Making sure you have certified-safe eclipse glasses

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (IUSTV News) — The total solar eclipse is quickly approaching Bloomington, but it is crucial that everyone watching is wearing proper eyewear, such as eclipse glasses.

Solar viewers were designed to protect our eyes when staring directly into the sun.

Expert Hin Cheung specializes in eye safety.

“To view the sun directly and safely, you have to use solar eclipse viewers,” Cheung said. “So, for example, [for] a solar viewer, you would look through [the] filter to look directly at the sun. And so this is going to filter out the harmful light from the sun, the UV radiation, the infrared radiation, so that it doesn’t damage the back of your eye.”

While it is important to have proper eyewear when looking into the sun, it is also just as important to check and make sure the glasses you are using are not fake.

Many companies are taking advantage of the eclipse by producing counterfeit glasses and selling them on platforms such as Amazon.

“People are just printing the label that says that they are safe for viewing eclipses, but actually it’s not,” Chueng said. “So if you go on the American Astronomical Society website, they actually have a list of reputable vendors that they trust.”

Uf you do not want to go out and get eclipse glasses of your own, many schools at IU are handing out free eclipse glasses such as The Media School, School of Optometry, and many more.

The main reason why this eclipse is such a big deal is because this is a ‘total’ solar eclipse, which means for around four minutes, it will be completely safe to stare directly at the sun with no glasses on. But, anywhere outside of these four minutes, it is critical to wear eclipse glasses, or else there is a risk of damaging your eyesight permanently.