Difference Wiki

Sunglasses vs. Goggles: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Published on December 6, 2023
Sunglasses are tinted eyewear for protecting eyes from sunlight, while goggles are protective eyewear enclosing the eyes for safety in specific environments.

Key Differences

Sunglasses are designed to shield the eyes from sunlight and UV rays, often with tinted lenses. Goggles, on the other hand, are designed to offer full eye protection in various environments, often completely enclosing the eye area.
Sunglasses are commonly used outdoors for comfort and fashion, reducing glare and enhancing vision in bright conditions. Goggles are used in specific activities like swimming, skiing, or in industrial settings to protect eyes from water, wind, debris, or chemicals.
Sunglasses typically have a lightweight frame and tinted lenses, fitting comfortably on the nose and ears. Goggles have a more robust construction with a secure fit around the head, often with a strap, to ensure a tight seal around the eyes.
Sunglasses come in various styles, shapes, and tint levels, catering to fashion preferences and different levels of sun exposure. Goggles are available in different forms tailored to specific activities, like swimming goggles, ski goggles, or safety goggles for industrial use.
The lenses in sunglasses often have UV protection and may include polarized or photochromic options. Goggle lenses are designed for specific environments, like anti-fog properties for swimming or impact-resistant materials for safety goggles.

Comparison Chart

Primary Function

Protection from sunlight and UV rays
Full eye protection in specific environments


Outdoor, casual, fashion
Swimming, skiing, industrial work


Lightweight frame, tinted lenses
Enclosed design, often with a secure strap

Styles and Variety

Various fashionable designs
Designed for specific activities

Lens Features

UV protection, polarized, photochromic options
Anti-fog, impact resistance, water-tight seal

Sunglasses and Goggles Definitions


Eyewear providing protection from harmful UV rays.
These sunglasses offer 100% UV protection.


Eyewear designed for clear vision underwater.
He wore his goggles to protect his eyes in the pool.


Stylish eyewear with tinted lenses.
She wore her designer sunglasses at the beach.


Eyewear designed for protection and vision in snowy conditions.
Her ski goggles kept her eyes safe from the cold wind.


Eyewear designed to reduce sunlight glare.
His polarized sunglasses helped reduce glare while driving.


Protect eyes from debris, chemicals, or impact.
Safety goggles are mandatory in this laboratory.


Used for comfortable vision in bright sunlight.
I always carry my sunglasses on sunny days.


Head-mounted display for immersive experiences.
He used virtual reality goggles to play the latest games.


Enhances visual clarity in bright conditions.
The sunglasses improved her vision on the ski slopes.


Used for eye protection in industrial environments.
Industrial goggles are essential for welding work.


A convex lens used to focus the sun's rays and produce heat, especially for ignition.


To stare with wide and bulging eyes.


Sunglasses Eyeglasses with tinted or polarizing lenses to protect the eyes from the sun's glare.


To roll or bulge. Used of the eyes.


Tinted glasses worn to protect the eyes from the sun.


To roll or bulge (the eyes).


(colloquial) A person wearing sunglasses


A stare or leer.


Spectacles that are darkened or polarized to protect the eyes from the glare of the sun;
He was wearing a pair of mirrored shades


GogglesA pair of tight-fitting eyeglasses, often tinted or having side shields, worn to protect the eyes from hazards such as wind, glare, water, or flying debris.


Protective eyewear set in a flexible frame to fit snugly against the face.
Goggles must be worn in the swimming pool.
We had to put on our goggles as it was snowing outside.


Blinds for shying horses.


Spectacles worn to protect the eyes


What are sunglasses?

Eyewear with tinted lenses for sun protection.

Can sunglasses reduce glare?

Yes, especially polarized sunglasses.

Are goggles used for swimming?

Yes, swimming goggles protect eyes underwater.

Are all sunglasses UV protective?

Most are, but it's important to check UV ratings.

Do sunglasses help with driving?

Yes, they can reduce glare and improve vision in bright light.

What are goggles?

Protective eyewear that encloses the eyes for specific activities.

Do sunglasses protect against UV rays?

Yes, most sunglasses offer UV protection.

Do sunglasses come in different styles?

Yes, there are many fashion and functional styles.

What makes goggles different from regular glasses?

Goggles provide a sealed protection around the eyes.

Should sunglasses be worn even on cloudy days?

Yes, as UV rays can penetrate clouds.

Are goggles necessary for skiing?

Yes, to protect against wind, snow, and glare.

Can goggles be used in laboratories?

Yes, safety goggles are essential for lab work.

Do goggles come with anti-fog features?

Many swimming and ski goggles have anti-fog properties.

Are sunglasses a fashion statement?

Yes, they often serve both functional and fashion purposes.

Can children wear sunglasses?

Yes, there are sunglasses designed for children.

Are there specific goggles for different sports?

Yes, goggles are often tailored for specific sports like skiing or swimming.

Are there goggles for virtual reality?

Yes, VR goggles provide immersive digital experiences.

Do goggles protect against chemicals?

Safety goggles are designed to protect eyes from chemicals.

Can prescription lenses be fitted into sunglasses?

Yes, many sunglasses can be fitted with prescription lenses.

Are goggles adjustable?

Most have adjustable straps for a secure fit.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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