Winter is well and truly gone and most of us are excited to get outside and enjoy the warmer weather and brighter evenings. It’s time to shed the woolly jumpers and waterproof coats and get ready for spring and summer. One great way to re-energise your wardrobe is to consider a new pair of glasses – especially if your eyesight requires you to wear prescription glasses every day. If this is the case, a new pair could completely transform your sense of style, and this guide will tell you how to find the perfect pair for you.
First off, if you haven’t had an eye test in about six months, then it’s a good idea to get one before you invest in a new pair of prescription glasses, as an out-of-date prescription means your glasses will need to be replaced far too quickly. You’re lucky if you live in Scotland as all residents are entitled to free eye tests through the NHS. If you live somewhere else in the UK, then you are only entitled to a free eye test if you fit certain criteria, such as being under 16, over 60, or suffer from diabetes, etc. You’ll find the entire list of criteria listed on the NHS Choices website. If you don’t fit any of the criteria, then don’t panic, as many opticians offer free eye tests at different times of the year. They do this to generate sales leads, but you are not obliged to buy a pair of glasses after you’ve received your eye test. Just tell them you need a little more time to decide what style you’d like and leave with your prescription!
As far as glasses are concerned, it is significantly cheaper to shop for prescription glasses online, as online stores cut their overheads by avoiding the additional costs involved with running an actual walk-in store. Online glasses shops also buy their stock in considerable bulk from the big designer brands, saving a lot of money and passing these savings on to their customers. For this reason, it’s definitely worth looking for your ideal new glasses on an online shop. Companies like Red Hot Sunglasses are perfect, as they have a huge prescription glasses section and regular sales throughout the year to help you save even more money.
Find the right glasses for your face
The only problem with buying prescription glasses online is that you don’t get to try them on first, and you can’t return them if you’ve had specific prescriptions lenses made just for you. But this problem is easily avoided if you spend a little time researching the right glasses style for your face.
One good idea is to try on various glasses in a store and to take note of the brand, model, and size of the pairs that suit you most. On the inside of one of the glasses’ arms you’ll find two two-digit numbers. The two digits on the left correspond to the width of the rims/lenses and the two digits on the right relate to the width of the bridge that passes over your nose. If you find a pair of glasses that fits perfectly across your face, make a note of these numbers and refer to them when you’re shopping online.
Also make note of the different glasses styles that suit you best. It’s not a science at all, and every face is a little different, but there are certain face shapes that tend to suit specific glasses styles. If you want to figure out your face shape you can use a crayon or anything that washes off easily and draw around the outline of your face in a mirror. Draw down along your jawline and up along your hairline. The shape you’re left with on the mirror won’t look like a square, heart, oblong, etc, but it will give you a rough idea of your face’s shape and it will help you figure out the perfect glasses for your face.
Your face is round if it is roughly as tall as it is wide and it tapers off a little at the forehead and the chin. Having a round face does not mean you’re carrying extra weight, it just means that your cheeks are the widest part of your head. The best-shaped glasses for people with round faces are squares and rectangles as the angles balance out your softer features.
Your face is square if it is roughly as tall as it is wide and its widest points are both its jawline and hairline. These proportions create sharp, angular features and it’s best to avoid glasses that will emphasise these features. Instead, look for soft, curvy shapes, such as round, oval, and cateye glasses.
Your face is oval if it is slightly taller than it is wide, it’s at its widest at your eyeline or cheekbones, and your jawline and hairline are rounded off. Oval-shaped faces are often considered to be the most attractive and they suit pretty much any style of glasses, so have fun and don’t worry about what style you choose. Although make sure you find the right size glasses for your face before you buy them.
Your face is heart-shaped if it is at its widest point at your cheeks and it tapers out to a point at your chin. You’ll also have a round, heart-shaped hairline. Diamond faces are similar, only their foreheads also taper in a little. The best glasses for both diamond- and heart-shaped faces are top-heavy designs, such as Clubmasters, Aviators, and cateye designs that pull people’s gaze up to the upper half of your face and away from your pointy chin.
There are other face shapes out there, but these are most common types. Always look to balance out your features and you can’t go wrong.
I hope this guide has been useful and that you’ll get the best prescription glasses possible for your face shape (and save a bit of money while you’re at it!). Many of us wear our glasses every day, so it’s important to put a bit of time and effort into finding the right pair!