Safety goggles and glasses protect your eyes from a range of harmful and destructive exposure. With the right protective eyewear, you can block chemicals, liquids, dirt, dust, or debris from entering your eyes.
Having safety eyewear is essential whether you are in a construction or landscaping site or manufacturing facility, automotive repair shop, laboratory, or woodworking. Medical fields, childcare, and countless other professions also rely on protective eyewear to keep their eyes safe from damage and contaminants.
In many cases, it is mandated by law to have the goggles on to perform a certain type of task. If your employees do not have these goggles on, it can result in a violation; and they can get seriously injured.
Safety Glasses Vs. Goggles
The main difference between safety glasses and goggles is the level of protection they provide. Safety glasses are designed to protect your eyes from flying debris and other objects that can injure them. However, goggles provide complete protection, as there are no gaps around them like there are with safety glasses.
Goggles can fit over eyeglasses or can be worn by people who wear contact lenses – they are made from a durable, flexible material that can adjust to different face sizes.
Safety glasses generally offer adequate protection in most industrial and medical settings, while goggles may be needed in industries where there is a danger of splash hazards, airborne dust, and flying debris.
Why You Should Wear Safety Glasses or Goggles
Wearing safety eyewear is essential for workplace safety, and is mandated by OSHA. They state this on their website: The employer shall ensure that each affected employee uses appropriate eye or face protection when exposed to eye or face hazards from flying particles, molten metal, liquid chemicals, acids or caustic liquids, chemical gases or vapors, or potentially injurious light radiation.
Protect yourself and your employees against injury, and your business against fines or other legal trouble, by ensuring you have the right safety glasses or goggles for your type of business.
Safety Goggles: Our Top Recommendations
|Feature||Top Pick: Solidworks Safety Goggles||Runner Up: NoCry Safety Goggles 6X3||Best Value: DEWALT Anti-Fog Dual Mold Safety Goggles|
|UV Protection||Yes||Yes||Not Specified|
|Adjustable||Adjustable elastic strap||Not Specified||Adjustable cloth head strap|
|Over Glasses Fit||Yes||Yes||Not Specified|
|Ventilation||Ventilated Design||Angled vents to promote airflow||Built-in ventilation channels|
|Certification||Not Specified||ANSI Z87.1 certified, OSHA compliant||Not Specified|
|Additional Features||Polarized dark lenses, Soft rubber sealing molds to fit all face and head sizes||Clear wraparound lenses||Soft, dual-injected rubber seal, Clip attachment for easy lens replacement|
Solidwork Safety Goggles
Top Pick: Our top pick for the best safety glasses or goggles is made by a company called Solidwork, which specializes in protective eyewear and other personal protective equipment. This ventilated pair of goggles offers UV protection – they have a special coating that makes them scratch-resistant on the outside and fog-free on the inside while the polarized dark lenses protect your eyes from harmful UV rays.
These goggles will fit over most eyeglasses and are said to be extremely comfortable and adjustable. They have an adjustable elastic strap and soft rubber sealing molds to fit all face and head sizes.
NoCry Safety Goggles 6X3
Runner Up: Our runner-up goggles also come with an anti-fog and anti-scratch coating as well as UV protection. They have clear wraparound lenses with angled vents to promote airflow, reduce fogging, and provide a comfortable fit. These over-the-glasses safety goggles are ANSI Z87.1 certified and OSHA compliant.
DEWALT Anti-Fog Dual Mold Safety Goggles
Best Value: Our best value pick comes from DEWALT. Their anti-fog safety glasses are also scratch resistant and provide a soft, comfortable protective seal with soft, dual-injected rubber.
The adjustable cloth head strap promises a comfortable fit, and the built-in ventilation channels provide additional anti-fogging. A clip attachment allows for easy lens replacement.
3M GoggleGear 500 Series
3M’s Scotchguard anti-fog coating is said to last longer than traditional anti-fog coatings, helping to increase eyewear performance in damp or steamy environments.
These safety glasses offer a low-profile design, adjustable strap, and indirect ventilation. They meet the requirements of ANSI Z87.1-2015 and CSA Z94.3.
Kleenguard Maverick Safety Glasses
Kleenguard’s Maverick safety glasses feature a sleek, lightweight frame and premium anti-fog and anti-scratch lens coatings. These polycarbonate lenses provide 99. 9% UVA/ UVB/UVC protection and meet the ANSI Z87. 1+ standards for optical and impact protectors.
Uvex Ultra-Spec 2001 OTG
These goggles are designed to be worn while wearing prescription glasses. The deep brow guard and adjustable temple length ensure they will fit around most prescription glasses. They also have temple pads to prevent pinching or pressure in that area. These are clear, anti-fog glasses.
Stoggles Square Z87.1 Certified Safety Glasses
Small business Stoggles offers these impact-resistant safety glasses made from transparent polycarbonate. Their lenses have 100% UV blocking protection, coated lenses to prevent lens fogging, and block blue light, so they can be worn safely for an extended period.
Crews BK310AF BearKat 3
A Duramass scratch-resistant coating and a clear fog lens give this light 0.87-ounce goggles some great features. The polycarbonate lens filters 99.9% of UV rays. Additional safety standards include meeting the military’s MIL-PRF-31013 clause 22.214.171.124 for high-velocity impact protection and exceeding the ANSI Z87+ rating.
Truline Wraptor 110 Safety Goggles
Truline’s Wraptor goggles feature polycarbonate lenses and frame, and an anti-fog coating. They are foam lined to prevent against airborne particles and have a lanyard strap for maximum seal and protection. These clear glasses are Z87+ compliant.
Sellstrom Safety Goggles & Glasses Wildland Fire OTG Eye Protection
This pair of safety glasses by Sellstrom is heat resistant up to 350ºF and can be used in any application requiring non-vented eye protection. They are made from heat-resistant TPV material and have a soft, closed cell foam layer; and an OTG design that fits over most prescription eyeglasses.
These goggles meet ANSI Z87.1 and high impact standards and the lenses have STA-Clear coating for fog and scratch resistance.
Pyramex Fortress Safety Glasses
These Pyramex safety glasses provide a lightweight, low-profile design with an adjustable nose pad to reduce irritation to the nose bridge and vented lenses. They have a straight back and rubber-coated temple tips. Pyramex says their anti-scratch lenses offer 99% protection against harmful UV rays.
NoCry Safety Glasses
The NoCry safety glasses are made with a strong, durable wraparound design to keep your eyes safe from direct and peripheral threats. These protective glasses have side and nose pieces that adjust to fit any head size. They are fog, glare, and scratch resistant and promise no optical distortion.
How to choose the Best Safety Glasses and Goggles for You and Your Employees
The right safety glasses or goggles can make all the difference in maintaining a safe workplace. Apart from understanding the risks inherent to your specific line of work, there are several factors you should consider when buying safety eyewear.
Ergonomic design can greatly affect the comfort and effectiveness of safety eyewear. Look for models that provide good coverage without compromising your ability to see and react to your surroundings. Features like adjustable straps and flexible frames can improve the fit and comfort.
The lens material is also a crucial aspect. Polycarbonate is often preferred due to its superior impact resistance. If you work in high-temperature environments, you might want to consider heat-resistant materials.
Different lens colors serve different purposes. Clear lenses are ideal for indoor use, while amber or yellow lenses can enhance contrast in low-light conditions. Gray or dark-colored lenses can protect against sun glare, making them perfect for outdoor use.
Vented vs. Non-Vented:
Depending on your work environment, you might need vented goggles to reduce fogging, or non-vented ones to protect against dust, liquids, or chemical splashes.
Some companies offer safety glasses that can accommodate your prescription, eliminating the need for wearing two pairs of glasses simultaneously. It may be more costly upfront, but can save on long-term discomfort and hassle.
Consider the following key points when selecting safety eyewear:
- Type of Work: Determine the risks inherent to your job role, like projectiles or chemicals.
- Fit: Make sure the glasses fit properly, securely, and provide clear peripheral vision.
- Comfort: Avoid glasses that cause pressure points or discomfort.
- Fog and Scratch Resistance: Look for models that resist fogging and scratching.
- Prescription Integration: If necessary, find models that accommodate prescription glasses.
- Durability: Invest in high-quality glasses to save on future replacement costs.
- Filters: Choose glasses with the appropriate protective filters for your work environment.
- Impact Resistance: Ensure your glasses conform to ANSI safety standards.
Remember, safety eyewear isn’t an area to cut corners on. High-quality, suitable protective eyewear is a critical investment in the well-being and productivity of you and your employees. Protecting vision at work isn’t just a precautionary measure; it’s a key component of maintaining a safe and efficient work environment.
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