Tourists who buy cheap glasses overseas are putting themselves at risk of eye cancer

A new study has found that tourists who buy cheap sunglasses from beach sellers overseas are putting themselves at risk of blindness and eye cancer.

A total of 35 per cent of the rip-off of famous brands offer zero protection against UV rays, which means that wearing them in bright sunlight could cause irreversible damage.

According to The Sun, travellers should be hyper aware of cheap fakes, including “Ray-Bon” which are on sale at many international destinations.

High UV exposure can cause photokeratitis and photoconjunctivitis — a kind of sunburn to the eyeballs or eyelids, insurance company Direct Line said. It said drivers should always use good eyewear.

A survey by insurance company Direct Line found that 18 per cent of those buying sunglasses did not check for UV protection and 11 per cent said they would still purchase the sunglasses even after finding out that they offered no UV protection.

An added problem for drivers was that many who normally wear prescription glasses wear non-prescription sunglasses in bright sunshine.

Steve Barrett, head of motor insurance at Direct Line, said: “We urge all motorists to wear appropriate eye protection and prescribed lenses including prescription sunglasses while driving.

“If people cannot see to drive safely, either through not wearing the correct prescription lenses or sunglasses to protect from glare, they pose a real danger to themselves and everyone else on our roads.”

This article originally appeared on Over60.