Optical Frames

Shopping for eyeglass frames can be quite overwhelming… but also lots of fun!

Today, the selection of eyeglasses is incredibly diverse, featuring an array of designs, forms, hues, and construction materials—including metals, synthetics, and authentic wood. Optical retailers showcase extensive collections of eyewear created by renowned designers and celebrated brands, catering to various preferences and distinctive styles.

While the aesthetic appeal of eyeglasses is a key aspect, it’s equally critical to consider their comfort and longevity. These elements significantly influence your experience and satisfaction with your eyewear.

Which type of frame is right for you?

Eyeglass frames come in a variety of materials, with some designed from a single material like metal or plastic, and others blending different materials, such as plastic frames featuring titanium arms.

When it comes to metal versus plastic frames, the current manufacturing processes ensure that both materials offer comparable durability, weight, and affordability. However, the metal used can differ from one frame to another, making it vital to get advice from your optometrist or eyewear specialist to choose the best option. For those with sensitivities to nickel or other metals, it’s crucial to select frames made from hypoallergenic materials.

Here’s a rundown of the various frame types you’ll find on today’s market.

Metal frames

Metal eyeglass frames stand out for their robustness and lasting quality, with each type of metal bringing its own set of benefits:

  • Titanium frames are celebrated for their durability and strength, along with being impressively light and resistant to corrosion. They’re also non-allergenic, making them a perfect choice for individuals sensitive to metals like nickel.
  • Beryllium frames offer a lighter, yet sturdy alternative to titanium, at a more affordable price. These frames stand out for their flexibility and exceptional resistance to corrosion.
  • Stainless steel frames provide a solid balance of strength and lightness, although they are slightly heavier than titanium. They’re also resistant to corrosion and generally more budget-friendly compared to other metal options.
  • Monel frames combine various metals and are specifically coated to prevent any allergic reactions for those with sensitive skin, despite containing nickel. These frames are adaptable and resistant to corrosion.
  • Aluminum frames are known for their flexibility, strength, and resistance to corrosion, making them a premium option among metal frames.
  • Flexon frames live up to their name with unparalleled flexibility, allowing them to return to their original shape after being bent or twisted. These frames are also light, non-allergenic, and resistant to corrosion.
Contact an eye doctor near you to help you decide which frames will best fit you.

Plastic frames

Plastic frames stand out for their style, lightness, and the wide array of designs and hues they come in. Generally, they are more budget-friendly compared to their metal counterparts. However, it’s important to note that plastic frames may not be as robust as metal ones and have a higher tendency to break.

Various plastics are utilized to craft frames, each with its unique features:

  • Zyl, or zylonite frames, are celebrated for their affordability and lightweight nature. They can be easily shaped for a perfect fit and come in a spectrum of colors.
  • Optyl frames are crafted from a special type of epoxy resin. These require a specific heating process for molding, allowing for a snug fit to your face.
  • Frames made from cellulose acetate propionate offer a lighter alternative, thanks to their nylon-based, hypoallergenic plastic. These frames feel softer compared to other plastic options.
  • Blended nylon frames strike a balance between being both light and durable. Their design is particularly favored for sports eyewear, thanks to the wraparound styles that offer enhanced functionality.

If you think plastic frames are for you contact an eye doctor to make sure they are a good fit.

Wooden frames

Wooden frames stand out for their distinctive character and come with a host of benefits.

Crafted from natural wood, these frames are offered in a variety of finishes, ensuring a wide selection to suit different tastes. Their hypoallergenic nature, thanks to the use of pure wood and coatings derived from plant-based and natural substances, makes them a great option for those sensitive to other materials. Not only are they exceptionally lightweight and comfortable, but they also add a touch of elegance and style to any look. Furthermore, wooden frames are environmentally friendly due to the minimal processing and energy required for their production.

Rimless frames

Rimless eyeglasses have gained popularity for their understated elegance, appealing to individuals who prefer a minimalist aesthetic. They come in a wide range of shapes and sizes, and there’s also the option of choosing half-rimless frames for a slightly different look.

These frames are known for their lightweight feel and comfort, allowing for a barely-there appearance that draws attention away from the eyewear to the wearer’s features. However, it’s important to consider that rimless frames are more fragile compared to their full-rimmed counterparts and tend to be more susceptible to damage.

Other important factors to consider

After deciding on the style of frame you’re interested in, it’s important to consider various aspects of the frame to refine your selection further.

Frame Size

A wide array of frame sizes makes it easier to find one that fits you perfectly. Smaller frames might be preferred for reading glasses, but for those wearing glasses throughout the day, opting for a larger frame can enhance your field of vision and peripheral sight.

However, the strength of your prescription plays a crucial role in determining the suitable frame size. For higher prescriptions, large frames may lead to thicker lenses, though the use of high-index lenses can help reduce this thickness.

Bridge Fit

A well-fitting bridge is crucial for comfort and to ensure your glasses stay in place. Glasses that fit well on the bridge of your nose won’t slip when you move or look down. A bridge that is too tight or sits too high can cause discomfort by pinching your nose.

Temple Style

Temples connect the front of the glasses to the back of your ears. There are various styles, including comfort cable temples that securely wrap around the ears and straight temples that rely on a snug fit against the head to prevent slipping. For a comfortable fit that doesn’t slide, the temple length, which typically ranges from 120 to 150 mm, should match your head size. If you’re unsure about the fit, consulting with an optical specialist is a good idea.

Spring Hinges

Frames with spring hinges are more flexible, reducing the likelihood of damage for those who might be a bit more careless with their glasses or tend to fall asleep while wearing them. Choosing frames with these hinges can save you frequent trips for adjustments or repairs.

Taking your time to explore all available options and considering these factors will help you select the best frames for your needs. If you’re still uncertain, consulting an eye care professional can provide tailored advice on the most suitable frame type for your prescription, face shape, and lifestyle needs, ensuring you’re delighted with your choice

For additional guidance, don’t hesitate to seek advice from an optician or eye doctor. They can assist in finding the perfect fit, shape, and size, ensuring your new glasses not only meet your visual requirements but also complement your daily life and style.