Glasses, also known as eyeglasses or spectacles, are vision eyewear, consisting of glass or hard plastic lenses mounted in a frame that holds them in front of a person's eyes, typically utilizing a bridge over the nose and hinged arms (known as temples or temple pieces) which rest over the ears.
Glasses are typically used for vision correction, such as with reading glasses and glasses used for nearsightedness, however, without the specialized lenses, they are sometimes used for cosmetic purposes.
Safety glasses provide eye protection against flying debris for construction workers or lab technicians; these glasses may have protection for the sides of the eyes as well as in the lenses. Some types of safety glasses are used to protect against visible and near-visible light or radiation. Glasses are worn for eye protection in some sports, such as squash.
Glasses wearers may use a strap to prevent the glasses from falling off. Wearers of glasses that are used only part of the time may have the glasses attached to a cord that goes around their neck, to prevent the loss of the glasses and breaking. The loss of glasses would be detrimental to those working in these conditions.
Sunglasses allow for better vision in bright daylight, and may protect one's eyes against damage from excessive levels of ultraviolet light. Typical sunglasses lenses are tinted for protection against bright light or polarized to remove glare; photochromatic glasses are clear or lightly tinted in dark or indoor conditions, but turn into sunglasses when they come in contact with ultraviolet light. Most over the counter sunglasses do not have corrective power in the lenses; however, special prescription sunglasses can be made. People with conditions that have photophobia as a primary symptom (like certain migraine disorders or Irlen syndrome) often wear sunglasses or precision tinted glasses, even indoors and at night.
Specialized glasses may be used for viewing specific visual information, for example 3D glasses for 3D films (stereoscopy). Sometimes glasses are worn purely for fashion or aesthetic purposes. Even with glasses used for vision correction, a wide range of fashions are available, using plastic, metal, wire, and other materials for frames.
People are more likely to need glasses the older they get; 93% of people between the ages of 65 and 75 wear corrective lenses.