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Do 'onion goggles' stop teary eyes?

January 18, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
If preparing a meal means chopping onions - lots of onions - and that brings you to tears, then you need to know about a product that promises to spare you. But does it work?So far, gimmicks to stop your eyes from watering when slicing onions are like the gimmicks for the hiccups - none of them really work. But when Eyewitness News teamed up with Consumer Reports, we found one new product that might just be the one for tear-free onion chopping.

Onions can make a grown man weep. Rich Hammond was one of seven crying cooks Consumer Reports called on to test something that promises to end onion tears -- onion goggles.

The goggles are edged in foam to help make a seal around your eyes. They come in their own storage case and cost about $20.

To test, panelists first chopped without the goggles for three minutes straight and reported what happened. They experienced tearing and burning sensations.

After a break to recover, they chopped with the onion goggles. Okay, they're kind of funny looking. But six of the seven panelists reported a big improvement.

Consumer Reports also tried some cheaper alternatives. A pair of $5 contractor goggles let you wear your glasses, which you can't with the onion goggles. They - and a pair of $8 safety glasses - did cut down on the tears, but they didn't seem as effective as the onion goggles.

So if you chop a whole lot of onions, onion goggles may be worth it -- despite the fact you look ridiculous.

Consumer Reports says if you do decide to chop onions wearing safety goggles or swim goggles, be sure to choose ones with anti-fog lenses. Otherwise if they fog up, you could cut your hand; then you'll really have something to cry about.