On August 21, parts of the U.S. will get the chance to see a total solar eclipse and the entire country will experience at least a partial eclipse! But in order to truly appreciate this once-in-a-lifetime event, you must take precautions — if you don’t, there could be serious consequences, like impaired vision and possibly even blindness.
Where to find reliable, cheap glasses for the solar eclipse
Ordinary sunglasses won’t cut it on eclipse day — they don’t have the right protective coating to shield your eyes from the harmful rays of the sun.
The American Astronomical Society (AAS) compiled a list of solar filter brands that effectively block those rays and protect your eyes.
- American Paper Optics (Eclipser) / EclipseGlasses.com
- APM Telescopes (Sunfilter Glasses)
- Baader Planetarium (AstroSolar Silver/Gold Film)
- Celestron (EclipSmart Glasses & Viewers)
- DayStar (Solar Glasses)
- Explore Scientific (Solar Eclipse Sun Catcher Glasses)
- Lunt Solar Systems (SUNsafe SUNglasses)
- Meade Instruments (EclipseView Glasses & Viewers)
- Rainbow Symphony (Eclipse Shades)
- Thousand Oaks Optical (Silver-Black Polymer & SolarLite)
- TSE 17 (Solar Filter Foil)
NASA also posted these guidelines for safe viewing:
- Stand still and cover your eyes with your eclipse glasses or solar viewer before looking at the sun. Do not remove it while looking at the sun.
- Do not look at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical device — even if you are wearing eclipse glasses.
- If you are within the path of totality, remove your solar filter only when the Moon completely covers the sun’s bright face and it gets dark. As soon as the sun begins to reappear, replace your solar viewer to glance at the remaining partial phases.
- An alternative method for safe viewing of the partially eclipsed sun is pinhole projection
The AAS has a recommended guide on how to build a pinhole projector if glasses or other viewers aren’t for you. Places like local libraries and Warby Parker stores will also be handing out free solar eclipse glasses while supplies last.