General Information about Light and Ra Optics

What is blue light?

Blue light is the component of natural sunlight that sets our body’s inner clock (called a circadian rhythm). In this way, it controls our sleep/wake cycle, production of key hormones and neurotransmitters, metabolic activity, and, as a result, has an effect on virtually every process in the body.

How can blue light be harmful?

Blue light can become harmful in a few ways. Modern, man-made light sources have been able to isolate certain wavelengths of light, and utilize blue wavelengths to stimulate the brain and body for activity, effectively “force-stressing” people into more work and productivity, by affecting our hormones and neurotransmitters—in the workplace or at school, for example.

Near-infrared light, which is always present in large quantities in sunlight, naturally counter-balances the damaging effects of high-energy blue light. Modern light sources, in order to be more “energy efficient” have completely eliminated near-infrared light, because it is believed to be “wasted energy”. Therefore, modern light sources lack near-infrared light, causing the blue light that they emit to be very detrimental to the health of our eyes, cells, brain, and body as whole.

During the day, chronic exposure to blue light from man-made sources (modern lighting appliances and screen devices) can cause eyestrain, headaches, and fatigue. Over time, this exposure can lead to retinal damage

At night, blue light tricks the brain into thinking that it is daytime, when it is not. It causes the brain to halt the natural secretion of melatonin, which is the hormone that prepares our brain and body for sleep, when light (especially blue light) is no longer present in the environment. Melatonin is the body’s most essential anti-oxidant, anti-aging, and anti-cancer hormone. Disruption of melatonin will make it difficult to relax naturally in the evening, and to fall asleep. So, people will find that they need external substances like alcohol, drugs, and/or pharmaceuticals, just to be able to relax and fall asleep. Sleep quality will be impaired, and you can become restless, tossing and turning, waking up during the night, and so on. As a result, you will not wake up feeling refreshed, nor have the energy that you need to be maximally successful and productive in your day.

By simply blocking this blue light, we can prevent all of these issues, during the day, and in the evening.

What is a “circadian rhythm?”

A circadian rhythm is an internal cycle, like a clock, that links the internal functions of a living organism with changes in the external environment. Circa is Latin for “about/approximately”, and dies means “a day”; therefore, circadian means “approximately a day”. The first researchers to discover these internal cycles noticed that they follow almost exactly the length of a day, hence this name.

Circadian rhythms are responsible for controlling every single function in the body, directly and/or indirectly. A clear example of a process controlled by the circadian rhythm is our sleep/wake cycle. Along with sleeping and waking, the circadian rhythm controls the activity of our metabolism, the production of key hormones and neurotransmitters, the process of excreting waste, thirst, and more. Every single function in the body is affected by one or more of the processes, especially metabolism (since metabolism is the process of generating energy, and every process the body requires energy to function).

In 2017, the Nobel Prize in medicine was awarded for the discovery of the molecular mechanisms that control the circadian rhythm.

Researchers have discovered that the primary driver of the circadian rhythm is light. It makes sense, considering that a day is created by one full rotation of the earth around its own axis, and the most significant change in the environment during this period is the shift between the presence and absence of daylight.

Chronic exposure to blue light, especially after sunset, has been proven to disrupt our body’s circadian rhythm. Since the circadian rhythm is a timing system that controls a variety of functions, the main effect of this phase-delay can be seen in the suppression of natural melatonin production. Melatonin is the hormone responsible for decreasing metabolic activity, slowing down our brain waves, and putting us to sleep. It is also responsible for cellular repair; it is the body’s most important antioxidant, anti-aging, anti-cancer molecule.

Chronic disruption of the circadian rhythm and melatonin production by exposure to blue light at night can lead to long-term health consequences as the result of lack of cellular repair, in particular, increased degeneration of mitochondrial function. The majority of modern chronic illnesses are mitochondrial in origin, meaning they are due to a failure of natural energy production. Hence, it is critically important to protect our natural melatonin production by blocking blue light at night.

How do I use Ra Optics, and what are the effects?

Daylight Lenses

Wear Daylight Lenses whenever you are exposed to man-made light sources during the day, whether on the computer, at the office, or at school.

Eliminate eye strain, headaches, and afternoon fatigue. Feel your mind relax, your mood rise, and your productivity soar.

Sunset Lenses

Wear Sunset Lenses between sunset and bedtime, whenever you are exposed to common light sources (light bulbs, screens, TV, etc.).

Relax naturally, fall asleep more easily, sleep more deeply, and wake up with more energy.

Sunset Lenses are not necessary when there is no blue light, as with candles, fire light, and red or orange light bulbs.

How do Ra Optics glasses work?

Ra Optics lenses are embedded with advanced pigment technology that absorbs the specific, harmful wavelengths of light that we want to protect from.

So, light comes into the lens, and just as melanin in human skin absorbs high-energy radiation to prevent us from sunburning, our lenses absorb high-energy blue light wavelengths, which can cause ocular damage, sleep disruption, and negatively impact health.

Since blue light increases the production of harmful free radical molecules (reactive oxygen species, i.e., ROS), blocking this blue light naturally reduces the production of these molecules, allowing retinal cells and the entire eyes to regenerate and to function more optimally.

At night, additionally, blue light has been clearly demonstrated to suppress the body's natural production of melatonin—the body's sleep hormone—which is crucial for cellular repair and a variety of anti-oxidant, anti-aging, and disease prevention processes.

By simply blocking this blue light, we are able to both protect retinal health, and, in the evenings, support the body's natural secretion of melatonin. During the day, this means reduced or even eliminated eyestrain, headaches, and fatigue; a more balanced state, and naturally increased energy levels, focus and productivity. In the evening, this means relaxing naturally without the need for external substances; falling asleep more easily, sleeping more deeply, and waking up with more energy in the morning, ready to take on the day.

How are Ra Optics different from the cheap brands on Amazon, or other blue blockers? Why do they cost more?

At Ra Optics, we are not interested in producing the cheapest products; we are interested in producing the highest-quality, most effective products possible.

Ra Optics were first developed because there were no blue light blocking glasses available that (a) blocked the right wavelengths of light, as indicated by the science, and (b) were truly stylish, attractive, and comfortable to wear. Ra Optics were the first blue light blocking glasses to meet these needs. Many brands have tried to follow, although not as effectively.

In the beginning went to the top experts in the field of light biology—how light affects living organisms—to understand which wavelengths of light need to be blocked, and which are acceptable. We took this information to leaders in the field of pigment technology and optical manufacturing in order to develop a lens that actually blocks all these wavelengths, while allowing for a phenomenal wearer experience and superior visual comfort. We have developed and utilize our own unique measuring processes to test our lenses in order to ensure that they meet the absolute highest standards for blue light protection, while also maximizing color perception and additional qualitative measures of comfort and mind-soothing effects.

We also worked with leading frame manufacturers to develop a highly intentional selection of top-quality frames that would allow anyone to find a style that they loved—while not making it too difficult to make a choice (and therefore miss out on the benefits of the key technology: the lenses) by having too many options to choose from.

All of our frames are made with the highest-quality materials available: Italian Mazzucchelli acetate (a plant-based plastic which is friendly to the environment), and German-engineered steel. Our final products are all assembled and quality checked in, and shipped from, San Diego, California.

We offer fast and free shipping everywhere in the United States, as well as ultra-fast international shipping, with all duties and taxes pre-paid through our website, so international customers don’t have to worry about any surprise charges when their package arrives.

We also offer a 30-day satisfaction guarantee. If you don’t absolutely love your Ra Optics, you can return or exchange them, free of charge (free shipping in the USA; international customers must pay shipping). We stand 100% behind our products, because we know that they work, and they have changed tens of thousands of lives already.

Sample Reviews

Check out the following reviews to understand a bit about how our products are changing customers’ lives

Sunset Lens Reviews

Aaron M. — Sunset lens review

I have had a few different pairs of blue light blocking glasses but these are by far the best quality glasses I have had. Not only can you tell and feel the difference when I wear these at night but I am already seeing improvements in my sleep score on my Oura ring. Well worth the money. I will be purchasing a pair of the daylight glasses to go with these ones :)))

Amy D. — These are worth it!

I really like these glasses. They are incredibly comfortable to wear, the style fits my face, they are easy to look through despite the dark amber color, and most of all help me fall asleep accordingly. My sleep quality has been soaring in the high 90's according to my Oura ring since using RA Optic glasses. I appreciate the addition to my health routine, thank you for making such a great product!

Bobby F. — ÖURA + RA ROCK!

I'm truly blessed by the combination OURA ring with the sunset lenses. My deep sleep improved instantly (I got an additional 15~30 minutes per night) once I started using the RA red lenses.

Jack R. — Lives up to the hype

I read a review saying it would change the way you slept on the first night and was very skeptical. Upon receiving them, I wore them and had my best nights sleep in months. Believe the hype. They live up to it!

Janet L. — Ra Optics Maxwell Frame with Sunset Lenses "sleep glasses" are amazing!

I've been wearing an Oura Ring for over a year and won a pair of Ra Optics. Maxwell Frame with Sunset Lenses sleep glasses for referring a friend who bought an Our ring. The first night I wore the glasses, from sunset until bedtime, I got the highest sleep score yet from my Oura Ring (95)! Since then, I have had consistently high scores, except for a few very stressful, challenging days. I'm very impressed! The glasses fit comfortably over my regular eyeglasses, and although I look weird, I can read or do other tasks with no problem. Thank you Ra Optics!

Jason C. — 20% jump in HRV

They work! Seeing an immediate jump in HRV on whoop and Oura. 10/10 recommend!!!!

Natalie V. — Life changing! I can sleep.

I am so grateful for these glasses. As a health care provider, I had read the studies on exposure to blue light. I tried other blue light blocking glasses and nothing changed in my sleep. How much could that be causing a problem I thought? I was sent a pair of the Ra Optics as a promotion. The change is HUGE!!!!! You can see from the images below that irrespective of what I tried my sleep was typically a concern. But from the day I received and started using my Ra Optics the results show. Every night now I have good to optimum sleep. The difference in my life is phenomenal.

Once I saw this difference I backtracked my life and recognized that my sleep had increasingly decreased as I used more and more devices after dark. I thought is was aging or menopause but it is not. I even thought that it was my autism but that had never been a problem prior to blue light.

I am so happy to be able to share this help with sleep to the 5 million monthly viewers that visit my site about Autism. Sleep is such a HUGE problem for us.

Thank you! Thank you!

Daylight Lens Reviews

Ron B. — thoroughly impressed.

fantastic! It's rare a product over-delivers, from the packaging to the glasses case to the glasses themselves everything was first class. The look of the Popp daylight is great leven get compliments on them when wearing them around. Definitely helps mitigate the harsh light of looking at screens in the mornings. I can't recommend these enough and I plan on buying the evening ones as well. thanks for a great product.

Bethany L. — I love them!

I have noticed my eyes don't get blurry and fatigued like they used to when I would spend a lot of time working on my laptop. I have been wearing them at night and have noticed I fall asleep faster as well! So happy with these! Next stop will be the red lenses!

Brenna H. — Life Changing!

I have had mine for a little over a month. I stare at a computer screen for about 9-10 hours a day and wear them everyday since I got them! The annoying headache and achy eyes at the end of the day is GONE! It is incredible going home and not feeling like mv brain and eves were completelv drained. I have been starting to sleep better and fall asleep quicker. So alad I got these as it is an incredible difference.

Luis L. — Amazing glasses!

Product is of great quality. It does what it is advertised to do. You will feel immediate relief from man made lighting. I live in the gloomy north east and I feel these glasses are a necessity. Also, the feel of the glasses on your nose is comfortable, not heavy at all. I also own the red lenses and it truly works as stated. I am very happy with my purchase.

Irving F. — High quality frame

Am still in the middle of enjoying all the amazing benefits of these stunning daylight blue blockers...but so far, I LOVE them and can absolutely feel LESS strain on my eyes (which can only mean less strain on my brain/body) by using these consistently.

Can't wait to continue benefitting from these!

Scientific References

Circadian Rhythms

Blue Light Effects / Risks

Near-Infrared Light


Studies on Blue Light Blocking Glasses

Books about Light, Electromagnetism, and Related Subjects

Mitochondria, Epigenetics, Mitochondrial Disease

Video Lectures

Video and Podcast Resources on Light