Protecting Yourself From the Threat of Ransomware

Ransomware refers to malicious programs that cyber crooks use to hold computers or computer files to ransom, demanding payment before they can release them. Unfortunately, ransomware is increasingly becoming a popular method for malware creators to extort cash from consumers and companies alike. A range of ransomware may get into your machine but, as usual, those techniques are either due to social engineering tricks or exploiting software weaknesses to secretly install on your machine.

What to do about it

For starters, ransomware can be extremely scary as the encrypted files may essentially be deemed damaged beyond repair. However, if you’ve prepared your system properly, it’s really just a nuisance. The following are some tips to help you prevent ransomware from ruining your day.

Back up your information

The biggest damage you can suffer from any ransomware attack is losing your files, including documents and pictures.

The best way to protect yourself from ransomware is to have all your data and files backed up in a totally separate system. A great way to do that is to use an external hard disk that’s not online. This means that you’ll not lose any information to hackers should you be attacked.

Businesses often back up their data to remote servers that will not be affected should their main network be attacked.

Always install updates

Companies regularly release software updates, which help to fix weaknesses that can be capitalized on by hackers to install ransomware. Therefore, it’s always recommended that you download the latest version of any software once it’s available.

Use antivirus software

An age-old tip for computer security, antivirus software can prevent the downloading of ransomware onto a computer and can detect when an attempt is made.

Most antivirus software may scan files to rule out the presence of ransomware before downloading them. Also, they can stop secret installations from harmful ads when you’re surfing the internet, and search for malware that could already be on the computer or device.

Beware of suspicious pop-ups and emails

Don’t click links inside suspicious emails. Look at the sender’s email address carefully to ascertain whether it’s from a legit address. Look for clear grammatical errors and typos in the body as well. Hover above links inside emails (without clicking them) to see if they point to dubious web pages. If you get an email that seems to come from an internet service provider, bank, or credit card provider, remember that they’ll never ask for confidential information such as your social security number or password.

Additionally, ransomware authors often utilize pop-up windows that promote software solutions for removing malware. Don’t click these pop-ups and then close the windows safely.

Don’t pay the ransom

If you’ve been attacked by ransomware, it’s best to not pay the ransom as it will encourage attackers and might not help you recover files. There are certain programs that may help decrypt files. Alternatively, you can restore your files if you’ve got a back up.

What should I do if I’m already infected?

If you’re already under a ransomware attack, you first must disconnect your computer or device from the net so it doesn’t infect other devices. Then report the attack to the police and get assistance from an IT firm that focuses on data recovery to know what options could be. You can click here for more information about protecting yourself from ransomware.

In some extreme situations, it might make perfect sense to pay the ransom if the encrypted files are vital and you don’t have backups. But you should never pay the ransom because the hackers are always overwhelmed with requests for releasing data and some who pay the ransom don’t hear back.

Finally, you should note that the spate of ransomware attacks recently has created a great deal of news coverage, primarily because it’s different from previous attacks which were usually stealthy and not damaging to data. Ransomware can definitely be scary, but there are plenty of benign issues that may result in just as much damage.

That’s why it’s always best to back up your information regularly to guard against data loss. This way, regardless of what happens, you’ll be able to restore your data quickly. Hopefully, this ransomware trend can help you understand how important it is to protect your valuable data by backing it up regularly.


13 Signs Your Small Business Needs an Accountant

Running a business usually involves making difficult decisions. And those decisions only become harder when they affect your bottom line.

Fortunately, an accountant can help you during these moments. Many people assume that accountants are just limited to bookkeeping and tax returns preparation, but they can help you a great deal.

They can give you advice on the best decisions to make in your business, depending on their extensive knowledge of your finances and expertise. Here are 13 common situations that require the hiring of accountants specialized for small businesses.

You know nothing about accounting

If you’re confused by financial statements, you find it hard to create reports, or you don’t understand accounting terms, you probably need to employ an accounting professional—at least at the beginning—to teach you everything related to finances.

An accountant can speak to you in a simple language, weed through jargon, and show you how to handle your own finances. Apart from that, you wouldn’t want to make mistakes initially or miss vital information that might be costly down the road. With an accountant, you and your business can get started on the right lane.

You know nothing about taxes

The American tax code is complex. Even so, if you don’t pay the relevant taxes for your company, you’ll likely incur fines and penalties. An accountant can give you advice early so you can abide by all tax regulations. Even more important, an accountant can let you know of deductions and tax credits you can take, as well as predict taxes you owe so you can pay them to the government. Lastly, an accountant can file your taxes on your behalf, making the tax season less challenging.

You need advice on creating a business plan

An accountant can provide you with invaluable assistance when you’re preparing your business plan. With accounting software, they can add financial projections as well as other reports to handle the numbers better. This helps you write a more professional and realistic business plan.

When your small business is expanding

As a small business owner, growth is exciting but it isn’t always simple to handle. As your business grows, an accountant can guide you—much like a chief financial officer does in a big company.

Growth usually necessitates making strategic decisions such as taking on additional office space, expanding your product/service offering, or hiring new employees. Your accountant will get to understand your budget better than anybody and can recommend the right moment to implement these decisions.

You need advice regarding your business’ legal structure

Businesses have various kinds of legal structure, including limited company, limited liability partnership, sole proprietorship, etc. An account will teach you about the various legal structures, as well as help you pick the best one.

You want to delegate 

One of the pluses of running your own company is the freedom of being in control of every aspect of the business. But as you expand and really focus on moving the company forward, there’ll come a time when you need to delegate financial responsibility a bit more. Having an accountant take care of some financial matters provides you with more time to run your business.

When you’re seeking a loan 

Having an accountant in your small business can be a huge benefit when you’re seeking a business loan. Lenders usually deal with businesses they know will pay back and having an accountant shows that you want to succeed.

An accountant may also help you apply for a loan. They may use your financial details to produce expense reports and revenue projections to give to the lender. This shows you know your cash flow and have a strategy to pay off the loan.

When you need to focus on more important tasks 

Perhaps you’ve got some practical knowledge of accounting, but bookkeeping isn’t allowing you to accomplish tasks that might directly expand your business (like moving into fresh markets or acquiring new customers) or managing your company effectively (like handling performance problems or fixing service problems). You should employ an accountant in order to focus more on building your team, innovating, winning more business, as well as other development matters.

Your revenue is growing but profit is not 

If you have more sales than ever before, but your profit isn’t increasing, an accountant can review your overheads and recommend where you can slash costs or make changes to grow your profit margins.

If you’re buying/selling a business 

You don’t need to launch a new business when you can purchase one that’s already operational. But before you buy an existing business, consult an accountant. They’ll review the business’ accounts to ensure everything is fine.

If you’ve been operating your business for many years, it’s highly likely that you’ll have an accountant when time comes to sell the business. However, if you don’t have an accountant maintaining your books, it’s important to hire one to sort out your finances and generate statements to show to potential buyers.

You’re about to be audited

An accountant will provide guidance through this testing process by dealing with the IRS for you or preparing you to handle the audit. An accountant may save you precious money and time, and provide guidance during a very stressful time.

You have to handle the government 

As your business grows, you’ll need to fill out plenty of regulatory and tax documents. Dealing with government matters can be very technical aspects of business management that can prove daunting. Accountants may help you with far more than tax returns, however. They can assist you to stay on top of your compliance and regulatory requirements.

You want to venture into another state 

If you plan to take your business to a new location, hire workers in other states, or distribute in another state, an accountant may help ensure you comply with regional tax-reporting, income, or sales requirements.

When you’re managing your small business, you’ll end up handling lots of different tasks. Hiring an accountant, however, is one thing that can actually impact your business’ growth. The knowledge and expertise of accountants is very useful, whether you’re having a tax audit, preparing a business plan, or handling tax compliance.


A Guide for Choosing the Best Laser Marking Machine for Your Applications

The vast range of materials and laser marking applications often make it challenging to choose the right machine for your purposes. It requires a good understanding of the characteristics of laser technology and the material attributes play a crucial role in choosing your ideal laser machine.

The factors that make a difference in the laser marking processes include the quality of the mark needed, the type of material being used, and the speed at which the laser can mark. For instances, CO2 lasers are often used for marking, but not on metal. On the other hand, solid-state pulsing laser technology offers more options for marking applications.

For the purpose of this article, we will concentrate on the solid-state pulsed type of laser machines like Nd:YAG, fiber lasers, and Nd:YV04.

Solid-State Pulse Laser Technologies

  • Nd:YAG – It’s been 25 years since the first Nd:YAG laser was introduced. Today, it is considered the workhorse of the marking industry. The big benefit of the Nd:YAG laser type is the quality of its beam, which allows for a smaller, more focused spot size of the laser. This makes it ideal for deep engraving with clear marks, small characters, and a crisp finish.
  • Vanadate – Vanadate lasers emit at three varying wavelengths. They deliver good beam quality, are diode pumped, and offer pulse-to-pulse stability. They are ideally suited for HAZ applications and ablation marking.
  • Fiber Laser – Around six years ago, fiber laser technology entered the marking industry and has become another staple technology in the industry. It doesn’t have the same beam quality as the vanadate or Nd:YAG lasers, therefore the peak power is limited. The biggest benefit of the fiber laser lies in its ability to anneal stainless steel due to its large spot size, which draws carbon to the surface of the material.

Factors to Consider

  • Beam Properties – The beam quality of a laser marking machine is one of the first things people look at before choosing one. The term used for determining quality is M2. The M2 value of a laser machine tells you the smallest spot size it can produce. For instance, a Gaussian beam features an M2 of 1, which allows for the smallest size spot in relation to the optics and wavelength used. Nd:YAG technology has an M2 value of 1.2. Fiber-based laser technology has an M2 value of 1.7, which produces a larger spot size with less power density. Better beam quality is capable of producing smaller linewidths, higher marking speeds, deeper engraving, and sharper contours. A laser marking machine with good beam quality also produces high depth of focus over one that has less beam quality.
  • Pulse Repetition Rate–There is a vast difference between the YAG and vanadate compared to the fiber laser as far as peak power and pulse repetition is concerned. The pulse duration of fiber systems can be adjusted, which affects the pulse repetition rate, which optimizes laser marking. Make sure you research pulse repetition rates to ensure you’re getting the right laser marking machine for your applications.
  • Applications – Common terms used in the laser marking industry include, annealing, engraving, color change of plastics, and ablation. Every laser marking machine discussed here are capable of optimizing the performance of laser marking processes. For example, the vanadate laser performs very well for ablating day/night designs because of its short pulses, higher repetition rates, and pulse-to-pulse stability. Ablation is the most forgiving process in laser marking.

Each of these laser marking machines has its benefits and purpose in the marking field. It’s important that you know their purpose and features before choosing your laser marking system.


Guide to Picking the Best Vacuum Cleaner for Your Wood Floor

Dust, pet hair, and other objects littered on the floor can complicate a simple cleaning task, and keeping the polish and sheen on a hardwood floor may be just as challenging, especially if you aren’t using the recommended tools to eliminate dust. When you’ve got a good vacuum at your disposal, cleaning your hardwood floor until it’s spotlessly clean and shiny becomes a very easy task.

Since time immemorial, many floors have been covered with hardwood and it never seems to go out of fashion. Hardwood flooring can make your home more contemporary, as well as outstanding and classy. However, many people use the wrong vacuum cleaner on hardwood floors, which decreases their durability and elegance. So, read on to know how to pick the perfect vacuum for your hardwood floors.

The flooring requirements of hardwood floors differ based on how the floor is used. If you’ve got a pet, you know that pets mess up the floor and it may be difficult to get rid of the mess. Pet hair normally sticks to anything, so you should pick a vacuum that’s specialized for the job.

Also, you should consider the amount of noise you can take when cleaning. Usually, louder vacuum cleaners tend to be cheaper ones. However, if you don’t want the noise, choose a vacuum that’s been insulated.

You should also consider your personal preferences before purchasing a vacuum cleaner. For example, if you suffer from allergies, it’d be best to consider a vacuum cleaner with the right filtration system.

You should also take into account your kind of hardwood as it’ll have an effect on the required cleaning. Some hardwood floors have coated wood, some have delicate wood, and others have lines and deep indentations in the wood. Other floors have a mix of the three qualities, so make sure to choose a vacuum that meets most of your needs.

Qualities of the perfect hardwood floor vacuum

The best vacuum cleaners for hardwood floors will have the following qualities:

The vacuum cleaner should not have roller bristles because hardwood usually doesn’t have debris that needs clearing, unlike carpet. The bristles will only increase the chances of scratching. If you need a general purpose cleaner, it should feature an off switch to prevent the rolling brush from spinning.

The vacuum cleaner’s wheels should be made from rubber, instead of plastic. The vacuum’s base should also have additional padding made of felt or rubber to shield the floor while you move the equipment around.

The ideal hardwood floor vacuum should be light and small. A small, lightweight vacuum moves easily on the floor, making vacuum cleaning that much easier.

A quality vacuum should have good suction that ensures that no particles or dust is left after vacuuming. When you just need light vacuum cleaning, you can choose to have suction control to decrease the suction power. A backpack vacuum is a perfect example as it has powerful suction and is lightweight.

The vacuum should have a setting for bare floors, which lets you decrease the power head. Decreasing the vacuum’s power head takes the suction power closer to the hardwood floor for better cleaning.

An edge cleaner is a vital feature. Vacuum cleaners with this feature have power heads that can collect dirt all over the surface. An edge cleaner allows the vacuum to suck the dirt out of the edges of the room where the wall meets the floor.

Whichever vacuum cleaner you pick, follow these guidelines to keep your hardwood floor looking great.

Put a doormat outside entries to stop people tracking grit and dirt indoors. You can also enforce a no-shoes policy to preserve floors even more.

Use felt or plastic protectors under the legs of furniture to prevent scratches. While rearranging your furniture, always raise pieces rather than slide them.

In the kitchen, put a mat before the range and sink to prevent bare spots on the floor.

Never clean your hardwood floors with a steam mop. Vapors can be pushed into crevices and cracks, causing hazing and cupping of the finish.

Installing hardwood flooring is a huge investment, so taking good care of your floors is very important. Regular care will ensure that your hardwood floors last for a long, long time. Getting the best vacuum for your hardwood floors is the first step to keeping your floors looking their best.


How to Create the Perfect Diamond Engagement Ring

Choosing the perfect engagement ring isn’t easy. You have to carefully consider the materials, style, and colors of the ring. One of the most important details is the cut. The cut of a diamond can completely transform the overall look and feel of the ring. Before you buy a new engagement ring, explore some of these trendy diamond cuts. Then, pair them with the vibrant colors of other precious gemstones or a custom setting to get the best design.

Can You Have More Than One Cut on a Diamond Engagement Ring?

Symmetry is very important when it comes to designing diamond rings. Most modern engagement rings use the same diamond cut throughout. Combining several cuts can look stunning, but only if done right. As long as each diamond has a purpose in the overall design of the ring, you will have an impressive engagement ring.

Princess Cut Diamonds

Everyone wants to feel like royalty. The princess cut is a popular choice because it allows light to shine on the diamond from several different angles. Because of the square shape, this cut can be incorporated into a wide range of engagement rings. The unique style reflects light around the corners of the ring, making it perfect in single stone settings.

Cushion Cut Diamonds

Much like the princess cut, cushion cut diamonds can make an impression on their own. While they can be found in three and five stone settings, the rounded corners allow for more light to reflect from the stone. This makes them more ideal for the center of the ring. Try using several small diamonds to really draw attention to this stunning stone.

Round Brilliant Cut Diamonds

When people think of engagement rings in Melbourne CBD, the first thing that comes to mind is round brilliant cut diamonds. These circular diamonds have a timeless quality and continue to be one of the most popular cuts after hundreds of years. While the natural color of the diamond should be the star of the engagement ring, round brilliant diamonds work well with colored gemstones. The circular shape can fit into a wide range of designs, making it the ideal choice for couples who want to combine rich gemstones and diamonds.

Asscher Cut Diamonds

While asscher cut diamonds aren’t seen very often, their classic shape is making a comeback. A slight modification on the traditional square cut, asscher cut diamonds are always the center of attention. Unlike other cuts, this style is incorporated in both men’s and women’s engagement rings. Its larger shape makes it more suitable as a standalone stone.

Emerald Cut Diamonds

This traditional diamond cut is used to showcase the natural beauty and color of a stone. While it is typically used for brightly colored gemstones, it can be a great way to show off the clarity and brilliance of a diamond. While this stone tends to be large, many designers have found ways to incorporate emerald cut diamonds into multi-stone and multi-color designs.

How Many Diamonds Does Your Engagement Ring Need?

Each one of the diamond cuts listed above can work as a standalone piece or incorporate other stones into the design. This allows for more flexibility and customization options.

Here are some of the most common diamond settings and designs:

    • Single stone – a brilliantly cut diamond set on a plain band.
    • Three stones – three even stones are centered on the ring. These stones can be multiple colors.
    • Five stones – ideal for colored gemstone rings, these rings often use stones that are all the same size.
    • Twenty or more stones – this design usually features one centered stone with smaller stones running alongside the band. This adds shine to the whole ring.

Deciding how many diamonds to get on a ring is a personal choice. For engagement rings, there is no right or wrong choice; however, most modern designers emphasize simplicity. Standard engagement rings tend to have one large stone, with wedding bands and anniversary bands being more elaborate.

Choosing the right diamonds for an engagement ring doesn’t have to be difficult. Talk to an experienced jeweler today about custom options and one-of-a-kind designs. They will be able to help you not only select the right cut, but match it to the precious metal or gemstones of your choice.


Choosing the Best Recliners that Offers Relaxation

We leave our workplaces tired, and there is no better way to relax than getting home and sitting on a sofa that is well built to provide relaxation.  A recliner chair is the best seat to ensure that our muscles are relaxed. These chairs come with varying features, but the most important aspect that we consider when buying the chairs is the price.  There are some that are standard chairs, simple and some are sophisticated with a lot of features.  Below are some recliners that we should consider when purchasing;

Glider Recliner

This recliner serves two purposes; it gives us the comfort that a recliner is meant to offer and at the same time provides us with the rocking experience.  The chair is also known as a rocking recliner, and we can use it either in our living rooms or the children’s nursery if there is ample space.

Lift Chair

The chair is ideal if we have a challenge rising from the comfort of a seat.  This chair uses electric power, and we can quickly rise without struggling.

Massage Recliner

This recliner has built-in massage features that help us to manage our pains and all the body aches at the comfort of our homes. We require this type of a chair which can even help us save the amount of money that we spend in massage parlors.

Wall Hugger Recliner

This kind of a recliner is unique because of its size. It is huge than all the other recliners ensuring that we get maximum comfort and relaxation.  It is designed to make sure that we have a feeling that leaves our bodies energized to face another day with new strengths.

Standard recliner

This model of a recliner has a unique footrest, and we can push it in any direction because it reclines to give us maximum relaxation.

Power Recline

The recliner uses power, and we only need to connect it to a source of energy relax and have a perfect time. It allows us to get rid of all stresses and release all the tension that we had from work.

Choosing an affordable recliner that gives us satisfactory services

Selecting cheap recliners from the market can be a real challenge because there are so many models that look similar.  Most us are attracted to recliners that have leather finish because they appear trendier. They can be easily cleaned, and they can stay longer than recliners made from cloth. Since leather is slippery, it is easy to have fun as we slide into the chair.  Before buying a leather recliner consider the features below.

    • Room size- the style of the equipment should fit in our places without making the space to look congested. They also come in traditional and modern finishes, and we should be able to purchase the right one that matches our taste.
    • Style and space- the recliner should blend well with our styles, and we should be able to find the right space in our homes to install the recliners. These recliners will give us more comfort when relaxing. To ensure that we are right, we should use a measuring tool before buying the item to have enough space to install the chair.
    • Budget- this equipment comes with different costs. Before picking a recliner, we should make sure that it is in line with our budget. We should know the purpose we want the recliner to serve and ensure that we spend depending on the purpose. We should purchase what we can afford as long as the recliners serve our intended purpose.   Using information available on different sites can help us make the right decision on the type of leather recliners to purchase.  Checking reviews on the recliners can also assist us to buy the most appropriate type.
    • Consider the user- if we will be using the recliners most of the times we should ensure that it is user friendly. Comfort is also essential and we should not ignore this aspect before buying the recliners.  The position of our feet is also essential and we should ensure that the recliner offers comfort to our feet before making any purchase.  The recliner we buy should accommodate our weight appropriately.

Before buying any model of a recliner we should ensure that we can easily assemble it and it should be moveable.  A good recliner should help us to live more fulfilling lives.


Facts to Consider Before Purchasing a Deep Fryer

We often enjoy food cooked at the leading fast food stores, but the secret to having tasty food that is appetizing in our homes is using the right deep fryer.  With a high-quality deep fryer in our homes, we can always cook delicious crusted shrimp, fries and chicken.  These tools allow us to prepare doughnuts and other types of desserts that are perfect for our families and guests who visit us.

We believe that tasty dishes are available when we are eating away from our homes but this is a lie. With proper lessons and a great fryer, we can cook our best meals at home and even save a lot of cash that is spent buying foods out. We are guaranteed of healthful meals because we do not even know how food from outside is prepared.  These great cooking appliances are very affordable, and there is a machine that can suit each person’s budget.  Deep fryers are available at a reasonable cost of $20, but if we want more sophisticated equipment they can be available at a higher price.  We, therefore, don’t need to toil so much to purchase the deep fryer that can make meal times in our homes more compelling.

We are always comfortable buying appliances such as blenders or toasters at a high price, but a big number of people shy away from spending on a deep fryer.  Getting the right information on the appliance to buy is quite challenging to most of us, but at the Deep Fryer Hub, we can get the most reliable information on different fryers in the market.  I have personally relied on the information found at the hub’s website, and it is beneficial. Varying types of fryers are analysed to help us understand their features and make the right decision on the tool to buy for our kitchens.

All the deep fryers cook food using heated oil.  The cooking method of the fryer is known as dry cooking because we do not use water when we are cooking using the appliance.  We are made to believe that these tools deliver foods that are greasy, but if we follow proper guidelines, the foods are of high quality.  Since the food, we are deep frying has water the water should deter oils from getting into our foods.  The moisture that is present in our foods leaves the food at a high pressure, and this should ensure that no oil gets into the food whatsoever.

Before purchasing a deep fryer, we should make sure that we have understood the difference between a deep fryer that is ideal for a home, and an appliance for commercial use. A home fryer is used on a counter top, and the major features that the appliance must have are;

    • A food basket- this basket is essential because it prevents our hands from burns and we are sure that oil will not splash on our clothes. The basket also helps us to remove food from hot oil without having to use a spoon or tongs. We, therefore, get all the foods without struggling to get small particles from the oil.
    • A built in timer- some fryers lack a timer, but most of the new fryers have timers that ensure that our food cooks promptly. A timer prevents incidences of overcooking to give us high-quality food. If we leave food in the fryer without timing, oil may get into the food making it greasy, and it may eventually become burnt.
    • A knob to set temperature – this button helps us to establish the right temperature for cooking and some modern fryers have an automatic feature that displays temperature digitally. The digital appliances however target the high end buyer and have a higher price compared to the traditional fryers.

A deep fryer that is expensive has more features and it can serve us better compared to a $20 appliance. However, some are overpriced and we should be keen to have value for our money. A deep fryer that has an oil filter is better than those that lack this feature. An oil filter allows us to use our oil for more than one time and save the money we spend on buying oil.  Some fryers even move the food in the appliance ensuring that the amount of oil needed is minimal.


Finding the Perfect Sunglasses

Have you ever seen people wearing gorgeous sunglasses that enhance their looks, and when you try the same pair the sunglasses detract from your own looks? I’ve experienced this plenty of times. This situation is pretty common, especially for those of us who are clueless about finding the right sunglasses for our face shapes and features.

In magazines and ads, the models’ sunglasses always suit their faces. They make it look so effortless. But the reality is that most of us do not have oval shaped faces, so it requires a bit more work to find the right pair of shades for our faces. This means it won’t be easy, but it’s worth it in the end.

I used to pick out sunglasses based on how they looked. For some reason I gravitated towards Aviators, even though they weren’t comfortable on my face and probably didn’t look that great. I’d try them on in the store and think they looked okay. The problem is, looking okay and looking great are two different things. After some time, I’d become dissatisfied with my sunglasses because they just didn’t look right. Something was off.

It wasn’t until I started looking for tips, such as those found at Sunglass Picks, that I figured out my problem. If it wasn’t for doing research, I would have continued going on with choosing sunglasses that didn’t flatter my entire face, not to mention wasting money when I ended up throwing them away. I also hadn’t heard of certain designers, so it was a great learning experience to discover different brands. The biggest takeaway from researching sunglasses starts with each person.

It’s important to identify your face type. Because everyone in my family tended to have round faces I figured mine was the same. I forgot to factor in a few details, however: my defined jaw and higher cheekbones. No wonder my siblings’ shades missed the mark for me. As annoying as this discovery was, at least it helped me move forward in my quest for the perfect sunglasses for my face.

Another thing I noticed: prominent features can be emphasized with the wrong sunglasses. Ouch. No wonder my nose looked so big in those small, rounded sunglasses. So the shape of the frame plays an important role in balancing your face as well.

Besides the shape, there are other factors to consider. How much sun protection do you want? Do you want polarized frames or shades without glare?

For people like me, I just want a pair of sunglasses that look great on me and don’t cost too much. I appreciate the intention of sunglasses, that of protecting my eyes, but I’m honest enough to admit that sun protection is most likely at the bottom of my list. It’s one of those things that are great to have, but it isn’t something I actively look for in the beginning.

The material makeup of the sunglasses is another factor to consider. Metal frames increase the weight, unfortunately. I personally prefer plastic frames for how light they feel on my face. I’m extremely sensitive to anything on my face, so at times I’ve chosen sunglasses or kept unflattering sunglasses based on how comfortable they felt on me. How many can relate to this?

The funny thing is, sunglasses should be the easiest accessory to choose. But every time I shop for sunglasses it stresses me out more than it should, which is annoying. What’s worse is that this has to be done in person. Most people can’t just browse sunglasses online and order them with the expectation that they’ll look great on them. If someone knows of a foolproof way to purchase the perfect sunglasses online, let me know.

With the tips I’ve learned, I’m feeling brave enough to give sunglasses another chance. There must be a pair out there that’s right for each one of us. At the end of the day I just have to remember that sunglasses are supposed to protect my eyes. Whether they look incredible on me or not isn’t my ultimate goal. However, the honest side of me is saying it sure would be nice if they did look great and protected me.

The perfect pair is out there. I won’t give up on finding them.