Smith Surf athlete Yadin Nicol wearing prescription sunglasses.

Photochromic Glasses vs. Prescription Sunglasses | Which is Right for You?

Here at Smith, we offer a wide range of prescription glasses, from blue light computer glasses to prescription sunglasses with ChromaPop™ lenses, but two of our offerings overlap a little and it can be tough to decide which pair is right for you. Both our glasses with photochromic lenses and prescription sunglasses offer UV protection in your customized prescription, but each option has a couple of unique features that might make it a better fit for you and your activities. 

Photochromic Glasses: Pros and Cons

When you pick out your prescription frames, you also have the option to customize your lenses. One of our favorite customization options is making your lenses photochromic. Photochromic or light-sensitive lenses automatically adjust from clear to tinted when exposed to sunlight, making your glasses adapt to any environment you find yourself in. 

The main advantage of selecting photochromic lenses is that they’re like a pair of sunglasses and a pair of glasses in one frame, you have less to carry and can protect your eyes when you’re out in the sun. The drawback is that photochromic lenses are not currently available with ChromaPop™ or polarization, and are currently only available in one tint (clear to grey). 

If your day is evenly spent between indoors and out then photochromic lenses in your glasses might be the right pick for you, but if you spend most of your time outdoors or are heading out for a weekend adventure then you might want to consider getting a pair of prescription sunglasses. 

Prescription Sunglasses: Pros and Cons

Our prescription sunglasses are just as easy to purchase on our website as our prescription glasses, and you get the benefit of getting our best-selling sunglasses styles custom-made with the lens tint you want in your prescription. You can get performance sunglasses like the Guide’s Choice or go for a more casual style like the Contour, both frames have thoughtful details like grippy Megol nose pads to keep your glasses in place. 

The other major benefit of our prescription sunglasses is that you can match whichever frame color you like to whichever lens will perform best in your environment. You can choose between black, brown, bronze mirror, green mirror, and blue mirror lenses when you’re making your prescription sunglasses, and all of those lens options feature both polarization and ChromaPop™

Still Not Sure Which Glasses Are Right For You? 

We want you to spend more time doing what you love, and less time thinking about glasses, so leave finding your perfect fit to us. Shoot our team a message and we can help recommend what style will work best for you.