Allison Kerek

SUMMER IS TERRIBLE. Bugs exist. Heat happens. Your hillbilly neighbors set off fireworks for a month each side of Fourth of July. Worst, though, are the unrelenting beams of the Hateful Daystar. Summer banishes the comforting layer of cloud cover from Portland's normally unthreatening skies, and night is whittled down to, at times, a paltry six hours. For reasons unknown, some people welcome summer's light like it's something to actually celebrate. For those of us who more sensibly greet the gaze of Helios with a vampiric hiss, though, certain countermeasures must be taken.

Unless you're willing to don a full-body Bedouin wrap (NOT A TERRIBLE IDEA) then inevitably some stray rays of burning evil are going to hit your skin. But, there's one (or rather, two) body parts that you can protect from the awful glare of Sol: your eyes. With the right pair of sunglasses, you can turn a bunch of stupid daylight into safe, comfortable eventide.

Before you apply that pair of Car2Go promo sunglasses to your face, though, there are a few things to consider, like whether or not you need vision correction in the first place.

"There are a lot of restrictions that come with higher prescriptions and most people don't know," says Christina Song, who's in charge of buying sunglasses for Portland's Myoptic Optometry. "If you have a complicated prescription, having someone there who knows the prescription parameters is important, i.e., a person with a really complicated astigmatism should not be in anything too wrapped or oversized."

If you don't need any vision correction then it's a lot less complicated, but fit is important.

"Every time you pick glasses, fit should come first, then style," says Song. "Of course you can compromise some of the fit for style, but not too much. If they are uncomfortable, you will never want to wear them." According to Song the ideal pair of sunglasses should have three points of contact along the bridge of your nose to keep your eyewear from sliding up, down, or sideways across your face.

One word that gets thrown all over the world of sunglasses is the term "polarized" which, according to Song, is not just marketing-speak. It actually means something. "An easy way to understand polarized lenses is comparing them to a venetian blind," says Song.

"The light gets cut at a certain angle and helps with a lot of glare reduction. A lot of people who are on the water or in the snow love polarized lenses, because it helps with seeing through the water and adds depth to the snow," she continues. "That being said, a lot of people don't like polarized lenses because they can't see things on a digital device with the lenses on. Because they act like a venetian blind, a lot of phones or computer screens will get blacked out."

So go forth, my fellow sun-hating mole people and shroud your eyeballs in light-obstructing plastic and glass. I'll be keeping my eyeballs locked away from the dumb sun until October.


More How to Do Summer Articles:

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How to Hike... by Bus

How NOT to Go Hiking

How to Get Someone to Take You to the River

How to Hitchhike to Suavie Island

How to Glamp

How to Avoid the Sun

How to Pick the Perfect Summer Book

How to Listen to Music in the Out of Doors

How to Disc Golf Like a Pro

How to Skinny Dip

How to Pee