The Anatomy of Photochromic Lenses

published at 13 Apr 2023
reading time 3 min read


Known sometimes as photochromatic lenses or transition lenses, photochromic lenses are eyeglass lenses that automatically darken when exposed to UV (ultraviolet) radiation from sunlight and then lighten again when the UV radiation decreases, such as when you move indoors. They eliminate the need for separate prescription sunglasses and eyeglasses because they are made to provide sharp vision in various lighting situations.

Sun protection is just one feature that light reactive lenses have integrated into a typical pair of glasses. They are extremely cutting-edge auto-adjusting lenses with convenience features built in to make the patient’s life easier. Additionally, light-reactive lenses aid in reducing damaging indoor and outdoor blue light as well as UV light.


How Do Photochromic Lenses Work?

A unique class of photoactive molecule found in photochromic lenses causes a chemical change when exposed to UV light. As a result of this reaction, the lenses get darker because the molecules rearrange themselves to absorb the UV rays and block less light from reaching the eyes. The photoactive molecules revert to their initial state when the UV sunlight decreases, such as when you walk indoors or when it’s cloudy, and the lenses brighten once more.


Why we are so much in love with Photochromic aka light reactive lenses?

Convenience: When moving between indoor and outdoor locations, photochromic lenses eliminate the need to change between prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses. They provide clear vision in a range of lighting conditions without the need to carry around several pairs of glasses by automatically darkening in direct sunshine and lighting up inside or in low light.

UV protection: Photochromic lenses, which automatically darken in reaction to UV rays from sunshine, offer UV protection. When you’re outside, this adds another layer of protection for your eyes by helping to block dangerous UV rays that can lead to eye disorders including cataracts and age-related macular degeneration.

Protection from blue light: Photochromic lenses also offer defense against the damaging blue light emitted by digital screens, including those found on computers, cellphones, and other electronics. This can lessen the discomfort and eye strain brought on by extended screen use.

Vision comfort: Photochromic lenses can aid in lowering glare and discomfort brought on by strong sunshine. The quantity of glare and excessive light that enters the eyes is reduced when they darken, enhancing visual comfort and lowering eye strain.

Aesthetics: Photochromic lenses come in a variety of colors and designs, allowing you to select lenses that go with your individual preferences and style.

Versatility: Photochromic lenses can be added to numerous styles of eyeglasses, such as single vision, bifocal, and progressive lenses, making them appropriate for people with diverse vision correction requirements. They are a flexible alternative for a variety of prescriptions, lifestyles, and activities because they are also compatible with various lens materials.


Overall, photochromic lenses are a popular option for many eyeglass wearers because they provide UV protection, glare reduction, versatility, and aesthetics in addition to the convenience of having prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses in one pair. However, it’s crucial to speak with an eye care specialist to ascertain whether photochromic lenses are appropriate for your unique lifestyle and vision requirements.

Learn more about Photochromic Lenses