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​Choosing Eyeglass Frames - Some Rules To Live By

Posted by Terri-Lynn Weatherby -Licensed Optician on

Choosing Eyeglass Frames - Some Rules To Live By

Have you ever avoided buying new glasses because intuition said there was something more

you needed to know? Hopefully the following basic tips will help you choose your best look

with comfort and style. Whether this is your first or twenty-first time choosing a frame, consider

the type of prescription lens being used, face shape / frame weight balance, frame size, and

colour.

Prescription

Prescription lenses will not be discussed here more than just to let you know that the shape,

size and characteristics of the ophthalmic lens, also known as the prescription, can determine

the frame choice entirely. With lens prescriptions over 3.50 D, frame size should decrease as

lens power increases.

Balancing The Face Shape and Frame Weight

The key to choosing a frame that looks great is to achieve balance. Wearing a frame can

create the illusion of a wider and longer, or a shorter and thinner face shape. Think of the frame

as weight. By weight I mean that which is dark, thick, large, bold, or prominent as heavy and

that which is light in colour, thin, and small in size, to be light. In general, a bold frame will

cause the face to appear smaller. A light frame will cause boldness in the face.

Any frame where the bottom eye wire is lighter than the top eye wire will balance a triangular

shaped face, and thin out a round or square shaped face. A frame with a darker bottom eye

wire will balance an inverted triangular shaped face.

When the frame is heavy it will appear to shorten the face and make the cheek look thicker

below the bottom eye wire. To balance a long or thin face shape use a darker frame. The

expression of the wearer is lost behind a frame that is to bold or sits to high covering up the

expression in the eye brow.

Frame Size

The eye or “A” measurement, the bridge measurement, the “B” measurement, and temple

length all make up the dimensions of the frame in millimetres. The “A” measurement is the

horizontal length of one eye opening.The bridge measurement is the space between the two

“A” measurements. The “B” measurement represents the vertical dimension of the eye

opening. The temple length describes the length of the arm. The frame size is scribed on the

inside of the frame, usually on the temple or bridge as follows 52-17/135 always in the same

order of “A”- Bridge/Temple. If the current frame fits, success can be achieved by repeating the

same size. If the current frame you are in needs to be readjusted often, slides down, or is

causing discomfort this could suggest a poor fit; therefore, a different size could be in order.

The Bridge and Eye Size

The collective frame front should not be longer than the longest part of the face, or too short

that the face now looks bigger and the frame feels tight. The bridge should fit such that there is

no more than 1mm gape created between the nose and the eye wire when the frame is pushed

with a finger on the end piece in towards the wearers temple. A metal frame is forgiving if the

bridge does not fit well because the nose pads can be adjusted and changed to improve the

fit. A plastic frame however, is not adjustable, when considering the bridge fit.

Colour

Black, brown, and shades of these colours are common and safe because they are easily

matched with clothing. Use colours that go with your skin tone and think about the colours in

your wardrobe. The frame should not match exactly but do combine alike tones. Imagine

yourself wearing the frame for long periods of time and be aware of the experience of looking

through the lens opening. Is the colour and frame style framing your vision? What is this

experience like for you?

Wearing the right frame feels light and natural. The eye is centred a little higher than the half

way point in the eye opening. Vision is clear. Life is not interrupted by the need to push up or

put the frame back into place over and over again. When picking out your frame remember

how your lens is going to look and act within the frame. Understand your face shape and use

the frame to accentuate some facial features and minimize others. Create the fit you desire by

knowing your size. Think about your past frames. Avoid frame attributes that have been

experienced in the past. My wish for you is every good thing your eyeglasses can bring.

Terri-Lynn Weatherby

Licensed Optician and Founder

OptimEyes Mobile Optician Ltd

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