All about ANSI Z87.1 standard for Prescription Safety Glasses

All about ANSI Z87.1 standard for Prescription Safety Glasses

Eyes are the most crucial organ of the body. The loss or damage of the eyesight is one of the kinds of industrial accidents. As per the estimate, around 300,000 workplace eye injuries send people to the emergency room each year in the USA. In most of the eye injury cases, it was noticed that employee was not wearing safety glasses. Out of 300,000 injuries, over 90% of them were preventable with proper eye protection. 

For those who have myopia and need to wear corrective pair of glass can go for safety glasses. Prescription Safety Glasses is an appropriate option as they come with a tailored prescription, specifically designed to provide the right vision and safety.

All the safety glasses conform to ANSI standards that ensure the quality and durability of the safety glasses.

 What is the ANSI Z87.1 standard?

When you look inside the pair of safety eyeglasses, you may have seen markings. Have you ever wondered what they are? These numbers define a particular safety standard given by ANSI. 

The American National Standard Institute is a private non-profit organization that looks after assesses and standardizes various product and services. ANSI Z87.1 is a standard for eye protection gadgets like Prescription Safety Glasses and other goggles. Z87.1 marking is given to safety eyewear that passes impact resistance and scratch-resistant test to ensure complete protection to the eyes of the wearer. It establishes criteria for using, testing, and marking, choosing and maintaining eye protection or minimum injuries from eye hazards. Furthermore, this creates a uniform testing standard that all manufacturers holds for the level of safety they deliver in their products.

A Prescription Safety that compliances with ANSI safety standards protect eyes from –

  • Blunt impact
  • Radiation
  • Chemical splashes and droplets
  • Dust
  • Small dust particles

What is the new ANSI Z87.1- 2015?

ANSI continues to focus on product performance and tries to harmonize with international standards while considering the needs of the wearer in mind with consideration to workplace hazards and other regulatory obligations. This 2015 standard continues to differentiate protectors for preventing specific risks. 

What is the difference between ANSI Z87.1 -2010 and ANSI Z87.1 2015?

  1. The 2010 version mandated that testing should be done on lenses with 2.0mm -2.2mm minimum thickness. However, 2015 allows lenses with minimum thickness to be tested.
  2. The 2015 ANSI standards eliminate minimum thickness requirements for non-prescription protectors that pass the requirements for impact-rated protectors.
  3. Removes the need for performing drop ball test on the lens that was earlier mandated to test impact resistance.

How are the safety glasses tested?

ANSI Z87.1 certified safety glasses undergo intensive testing to ensure they are good enough to protect eyes. 

There are three basic testing processes of safety glasses-

  1. Basic and high-impact test for lenses and frames to check whether both the components can stand a sharp blow of hard and solid materials.
  2.  Test of non-ionizing radiation and chemical on frame and lens is done to check whether glasses can resist the exposure of harmful chemicals and other radiation. 
  3. Durability to flammables and corrosion test. This is to ensure the glasses stay durable in a high-temperature work zone or don’t get rusted in the long run in a moist environment. 

Does OSHA needs to comply with ANSI Z87.1-2015?

No, OSHA eye protection standard general industry states, it only accepts eye protection that is made according to following standards-

  • ANSI Z87.1-2010
  • ANSI Z87.1-2003
  • ANSI Z87.1-1989 (R-1998)
  • ANSI Z87.1-1989

Protection Markings:

  • Impact –Resistant
  • Splash and Dust Protection
  • Optical Radiation Protection


The lens undergoes through high-mass, and high-velocity test. Glasses that are impact -resistance will have a plus symbol (+). Impact-rated flat lenses are marked with “Z87+ symbol.

Chemical and Dust Protection

Safety eyewear that meets ANSI Z87.1requirement for droplet or dust protection is market with starting letter D.

  • Eye protection that prevents eyes from droplets and splashes is marked with “D3.”

  • Eye protection that provides from dust is marked “D4.”

  • Eye protection that prevents eyes from dust is labelled “D5.”

Radiation Protection

A lens that can protect from radiation to the eyes is marked with the following ratings-

  • Welding Filter: Letter “W” is marked with a shade number on a scale from 1.3 to 14.
  • Ultra-violet (UV) Filter: Letter “U” is followed by a number on a scale from 2 to 6.
  • Infra-red (Heat) Filter: Letter “R” is followed by a number on a scale from 1.3 to 10.
  • Visible Light (Glare) Filter: Letter “L” is followed by a number on a scale from 1.3 to 10.
  • Clear lens: No additional marking
  • Variable tint: “V.”
  • Special purpose: “S.”

Additional markings for safety glasses

  • Eye protection for smaller head size is marked with the letter “H.”
  • The prescription glass will also have a manufacturer’s logo.


31DollarGlasses is the top manufacturers of safety glasses. We provide a one-stop solution for all eye protection concerns. You can find a wide variety of the latest and fashionable Prescription Safety Glasses online on our website.