Free home trial Free returns Klarna available

Photochromic lenses

Convenient light adaptive technology

A pair of tortoiseshell sunglasses A pair of tortoiseshell sunglasses

Have you ever gone outdoors in your prescription glasses and noticed you forgot to bring a pair of sunglasses with you? It's a common mistake to make. Well, photochromic lenses might just be the solution you need. They go from light to dark when you move inside to outdoors.

What are photochromic lenses?

Photochromic lenses, otherwise known as transition lenses, are extremely convenient and adapt to changing light conditions, remaining clear indoors and darkening outside. They block 100% of UVA/B rays when exposed to bright sunlight, functioning as both fully clear glasses inside and a pair of fashionable sunglasses when you go outdoors.

How do photochromic lenses work?

Small molecules are fixed into a photochromic lens. The lens is completely clear until it is exposed to bright sunlight outdoors. The molecules shift, change shape and absorb the light. This chemical process changes the molecules and they darken to a sunglasses tint. The photochromic lens will remain dark whilst it is exposed to UV rays and then the molecules will revert the lens back to its original clear state when taken away from the bright light.

Benefits of photochromic lenses


Dual purpose and convenient, functioning as both fully clear glasses and sunglasses so there's no need to carry two pairs.


Complete protection from the sun’s harmful UVA/B rays.


A cost-effective solution to buying both a pair of sunglasses and glasses.


Reducing your exposure to harmful UV rays can lower the risk of cataracts or other diseases.

Potential disadvantages of photochromic lenses

Choose from our range of photochromic lenses

Man wearing sunglasses outdoors

Light adaptive

Our light adaptive lenses remain clear inside and darken outdoors. They block 100% UVA/B rays when exposed to bright sunlight, functioning as both regular fully clear glasses and sunglasses.

Transitions® Light Intelligent Lenses™

Transitions® lenses adapt to changing light conditions. They are 100% UVA/B blocking and help protect against sources of blue light. As for Transitions® Drivewear® lenses, these are always tinted and are most ideal for keeping you safe when you're driving. You can discover more about Transitions® lenses in our buying guides.

Woman wearing Transitions Drivewear lenses in a car


Are light reactive lenses worth it?

Yes, absolutely. Light adaptive lenses will help keep your eyes protected without you having to decide or make a judgement on whether or not they are needed. The lenses will darken automatically even during overcast conditions when UV radiation is still able to move through the clouds and cause damage to your eyes.

Are photochromic lenses suitable for driving?

Our standard light adaptive lenses and Transitions®Signature®GEN8™ are intended for general use and are not really designed for driving. However, both Transitions®XTRActive® and Transitions®Drivewear® can be used behind the windscreen of a car. Transitions®XTRActive® is ideal for everyday wear and also safe to drive at night with.

Meanwhile, Transitions®Drivewear® are a type of sunglasses specifically designed to help you drive safely on the road. They adapt quickly to changing light from low light in overcast conditions, to the brightest sunlight for an improved driving experience. Transitions®Drivewear® lenses are not suitable for driving at night.

What colour Transition lenses are best?

When it comes to choosing a colour for your lenses, it's really down to your own individual preference and what you intend to use them for. Our most basic light adaptive lenses come in brown and grey. Brown lenses enhance contrast for a sharper image. They are ideal for sports, especially fishing and golf. Meanwhile, grey lenses make colours appear more natural and are suitable for everyday use.

Transitions® Signature® GEN8™ come in seven trendy style colours. So you can pick according to your own personal sense of style.

Transitions®XTRActive® lenses come in brown and grey. You also have the option of green lenses which provide excellent contrast and make colours appear as they are at their most natural.

Transitions®Drivewear® lenses are always tinted and are an olive green colour by default.

Do transition lenses have UV protection?

All of our light adaptive lenses provide the same amount of UV protection as standard sunglasses. Photochromic lenses provide 100% protection from UVA and UVB rays. They are the ideal solution for keeping you protected whilst wearing your everyday glasses.

Which is better, transition lenses or sunglasses?

Neither is better but if you're trying to make a decision based on which is best for you personally, you need to think about what you'll be using your eyewear for. Transition lenses might not always be as dark as standard sunglasses. They will provide adequate UV protection but how dark they become really depends on how much UV light there is for the lenses to react to. The weather and time can also impact how much the lenses darken.

If you're outside a lot or the area you live in doesn't get much sunlight, then sunglasses or just standard glasses might be your best option. Also, if you're particularly sensitive to light then photochromic lenses may not be suited to your needs. However, if you're seeking the flexibility of a versatile pair of glasses which you can wear all the time without having to change them or bring a spare, then you'll want to go for transition lenses.

How to order photochromic lenses

Two frames icon

1. Choose your frame

Explore our wide collection of trendy frames online and add your favourites to your basket.

Lenses icon

2. Select your lenses and package

Select your vision type and then pick light intelligent lenses as your lens category. Decide which of our four light adaptive lenses is most suited to your needs. Next, choose one of our sophisticated lens packages.

Sheet of paper icon

3. Add your prescription

Add your prescription or choose to send it later via email, phone, or post.

Truck icon

4. Enjoy your new light adaptive eyewear!

Once your new eyewear has been delivered to your door, you'll be able to try them on and show them to everyone you know.