An in-depth overview of industrial eye protection market

Published Date: August 9, 2017    Author: Saipriya Iyer

Hoya’s recent acquisition of Performance Optics marks the outset of another lucrative journey for the former in industrial eyewear protection market. This acquisition grants Hoya the rights to Daemyung Optical and Vision Ease (the subsidiaries of Performance Optics) as well, thereby enhancing Hoya’s already enviable portfolio, and helping to expand the reach of its Vision Care division. Performance Optics, already a renowned name in the eyeglass lens manufacturing sector, will also allow Hoya to make use of its polarized lens, polycarbonate, and photochromic technologies, thereby helping the company strengthen its position in industrial eyewear protection industry, slated to cross USD 2.5 billion by 2024.

industrial eye protection market

Prior to this deal, Hoya’s Vision Care division had already purchased 3M’s safety prescription eyewear business in 2016, which records annual global sales of around USD 45 million. This acquisition brought about a slew of benefits for the lens manufacturer, providing it with access to 3M’s line of prescription lenses, premium coating options, and frames, thereby strengthening its consumer base across industrial eye protection market. Thriving on the foundation of the inevitable requirement for eye protection across hazardous worksites, which has prompted companies to injunct the usage of safety eyewear, industrial eye protection industry is certain to achieve a discernible momentum over 2017-2024.

A strict regulatory frame of reference speaks volumes and has much to contribute toward industrial eye protection market. Some vital statistics pertaining to worksite eye injuries and norms initiated by regulatory bodies to prevent injuries and standardize safety procedures have been outlined below. Despite the fact that most of the estimates refer to the U.S. alone, the regulations have been mandated on a global level for sectors, such as mining, construction, etc. These norms contribute immensely to the development of industrial eye protection market.

  • As per ISHN (Industrial Safety & Hygiene News), more than 300,000 workplace eye injuries are recorded in the U.S. alone, on an annual basis. The mining, construction, and manufacturing sectors make up for around 40% of these injuries. Additionally, WHO declares that workplace accidents stand second in terms of causing blindness, after cataracts. Considering these factors, stringent rules have been imposed on manufacturers to mandate workplace safety procedures, which will be a major driver fueling industrial eye protection industry development.
  • The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) states that on a daily basis, around 2000 U.S. workers suffer eye-related injuries that demand medical treatment. Around 10% to 20% of these are likely to result in temporary or permanent loss of vision. As per statements recorded by medical experts, using protective eyewear may lower the rate of injury occurrence by almost 90%. For industrial eye protection market players, this is a vital pointer to be taken under consideration.
  • Prevent Blindness America reports that on a yearly basis, more than 700,000 Americans suffer eye injuries in labor jobs, while more than 120,000 harm their eyes at homes. Furthermore, more than 40,000 adults and children suffer game-related injuries. Unfortunately, a significant percentage of these cases are not reported, nonetheless, it proves to be a contributing factor toward the industrial eye protection industry growth.
  • A Bureau of Labor Statistics survey declares around 70% of eye injuries to be caused by falling debris at construction or manufacturing sites. Yet another survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics reveals that almost three out of five workers were not using eye protection during the accident. Pertaining to the aforementioned factors, companies have mandated the usage of safety eyewear at the workplace, thereby accounting for industrial eye protection market development.
  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) strictly mandates that workers use eye protection in projects that are reasonably hazardous, but in which injuries could be prevented enormously by using safety eyewear, such as face shields, safety goggles, full face respirators, etc. The rising adoption of such regulations will profitably drive industrial eye protection industry growth.
  • The American Optometric Association declares that the average American employee spends at least 7 hours on the computer, leading to the widespread occurrence of the Computer Vision Syndrome, a.k.a., the Digital Eye Strain, encompassing vision-related issues caused due to prolonged computer/laptop screen exposure.  On these grounds, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has mandated a standard for lens approval, called the Z-87. This marking ensures ANSI compliance, and no lens manufacturer is permitted to sell safety eyewear without having met the ANSI standards.
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An insight into the lens material encompassed by industrial eye protection market:





High shattering risk

Very low shattering risk


Low shattering risk

Low shattering risk

Excellent optical quality

Poor optical quality

High optical quality

Good optical quality



Very light & thin

Ultra-light & thin

Half the weight of glass


Polycarbonate-based industrial eye protection industry trends

Since its inception in the 1970s, polycarbonate was used for aerospace applications, such as space shuttle windshields. In the 1980s though, it came to be used for safety eyewear, thereby marking its entry into industrial eye protection market. The material is supremely thin and lightweight, and has high impact resistance, UV protection, and optical clarity, making it one of the most preferred materials for safety goggles, safety spectacles, and children’s eyewear. Industrial eye protection industry size from polycarbonate was worth USD 760 million in 2016. Its excellent process-ability via injection molding, extrusion, and foam molding are certain to help the material observe a commendable growth in the ensuing years.

Polycarbonate is also an excellent choice for rimless eyewear designs, where lenses are drilled onto frame components. Primarily, the material finds massive utilization for safety goggles and safety spectacles used across the construction, mining, oil & gas, and manufacturing sectors. As per estimates, industrial eye protection market from safety spectacles stood at USD 770 million in 2016, and is expected to surge over the coming seven years, given its anti-scratch, anti-glare, and UV protection mechanisms. Safety goggles, on the other hand, endowed with the property of anti-fogginess, will generate a valuation of more than USD 970 million by 2024, as per a report compiled by Global Market Insights, Inc. Undeniably, statistics declare polycarbonate-based industrial eye protection industry to carve out a profitable growth map over 2017-2024.

Trivex-based industrial eye protection market trends

Trivex was the wonder material introduced apparently by PPG Industries, a year post the onset of the new millennium. Touted by industry experts as the rival of polycarbonate, Trivex took industrial eye protection industry by storm ever since its infancy, and today, is considered one of the best lens materials ever. Its resemblance to polycarbonate, especially in terms of properties, is astonishing, however, it is one step ahead of its counterpart. It has a lower specific gravity than polycarbonate, making it around 10% lighter than the latter, and it possesses sharper peripheral and central vision than polycarbonate lenses. With a UV cut-off of 380 nm, compatibility with polarized lenses and anti-reflective coatings, and a density of 1.1 g/cm³, Trivex is pegged to be one of the most lucrative materials through which investors stand to accrue immense profits. The only restraint for Trivex-based industrial eye protection market, if any, is its exorbitant price, as compared to other lens materials.

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CR-39-based industrial eye protection industry trends

CR-39 is one of the most common-used and reputed lens materials that exists. Having held more than 39% of the overall industrial eye protection market size in 2016, CR-39 will continue to witness extensive demand over the years, say analysts, possibly owing to its low cost, easy availability, excellent impact resistance, and durability. The material, according to industry experts, possess excellent optical clarity and is relatively cheaper to manufacture. On these grounds, Global market Insights, Inc., forecasts CR-39-based industrial eye protection market to grow at a rate of 3% over 2017-2024.

Glass-based industrial eye protection industry trends

One of the oldest materials used for lens manufacturing, glass possesses the highly superior optical clarity and is extremely scratch-resistant, making it one of the most viable materials in industrial eye protection market. Unfortunately though, the material also has certain downsides – it is heavy, vulnerable to shattering, and is very costly. To add to its already diminishing popularity, materials such as Trivex are beginning to gain prominence in industrial eye protection industry, thereby leading to the depiction of a slightly downward curve in its growth graph.

Numerous companies partaking in industrial eye protection market have been working toward the development of novel materials endowed with even more superior properties. Even the tech mammoth, Google, with its recent launch of the Glass Enterprise Edition, has announced itself as an entrant in industrial eye protection industry. Google Glass EE has been designed for protective eyewear such as face shields or safety glasses. As per a leading report, more than 14 million Americans are likely to wear the Google Glass at work by the year 2025, which would favorably impact industrial eye protection market share over 2017-2024.

Incessant product innovations by leading giants, coupled with a strict regulatory groundwork, are certain to bring about a positive change in industrial eye protection industry. In addition, the expansion in the manufacturing and constructions sectors across the globe is certain to contribute toward the business growth. With increasing consumer awareness and shifting employer concerns toward workplace safety, industrial eye protection market size is certain to surpass 270 million units by 2024, in terms of volume.

Global Market Insights, Inc. has a report titled “Industrial Eye Protection Market Size By Material (Polycarbonate, CR-39, Trivex, Glass), By Product (Safety Spectacles [Prescribed, Non-Prescribed], Safety Goggles, Welding Shields, Face Shields), By Application (Construction, Oil & Gas, Chemicals, Mining, Pharmaceutical, Food Processing, Transportation, Firefighting) Industry Analysis Report, Regional Outlook (U.S, Canada, Germany, UK, France, Italy, Spain, Russia, China, India, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Indonesia, Australia, Taiwan, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, UAE, South Africa), Growth Potential, Price Trends, Competitive Market Share & Forecast, 2017 – 2024” available at


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