Review of Different Types of Lenses at Our Chicago, Illinois, Optical Store
To help you make an informed decision, let’s walk through some of the types of lenses available for prescription eyeglasses.
So let’s jump right in. First off, feel free to stop by anytime with your up-to-date prescription to select your new frames and lenses. If you haven’t had an eye exam in the past year, make sure to contact our optical store to book an appointment with our eye doctor in Chicago, Illinois.
Do you have severe nearsightedness or farsightedness? High-index lenses allow you to say goodbye to soda bottle glasses!
All lenses for prescription eyeglasses work by bending light and focusing it directly on your retina so you can see clearly. High-index lenses, however, bend light more efficiently and dramatically than a standard lens, which means less material is needed, rendering these lenses thinner and lighter than traditional lenses. This makes your prescription eyeglasses more comfortable to wear, and certainly more attractive.
While high-index lenses offer many advantages, they also have a few downsides. Namely, they are highly reflective, can be more easily damaged than standard lenses, and tend to be costlier. One may also experience minor visual distortions when looking through the edges of the lenses. We, therefore, recommend adding anti-reflective and scratch-resistant lens coatings when choosing high-index glasses.
Types of High-Index Lenses
The index of refraction refers to how well the eyeglass lens can bend light, which is determined by how fast light can pass through the material. So as a lens bends light more efficiently, the index of refraction is higher and the lens is thinner. The general range of high-index lenses spans from 1.53 to 1.74.
High-index materials can be used to craft most types of modern lenses, including aspheric and photochromic.
Aspheric lenses for prescription eyeglasses are thinner and lighter than ordinary lenses. They feature flatter curves than standard lenses, creating a more attractive profile. The curvature of aspheric lenses changes gradually from the center of the lens out to the edges; the same curve doesn’t span across the entire surface.
The flattering benefits of aspheric lenses are most pronounced in lenses that correct severe farsightedness as these lenses bulge less from within the frame.
Aspheric lenses also offer a wider field of view, with better peripheral vision than conventional lens designs. (Incidentally, this is why expensive camera lenses are made with aspheric designs.)
If you find yourself constantly moving between indoors and outdoors, photochromic (or transition) lenses may be the perfect lens solution for your prescription eyeglasses. These specialized lenses, which darken in response to the sun’s UV rays, darken the moment you step outside and lighten once you head inside or into the shade. Photochromic lenses can be fit into the frames of your choice at our optical store.
The benefits of photochromic lenses are primarily convenience and constant UV protection. They can be crafted into a wide range of tints and are available in nearly all lens materials and designs, including high-index lenses, bifocals, and progressive lenses. Moreover, getting a pair of photochromic lenses is an economical choice, since they double as your prescription eyeglasses and sunglasses.
The downside is that photochromic lenses don’t darken when you’re in a car as the windshield blocks UV rays. Additionally, cold weather can slow the darkening and lightening process of the lenses.
To learn more visit our optical store in Chicago, Illinois for an eye exam select the designer frames of your choice from our trending collection and consult with our staff to determine which lenses are most suited for your vision prescription and lifestyle.