Tomorrow is a historical event and people are scrambling to find safe glasses to wear in order to watch the solar eclipse. Many places are sold out of glasses, but you may be able to still find some. Safety is very important and Nasa has issued an official warning about eye damage, so it’s important that the glasses you use are the real deal. In Nasa’s official safety guidelines, it is specifically said that:
Homemade filters or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the Sun.
So, let’s make sure you have the proper eyewear for your solar eclipse viewing.
Many retailers, from Walmart to Lowe’s, to Amazon, have featured glasses for the event, but if you are trying to find glasses at a local store, you should definitely call first. They may be completely sold out.
Buying glasses from sites like Craigslist may seem like a good idea, but if your glasses are fakes, you risk serious eye damage. If you have friends who have purchased more glasses than they need, then buying some off of them may be your best bet. Or, you could just take turns sharing … carefully. If you do pick up a pair of sunglasses or are questioning which retailers to trust, the American Astronomical Society (AAS) has put together a list of reputable brands and carriers.
If you are having no luck in finding glasses for the eclipse, you do have another option. You can use a DIY idea and watch the eclipse via pinhole projection. This is more convenient for the partially eclipsed Sun. In order to use pinhole projection, you just need to create something that allows sunlight to pass through a small opening. An easy example of this is using a hole-punch and making a hole in an index card. For all the details on how to create your own pinhole projection at home, click here.
For those still hoping to find a pair of eclipse glasses in local retail stores, here is a list of stores that are selling or have sold ISO-compliant safe eclipse glasses:
Casey’s General Store
Love’s Travel Stops
Toys “R” Us
The American Astronomical Society has also listed a ton of companies who are carrying glasses. Keep in mind, that many may have sold out, but it’s always worth a try.
American Science & Surplus
AstroBox / EclipseKit.com
Astronomers Without Borders
Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Astronomy Magazine / My Science Shop
Astroshop.eu / Omegon
Astrozap Telescopes & Accessories
Avenues of the Sky
B&H Photo Video
Charlie Bates Solar Astronomy Project
David Chandler Company
Discover Magazine / My Science Shop
High Point Scientific
Khan Scope Centre
Land Sea & Sky
Lire la Nature & Astronomie Plus
Oceanside Photo & Telescope
Online Science Mall
Ontario Telescope & Accessories
Orange County Telescope
Orion Telescopes & Binoculars
Science City at Union Station
Sky & Telescope Magazine / Shop at Sky
Space Racers / AugustEclipse.com
STEMcell Science Shop / Mudge Scientific
The Planetary Society
Woodland Hills Camera & Telescopes