tint and frame color options. They also include an anti-reflection coating and UV blocking capability.
Pros: One of their styles offers a magnification option in a strength of your choosing.
Cons: These lenses don’t block as much blue light as darker ones do. They are also not available with prescription.
Frequently Asked Questions
With so many options on the market, investing in gaming glasses may feel like a daunting task. Here are a few questions to ask before making a purchase.
Q: Do I need prescription gaming glasses?
A: Having a pair of glasses with your most up-to-date prescription is one of the most important things you can do to minimize computer vision syndrome. Without an accurate prescription in place, gaming glasses will have limited utility. The good news is that some gaming glasses can be ordered with a prescription. This allows for the correction of myopia (nearsightedness), hyperopia (farsightedness), astigmatism and presbyopia.
Gaming glasses features are also available in glasses that are not specifically designed for gaming. You can also order prescription blue light blocking glasses with an anti-reflection coating, UV filter, scratch-resistant coating and a lens tint of your choice through your optometrist or ophthalmologist. This route may end up costing more; however, you do have the benefit of choosing your own frame, or even using one you already have.
If your eyes don’t require a prescription, that makes it easy! You can order over-the-counter gaming glasses without having that worry. If you just need a little help seeing up close, some of them are available with magnification.
Q: How much should I spend?
A: Just like sunglasses, gaming glasses are available at many different price points. This is based on lens features, as well as frame style and quality. As you can see, there’s a wide variation in these attributes in the products out there. Your budget will be determined by what features are most important to you.
Q: How important is style?
A: Gaming glasses are notorious for being boxy, yellow, and looking like…well, gaming glasses! There are many options on the market, ranging from large frames with bright, amber colored lenses to sleek frames that look like they rolled right off the shelf at Warby Parker. Not all gaming glasses look like gaming glasses. With all the different options available today, you’re bound to find something to suit your style!
Q: Is there anything else I can do for computer vision syndrome?
A: Yes! Ergonomics play a huge role in computer vision syndrome. It’s important to have proper lighting, device positioning and posture. Anti-glare screen covers can help. Blinking and taking breaks goes a long way as well. Remember the 20-20-20 rule. For every 20 minutes of device use, take a 20 second break by looking at something 20 feet away. You can set a timer to remind you. This will help to ease the blur, eyestrain, dry eye and fatigue associated with device use.