Are varifocals a new type of lenses?
What are varifocal lense?
Who would wear them and why?
Can varifocal lenses fit into any size frame?
Can I buy varifocal lenses from the internet?
Can I measure my own eyes for my PD measurements so I can buy online?
Can I get varifocal sunglasses?
Can I get Light Reactive varifocal lenses?
Can I get varifocal lenses with Blue Light Blocking protection?
1.Are Varifocals a new type of lenses?
No. In 1959 the very first varifocal lenses called Varilux were invented by a company called Essilor. Over the years they have progressed and massively improved in design. Now, one of the most popular types of lenses sold world wide, being so comfortable and practical for the wearer, they have proved to be the ideal choice of everyday eyewear for millions of people. Essilor remain one of the worlds finest varifocal lens manufacturers. Their latest X Series, launched in 2017 already one of the worlds finest and popular lenses. Designed for modern day to day living, giving all day comfort for tasks that include hours on a computer, TV and lots of driving. With it’s extremely comfortable design, incorporating very wide distance, intermediate and reading areas, meaning very little or no peripheral distortion, little or no head movement, or any feeling of sway. We supply the X Series lenses at very affordable prices often £100’s less than high street opticians.
2.What are Varifocal Lenses?
Varifocal lenses are lenses that contain 3 different prescription powers. They contain prescriptions to correct vision in the far distance, mid distance (about an arms length away) and the near distance.
There are lots of different brands and types of varifocal lenses available on the market, some of them much better than others in performance. The very basic lenses have a much narrower field of vision at all distances. The premium quality digital, or Freeform lenses as they are also known as, have a much wider field of vision at all distances. Generally speaking, the better quality lenses are by far the best option as they are much more comfortable to wear, and give a clearer, wider field of vision at all distances for the wearer. If ever in doubt then Essilor are always going to be a better option especially for a lot of driving, computer use or stronger prescriptions.
When wearing varifocal lenses for the first time, advice from an expert in the optical industry is always preferable to trying to choose which lenses are best yourself. Some shops offer very cheap or even free varifocal lenses when you buy frames from them. This is often not a the better option, as mentioned above, budget varifocal lenses have often been found to give a much narrower field of vision than the better quality lenses, making them impractical and uncomfortable to wear. Often, these low quality lenses end up just sitting in a drawer unworn.
3.Who would wear them, and why?
It might be someone who has been wearing distance glasses for some time and is now approaching middle age. Or someone who has never worn glasses previously, but when approaching middle age finds they have difficulty focusing on anything up close.
Generally people around the age of 45 or over, develope an eye condition called Presbyopia. This isn’t some dreadful eye disease, it simply means that as the Crystalline lenses in their eyes becomes more rigid with age, and most people find it difficult to focus on close objects. This natural process of decreased flexibility in the eyes is called “ Presbyopia”
When Presbyopia first occurs, symptoms are holding text further away when reading, difficulties seeing small writing, and problems when trying to thread a needle. In order to see clearly at close distances again, a positive reading addition (seen as Add or Near on a prescription) is prescribed on top of the normal distance prescription. This means a different power lens is used for distance compared to reading. In terms of spectacles, if the wearer needs a prescription for both distances, they will need either two separate pairs of glasses, one for distance and one for reading/near), or varifocals which combine both prescriptions together.
As time goes on, the Crystalline lenses become more rigid, therefore the reading add (Add or Near on the prescription) has to be increased to compensate. By the age of 55-60 the lenses have lost all flexibility, and glasses are necessary for just about everyone to see up close.
4.Can Varifocal Lenses fit into any size frame?
The size of the frame is very important when considering buying varifocal lenses. Very shallow frames limit the quality of vision as the areas of the lenses are too small to fit the different prescriptions into. This results in the area of lens that contains the distance or reading prescriptions not being big enough to look through, limiting the size of the field of clear vision.
Ideally, a frame needs to be approximately 30mm deep to fit in most types of varifocal lenses. The pupils need to sit half way across the frame from left to right to avoid experiencing large amounts of periphera distortion around the edges of the lenses. For example: If the pupils sit a lot nearer to the nose than the temple side of the lenses, the chance of peripheral distortion is greatly increased.
Smaller, shallow frames are very popular just now. There are varifocal lenses available which are specially designed to fit into shallow frames. These short lenses are fine for normal everyday use, but can become a problem for anyone who needs to focus on anything at arms length for long periods of time. A perfect example would be using a computer, or reading sheet music. To make varifocal lenses fit shallow frames, the middle section of the lenses has to be compromised. This results in the area available to see through clearly for mid distance being very small, and unpractical to use. These types of lenses are no good for computer use, or any other similar types of work.
If however you have a shallow half frame, or rimless frame that you’d like to use for varifocal lenses, we can deepen the lenses a couple of mm to accommadate the better size varifocal lenses, making them suitable for computer use and reading. This cannot be done with full rimmed frames.
5.Can I buy Varifocal Lenses from the internet?
Yes, but only if the online company has the exact eye measurements needed to make the lenses accurately. Caution is advisable if buying varifocal lenses online is an option you’d like to consider. There are some drawbacks and very positive aspects to buying online. The cost is normally greatly reduced compared to high street prices, but the exact eye measurements needed to make up the lenses need to be exact.
Firstly, use caution if buying online. Due to the technical complexities of varifocal lenses, be sure to speak to someone from the company to talk you through the whole process clearly. Make sure you feel comfortable to be able to ask for any advice that you need, that you are not being rushed, and have had any questions answered thoroughly, and in a manner that you completely understand. Never consider a company who is prepared to use average PD eye measurements, rather than making sure they have your own correct ones. Do they offer a no quibble guarantee, and what is their returns policy? Check out their reviews. Are the comments specific to the person who has actually bought glasses and is sending the review, and does it appear genuine? Just general comments about service etc are usually found on the reviews written by companies who specialise in supplying false reviews for other companies. (Yes this really does happen ). And finally, shop around by all means, but go for a company that you feel you feel confident about their knowledge of lenses and professionalism rather than cost. Two companies might be offering the same lenses, but different service, guarantees, and most important different standards of care to get the eye measurements absolutely correct measuring. If you measure your own eyes and get say 64mm, and they accept this as your PD eye measurements, absolutely don’t buy your lenses from them. This isn’t accurate enough by far. For accurate varifocal measurements, 4 measurements are needed.
6.Can I measure my own eyes for my PD measurements so I can buy online?
Here is a link to a video showing how to accurately measure your own PD eye measurements with the help of a friend. The way PD ‘s are measured on the video is fine for single vision lenses like distance or reading glasses. Just make sure that when you speak to someone about your lenses on the phone, you say if the glasses are for reading or distance vision. The PD measurement for reading lenses is slightly different to distance lenses, but can easily be worked out by the people glazing the lenses if a normal PD measurement is given as shown in the video. Just follow the instructions carefully and you will be fine to buy your lenses online. Buying varifocal lenses online is slightly different. Follow the instructions shown on the video, but you might be asked to then leave the dots on the lenses and send your frame complete with dots. This way the position of your pupils in the lenses can be double checked for accuracy. Be sure to speak to someone personally though, and follow the advice above regarding buying varifocal lenses online.
7.Can I get Varifocal Sunglasses?
Yes. Most brands and types of varifocal lenses can be tinted as sunglass lenses. Some of the thinner lenses can be difficult to tint, but there is usually an option available to you whatever your prescription. Tints vary from very light shades, to darker shades, and graduated tints which are normally a dark at the top of the lenses, graduating to a light shade, or completely clear at the bottom of the lenses.
8.Can I get Light Reactive Varifocal Lenses?
Yes. Also known as Transitions, Photochromic, Reactions, Reactolite and the new XTRActive Lenses. These lenses all react to the UV in the sun. The lenses will all be completely clear when indoors, and go dark when exposed to the UV from the sun when outdoors.
Varifocal light reactive lenses are very popular as most people find them very practical for everyday wear. Having just one pair of glasses is ideal as they are suitable to be worn on most occasions, taking away the need to carry more than one pair of glasses.
When these types of lenses are at their darkest, most brands will be fairly dark, suitable for most sunny weather conditions. Normal over the counter sunglasses, and prescription sunglasses will go a shade darker than light reactive lenses, if very darker lenses are preferable.
If sunglasses are needed for when doing a lot of driving, solid tint sunglasses would be a better option. This is because light reactive lenses won’t be as effective when driving as most modern cars windscreens have a UV filter built into them. This filter prevents the lenses from going very dark when worn in the car compared to when wearing them outside.
XTRActive Lenses: These lenses have a permanent very light tint and work very well behind a car windscreen giving excellent sun and glare protection while driving. Proven to be outstanding lenses for anyone who is light sensitive. A must for anyone who drives for a living as they will darken to sunglasses while driving. An excellent choice of lenses for anyone who drives frequently.
For extra protection against glare see the new Road Pilot Lenses launched November 2017. Available as single vision and varifocal lenses. Full details are in the price list.
9. Can I get varifocal lenses with Blue Light Blocking protection, and why would I need them?
Yes you can get the blue light protection on most glasses these days. It can be a blue light protection coating which is clear like normal lense, or amber coloured lenses which absorbe the blue colour. Which lenses to choose depends on what you want to wear them for. Generally the clear coated ones are worn for work for computer use, and work places such as offices, shops, hospitals, dentists, schools, factories etc that are lit by strong LED lights. These clear lenses have a coating that reflects the harmful blue light from the surface of the lenses. They generally have a lower percentage of protection then amber coloured lenses, but look more professional for work.
The amber coloured lenses absorb the blue light. These lenses can be made in varying shades of amber, and the darker the shade, the more blue light is blocked. They can look a little strange and unsightly for office work, but are excellent for home use. They are a real help for anyone who has trouble sleeping as if worn for 2-3 before bedtime, they will help set the natural body clock and Circadiun Rhythm. Sleep will be much more restful, leaving you feeling much more refreshed in the morning. The health benefits of wearing the amber lenses in the evening to shield the eyes from artificial light are huge, and not only to the eyes, but the whole body. For more information about blue light see the link below which takes you directly to the full explanation and prices page.
Does the following sound familiar? If so, blue light protection would probably be a good idea for you.
After spending hours in front of a computer screen at work, you go on to spend yet more hours using other electronic devices at home. You often have headaches, fatigue, burning, watering, irritable or reddened eyes, flickering images, and intermittent short sightedness. You’re not alone. These symptoms have become so common; they even have a name, (CVS) Computer Vision Syndrome.
With the introduction of so many electronic devices, our eyes are put under enormous pressure as they are exposed to harmful light spectrums. Few people realise that our eyes are also exposed to harmful high-energy blue light and UV rays at home as well as at work.
LCD or LED Computer and TV screens, smart phones, tablets, and Fluorescent, CFL and LED bulbs all have a high blue spectral emission. Essentially, if you have any of the electronic devices now considered a necessary part of our everyday lives, you’re more than likely already being affected by the blue light in more ways than you realise.
We already know to take regular breaks from the screen. Staring at a screen for hours at a time slows down the blink reflex, causing eyes to feel dry. Use of eye drops to try to relieve dryness and eye tiredness can help, but only for a few minutes. Drops are not a long term solution.
So what is the solution?
Blue Light Blocking Lenses Everytime.
Our new “E-Clipzur” Lenses are scientifically proven and block out 100% of the harmful Blue Light, while allowing all healthy and beneficial blue light pass through the lenses. All “E-Clipzur” Lenses include a UV-400 filter to protect fully against UVA and UVB rays, and are available as prescription and non – prescription lenses for people who need no optical correction, but need to protect their eyes from the harmful blue light. .
They are all infused with the precise balance of ocular lens pigment and melanin to defend your eyes against harmful blue light spectrums both indoors and out. Further, such lenses effectively soothe tired, strained eyes and ward off computer vision syndrome (CVS) for those who use computers and play games frequently. Objects and text will also appear clearer, sharper and better defined as a result of wearing blue-filtering lenses.
“E-Clipzur95” A darker shade of amber offering maximum protection – excellent for Circadiun Rhythm and resetting the body clock for shift workers, bad sleepers etc. They will alter colour perception for TV and computers a little but are still very comfortable for evening use. We recommend wearing them for 2-3 hours before bedtime.
“E-Clipzur75” A mid shade of amber that is more natural to look through than the darker shade but offers slightly less protection then the darker shade. Also ideal for Cirdian Rhythm and resetting the body clock for shift workers, bad sleepers etc. They will alter colour less than the darker shade, and are very comfortable for evening use. We recommend wearing them for 2-3 hours before bedtime
“E-Clipzur55” A light shade of amber offering a more natural look that some people feel comfortable to wear for the office or work place. They offer slightly more blue light protection than the coated lenses, making them a good alternative to the clear coated lenses. They will only alter colour perception slightly.
“E-ClipzurClear” These are coated lenses that also offer anti-reflective coating and are mostly used for work and socialising. There is no change in colour perception with these lenses.