Home Eye Tests Glasses Eyesight Problems Eye Diseases Contact Lenses FAQs
Home Eye Tests Glasses Eyesight Problems Eye Diseases Contact Lenses FAQs


Eye test explained.

Glasses prescription explained.

Do I need glasses?

NHS eye tests




Reading glasses






Glare coatings,thinner lenses, photochromic,polaroid,sunglasses



Tips on choosing frames styles.

Glasses and facial shapes



Short Sighted   

Long Sighted


Reading Age






Macular Degeneration ARMD AMD

Treatment of Macular Degeneration



Introduction To Contact Lenses

Contact Lens Products

Cleaning Solutions for Contact Lenses.




Macushield Benefits  


Media and Opticians  





Common questions asked at Opticians.

Technical jargon explained




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Home Eye Tests Glasses Eyesight Problems Eye Diseases Contact Lenses FAQs


Lenses - the extra options

Lens Features

Transition or Reactolites

These are trade names for Photochromic lenses that change from clear lenses into sunglasses.

Transitions or Reactolites  go darker with sunlight and then clear up once the person goes indoors - works on basis of UV in the air that causes chemical reactions within the lens. The light reactive lenses can go dark in winter if it has been snowing due to increased UV being reflected off the snow.

Tip - a car windscreen tends to block UV and so usually do not work in a car - so best to use prescription sunglasses if driving in sunny conditions

Tinted sunglasses

Whether you wear glasses or not, it is important to wear sunglasses to protect your eyes from harmful UV from the sun.  The UV can cause eye conditions such as earlier onset of cataracts, macular degeneration and premature aging of the skin round the eyes.

Also sunglasses cut down on glare to improve vision and to reduce eyestrain.

Polaroid Lenses.

Polaroid lenses reduce glare by filtering out the horizontal part of it - bit like Venetian blinds.

Been popular in fishing as reduces glare from surface of water and helps to see the fish a lot better ! Also ideal for driving to reduce glare from car bonnet and flat road.

Tip - can reduce LCD image as these can be pre-polarised  eg cash machines and in some car displays. Avoid polaroid lenses for downhill ski slopes as could miss seeing icy patches.



Thinner lenses

These lenses are made from a higher density material that can produce the same power but with a thinner lens. Called high index lenses or thinner lenses.

These may be recommended for higher prescriptions, because the standard lenses tend to be thicker than for low powers.

They improve cosmetic appearance and usually come with anti glare coatings as standard.

Material of lenses-glass, plastic and polycarbonate.

Each have advantages and disadvantages

Glass lenses - thinner and more scratch resistant but are heavier and can shatter on an impact.

Plastic lenses - lighter and do not shatter. Therefore more safer and first choice of lenses.  They can be thicker than glass and scratch more  So coatings are advised ( see below )

Polycarbonate lenses are more impact resistant and so mainly used for safety eyewear. Scratch more easily than plastic.

Anti-scratch coating

Useful for plastic lenses as they can scratch more easily then glass lenses. However the coating wont make lenses scratch proof - just more resistant.

Tip - put either the spectacles in the glasses case or rest specs with its arms on the surface of a table than its lenses touching it.  Clean the lenses wet than dry - as cloth can drag dirt or grit on lens surface.

Anti-glare coating

Reduces glare from computer screens and car headlights. Helps to improve vision by allowing more direct light through. Also improves cosmetic appearance  - as onlooker can see the persons eye better - instead of reflections. Also called anti reflective coating.

Ideal for computer users and for night driving.

Would recommend if choosing designer frames or with high prescriptions as it does give an improved look.

Tip - The anti reflective coating normally comes as standard with thinner lenses along with a scratch resistant coating. Therefore may be more cost effective to have thinned lenses in higher prescriptions. Called hi-index lenses.

Onlooker may notice a blue or green tinge to the lenses instead of white light reflection but the user does not see this in their own vision.