How Do I recognize Safety Glasses and When to Wear Them? L p z87+ s enses

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How Do I Recognize Safety Glasses and When to Wear Them?
P Z87+ S
Lenses are divided into two protection levels: Basic Impact and High Impact. To identify a device’s level of impact protection, look for a marking on the lenses. Basic Impact lenses will have the manufacturer’s mark, for example a Pyramex product will have a P. High Impact spectacle lenses will also have a plus + sign, i.e. P+. While not required, some manufacturer’s, like Pyramex, will include Z87denoting the American National Standard number (P Z87+). Goggles and faceshields are required to have the manufacturer’s and ANSI Z87 markings (Basic = P Z87; High Impact = P Z87+).
Note: Lenses/windows may have additional markings. Shaded lens may have markings denoting a shade number such as 3.0, 5.0 etc. Special purpose lenses may be marked with S”. A variable tint lens may have a V” marking.

Lens material: Lens material may be tinted for UV protection and may also have anti-fog protection.

Polycarbonate – strongest material for impact resistance

Plastic – resistant to solvents; lightweight; cannot be molded or bent

Glass - Basic Impact lens only/no impact resistance;

- heavier than polycarbonate or plastic

- greater scratch resistance


Clear Safety Glasses - For general indoor applications where impact protection is required.

Gray Safety Glasses - For outdoor applications where light and glare can cause eye strain and fatigue.

Provides good color recognition.

Indoor/Outdoor Safety Glasses - A clear lens with a slight mirror coating serves the same purpose as gray

lens, yet allows more visible light through the lens for indoor/outdoor use.

Reduces glare from artificial light.
LENS THICKNESS: No minimum lens thickness requirement for High Impact spectacle lenses. The protective advantages of wrap-around lenses and other advancements in eyewear design eliminated the need. Glass lenses, which still fall into the Basic Impact lens category, must have a minimum lens thickness” of 3 millimeters.

Pyramex Z87+
Safety frames are stronger than street-wear frames and are often heat resistant. They are also designed to prevent lenses from being pushed into the eyes. The manufacturer or supplier logo is marked on the frames. The ANSI standard and type (Basic or High Impact) are also noted.

When should you wear goggles and/or faceshields?

Goggles are generally stronger than safety glasses and are used for higher impact protection and greater particle protection. They are also recommended for chemical splashes because you can get a seal around the eyes. Goggles for splash or high dust protection should have indirect venting. Goggles with direct venting (a mesh of small holes around the sides) tend to fog less, but should not be used with liquid or fine dust hazards. Faceshields are a supplementary protective device. They must be worn with either safety glasses or goggles.

Safety Glasses Selection


Protection Required

Hazard Type

Common Related Tasks

Safety Glasses




Face Shield

Impact—Flying objects such as large chips, fragments, particles, sand and dirt.

Chipping, grinding, machining,
masonry work, riveting and sanding.






Heat—Hot sparks, splash from molten metal and high-temperature exposure.

Furnace operations, pouring, casting, hot dipping, gas cutting and welding.






Chemicals—Splash, fumes, vapors and irritating mists.

Chemical handling, degreasing
and plating.







Woodworking, buffing and
general dusty conditions.






Optical Radiation—Radiant energy, glare and intense light.

Welding, torch cutting, brazing
energy, glare and intense light. soldering and laser work.






Safety glasses need maintenance.

  • Clean your safety glasses daily. Follow the manufacturer's instructions. Avoid rough handling that can scratch lenses.

  • Scratches impair vision and can weaken lenses.

  • Store your safety glasses in a clean, dry place where they cannot fall or be stepped on. Keep them in a case when they are not being worn.

  • Replace scratched, pitted, broken, bent or ill-fitting glasses. Damaged glasses interfere with vision and do not provide protection.

Note: Safety glasses shall always be worn with side shields, unless they are the wrap around frame style.
Polycarbonate Lens Performance

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