The invention of shades was somewhere around the twelfth century and before 1430, when shades were worn by Judges in the Courts of China. The smoky quartz, flat-glassed panes were not used as protection from the sun. They were used to conceal any expression in their eyes to keep from giving away the result of their calls. Prescription shades were developed in Italy in 1430 and were later utilized by the Chinese Judges.
In the mid 18th Century, James Ayscough developed blue and green corrective lenses which started the utilization of sunglasses for correcting optical impairments.
By the 20th Century, shades were used to give protection to the eyes from the sun. In 1929 Sam Foster began selling his protective shades at Woolworth stores on the boardwalk at the beaches in Atlantic town and New Jersey. His Foster Grants were the first industrially produced sun shades and they commenced the trend of shades for fashion.
In the 1930’s the division Air Corps asked Bausch & Lomb to develop sunglasses that would efficiently reduce high-altitude sun glare for pilots. Bausch & Lomb popped up with sun shades that had a dark green hint that absorbed light through the yellow range.
Edward H. Land had invented the Polaroid filter and by 1936 he was using it in the making of sun shades and soon, sun shades became “cool.” movies stars began wearing shades as a statement and to hide behind. Aviator glasses became well-liked by the movie stars and the common public in 1937 after Ray Ban developed the anti-glare sunglasses using polarization.
By the 1970’s Hollywood movie celebrities and fashion designers made a big effect on the shades market. Clothing designers and stars put their names on glasses and sunglasses and everybody had to have them.
To this day, stars are still hiding behind their oversized designer sun shades, making fashion statements and defending their eyes from the dangerous aftermath of the Ultra Violet ( UV ) rays of the sun. With modern technology and enhancements, the making of sunglasses continues to evolve. What’s next?
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