Polarizing filters come in where regular lenses and anti glare coatings leave off. While anti glare coatings help reduce light intensity and therefore reduce reflections, the amount of reflections relative to their surroundings is basically kept even. Polarizing lenses work to eliminate glare while keeping the surrounding objects just as bright, colorful and vivid.
HOW DO POLARIZED LENSES WORK?
Imagine direct rays of light all pointing straight from an a shiny object (maybe a car) into your eyes. Think of the light rays as simply straight lines headed for the eye. Along with the ray, there are multiple waves traveling perpendicular to the ray but each oriented differently. Some of the waves travel on the 90 axis and go up and down (just like waves in the ocean that travel only up and down), others travel along the horizontal axis where the peak and the crest of the wave go right and left. Others have a diagonal orientation and so on. It is all of the wave orientations - the vibrating light in all angles that causes scatter and glare.
Polarized lenses are simply a filter in the lens that restricts the waves only in one orientation... vertical... just like the ocean waves go only in one orientation (up / down). By blocking the vibrating light waves in the horizontal direction, the filters reduce glare. The filters are usually made from a stretched out sheet of polyvinyl alcohol which is cast into the lenses as they are manufactured.
WHO NEEDS POLARIZED LENSES?
Anyone who spends time at the water (fishing, kayaking, boating), mountain (skiing, snowboarding) or who gets bothered by day time glare when driving will notice significant improvements in how they see with polarized lenses.
CAN I GET POLARIZED LENSES IN ANY EYEGLASSES?
Yes. Polarized filters can be made in all types of eyeglasses including clear lenses and sun lenses. They come in many different colors including gray, brown, green and can be used with mirrored coatings, anti glare coatings and photochromic tints.
They can also be used with progressives, single vision, bifocals and can be put in most lens materials including glass, plastic, polycarbonate and high index lenses.