N.P.E.L.P. (Neodymium, Praseodymium and Erbium and LP for Loro Piana) lenses are the result of a collaboration with Barberini, acknowledged as the world’s leading producer of optical glass solar protection lenses. After extensive research, Mr. Vetrini, engineer, pilot and CEO of Barberini, developed a unique lens for the gliding World Championship in Rieti, Italy (2008). In this sport, long distance acuity, image definition and the ability to identify even the slightest colour shades are essential. N.P.E.L.P. lenses represent the evolution of that research process and the best quality “lenses” for those who need protection and deep view during sun exposure.
N.P.E.L.P. lenses are made in optical glass: natural and eco-friendly raw material, the most transparent and resistant available in nature. Made of two lenses with a polarising filter between, Loro Piana lenses are just 1,8 mm thick: thinnest in the world.
Contain the so-called “rare earth elements”: they are specific chemical substances present in natural minerals. These are mixed during the lenses’ optical glass melting process and add a filtering effect on the various colours measured by the iris. Red, green and blue are the only colours the human eye perceives and, thanks to these elements, they can stand out more, consequently improving contrast and clearness. The amount of each rare earth element in these lenses is exclusive to Loro Piana.
Secure a total block of ultraviolet rays below 400 nm (see note): UV rays are acknowledged as harmful to the eye and N.P.E.L.P. lenses are particularly efficient in blocking them completely, up to 400 nm wavelength.
Guarantee protection from infrared rays above 780 nm: IR rays generate heat. Lenses without IR rays filter fail to protect eyes from heat, causing dry eyes and eye fatigue. With N.P.E.L.P. lenses eyes do not suffer strain but experience an absolute sense of comfort.
They are polarised: polarised light, i.e. reflected by bright surfaces like sea, snow, a car’s dashboard can be easily detected and blocked through a polarized filter. In the N.P.E.L.P. lenses, 99.9% of polarised reflected light is blocked. Vision is perfectly clear and much deeper, as even the slightest micro reflections generated by water droplets are neutralised (which would affect long-distance vision).
They are antiglare: the internal surface of Loro Piana lenses has 10 layers of antiglare coating to protect the pupil from the sun’s direct sunrays which, entering from the side, spread on the lenses and hit the eye indirectly.
They are oleophobic and hydrophobic: another layer prevents sweat drops from adhering to the lenses and allows the removal of oily substances.
Frames: three different frame style are available with N.P.E.L.P lenses.
They are in celluloid, a plastic material obtained from a natural base: cellulose, a complex sugar widely available in nature. Celluloid, or cellulose acetate is well-known for its sheen, a feature enhanced by process the polishing phases.
They are completely handmade in Italy, according to artisanal tradition. The profiles of the fronts and of the arms are cut by hand with the pantograph. Metal parts are dipped in celluloid. Frames are polished through a three-phase tumbling process using plastic, birch and beech woods. This operation lasts from 4 to 8 days according to the temperature and air humidity rate. The polishing process is carried out with cotton discs, abrasive pastes and ends with the mounting and tuning phases to optimise the eyewear’s fitting.
They are flexible and elastic: if properly heated, they can be easily adapted to the face. They are hypoallergenic.
Loro Piana N.P.E.L.P. sunglasses are available in Kuwait exclusively from the Loro Piana store in Salhiya Complex, tel. 22996430
First published in Men's Passion issue #30 April 2011