Breaks For Eyes: This Mac App Helps You Get Rid Of Eye Strain

Alex Chernikov
Intermission for Mac
3 min readOct 11, 2018


After I was quite stunned with a significant eyesight drop on my recent vision test, I spent 2 months researching how to use a computer with no harm to my health, and eyes in particular.

I found out that regular breaks is probably the most important thing if don’t want your eyes to burn and to feel squeezed out at the end of the day.

So, we at Twopeople Software ended up making the Breaks For Eyes app to help take these breaks on schedule & not skip.

What It Does And Why?

The app is very simple. Basically, it puts a famous 20–20–20 rule on your Mac and automates it.

Simply speaking, every 20 minutes it asks you (by blocking your screen) to look at something 20 ft (6 m) away from you for 20 seconds. After 20 seconds, it unblocks the screen.

Focusing on your monitor without breaks for protracted periods of time causes computer vision syndrome (CVS). Symptoms of it include blurred vision, dry eyes, difficulties with focusing, irritated eyes, often also a headache and fatigue.

Regular quick breaks drastically reduce eye strain and help overcome symptoms of the CVS.

Starting Off

Launch the app. Now, it will be asking you to take a break every 20 minutes. You can see how much time is left until the next break in the menu bar.

This is how the app asks you to take a break.
This is where you can see how much time is left until the next break (18 min in my case).

Skipping Breaks

For instance, if you’re going to watch a movie, you wouldn’t like to see break reminders, probably. We made it possible to disable all breaks for 30 min, 1h, 2h, 4h and until the next day.

Click the button in the menu bar to select for how long you don’t want to take breaks.

Disabling breaks for some time.

You can also skip every single break. Just click the “Skip” button when your screen gets blocked. However, we don’t recommend to skip your breaks like this. Read the next paragraph to learn why.

Motivation Not To Skip

We know it from our experience that it can be quite challenging to gain this new habit to take breaks.

“I’m working on important stuff here, why this stupid app interrupts me???” you may think the first time Breaks For Eyes asks you to put your important stuff aside for 20 seconds.

We’ll try to help you gain the habit. You’ll be getting a reward after each not-skipped break. Such as super beautiful wallpapers (from the Artpaper app), which you can download in one click, and insightful pieces of advice on how to save your health.

From the observations we made with our early users, it takes half a day up to one day to stop struggling whether to skip or not. Just 12 up to 24 breaks, and you’ll not be even having in mind to skip the break!

Your prospective reward for a not skipped break.

Download Breaks For Eyes:


If you have any feedback or bug reports, feel free to drop them at with a respective subject line.

Also send us how many breaks it took you to get used. We’ll make fun infographics out of this data later on.

Note: Breaks For Eyes is only available for macOS now. It’s a paid app (9.99$ one-time) with a free 3-day trial. Download links: our website, Mac App Store.



Alex Chernikov
Intermission for Mac

Maker of top-rated, award-winning iOS and macOS software with over 600,000 monthly users; CEO at |