The proper exposure to light matters to our health. Too much, not enough, or even the wrong kind of light at certain times of the day can wreak havoc on our circadian rhythms, health, and productivity. And poor sleep/wake patterns have been linked to breast cancer, cardiovascular disease, and Type 2 diabetes.

What if smart eyewear could help?

Mark Rea, Ph.D., professor at the Lighting Research Center of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, predicts the next big topic in smart technology will be circadian rhythms and eyewear-based photon measuring systems.

Already, Transitions Optical is in the early stages of developing new smart eyewear to measure and manage the amount of light the wearer has been exposed to at any point in the day. To be launched later this year using a crowdfunding campaign, the smart eyewear will track the wearer’s posture and exercise, and monitor exposure to light via a UV sensor.

“We’ve been trying to quantify what you need during the daytime and what you don’t want at night, in order for our circadian rhythms to be regulated,” Rea says of his work. “We’ve been working to get what we call a ‘robust’ light/dark pattern that still fits today’s lifestyle.” —SUSAN TARRANT

Musings From Munich

opti Munich kicked off the new year on the right foot—the international trade show for optics + design hosted approximately 28,000 visitors and 631 exhibitors from Jan. 25-27.

Of the surveyed attendees, 94% of visitors and 91% of exhibiting companies awarded the “new” opti with the highest grades. Here, we pinpoint key trends spotted directly in this year’s expanded space.


EYE LOVE THE '70s. Retro inspirations were a hit, emphasized by the far-out designs by Rounder Rounder, the brand voted as the best newcomer in the eyewear market by 27 international bloggers for this year’s Blogger Spectacle Award.


FROM ALL SIDES. From hexagons to octagons, a plethora of eccentric silhouettes shined on the show floor, including ECO style Nice from MODO Eyewear, MYKITA + Maison Margiela model MMCRAFT004, and KOMONO style Johnny.


PASTEL POPS. Even brands that typically stick to more natural color palettes showcased playful pastels, including Blackfin, pictured here. For more specs in perfect-for-spring shades, attendees gathered at Face à Face and Coco Song.

1 Brian Hou of Rounder Rounder rejoices with the Blogger Spectacle Award.

2 Blogger Spectacle attendees try on sunnies from Lightbird.

3 Taking a closer look at the Alcon booth.

4 Blackfin’s Coral Cove style from Villa Eyewear.

5 Lacoste’s sleek specs from Marchon Eyewear.


Want to join the fun next year? opti 2020 will take place Jan. 10-12.