It’s no secret that I’m an enormous eyewear geek. In the world of cycling, there is no shortage of awesome sunglasses to choose from; however, in the world of science, acceptable eyewear is much more difficult to come by. In fact, awesome lab goggles are practically nonexistent. That’s why I decided to share this afternoon’s stockroom discovery with you.
To begin, let me take you on a quick journey through the options available to a contemporary lab scientist.
Almost anyone who has taken a high-school or college science course has come across a pair of the soft, rubbery “scuba goggles” shown below.
No self-respecting scientist would ever, ever put these safety goggles on in the lab. The only acceptable use for those green monstrosities is the last-minute “slutty scientist” Halloween costume, consisting of the goggles and a lab coat…and nothing else. Hot.
The most common type of safety goggles found in a modern laboratory is the generic, Fisher brand setup–classic and boring. We have a box of 30 of these glasses in my lab.
While these goggles are still unbelievably dorky, they’re orders of magnitude more comfortable, clear, and breathable than the previous set. I think my facial expression clearly indicates how I feel about both pairs of eyewear.
Next up, we have a noble attempt at style that misses the mark by a little bit.
The sweeping lens shape and contoured earpieces are well executed, and the rubberized nosepiece is a nice touch, but the glasses remain inexplicably nerdy. OK, perhaps nerdy isn’t the right adjective–after all, my epically-moustached co-worker wears them–but there’s just something “off” about the way they look. Anyway, I have no idea how to describe the facial expression above, but I think it perfectly captures my feelings about the goggles.
That said, until this afternoon, I chose the least of the three evils: I was forced to wear the previous pair of goggles when I worked in the chemistry lab. However, as I rooted through our high-density stockroom today, I saw something that took my breath away: a pair of downright cool lab glasses!
Check these bad boys out.
They’re a spot on imitation of Oakley’s Half-Jackets, and they’re cool enough I’d consider wearing them in a twilight criterium.
I’m actually excited to go back to work tomorrow, just so that I can wear my new safety glasses around the lab!