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Lens Materials

Lens Materials

There are many products available to you today that make your next pair of eyeglasses an even better choice. These materials are often chosen based on preference but also function, ensuring your next pair of glasses will be better suited to your specific needs. In addition, there are also a wide variety of lens types including single vision, aspherical, bi-focals, tri-focals and progressives. These types of lenses further enhance your vision based on your existing eye condition and your desired function.

Impact Resistance (Hard Resin)

Resin Eye-wear Lenses - Snyder OptometryThere are many products available to you today that make your next pair of eyeglasses an even better choice. These materials are often chosen based on preference but also function, ensuring your next pair of glasses will be better suited to your specific needs.

In addition, there are also a wide variety of lens types including single vision, aspherical, bi-focals, tri-focals and progressives. These types of lenses further enhance your vision based on your existing eye condition and your desired function.

Light-weight (High-index)

High Index Eye-wear Lenses- Resin Eye-wear Lenses - Snyder OptometryThe field of optometry has made vast improvements in the last few decades. In terms of comfort, durability and versatility, the eyeglass industry has also greatly advanced, and one of the great achievements of modern optometry has been the invention and use of high-index eyeglasses.

High index lenses are a type of lens developed to provide a high level of vision correction while still being lightweight and thin. In the past, people in need of strong vision correction had to resort to thick, heavy lenses. Now with high index lenses, even people with extremely strong prescriptions and vision problems can choose from a wide variety of lightweight and convenient lens styles.

Safety (Polycarbonate)

Polycarbonate Eye-wear Lenses - Resin Eye-wear Lenses - Snyder OptometryPolycarbonate lenses are up to 10 times more impact-resistant than plastic or glass lenses, and they provide 100% protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. They are also lightweight, adding to the comfort of your eyeglasses, sunglasses, and sports eye-wear.

Originally designed for canopies covering cockpits in fighter planes, polycarbonate offers an impact-resistant, optically clear window. Polycarbonate was introduced to consumers in the 1980s as a safe, affordable alternative to standard plastic and glass eyeglasses. Today, polycarbonate lenses set the standard in eye-wear safety. These lenses are a smart choice for athletes including those who work in hazardous job environments and especially for children.

Sun Protection (Photochromic)

Photochromic Eye-wear Lenses - Resin Eye-wear Lenses - Snyder OptometryThe word “photochromic” comes from two Greek words “photo” meaning light and “chroma” meaning color. In relation to sunglasses, photochromic lenses darken or lighten dependent on the amount of exposure to UV light. For example, once the UV is removed by walking indoors, the lenses will gradually return to their clear state.

Photochromic lenses were originally developed in the 1960’s and made from glass. They worked a bit like pieces of old-fashioned, photographic film. Early photochromic lenses contained similar silver chemicals as film and darkened the same way. Unlike photographic film, which darkens permanently, the photochromic lenses can change repeatedly from dark to a clear state.

Scratch Resistance (Glass)

Glass Eye-wear Lenses - Resin Eye-wear Lenses - Snyder OptometryIn the early days of vision correction, all eyeglass lenses were made of glass. Although glass lenses offer exceptional optics, they are heavy and can break easily. Glass lenses however, still have a significant function in optometry today thanks to their exceptional scratch resistant properties. Glass is also less expensive than comparable plastic lenses.

Glass is also recommended for bi-focal or tri-focal lenses because various materials can be melted together without forming a noticeable edge seam. In principle, the increased thickness of the material makes it optically more pure, and therefore, the glasses appear cleaner.

 

Please also see Lens Treatments to learn more about coatings that can be applied to the lens surface such as UV protection and scratch-resistance that complement these products.