Lens thickness question

Discussion in 'Optometry Archives' started by cutiepieusa, Nov 1, 2005.

  1. cutiepieusa

    cutiepieusa Guest

    Hi, I'm getting ready to buy a backup pair of glasses, and they'll be
    the first pair of glasses I'll have been able to really research, since
    I've finally learned my lesson (+my prescription is settling down...
    only changing by a decrease of -0.25 spherical power diopter every 2
    years, and an increase of -0.25 cylinder power in one eye (OD) over the
    last 4 years.

    Anyways, I'm curious both about lens thickness and optics. I know that
    the frame matters a lot to thickness - and my current frames are the
    tiniest ones I've had yet (I'm 21, on my 6th pair of glasses, and I've
    noticed every pair I get gets smaller). I also got my first contact
    lenses this time! But I don't really like wearing them (Ciba
    O2Optix)... My eyes get tired more easily, I get more headaches (partly
    since unlike glasses I can't just take them off to read and use the
    computer), etc... Anyways, my current frames are these:
    http://framesdirect.com/framesfp/Candies-tapfm/r.html (size
    46-18-130). They were bought at Pearle Vision and I have Seiko 1.60
    index aspheric lenses that were stock and stock AR coated. I'm very
    satisfied with the thickness and optics - though I don't care for the
    greenish AR (before I had Zeiss Gold ET on a non-aspheric, unnamed,
    1.60 index). Pearle Vision did have to redo them *three* times until I
    got a pair of lenses that didn't have tiny scratches in the coating!!!

    I LOVED the Zeiss Gold ET but needed glasses-in-an-hour (and that meant
    stock lenses) this time (my old ones literally fell apart when cleaning
    them one day - they were a cheap plastic frame with tons of tiny cracks
    in it)

    Historically, before my last pair I had always had what my parents
    bought for me - uncoated polycarbonate. The stuff gave me terrible
    headaches from glare and the chromatic aberration really bothered me.
    But I was a kid and teenager - I didn't know there WERE any other type
    of glasses, and the possibility of different lens materials being
    optically better (I was TOLD as a kid by opticians that polycarbonate
    was "far better than plastic") and coatings was never presented to me.
    I was told by a good friend of mine when complaining about how I hated
    glasses that I needed AR coating and better lenses - both he and his
    (then ten, now twelve year old) daughter had high-index AR coated
    lenses for the same problems I had and both said they made all the
    difference in the world - and they do!

    Anyways, sorry for all that but hopefully it helps you provide me
    recommendations for the best cost for money for me in a backup pair of
    glasses. Are Costco's glasses decent? Anywhere else cheap? In a frame
    the size of the one I'm wearing now - what will the edge thickness of
    the different materials on the market? How would CR-39 look in my
    prescription with my frame size - these 1.60's are SO thin in this
    frame, I'm thinking CR-39 might not be TOO bad for backup glasses. How
    would they compare optically? What are the best (non-glass) optics I
    can get? What is cheap and still great for backup glasses (which I'll
    probably be wearing quite often - they won't be sit-in-a-drawer backup,
    they'll probably be a slightly different style and color so I can match
    outfits better than being stuck with one pair)

    Thanks for any recommendations you can make - I've learned my lesson
    that lens and coating choices can change how I see my world -
    literally. Headaches as a kid are gone. Hate for wearing my glasses -
    70% gone. (Of course, part of that is finally getting some nice tiny
    frames vs. the huge things I used to wear (at the encouragement of the
    optician!) But the AR, in addition to getting rid of glare also makes
    me feel better about wearing them). That's why I want to get some
    professional (and experienced amateur :) :) :) ) opinions before I go
    shopping for this pair!

    Thanks so much in advance,

    cutiepieusa, Nov 1, 2005
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  2. cutiepieusa

    cutiepieusa Guest

    OOPS, I forgot my prescription *blushes*


    OD -3.00 -0.50 170
    OS -3.00 -0.75 011

    Thanks again in advance!

    cutiepieusa, Nov 1, 2005
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  3. cutiepieusa

    Mark A Guest

    Stores like Costco and Wal-Mart/Sams carry a large variety of lenses, some
    very good and some mediocre. Unlike chains such as Lenscrafters and Pearle,
    you can find out exactly what brand and model of lens you are getting from
    Costco and Wal-Mart/Sams.

    For your Rx, I would recommend that you consider Sola lenses made from
    Spectralite material. This is a light weight and very high quality (high
    abbe value) lens that is about 1.53 index, which should be fine for your Rx
    and small frame. I believe that Wal-Mart sold these at one time, but not
    sure if they still do.

    You are correct to stay away from polycarbonate, unless you need safety
    glasses, in which case Trivex would be better (Hoya Phoenix or Younger
    Mark A, Nov 1, 2005
  4. cutiepieusa

    cutiepieusa Guest

    I don't need safety glasses and I know from past experience that I
    can't stand polycarbonate and non-AR lenses. I'm curious how CR-39
    would be - is my prescription too strong to get reasonable thin CR-39
    lenses. My current Seiko's are quite nice - what would I be looking at
    for CR-39 thickness compared to these? Twice?


    cutiepieusa, Nov 1, 2005
  5. cutiepieusa

    Mark A Guest

    CR-39 (1.50 index) would definitely be thicker and heaver than a higher
    index lens. Sola Spectralite (1.53) would be a definite improvement in
    thickness and weight, with almost no loss in quality.

    The edge thickness is what would be noticeable in a minus lens like yours.
    How much it would be noticeable depends on the frame size and configuration.
    Most people with your Rx would probably use something a little thinner and
    lighter than CR-39.
    Mark A, Nov 1, 2005
  6. cutiepieusa

    cutiepieusa Guest

    Thanks! That's what I was wondering as CR-39 is so much cheaper and
    said to be good.

    I'm very happy with the 1.60 aspheric Seiko lenses - there's zero
    noticeable edge thickness (the lens is at most a mm thicker than the
    frame at the sides and since it's balanced half to the front, half to
    the back, you can't tell from any distance over a few inches that the
    lens is thicker than the frame). I like that. It's not really worth
    giving that up to save a few dollars. Though is CR-39 really any
    HEAVIER? I've been under the impression that the low specific gravity
    made the product sill LIGHTER. My current glasses are essentially
    weightless (I can't feel the weight), the first pair (including ones
    with another 1.60 material) I can say that about.

    Isn't Spectralite MORE expensive than 1.60? If I'm optically happy with
    the 1.60's (which I very much am especially these new tiny aspheric
    ones- it's just the polycarbonate I couldn't stand) what would be the
    reason to spend more on Spectralite? I'm kinda looking CHEAPER
    suggestions that still meet my needs :) But thanks very much for your


    cutiepieusa, Nov 2, 2005
  7. cutiepieusa

    cutiepieusa Guest

    Thank you VERY much :) That's exactly what I needed to hear! Yeah,
    twice as thick and I'd actually see the lenses and all, no thanks!
    Question - why then would anyone buy CR-39 compared to at the least,
    materials like Trivex? I mean other than cost, why would someone put up
    with such thick lenses?

    Are there any really great materials I should be looking at? And any
    suggestions on a good commonly available AR that's not green? (boy was
    Gold ET tough to get and expensive but I loved it)
    cutiepieusa, Nov 2, 2005
  8. cutiepieusa

    nicoleh76 Guest

    To be honest, I just choose the cheapest lenses possible. The most
    important thing is that you are able to see. Minus three is not thick
    at all, so just go for normal lenses, whatever the cheapest is. What
    did glasses wearers do before all of these types of lenses? Well,
    that's a European standpoint. You in the States are so capitalistic.
    nicoleh76, Nov 3, 2005
  9. cutiepieusa

    Quick Guest

    That's why most Europeans sound sort of nasal.
    Those heavy glasses have squashed their noses... -:)

    Quick, Nov 3, 2005
  10. cutiepieusa

    Mark A Guest

    CR-39 is probably more expensive in Europe than Spectralite is in the US
    (especially at Wal-Mart).
    Mark A, Nov 3, 2005
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