Step aside, overpriced sunglasses — there’s some new eye protection on the market, and it’s not what you might think. The new Acuvue Oasys with Transitions Light Intelligent Technology are contact lenses that not only correct your vision, but also help your eyes adjust to light once outside, too.
Yeah, I didn’t believe it when I heard about them, either. Contact lenses that adjust to the light to prevent squinting just seemed unimaginable to me, but that’s how I felt when colored contact lenses first came out on the market, too. (Like, how do people actually see through those things? I’m still confused.) According to a press release, though, the new Acuvue Oasys contacts include a “photochromic dynamic filter that quickly and seamlessly adjusts from clear to dark and back in response to changing light conditions, providing soothing vision all day.” So yes, these lenses are similar to the transitions lenses you're probably familiar with on regular glasses, except much less cumbersome.
The new innovation is the first and only of its kind, and was named one of TIME’s “Best Inventions of 2018.” The product is best suited for those living an active lifestyle, as these contacts help reduce exposure to bright lights both indoors and outdoors, plus they’re the only contacts that provide 100 percent protection against UVB rays (like sunscreen for your eyeballs!).
“We had to overcome a huge technology hurdle to make this happen,” David Turner, head of contact-lens research and development at Acuvue’s parent company, Johnson & Johnson Vision, told TIME. And overcome it, they did. In a clinical study, the Acuvue Oasys with Transitions was shown to reduce the stressful impact that light can have on your eyes by helping your vision recover from bright light (up to 5 seconds) faster and reducing squinting (by 38 percent, on average).
Just to be clear, the contacts don’t turn a super dark color once outdoors (like transitional glasses might), but they do change color ever-so-slightly (which will most likely be unnoticeable to others looking into your eyes). The new Acuvue contacts begin to darken as soon as they’re exposed to sunlight, reaching full activation within 45 seconds on average and blocking 70 percent of visible light. Then, the lenses will fade from dark to clear within 90 seconds when going from outdoors to indoors.
These revolutionary contacts also help you see colors more clearly, too. Compared to the Acuvue Oasys with Hydraclear Plus contacts, the new Acuvue Oasys Transitions contacts provide up to 38 percent better color contrast, according to the brand, and will make life look more vivid and vibrant.
These contacts will help every wearer reduce the amount of squinting happening on a daily basis, which has a large effect on the amount and severity of fine lines and wrinkles around the eye area. There haven’t been any studies done that prove these will heavily help prevent wrinkles, but honestly, having a first line of defense immediately, both indoors and outdoors, is a pretty sweet deal. (Of course, these contacts shouldn't replace sunglasses or other forms of full eye protection.)
The Acuvue Oasys with Transitions is a two-week reusable contact lens and is already available for purchase. Find out more at www.acuvue.com/transitions.