How To Make Sunglasses Darker?


Struggling with sunglasses that just aren’t dark enough for those sunny days? Discover the ultimate guide to making your sunglasses darker, effortlessly. 

From savvy DIY tricks to professional tweaks, we’ve got all the insider tips you need to transform your shades into the perfect sun blockers.

Understanding the Need for Darker Sunglasses

Sunglasses aren’t just a fashion statement; they’re a shield for your eyes. When the sun is blazing, darker sunglasses step up to the challenge, offering more than just a cool look. 

They’re like a comfortable shade on a sunny day but for your eyes.

When to Consider Darkening Your Lenses

  • Outdoor Enthusiasts: If you’re always out in the sun, playing sports, or hiking, darker lenses are your best friend. They’re like a trusty sidekick, keeping the glare out of your adventures.
  • Driving and Water Activities: For those who drive a lot or love water sports, darker lenses are a must. They’re like a reliable co-pilot, helping you navigate through light reflections and bright conditions.
  • Light Sensitivity: If bright lights bother your eyes, darker lenses can be a soothing solution. They’re like a gentle dimmer for the world’s brightness.
  • Eye Health Conscious: If you’re mindful about eye health or have had eye issues, think of darker lenses as protective gear. They’re your first line of defense against the sun’s damaging effects.

Professional Methods to Darken Sunglasses

Consulting with an Optician for Lens Replacement

  • Expert Lens Fitting: Opticians are skilled in ensuring your new lenses are perfectly fitted, much like a tailor ensures a suit fits impeccably.
  • Customized Darkness: They can fine-tune the darkness of your lenses to your preference, akin to adjusting the brightness on a smartphone screen for optimal viewing.
  • Selection of Lens Types: Opticians assist in choosing between tinted and photochromic lenses. Tinted lenses are like sunglasses that always provide shade, while photochromic lenses adapt to light conditions, much like automatic dimming headlights in cars.

The Role of Optometric Shops in Lens Darkening

  • Eyewear Expertise: Optometric shops are akin to specialty boutiques, offering a range of options and expert advice on lens darkening.
  • Collaboration with Eye Care Professionals: They often collaborate with optometrists, combining their expertise like a chef and a sommelier pairing food and wine.
  • Diverse Lens Options: Optometric shops provide a variety of lens options, helping you find the perfect match for your needs, similar to choosing the right accessory for an outfit.

Tinted Lenses

  • Precision in Creation: Tinted lenses are made with exact measurements of dye, akin to a precise recipe in gourmet cooking, ensuring the perfect shade.
  • Consistent Darkness: These lenses offer a constant level of darkness, much like wearing a cap to shield your eyes from the sun.

Photochromic Lenses

  • Responsive to Light: These lenses adjust their darkness based on UV light exposure, similar to flowers that open and close with the sun’s intensity.
  • Versatile and Adaptive: Ideal for varying light conditions, they’re like having multiple pairs of sunglasses in one.

Professional Lens Replacement

  • Complete Lens Overhaul: Sometimes, the best option is to start anew. Getting your lenses replaced professionally is like renovating a room for a fresh, new look.
  • Ensuring Quality and Fit: This method guarantees that your sunglasses not only meet your vision needs but also fit comfortably and look great.

DIY Techniques for Darkening Sunglasses

Using Tinted Lens Kits

  • Availability: Tinted lens kits can be found easily, much like a paint set for a DIY art project.
  • Designed for Plastic Lenses: These kits work best on plastic lenses, similar to how certain paints are best for specific surfaces.
  • Instruction-Driven Process: Following the kit’s instructions is crucial, akin to following a recipe step-by-step to bake a perfect cake.
  • Careful Application: It’s important to apply the tint carefully to maintain the lenses’ quality, like painting a delicate model airplane.

Home Dyeing Methods: Steps and Precautions

  • Suitable for Non-Prescription Sunglasses: Ideal for ordinary plastic sunglasses, not unlike choosing a basic canvas for a first-time painting.
  • Dye Mixing and Heating: Mix specific dyes with distilled water and heat, similar to preparing a special potion.
  • Time-Controlled Dyeing: Submerge the sunglasses for a precise duration, much like timing a boiled egg to your preferred doneness.
  • Risk of Over-Dyeing: Leaving glasses in the dye too long can damage them, akin to overcooking a meal.
  • Variable Results: The outcome can differ based on the plastic type and lens coating, similar to how different fabrics take dye differently.

Applying Window Tint Film to Sunglasses

  • Not Recommended for Sunglasses: Using sunglasses for window tinting is like using outdoor paint for an indoor wall – it’s not suitable.
  • Optical Performance Concerns: This method can affect the sunglasses’ effectiveness, similar to how putting the wrong type of tires on a car can affect its performance.
  • Quality and Safety: For the best results, it’s advised to use methods specifically designed for sunglasses, like using the right tool for a job.

Lens Coatings and Treatments

Exploring lens coatings and treatments is like adding a protective shield to your sunglasses, enhancing their functionality and lifespan.

Scratch-Resistant Coatings for Enhanced Darkness

  • Enhanced Durability: These coatings act like a protective armor for your lenses, guarding against scratches and abrasions.
  • Maintained Optical Quality: Like a durable cover on a smartphone screen, they help preserve the lens’s clarity and darkness over time.
  • Long-Lasting Darkness: The coating ensures that the lenses retain their darkness, similar to how a topcoat preserves the color of a painted surface.

UV Coating: Testing and Importance

  • Critical Eye Protection: UV coating on sunglasses serves as a barrier, much like sunscreen for your skin, blocking harmful UV rays.
  • Testing for Effectiveness: It’s important to test sunglasses for UV protection, akin to checking the SPF level in sunscreen.
  • Universal Application: This coating can also be applied to prescription lenses, offering an extra layer of protection, just like adding a sunshade to prescription glasses.
  • Blocking Harmful Rays: Quality sunglasses should block 99-100% of UVA and UVB rays, ensuring comprehensive eye safety, similar to wearing a full-coverage hat in the sun.

Selecting the Right Lens Tint

Choosing the right lens tint is like picking the perfect sunglasses for your lifestyle, ensuring comfort and protection in various lighting conditions.

Understanding Visible Light Transmission (VLT)

  • Definition of VLT: VLT measures how much light a lens lets through, similar to how curtains control sunlight in a room.
  • VLT Percentage: A lower VLT percentage means a darker lens, much like thicker curtains block more light.
  • Importance for Activities: Knowing the VLT helps you choose the right tint for different settings, like selecting the right light setting for reading or cooking.

Choosing the Appropriate Tint for Your Needs

  • Activity-Based Selection: Consider your activities, like choosing gear for a sport. Different tints work better for different environments.
  • Versatile Tints: Grey, brown, or green tints are all-rounders, suitable for general use, akin to a favorite everyday outfit.
  • Contrast Enhancement: Yellow or orange tints are great for low light, enhancing contrast like a camera filter.
  • Polarized Lenses: Ideal for reducing glare from reflective surfaces, they work like a glare-reducing car visor.
  • Photochromic Lenses: These adapt to UV light, offering versatility like a jacket that adjusts to weather changes.

Considerations Before Darkening Sunglasses

Before embarking on the journey of darkening your sunglasses, it’s essential to weigh several factors. This process is akin to preparing for a delicate project, where understanding the materials you’re working with and the potential impacts of your actions is crucial for success.

Assessing the Material and Quality of Your Lenses

  • Material Suitability: Check if your lens material, like glass, is fit for tinting. It’s like making sure a fabric can be dyed before changing its color.
  • Existing Coatings: Consider any coatings or treatments already on your lenses. It’s similar to checking if a painted wall can be repainted without peeling.
  • Risk of Damage: Be aware that some darkening methods might harm your lenses, much like using the wrong cleaning product can damage a delicate surface.

Maintaining UV Protection and Lens Integrity

  • UV Protection Priority: Ensure that darkening doesn’t reduce your lenses’ UV protection, akin to making sure a sunscreen still works after adding a scent to it.
  • Lens Integrity: Darkening methods should not compromise the lenses’ quality. It’s like ensuring a waterproof watch remains water-resistant after customization.
  • Professional Assistance: Consider getting help from an optician or eyewear specialist. It’s like consulting an expert before making major changes to a valuable item.

Alternatives to Darkening Existing Sunglasses

Exploring sunglasses darkening alternatives is like having multiple tools in your kit, each tailored for different situations and preferences.

Purchasing a Second Pair with Desired Darkness

  • Convenience of Multiple Pairs: Owning different pairs of sunglasses is like having shoes for different activities.
  • Adaptability: A darker pair for sunny days and a lighter pair for overcast conditions offer flexibility, similar to wearing different outfits for weather changes.

Tips for Optimal Sunglass Fit and Light Blockage

  • Snug, Comfortable Fit: Sunglasses should fit well, like a comfortable hat, neither too tight nor too loose.
  • Frame Style for Coverage: Larger frames or wraparound styles provide better coverage, akin to wearing a wide-brimmed hat for sun protection.
  • UV Protection: Regardless of tint darkness, ensuring UV protection is crucial, much like choosing sunscreen based on its SPF value.


Can I darken my sunglasses at home?

Yes, you can darken your sunglasses at home using DIY methods such as tinted lens kits or home dyeing techniques. However, it’s important to be cautious and follow instructions carefully to avoid damaging the lenses.

Are there any risks involved in darkening sunglasses myself?

Darkening sunglasses at home can pose risks such as damaging the lenses or reducing their UV protection. It’s crucial to understand the materials and coatings of your lenses before attempting any DIY methods.

How do I know which lens tint is right for me?

Tinting your lenses depends on your activities and lighting conditions. For bright sunlight, darker tints like grey or brown are suitable, while yellow or orange tints are better for low-light conditions.

Do darker sunglasses offer better UV protection?

Darker sunglasses do not necessarily offer better UV protection. The level of UV protection is determined by the lens material and coatings, not by the darkness of the tint.

Is it possible to darken polarized sunglasses?

Yes, It is feasible to make polarised sunglasses darker. Using colored lenses—which can be easily adjusted to be lighter or darker depending on personal preference—is one method to do this.

Can prescription sunglasses be darkened?

Yes, It is possible to darken prescription sunglasses, yes. There are several ways to accomplish this, including employing photochromic or tinted lenses. Prescription sunglasses can be made affordably with tinted lenses, which can be produced to the appropriate darkness.

Are there sunglasses that automatically adjust their darkness?

Yes, photochromic lenses automatically adjust their darkness based on the intensity of UV light, providing convenience and continuous eye protection.


In conclusion, darkening sunglasses involves many methods. These include DIY techniques and professional adjustments. A key point still to explore is balancing lens care with the right darkness level.

Focus on two things when choosing tinted, polarized, or photochromic lenses, or when buying a second pair. First, keep the lenses’ UV protection. Second, make sure they fit well and are comfortable.