Construction presents many workplace hazards. One such hazard that has been plaguing construction companies and their employees is poor eye protection. Therefore, safety glasses are vital for maintaining an efficient and safe working environment.

There are three primary kinds of glasses for construction workers: scratch-resistant, impact-resistant, and wrap-around. The right glasses for you depend on your preferences and specific needs.

To help you choose the right glasses for your construction work, we have compiled everything you need to know about construction eyewear. Read on to learn more.

What Kind of Glasses do Construction Workers Wear?

Construction glasses protect your eyes against molten metal, dust, debris, chemical or metal splash, radiations, scratches, impact, gases or vapor, and projectiles.

There are three kinds of glasses that construction workers wear:

  • Scratch-resistant glasses
  • Impact-resistant glasses
  • Wrap-around glasses

Therefore, the right kind of glasses for construction workers depends on your preferences and specific needs.

For instance, impact-resistant glasses provide the most protection from projectiles, while scratch-resistant glasses offer perfect protection against debris and dust. On the other hand, wrap-resistant glasses provide the best protection and coverage from scratches and impact.

Construction Glasses Standards

The right construction glasses should be OSHA-approved.

For instance, their standards have been tested and certified to meet the minimum requirements.

The governing body that sets the standards in the US is ANSI (American National Standards Institute).

While in Canada, the standards of construction glasses are set by CSA (Canadian Standard Association).

ANSI and CSA have similar standards with minor differences in wording and testing. The standard set by CSA is Z94.3-2002.

The performance of construction glasses is tested via the impact of a ¼-inch steel ball traveling at 152 feet per second or 46.5 meters per second.

The markings to ensure that the glasses are mainly the CSA logo, which is an “S” and “A” enclosed by a “C.”

Besides, construction glasses in Canada are identified with the manufacturer’s logo on the top of the lenses, on the frames, or in the corner of the prescription lenses.

The standard American National Standards Institute (ANSI) set is Z87.1-2015, having replaced Z87.1-2010 and z87.1-2003.

The testing includes:

  • Basic and high-impact testing of frames and lenses
  • Exposure to chemicals and non-ionization radiation

The construction glass markings on the lens and frames should be easy to understand.

Additionally, the markings assist in ensuring compliance with safety.

The markings vary depending on the type of protection that the construction glasses provide, as shown below:

  • High-velocity impact protection glasses are marked with Z87+ and z87 for basic impact protection.
  • Splash and dust protection glasses are marked with D3, D4, and D5.
  • Welding glasses are marked with W plus the shade number
  • UV protection glasses are marked with U and the scale number.
  • Prescription glasses are marked with Z87-2 on both the temples and the front of the frame.

Therefore, to keep construction workers safe, CAS and ANSI are constantly updating the standards of safety glasses.

However, the general consensus, according to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) the glasses should offer a reliable defense against workplace hazards.

When Should Construction Workers Wear Glasses?

Generally, construction workers should wear glasses any time they are working on hazardous construction sites.

Therefore, construction employers are required legally to provide workers with safety glasses.

If you are a construction worker and need a pair of safety glasses, do not be afraid to speak up.

Who Should Buy Construction Glasses?

Construction employers are tasked with buying construction glasses for their teams.

However, some construction professionals and workers opt to invest in their personalized construction glasses.

For instance, if you do not like the glasses supplied by your construction employee, consider shopping for a personalized and custom pair of glasses.

Features of the Right Glasses for Construction Workers

The right kind of glasses for construction workers should have the following features: 

  • Comfortable and lightweight for all-day wearing
  • Nose pieces and rubber temples for pinch-free fit
  • Adjustable to fit different faces and allow you to change the angle of vision easily
  • Scratch-resistant, anti-glare, and anti-fog lens coatings
  • Shatterproof and impact-resistant polycarbonate lenses
  • Side coverage to prevent debris and chemicals from sneaking in from the sides.

Therefore, considering these features while screening for construction safety glasses will help you get the best pairs.


Construction workers wear wrap-around, impact-resistant, and scratch-resistant glasses that meet OSHA standards.

They protect them from potential workplace hazards like molten metal, dust, debris, chemical or metal splash, radiations, scratches, impact, gases or vapor, and projectiles.