We got our hands on the Propeaq light therapy glasses made by Chrono Eyewear to see if they lived up to the hype.

These are supposed to help with seasonal affective disorder, depression, and insomnia.

Spoiler alert: They don’t.

Read on if you’re curious as to why! Or watch our video review:

The Propeaq Glasses

This is the only pair of light therapy glasses that I know of that are actually glasses.

What makes the Propeaq glasses special, is that they can be a light therapy device in the morning, and at night you can swap out the blue lenses for a pair of amber blue-blocking lenses.

propeaq glasses with blue lenses
propeaq glasses with amber lenses

They come with a hard carrying case, a soft case (which has smaller pockets inside for the spare lenses) as well as a micro-USB charging cable.

propeaq light therapy glasses contents

They’re quite light, weighing just a bit more than the AYO.

To use them you simply press the button on the inside and they run for a 30-minute session, however as we go over in the next section, this is not an adequate dose.

Specifications

  • Weight: 39.1g
  • Warranty: 1 year
  • LED Color: Blue
  • Session time: 30 mins
  • Battery life: 5 sessions
  • Charge time: 2.5 hours
  • Guarantee: 30 days

Measuring the Glasses

The Propeaq utilizes 4 LEDs on the upper interior of the glasses, that shine down on your eyes from above, similar to how the AYO works.

image of propeaq led section

According to the Amazon listing, these glasses put off 125 lux at 468nm.

screenshot of propeaq amazon technical specifications

This would be impressive! But wait… the technical specifications on the Propeaq website only say 35 lux

screenshot of propeaq website technical specifications

Something smells fishy here… This looks like a job for HENRY.

foam mannequin head wearing propeaq glasses
Henry is our spectrometer-equipped mannequin head.

With Henry, we’re able to accurately measure lux levels and spectral readings of these glasses at eye level.

So what did we find?

Measuring the Light

Well first, the Propeaq is peaking at around 462nm, not 468nm, not that that’s a big deal, it’s just that you’d expect them to get this kind of thing right.

graph of propeaq light therapy glasses spectral power distribution
Spectral power distribution graph of the Propeaq.

Next, and most disappointingly, the highest lux measurement we were able to obtain was a measly 14 lux! This is very dim, and less than half of the lowest advertised lux level of the Propeaq.

According to the LHRC’s Circadian Stimulus calculator, you’d have to use these for almost three hours to reach the recommended minimum dose of light.

To give you an idea of how dim they are, here’s a graph comparing the spectral powers of AYO and Propeaq side by side.

spectral power distribution graphs of ayo vs propeaq
The difference is quite staggering!

Below is the full list of measurements for you curious folks.

Our Measurements

  • Brightness: 14 lux
  • Total Power: 20 µW/cm2
  • Circadian Light: 189 CLA
  • Circadian Stimulus (30 min): 0.233
  • Melanopic EDI: 115

As you can see, we don’t achieve the LHRC’s recommended minimum CS value of 0.3 so for me these just don’t cut it.

Measuring the Lenses

We also went ahead and measured the lenses against a full spectrum light just to see what they blocked!

The amber lenses would work well as a blue blocker:

propeaq light therapy glasses amber lenses spectral power distribution graph before and after
The amber lenses do a pretty good job of eliminating blue and green light, though they do still let some in.

With the amber lenses on we saw a 93% reduction in circadian light and a 61% reduction in lux or brightness. So they work!

How about the blue lenses though? The ones you’re supposed to be using during the light therapy sessions?

This is where it stops making sense because these lenses actually block some of the light that would otherwise activate your circadian rhythm:

propeaq blue lenses spectral power distribution graph before and after

According to our calculations, these lenses blocked around 20% of the circadian light and around 35% of the lux!

I fail to understand the decision here. Why not just use clear lenses? Just for looks?

To me, it almost looks as though if there’s any ambient light on you’d be better off just taking the blue lenses off and using the Propeaq without them!

*sigh*

Final Thoughts

The Propeaq is a cool, novel idea, and they’d be an interesting choice for travel since they act as both a light therapy device and a set of blue blockers.

BUT.

They just don’t work very well…

If you’re in the market for a pair of light therapy glasses I highly recommend looking into the AYOs or the Luminette 3.

And if you’re looking for blue blockers you can check our best blue blockers article or our blue blocking glasses database!

website author wearing the propeaq glasses

Propeaq Light Therapy Glasses

propeaq light therapy glasses product photo

Pros

  • Interesting lenses swapping design

Cons

  • Not really an effective light therapy device

  • Learn More

Now check out our guide on 19 Ways to Align Your Circadian Rhythm for more tips on how to get better sleep!

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2 Comments

  1. If nothing else, the style of the glasses is rather cool. There’s just something that makes wraparound glasses probably the coolest style of glasses!