Subscribe for 33¢ / day
eye safety

Eclipse viewing glasses have very dark lenses incorporating a special filter to protect the human eye from the intense light of the sun when viewing an eclipse.


The most important aspect of the Total Solar Eclipse is viewing it safely. The sun emits ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which can harmfully damage your eyes without proper protection. To avoid ultimately going blind, take the following special precautions. 

While solar eclipses can be some of the most spectacular shows in nature, they also can be very dangerous if viewers don’t follow proper precautions.

Here are some things to know:

Eye damage can be permanent

Staring at the sun any time can cause permanent, irreversible eye damage, so it’s important to take eye safety seriously.

The human retina is very sensitive to light and also quite delicate. Too much sunlight hitting the retina can cause damage, resulting in solar retinopathy. In extreme cases it can cause blindness, but more often it results in other serious vision problems such as yellow or dark spots or blurred eyesight.

Solar eclipses are a particular risk because viewers are tempted to stare at the sun for long periods of time. Even a small sliver of sunlight showing is enough to cause permanent eye damage.

To save your vision, make sure you use proper eye protection — not ordinary sunglasses.

Special protection needed

To watch the eclipse safely, you’ll need to use appropriate eye glasses to filter out the sunlight.

According to NASA, only four manufacturers have been certified under the international ISO 12312-2 standard for these glasses: Rainbow Symphony, American Paper Optics, Thousand Oaks Optical and TSE 17.

It’s a good idea to order eclipse glasses early because high demand may cause a backlog or shortage of these safety devices.


• Wear eclipse glasses

• Use a welder’s glass with a grade of 14

• Use a Pinhole Projection method

• Solar telescopic viewing


• Wear sunglasses for viewing

• Wear Eclipse Glasses to view through an unfiltered telescope

If you’re planning on observing the 2017 solar eclipse, stay safe with eclipse viewing tips from NASA.