Choosing Eyeglasses: A Comprehensive Guide

Choosing Eyeglasses: A Comprehensive Guide

Choosing the right eyeglasses is a critical decision, that impacts both your vision and your overall style. This guide is designed to help you navigate through the myriad of options available, understand what works best for you, and help you make the most informed choice.

Types of Eyeglasses

Eyeglasses come in a variety of forms designed to correct different vision problems. Some of the most common types include:

Single Vision Glasses

These are designed to correct a single-vision condition like myopia (nearsightedness) or hyperopia (farsightedness).

Bifocal and Multifocal Glasses 

These glasses are designed with two or more distinct sections to assist with multiple vision distances.

Progressive Lenses: 

Offering a gradient of lens powers, these glasses provide a smoother transition between different vision zones.

Reading Glasses

Specifically designed for reading and close-up work, they help compensate for presbyopia (aging eyes).

Choosing Eyeglasses for Your Face Shape

Eyeglass frame designs should complement your face shape to accentuate your best features. Here's a brief guide:

  • Oval Face: Almost any frame design suits an oval face, including geometric shapes like rectangles or square frames.

  • Square Face: Round or oval frames can help soften the angularity of a square face.

  • Round Face: Rectangular or geometric frames help provide balance and make a round face appear slimmer.

  • Heart-Shaped Face: Bottom-heavy frames or frames with low-set temples can provide balance to a heart-shaped face.

Understanding Your Eyeglass Prescription

An eyeglass prescription from your optometrist includes details about the corrective power required for each eye. Common elements include:

  • Sphere (SPH): Indicates the lens power required to correct myopia or hyperopia.

  • Cylinder (CYL) and Axis: These figures are relevant if you have astigmatism, indicating the degree and direction of the correction required.

  • Add: This is often seen in bifocal or multifocal prescriptions, indicating the additional magnifying power needed for close-up work.

Eyeglass Frame Materials

Frames are made from a variety of materials, each with its benefits:

  • Metal Frames: Typically durable and corrosion-resistant. Titanium frames, for instance, are lightweight yet sturdy.

  • Plastic Frames: These are generally cheaper, lightweight, and come in various colors and designs. Acetate frames, a type of plastic, are particularly popular for their durability and vast color options.

  • Wood Frames: Offering a unique, eco-friendly fashion statement, wood frames are a stylish option.

  • Eyeglass Lens Coatings

  • Various lens coatings can enhance the functionality and durability of your eyeglasses:

  • Anti-Reflective Coating: Enhances the clarity of vision and the appearance of eyeglasses by minimizing light reflection.

  • Scratch-Resistant Coating: Adds a layer of protection, enhancing the durability of lenses.

  • UV Protection: Protects your eyes from harmful sun rays.

  • Blue Light Blocking Glasses: Especially beneficial for individuals spending significant time on screens, these lenses help block potentially harmful blue light.

Additional Considerations

Before finalizing your eyeglasses, keep in mind the following:

  • Cost and Insurance: Designer frames and lens upgrades can significantly increase the cost of eyeglasses. Check if your insurance offers coverage.

  • Eyeglasses Maintenance: Regular cleaning, storing them safely, and annual check-ups will increase the lifespan of your eyeglasses.

  • Trends and Personal Style: While trends may dictate popular styles, choose eyeglasses that resonate with your personal style and lifestyle needs.


Choosing eyeglasses can seem overwhelming, but this guide should provide a clearer lens through which to view your options. Remember, the perfect pair should enhance your vision, comfort, and style. Your optometrist and eyewear retailer are there to help you through this process, ensuring you find eyeglasses that are a perfect fit for you.