Solar eclipse glasses: What you need to know about the special glasses if you plan to catch a glimpse

Without proper glasses, you can damage your vision

A man uses a protective glasses to watch a hybrid solar eclipse in Lautem, East Timor, Thursday, April 20, 2023. The lucky few people in its path either saw the darkness of a total eclipse or a ring of fire as the sun peeked from behind the new moon. (AP Photo/Lorenio L.Pereira) (Lorenio L.Pereira, Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

During the annular solar eclipse of 2023, the moon is closest to the earth and the moon is 400 times smaller than the sun, but the sun is 400 times farther away; because of this, you will get a perfect shadow of the moon going in between us and the sun.

In our area, the moon will be covering 84% of the sun. Maximum visibility will be at 11:58 A.M. Saturday.

It’s tempting to look up at the eclipse, but Rahul Pandit said not to look with your bare eyes.

“You think you can because the light is very much dimmed compared to normal sunlight. It’s actually dangerous to your eye, and the reason is because when you have the eclipse, you’re decreasing the amount of light that gets to your eye, so your pupil actually dilates and so you’re actually getting more of the harmful infrared rays and all that which are not blocked out by the moon,” Dr. Rahul Pandit, associate professor of clinical ophthalmology at Houston Methodist Hospital said.

Here’s what you need

The eclipse glasses purchased at a store should be labeled with an ISO certification number: 12312-2

“That’s the particular number that was assigned for the certification for lenses that protect you from the light rays that occur during an eclipse,” Dr. Pandit said.

They should appear dark; you can’t see anything but the sliver of the sun.

Even just one time of looking at the sun without proper eyewear can make you go blind, “So, that’s why it’s of critical importance to really take all precautions when you’re enjoying the eclipse, to not permanently ruin your vision for the rest of your life,” Dr. Pandit said.

If you can’t get solar eclipse glasses, click here to see meteorologist Anthony Yanez explain how to make your own pinhole projector with a cereal box.


Regular sunglasses aren’t going to cut it!

UV protection helps when we’re outside, exposed to UV light during daily activity, but staring at the sun can burn the center of your retina and there’s nothing that can fix that.