Fifty Shades of…Shades

A few different pairs, but all big enough to protect the full eye.

Fifty Shades of Shades

No. I don’t own fifty pairs of shades, nor have I read Fifty Shades of Grey, but I do own about six pairs of sunglasses. I just wanted to entice you with that title to get your attention and share some information on why you should protect your eyes from the sun.

As I’ve aged, I’ve become a little self-conscious about my eyes. My friends may tell you I’m a little obsessed with it (and they are probably right). Keeping your eyes looking as youthful as possible is important to feeling good about yourself, however, I am firmly grounded. I know I can’t beat Mother Nature, but I am sure willing to try (and I don’t believe in Botox or surgery…at least not yet).

Protecting your eyes from the damages of the sun is key to good eye health and pretty skin. Many people think wearing sunglasses is just something to do during the summer months. In fact, we should always be protecting our eyes from the sun, no matter the season. According to an article written by Katharine Lee in Everyday Health, “UV rays can raise your risk of developing eye diseases such as cataracts, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and even cancer of the eye and eyelids, says Richard Shugarman, MD, spokesperson for the American Academy of Ophthalmology and an ophthalmologist in West Palm Beach, Florida.” Furthermore, the article reports that ultraviolet light is a form of radiation and has the potential to alter cells. This process can begin early in life, even though we may not see the damage until much later. Wearing sunglasses in the winter months can help protect your eyes from the rays. Hence, from the images you see of me wearing my various shades, the bigger the sunglasses, the better.

My favorite pair…from Ann Taylor Loft…and not expensive.
Winter shades…parka hat and scarf. I hate being cold!

Another tip in the winter months is to use a bit of Vaseline under your eyes. The petroleum jelly locks in moisture, and creates a protective barrier around your eyes. Because the skin underneath the eye is very thin, it can become flaky, and dryness can be irritating. I’ve just recently learned this tip about Vaseline, and if you’d like to read more, visit their website by clicking here.

Jackie-O and Audrey Hepburn loved to wear big sunglasses–this accessory added a certain mystique to their personas, not to mention, helped create iconic figures. Both ladies aged beautifully.

So, do yourself a favor and invest in a couple of pairs of good shades that feature UV protection. Wear them when you’re in the car (or leave a pair there for safekeeping in case you forget your favorite), pack a pair in your purse, or keep one in your briefcase. To the younger folks in particular, don’t plaster baby oil or a low-numbered sunscreen all over your body just to be tan. Wear a high number sunscreen, hats, or stay out of the sun altogether. Often when I go to the pool or the beach these days, you’ll find me wearing sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat, and most likely sitting under an umbrella. Unfortunately, the effects of what my friends and I did during our teens and twenties is still unfolding.

Trying to keep the eyes from looking tired.

Sunglasses are a fashion statement, so find the ones that suit you. Remember, you can look hip, cool, and iconic in your own way. Let them be an extension of your personality. And most importantly, let them protect one of your most valuable assets–your beautiful eyes.

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