How to choose laser safety glasses?

Choosing the right laser safety glasses involves considering several factors, including the type of laser you’re working with, its operating parameters, and the specific tasks you’ll be performing. Here are some steps to follow when choosing laser safety glasses:

  1. Identify Laser Type and Wavelength: Different lasers operate at different wavelengths, and it’s crucial to know the specific wavelength(s) of the laser you’re using. Safety glasses are designed to protect against specific ranges of wavelengths.
  2. Determine Required Optical Density (OD): The OD of the glasses indicates how much of the laser light they can block. It’s based on the power or energy of the laser, and higher OD values provide more protection. Often, the manufacturer of the laser or a safety officer will provide the necessary OD.
  3. Ensure Comfort and Fit: The glasses should fit well and be comfortable to wear for extended periods. They should fit closely to the face or have side shields to prevent laser light from reaching your eyes from the side.
  4. Check for Safety Standards: The glasses should meet relevant safety standards. In the U.S., for example, they should comply with American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Z136 standards.
  5. Visibility: Ensure that the glasses allow you to see well enough to perform your tasks. Some laser safety glasses can make everything look very dark or can distort colors.
  6. Durability: The glasses should be robust and durable, especially if they’ll be used in a demanding environment.
  7. Prescription Needs: If you wear prescription glasses, consider whether you need over-the-glasses laser safety glasses or if you prefer to get laser safety glasses with your prescription built-in.

Remember, laser safety glasses are not a substitute for proper laser safety practices, but they are a crucial part of a comprehensive laser safety program. Always follow your organization’s safety policies and procedures when working with lasers.

Have a question about personal safety equipment, work clothes, PPE industry? Anbu Safety writer Arlen Wang will find answers to the queries. to submit a question send an email to:

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