Can you use prescription glasses with Nintendo Labo VR?

Can you use prescription glasses with Nintendo Labo VR?

How Well Does Labo VR Work with Glasses?

We searched Nintendo's website to see if Labo VR was designed to fit around glasses but found no information on this topic. Next, we contacted Nintendo Customer Service, but since Labo VR is a relatively new product the representatives didn't know much about it.

With some research into VR user forums, we found reports of people wearing Labo VR over their prescription glasses quite comfortably and without experiencing any vision problems. This is good since the one-size-fits-all cardboard headpiece isn't adjustable. If your glasses happen to have really thick rims, there's a chance it might not be as roomy. Of course, whether or not you like the feel of Labo VR over your specs is ultimately a matter of preference. Some glasses wearers simply prefer using contacts when playing VR games.

While there are many different Toy-Cons (cardboard accessories) that can be used with Labo VR, they all connect to the same base headpiece. This means that, regardless of which Toy-Con you're using, the goggles should fit the same way. Labo VR goggles do not have a head strap, but rather require that you hold them up to your face. This means you won't have the unpleasant pressure of a band squeezing the temples or bridge of your glasses into your head.

Going Glasses Free with VR

For the past few years, there has been a debate between bespectacled gamers about which devices accommodate their vision better. It turns out many farsighted people report they can see clearly while using their VR headsets, sans glasses. Unfortunately, this isn't the case for many nearsighted VR users.

Individuals with prescriptions at -1.00 tend to be able to see details clearly without additional eye strain when playing VR without glasses. However, for anyone more short-sighted the details become progressively blurrier and eye strain becomes notable. Most nearsighted gamers will want to wear glasses or contacts when playing.

Unlike other VR devices, the Switch screen is only 720p instead of the usual 1080p or higher. You'll likely find that details aren't quite as crisp on the Switch as they are in other VR experiences, which might make you want to wear your glasses while playing, regardless of your prescription.

Digital Eye Strain and VR

According to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, staring at a screen for long periods won't cause permanent eye damage, but it can make your eyes tired, dry, and irritated. You might also experience headaches, blurred vision, or soreness in your neck and shoulders. One of the most common ways to alleviate eye strain is by sitting far enough away from the display, but that isn't really an option when the screen needs to be right next to your face as with Labo VR.

There are still some things you can do to help with VR eye strain:

  • Turn down the brightness of your screen to help your eyes relax.
  • Wear blue-light blocking lenses since Labo VR can accommodate them.
  • Make a conscious effort to blink more frequently while you play.
  • Take frequent breaks from the headset.
  • Use the 20-20-20 rule: stare at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds every 20 minutes.
  • To relieve shoulder and neck pain, try to have good posture while playing.
  • Consult an optometrist if you have any eye complications or concerns.

As a final note, the sensation created by a 3D gaming environment can sometimes make users feel sick. If you need to take a break from the VR aspect or if you want to allow a younger child to play, turn off the VR feature and play Labo VR games in 2D. If you'd rather not deal with VR, there's always the original Labo Variety Kit.

Rebecca Spear
Gaming Editor

Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.