Sunglasses for children? Exsqueeze me?
Eye doctors and dermatologists say yes. But the practical answer is, “if your child tolerates it,” amirite?
Families who spend a lot of time in the sun or live close[r] to the equator should definitely look into it. Kids’ sunglasses also help keep direct sun out of baby’s eyes in the car, which is especially useful when you lose the sunshade upon graduating to a convertible car seat (and it seems like NO MATTER WHICH DIRECTION you’re driving, the sun is ALWAYS in your kids’ eyes!).
Your little one’s eyes are extra precious, so don’t go for “toy” sunglasses. Experts recommend smaller versions of real, protective adult sunglasses. Ideally, get glasses that block 99-100 percent of both UVA and UVB rays, and find impact-resistant, scratch-proof lenses that don’t pop out of the frames, blah blah blah.
Here are the ones we recommend…
Best Options for Polarized, UVA/UVB, and Aviator Shades for Girls and Boys
For babies 6+ months, Baby BanZ has a strap that goes around the head to ensure they stay in place and seem to be tolerated well by most babes. These are polarized and have a UV 400 rating for 100% UVA/UVB protection.
*Check out their over-sized sunglasses for toddlers who prefer to be on-trend.
Babiators ~ $20
These cute and highly rated kids’ sunglasses offer 100% UVA/UVB protection, are impact/shatter-resistant, and will be replaced if lost or damaged within the first year – sweet! Fit-wise, they come in various sizes for babies, toddlers and older kids. My kids love them (below).
Julbo Sunglasses ~ $35
Julbo, a 125-year-old company known for their adult ultra-sports eyewear, has an award-winning children’s line as well. The lenses are shatterproof and block 100% of UVA/UVB rays.
I (Melissa) received a pair upon my request so I could put them to the test. Out of all the sunglasses my kid owns, this is his all-time favorite pair. He actually begs to wear them. Not only are they super easy for a 2-year-old to put on by himself, they are also omnidirectional, meaning there is no upside-down.
My son has a large head and these glasses do not pinch his temples. They are hinge-less, which is great for preventing pinching of fingers and whatnot; but because of this, the glasses do not fold up (read: they take up room in your bag).
- Looping 1 (0-12 months)
- Looping 2 (12-24 months)
- Looping 3 (2-4 year old)
Real Shades ~ starting at $15
“Bend ‘em, flex ‘em, you can’t break ‘em!” Real Shades kids sunglasses live up to the brand’s slogan. You really can’t go wrong with any of their styles — whether you choose the Adventure or the Explorer, your little one’s eyes will be protected at all times, from all angles. All lenses block 100% UVA/UVB and peripheral light and completely shatterproof.
Melissa and Charlene particularly love the wrap-around frame and the removable band. Plus, the frames are made to bend and twist without breaking or losing their shapes. Perfect for active tots. If you want to wow your little one, you can also opt for the Switch sunglasses. On top of their cool 80s wayfarer vibe, these sunnies change color when exposed to sunlight. What??!
Real Shades makes sunglasses for everyone in the family — from baby to older kids to adult — and received the Melanoma International Foundation Seal of Approval.
Recommended Product Line:
For Baby & Toddler: Explorer ~ $14.95
For Toddlers/Preschoolers: Surf ~ $14.95
Preschooler Fave: Switch Color Changing Frames ~ $14.95
Roshambo Baby ~ $20
These featherlight kids sunglasses are made to last. All of Roshambo Baby’s sunglasses are made in Italy (not China), but are still sold at a good price. Plus, they provide 100% UV protection and are polarized, certified BPA and phthalate free – safe for baby to chew on.
The San Diego-based, family-owned brand guarantees their sunnies are indestructible. If your little one does manage to break them, Roshambo will get you a new pair, free of charge!
Ready to get a pair for your baby and you (that’s right, they make adult shades too!)? A portion of all sales goes to Surfer Healing, a charity that teaches kids who are on the spectrum how to surf.
Recommended Product Line:
For each size, first choose your frame color and then choose your lens color.
Izipizi ~ $35
IZIPIZI, a French brand that’s known for its non-prescription glasses, makes kids (and adult) sunnies that have that je ne sais quoi. They are stylish and bright, and they come in a couple of fun, forward-thinking shapes.
The lenses are polarized and offer 100% UV3 protection; plus they respect natural colors and protect from glare. They are made with Bisphenol A(BPA)free and hypoallergenic plastic. Charlene, who got IZIPIZI sunglasses for her entire family, loves that the frame is made of soft bendable material, and the straight, flexible arm means that they grow with baby’s head.
Tortoise Mirror ~ $35
She most recently got this pair for her oldest, and she loves the pop of color. Note that these sunglasses are for kiddos 5-10 years of age.
Sun Baby ~ $35
So there you have it — it’s so important to protect your little one’s peepers against the sun’s rays, especially if she spends a lot of time outside. UVs can damage unprotected eyes and eyesight. But not to worry, now that we’ve gathered our absolute fave sunnies, you know how to do it right (and in style).