London, Jun 22: Forget all the old wives' tales, the most definite way to dispel tears caused due to slicing onions is rather funky - courtesy a special pair of glasses. The evolutionary 'onion goggles' have been designed with a foam seal around the edges that protects the area around the eye.
This stops the onion vapours, which trigger the tear ducts, from wafting in. The glasses also have special anti-fog lenses that prevent them from steaming as the kitchen heats up. Inventors in the US came up with the idea after noticing that some professional cooks often wore swimming goggles whilst chopping onions. The goggles, which can be bought in black or white, are sold on the Internet for around 15pounds.
They are designed to be unisex and even come with their own special storage cases.
"They are actually rather funky and look like a pair of sports sunglasses. When onions are chopped, the enzyme sulfoxide lyase is released into the atmosphere. This is the substance that can irritate a person's tear ducts," the Telegraph quoted Sonia Spencer, of British supplier Eddington, as saying.
"The foam seal on the onion goggles stops these vapours from entering the eye area and therefore stops you from crying.
"It's a very simple idea yet a very effective solution to a problem which affects most people in the kitchen. They can also be used to protect the eyes when chopping chillies. It can be extremely painful if you rub your eyes when doing this," she added.
David Eggison, managing director of Colanders, a cookware company that supplies onion goggles, said they were very popular.
"They are so quirky and appeal to all sorts of people, young and old. You might feel a bit daft wearing them but I have a pair of them myself and can honestly say they really work," he said.