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Bucket, Spade....Don't Forget Your Shades!

Ayrshire’s award-winning independent optometrists, Urquhart Opticians, are getting their shades on this month to urge locals to take extra care in the sun this summer.

With National Sun Awareness Week falling on 8-14th of May, the Urquhart Opticians team are highlighting the importance of protecting your eyes from the sun with information available at their Kilmarnock, Troon, Prestwick and Glasgow practices throughout May.

As part of this, the group are highlighting the importance of choosing the right sunglasses.

Alistair Duff, optometrist and partner at the Kilmarnock based opticians group, explained: “Our priority is our patients’ vision and eye health, so this month we’re launching a campaign to provide information on the benefits of wearing the right sunglasses. Recent years have seen great advances in widespread awareness of protecting our skin. However, the sun’s UV rays can cause both long and short term damage to our eyes too, from burning the delicate skin around the eye to increased risk of cataracts, growths and tumours. So, whilst sunglasses undoubtedly remain a key fashion item, it is essential that people consider their eye health too when choosing their next set of shades.

“This is also the time of year when the increased sun levels can make eye strain more apparent, whilst conditions such as hay fever can exacerbate underlying issues. Eye examinations remain free of charge on the NHS, so if you have any eye or vision concerns, please get them checked out by your local optician.”

Sun Glasses Guide from Urquhart Opticians

Check for UV

Look out for a tag or sticker stating that the lenses provide 100% UV protection. In Europe, the CE mark will denote UV protection, but if in doubt check with your optician or retailer.

Size Matters

Be sure and pick a pair which fits you comfortably, and chose larger sized lenses and/or wrap around styles to provide greater protection. As well as cutting down the UV entering your eyes, these styles can also help shield your eyes from water, grass cuttings etc.

Choose Your Colour

UV protective lenses need not always be darker brown. Coloured lenses can be just as protective, and can enhance contrast. Likewise, dark lenses do not necessarily mean 100% UV protection. Always check the tag or ask your optician.  Coloured lenses can be beneficial for certain activities and climates, providing varying levels of colour distortion and contrast. For example, golfers often appreciate sunglasses with amber, brown or green lenses, whilst cyclists and skiers may prefer a yellow or orange lens.         


Don’t confuse polarized with protection. Polarized lenses reduce glare, so are popular for drivers or for activities near water. Be sure and ask for UV protection as well as polarization.

Priced to Suit

100% UV protection sun glasses need not be expensive and are a worthwhile investment in protecting your long-term eye health.

Wear them Well

Wear your sun glasses at all times in the sun. For the best protection, team them up with a wide-brimmed hat. Don’t forget your sun cream. And never ever, even with shade on, look directly at the sun!

Urquhart Opticians was established in 1916 and has practices in Kilmarnock, Troon, Prestwick and Glasgow stocking a broad range of designer brands including Tiffany, Tom Ford, Ray Ban, Michael Kors, Oakley and William Morris. Throughout the month of May, the practices will be offering sun glasses special offers, discounts and the chance to win £250 of holiday vouchers. To find out more go to www.urquhart-opticians.co.uk

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