Five Tips for Getting More From Your Optical

Eyeglass shopping can be challenging for the average consumer.  Eyeglasses are one of a few products where the consumer has to take into account fashion and technology.  In many cases, the consumer of optical is left having to trust the optician regarding what options are best for them.  We hope this guide will help you be a better consumer.  Bookmark these tips for the next time you shop for eyeglasses

1.  Question your Opticians Experience

Opticians come with all levels of experience.  Some states require opticians to have a license, but most don’t.  You may find yourself getting advice from someone trained weeks or months ago, and many people don’t have any formal training but learn on the job.  By contrast, a veteran optician, whether licensed or not can provide the best advice on fashion and technology.  The optician’s role is crucial in the measurement of your lenses as well, and in many cases, poorly measured lenses lead to less than perfect vision, even eyestrain and headaches.

2.  Don’t Compromise on Optics

For many products, there is a pyramid of quality, where the products at the apex are palpably better than the products at the base, and more expensive as a result.   Optics is a strong example of this.  Cheap lenses generally have poorer optics than expensive lenses, and the higher someones prescription the more visible difference between the two.  You can purchase eyewear at any price, but if you want to see clearest you will need advanced materials manufactured with high quality control.  For lenses like progressives, where you may have to adapt to your new lenses, higher quality optics helps make adaptation easier, and if you ever had a pair you couldn’t adapt to, it might be worthwhile to try next time with better optics.

3.  UV and Other Coatings

Ensuring your lenses have UV protection is important.  The most common coating offered besides UV is Anti Reflective Coating (AR).  AR has a cosmetic benefit (when people look at your lenses they see more of your eyes and less reflections) and a physical benefit (they increase the amount of light that enters the eye and take the edge off of some glare and reflections).  Many optical chain stores and opticians offer to sell you both, but beware – most AR coatings are naturally UV protective and come with Scratch protection too so if your optical has a charge for AR and UV, ask if the AR only protects from UV and if they say no, take your prescription and go somewhere else.

4.  Frame Warranties

Unless you are paying pennies for your eyewear, be sure to ask about frame warranties.  Most reputable opticals will have a breakage guarantee of at least one year on frames, where they are replaced no questions asked if the frame breaks or the finish wears off within a year.  Nowadays it is common for opticals to offer 2 year warranties.  If your frame breaks, you might be able to salvage the valuable lenses with a warranty, but if you don’t have a warranty, you’ll find yourself buying new lenses as well as frames and spending big bucks.

5.  Subscribe to EyeInfo blog posts, join our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @EyeInfo

The doctors at Shady Grove Eye and Vision Care are committed to producing valuable content about eye and vision care issues and optical regularly, and disseminating it via social media for your benefit.  We love to hear your questions and are eager to interact with you, whether you live near our office or across the world.  We are here to serve you, so remember us and stay in touch!

Courtesy of the doctors of Shady Grove Eye and Vision Care; optometrists, ophthalmologists and opticians serving the Rockville, Potomac and Gaithersburg Maryland suburbs of Washington DC for over 40 years.  Visit or call (301) 670-1212 for more information or to schedule an appointment.  Follow us on twitter @EyeInfo


2 Responses

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Dr. Alan Glazier, Michael Duerden. Michael Duerden said: RT @EyeInfo Five Tips for Getting More From Your Optical: […]

  2. Thanks for bringing this up, such good information to share with. Those things should be consider..

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