Method Seven: Taking Protective Eyewear to New Heights

Method Seven: Taking Protective Eyewear to New Heights

Originally published in Cannabis Now.

Method Seven Specialty Optics designs and manufactures high-quality protective eyewear for use in unique or extreme lighting conditions.

Growing cannabis presents cultivators with a unique set of challenges — and it’s not just temperamental plants. Powerful lighting used to grow cannabis indoors aims to mimic the sun, often causing headaches, migraines, fatigue and safety problems for growers. On top of that, different indoor grow setups have different light issues. Metal halide lights, high pressure sodium (HPS) lights and LEDs all skew color in a unique direction which may interfere with early detection of pests or problems.

With over 10 different frame and lens combinations for use with various indoor light systems, outdoor growing and sky conditions, Method Seven Specialty Optics protect growers from harmful light output and infrared heat while enabling them to see the natural colors of plants and identify any grow issues.

The technology that makes Method Seven stand out as the industry leader in speciality optics is known as notch filtering. Each mineral glass lens contains a proprietary neodymium blend, fused into the glass, that can be manipulated in order to cut light at specific wavelengths. For example, Method Seven cuts the light spectrum at 590 nanometers in their glasses specifically designed for HPS lights.

Their original product, the Rendition, is made with a German mineral glass lens developed specifically for use under HPS lights. While these lights are known to be the most efficient and powerful light options on the market for growing indoor plants, they also make everything look yellow, so evaluating the well-being of plants under this lighting is nearly impossible. But with the revolutionary Rendition glasses, the lenses balance color and provide visual clarity for monitoring plants, protecting growers against harmful light output and infrared heat.

Taking this concept to life was a huge risk, Method Seven CEO James Cox told Cannabis Now.

“German glass production is designed for massive scale,” Cox said. “Our first test run, to craft the first lens to prove the theory, cost half a million dollars. But the process worked, and here we are today.”

Cox said that the German engineer who helped pour the glass explained that the glass can be used for fighter jet cockpits because they provide contrast enhancement at high altitude, protect against UV and improve pilot peripheral vision.

Cox was inspired and so, after two years of research and development, Method Seven has launched a line of speciality optics for pilots with their Sky eyewear line.

“[Pilots] have all learned that noise cancelling headsets are essential for flying an airplane,” said Cox. “Nobody would fly a plane without [them] because it’s so fatiguing hearing that noise all day. So, you’re looking at noise — visual noise — [when you look] through cheap glasses. If you can filter the light well, you can have a similar experience [to the audio], albeit on a subtler level.”

Cox says that the glasses will make flying a more comfortable experience for pilots because their eyes will be taken care of.

Going Beyond Normal Expectations

Method Seven wants to do more than sell a product, and so they’ve conducted studies and designed first-of-its-kind diagnostic equipment to test their groundbreaking findings.

“The challenge — or opportunity — for us is that: there aren’t many companies doing what we do, and our science and technology is way ahead,” he says.

Recently, Method Seven teamed with a professor emeritus of ophthalmology from University of California, Berkeley and his students to study the tint in aviation glasses and reaction time.

“[We] found that pilots who did not use [our] glasses took off their sunglasses to land,” said Cox. “The amber tint affected their performance. With a study of over 120 people, they found a 28-32 percent faster reaction time with Method Seven lenses than with the leading aviation amber performance lenses.”

Cox explained that blue light “is important to the brain function and the speed of information to the brain for landing a plane.” The Method Seven team then applied this lesson to their grow glasses, “so growers could have the right balance of blues for proper brain function and safety.”

This dedication to finding the “how” and “why” behind vision science sets Method Seven apart.

Meet the Visionaries Behind Method Seven

Method Seven crafts their protective lenses to go beyond “shades.” They are protective performance gear with a dedicated fan base. To highlight how diverse the application of their speciality optics are, they established ambassadors from inside and outside of the cannabis industry that are making a difference in the world through art, science, education and community engagement.

“One thing fun that we are doing across the board with the company is everyone in the company who sponsors the product uses it before we sponsor them,” said Cox. “They either found it organically or bought it and then found us, as opposed to finding them and pushing it on them. It keeps the brand authentic.”

Taylor Reinhold

International street artist Taylor Reinhold is visually impaired and partially color blind. Neither of these attributes makes for an easier life, but for an artist well known for his works in stunning colors, it comes as a surprise. His acclaimed artwork festoons buildings in Honolulu, South Africa, California and South Africa.

Reinhold started wearing a pair of glasses from Method Seven several years ago. Combining Method Seven’s notch filtering technology with his ideal prescription helps him see clearer with more vivid color than he had seen since childhood.

“As we look to people wearing our technology that have a vision, we are trying to let our technology help with their passion,” Cox said. “In the case of Taylor, it’s pretty profound, because he paints with color, and now he can see reds, greens and blues with more definition.”

Reinhold’s art decorates the cloth bags that Method Seven’s speciality optic lenses come in. To help him make his vision real, they even sponsored a 50,000-square-foot mural for him in Santa Cruz to bring awareness to oceanic plastic debris. Some of those garbage circles, like the one between Hawaii and California, measure twice as large as the state of Texas.

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Celine Cousteau

Another visionary deeply committed to a better vision of the future, Celine Cousteau has activism in her lineage. Granddaughter of famed oceanic explorer, Jacques Cousteau, she travels the world as a documentary film director, producer, explorer and activist.

Her work with ocean conservation and exploring puts her under constant glare from the sun. But thanks to Method Seven, her eyes remain focused on the project, not the fatigue. With glasses that can reduce the light reflection off the water and camera lenses that capture the true beauty of our planet, she presses onward.

Kyle Kushman

A more familiar name for cannabis enthusiasts, Kyle Kushman grows and works with cannabis for a living. His plant knowledge and experience in the grow room give him a weathered viewpoint on the unique challenges cultivators face. He has also worn and promoted Method Seven since 2013.

“Method Seven protects your eyes completely from all damaging UV light, while also allowing you to see the actual color of your plants, both of which are priceless benefits,” said Kushman. “They are a must have for any serious gardener.

Cultivators and aviators alike can find the perfect lenses to keep them alert, effective and safe at Methodseven.com.

TELL US, do you use speciality optics for your grow?