What Are Photochromic Lenses?

Oct 1, 2020

lady in photochromic lenses looking to the sky

Photochromic lenses, or photochromatic lenses, may sound rather technical, but they’re more widely known as transition lenses and work in the exact same way. Like transition lenses, photochromic lenses quickly react to different light conditions where UV is present. They absorb the ambient light and change the colour of the lens to protect the wearer from harmful ultraviolet rays.


Why are there photochromic glasses and transition glasses?

Although they achieve the same result, it all comes down to the science behind the photochromic lens. Its unique design is what allows them to transform from clear glass to a darker shade when in contact with UV light. This make-up is then used within multiple brands of lenses, utilising its benefits, with Transitions® glasses being the biggest and most well-known brand.

If you are working with screens a lot throughout the day, you may find a transition lens could benefit you, or even for watching television. UV is prevalent in varying degrees throughout the home, work, and outside, and so having the transition ready to protect your eyes throughout the day is a great way to improve your eye health.


What Do Photochromic Lenses Look Like?

Despite the technical name, photochromatic lenses don’t look any different from traditional lenses. The only thing separating them is the magic within the lens, changing colour depending on the amount of light absorbed.

The Benefits Of Photochromic Lenses

Photochromic lenses offer great flexibility to the wearer. They can be made with a prescription and with a wide variety of different coatings to protect them from scratches, glare, and more, they can provide an all-round solution for the patient with only one pair of glasses 

They can be applied to all types of lenses

By this, we mean that photochromatic lenses work with prescription and non-prescription glasses. Whether you require glasses throughout the day, for driving, reading or as standard sunglasses, photochromic lenses can protect your eyes no matter where you are or what you’re doing.

You can add different lens coatings

Along with UV protection, you can also personalise your photochromatic lenses with additional finishes. Different lens coatings such as anti-scratch, anti-glare or anti-smudge, will extend the longevity of your glasses and help provide better overall vision.

Save money with one lens

By choosing photochromic glasses, you can comfortably move from different environments and light settings, knowing your lenses will react and transition to the level of shade required. This removes the faff and expense of switching between two sets of frames.


Will photochromic lenses work in the car?

Photochromatic lenses are designed to react to UV sunlight. That’s why they predominately change when outdoors. Car windshields are designed to block UV light. Meaning fewer rays reach your glasses and your photochromatic lenses won’t darken.

However, if you find you’re still squinting whilst driving due to bright sunlight, our Transitions XTRActive lenses offer a solution. The molecules within these premium lenses are designed to react to both UV and naturally bright lights. Meaning the lens will transition to a darker lens whilst driving. 

How does temperature affect photochromic lenses?

It may sound silly, but temperature can influence how quickly your photochromic lenses react. The modules within the lens are designed to react when they come into contact with warm UV light. If the modules are cold, they’ll move slowly and take longer to transform from clear to darker lenses.


Why Choose Lensology Transition Signature Lenses?

At Lensology, quality and customer satisfaction are paramount. Only stocking the best products, we supply the latest in transition lens technology with our Gen8 Transitions Signature range.

Go back ten years, and lenses would be available in glass or plastic. The glass option was substantially weightier than its plastic counterpart and could not be produced in shatterproof materials, making the lenses harder to care for and expensive to replace. Ten years on and the technology is such that Lensology can offer a lens with fast-fade-back time, enhanced colour perception, first-class visual protection, and optimum comfort – without having to order through the opticians.

Whether you’re looking for a lens to do it all and take you from the couch to the tennis court, an additional pair to wear that transition when the sun goes down, or prescription sunglasses, all Lensology UV filtering lenses meet the BS2724 standard. Find out more about our reglazing and transition lenses here.

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