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Debunking the Blue Light Myth: Why Blue Light Blockers are the Problem

Date Aug 2023
Category health
Time reading 4 minutes
Woman wearing glasses, working

Blue light blockers have risen in popularity over the years – screen covers, glasses, no matter what form it comes in, it seems like everyone is telling us that you need them. But here’s the thing, we need blue light to survive. It does everything from boosting alertness, helps memory and brain function, elevating mood, and regulating our circadian rhythm and hormonal balance.

So why does it get a bad rep? We’ll examine the science and help you understand when you should and shouldn’t need blue light.


The Science: What is Blue Light?

To put it simply, blue light is a high-energy, short-wavelength light found in the visible spectrum, what the human eye can see. Sunlight is the primary natural source of blue light and about 1/3 of all visible light is considered blue light. It can also be transmitted by artificial lights like our smartphones, TVs, and computer screens and standard LED lighting.


How Does Blue Light Affect Us?

Blue light has both positive and negative effects on our bodies and is one of, if not the most critical factor when it comes to our health.

Blue light impacts so many bodily functions that we don’t realize. The obvious functions it affects are things like your circadian rhythm and mood, but they also can affect your alertness, brain function, melatonin suppression, body temperature and hormone regulation.

When you’re exposed to blue light during the daytime, it can improve your alertness and cognitive performance to help your ability to focus and be productive. It can influence your body temperature regulation as well, so your body is always at the right temperature to make you feel comfortable and affect secretion of hormones like cortisol.

However, the downside of blue light is its impact on our eyes and overall health when exposed to it at the wrong time. Prolonged exposure to blue light at night or in dimly lit environments can disrupt our sleep patterns by suppressing melatonin production. This can lead to insomnia, poor sleep quality, and even long-term health issues like an increased risk of obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular problems.


Do We Really Need Blue Light Blockers?

There are two types of blue light blockers. The first type has nearly clear lenses, they only block a smaller percentage of blue light (typically around 20-40%). The second type is the more popular one that has yellow or amber tint to their lenses. They block a higher percentage of blue light (often more than 60%) and are more useful at night. However, if you choose to use this type of blue light blocker at night, they need to be used at the same time every night.

A common misconception is that we need blue light blockers, when in fact, we need blue light for our well-being. All of the functions we talked about before are affected by blue light, especially during the day. We need blue light in the daytime, or it can create critical imbalances within our bodies and minds.

Blue light suppresses melatonin, which is the hormone that helps us feel tired and lets us know when it’s time for bed. Blue light at night interrupts our body’s natural sleep process, making it harder to fall asleep and disrupting healthy sleep patterns, leaving us feeling tired the next day, and can even create a domino effect of imbalances in our body.

If you’re going to use blue light glasses, use them at night if you’re going to be on your phone or watching tv. You can also set your phone screens to a night shift mode which takes out the blue and gives off more of an amber or redder light.


"These glasses block out the longer wavelengths of blue light that are important for our circadian rhythm"

Robert Soler, founder

Robert Soler

Chief Science Officer - SKYVIEW™


Other Alternatives to Blue Light Glasses

So, what can we do to reduce the negative effects of blue light exposure? It’s important to remember that blue light during the day is absolutely crucial to our health, we just need to make sure we’re not exposing ourselves to it for long periods of time in the evening when we’re getting ready for bed.

  1. Limiting your screen time - Try a no screens bedtime rule so you don’t have a hard time falling asleep or staying asleep.
  2. Get a SKYVIEW – SKYVIEW replicates the information we get from natural light throughout the day—both visual and non-visual. It focuses on the “sky blue” wavelength that gives you the right amount of blue light and wavelengths during the day and none of what you don’t need at night.
  3. Turn off your indoor lighting 1-2 hours before going to bed – This will help limit the exposure of blue light that standard LED lights give off.

Blue light is an integral part of our lives, both naturally and artificially. While it has beneficial effects during the day, prolonged exposure to blue light from electronic devices can negatively impact our sleep, eyes, and overall health. Always remember that getting the right light at the right time is essential to our health.


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