Wearing orange glasses at nighttime is the most effective way to maintain a robust circadian rhythm.
A proper pair of blue blockers will block out the most disruptive wavelengths of light. They are an absolute “must have” when using a computer, phone, or tablet at night. For best results, don them about the same time every night regardless of screen usage.
These are the popular and cheap Uvex S1933X Skyper safety glasses. As you will see, they are a quick and dirty way of getting the job done. Not only that, but they will have you looking quite sexy indeed! You can get a pair of these bad-boys on Amazon for under $10 with Prime shipping.
UPDATE: Try out these MUCH nicer looking blue blockers.
Check out how effective they are. I took a color spectrum of a compact florescent (CFL) lamp with and without orange UVEX glasses. CFL’s put out a strong blue wavelength that you definitely want to avoid at night. When the glasses are put in front, the blue light spectrum is completely eliminated. It leaves most of the green, and all the yellow and red light.
Effects on CFL Lighting
Here is another one showing daylight before and after.
Effects on a Sunny Day
Notice how it not only wipes out all the blue spectrum, but it also takes out about half of the green as well.
That’s the best part. They are the perfect way to test out all this light hacking stuff we’re talking about without breaking the bank.
Put them on around the same time every night and your good to go. You don’t need to change much else around the house. No dimmers to install. No “filtering” software to download. No need to overhaul the lighting systems in your home. There are many ways to optimize lighting exposure, but this is the single most potent hack around.
These are a must have if you are traveling. It’s way easier to throw a pair of these bad boys on than changing out all the lamps in your hotel room to orange or red!
These are very effective at blocking out the most disruptive wavelengths. They do let in about half of the green spectrum of light, which is why you can get somewhat decent color rendering. While the green light can still be disruptive, it is much less so than blue. If you really want to protect yourself you can get some red glasses that will knock the rest of the green out as well. Of course, everything will look, well…red. Most people find that orange glasses strike the perfect balance between functionality and usability.
Colors look funny
Yes colors look funny, but it is amazing how fast you can adapt to it. Because of the color shift, they are not suitable for graphic design or color sensitive work. You will also have trouble seeing blue lights. I can’t see the blue notification light blinking on my phone while wearing these. Come to think of it, maybe that is more of an advantage than not! If you want to see something psychedelic, go outside in the daytime wearing these.
You look ridiculous
My wife is pretty understanding with my unusual ways. She draws the line at her husband wearing weird plastic orange glasses during a dinner party. Let’s face it, they’re not exactly stylish or classy.
One of the most offensive nighttime lighting environments is the grocery store. Nothing like intense florescent light smacking down your melatonin as you stop for groceries. If you want to test your self confidence, go ahead and wear a pair while going about your after-dark shopping.
The problem is actually much worse for people who wear prescription glasses. Currently the best option is wearing goggles that go over top of the regular glasses. If your going for the “mad scientist” look then get yourself a pair of the goggles and enjoy.
UPDATE – These are now available.
So there you have it, a brief rundown of the most powerful and lowest cost health and wellness “hack” that I know of. Get yourself a pair of blue blockers and get started tonight.
UPDATE – You no longer need to look ridiculous!
We have taken matters into our own hands. We designed a pair of glasses that have all the blue blocking power of the UVEX without the fashion statement. Available now on Amazon.
Quick Facts about Light and your Health
I send out a short email every week or two containing interesting facts about light and health.