Choosing new eyewear can be lots of fun; a little like buying a new jacket you’ve had your eye on. After all, for many people spectacles are a fundamental part of their identity, and lots of wearers favour a frame that looks good and fits with their personality and style. With so many shapes and designs out there it should be easy to find eyewear that suits, and despite it being a little daunting at times, the good news is that there are so many styles to choose from, especially when you’re considering designer frames.
Of course, glasses have a practical reason for being: to correct vision. But over the last few decades they have also become much more a part of personal expression and image; so much so that they are considered a fashion accessory. As eyewear designs began to evolve a whole industry grew and many fashion houses turned their attention to designer frames. Today, almost every well known label boasts a range in custom specs and many put their name to sunglasses too.
With so many out there to choose from, you may well be wondering about what the best branded glasses might be for you.
This is a tricky question to answer. We stock our favourites, which include Lindberg, Tom Ford, Victoria Beckham and Nike, but every fashion label has its own unique style that generally resonates throughout the range. The best thing to do is try a few pairs on and see which suit your face shape, which are more comfortable, which ones might be more suitable for your lifestyle and, most importantly, which ones you like!
Your optician will of course be able to help, and they will also advise with regards to lens and frame compatibility, what each frame is made of and the potential advantages of the materials used. Some branded frames are more flexible, for example, and the Lindberg range has an ergonomically shaped nose pad. While the Marni range features bold geometric corners and a distinct browline, the Chloé range epitomises soft, elegant and feminine lines.
When it comes to the best ones, it all comes down to the individual, but rest assured that there will most definitely be a style out there to suit you!
There are many different insurance policies out there so always check the conditions carefully before signing up. Most opticians, however, offer a competitive and comprehensive insurance cover that includes eye examinations, frames, lenses and lens protection, like scratch resistant coating. Designer eyewear is no exception and will be covered. Some insurance does not cover replacement of lost or damaged glasses unless warranty insurance is in place, so this is something to check.
Most of us accept that designer glasses cost more than the NHS or optician’s own brand alternative. The question is, how much more? Just like branded clothes or handbags, cost can vary drastically and, if you really want to, you can pay hundreds. The good news is that the majority of fashion labels provide an affordable range of specs that are relatively accessible, cost wise. You can pick up a nice pair of fashion label frames for as little as £100, but you may end up paying up to £200-£300 depending on your budget. When you consider how often you may be wearing your eyewear and how it will most certainly become a part of your individual style, paying a little more for something you like may be worth it.
These fashion frames are expensive, but there is a good reason for that. We get asked often whether designer glasses are worth it, and we have to admit that they are. Glasses are not just a couple of bits of plastic and some metal fused together. The design, structure and manufacturing process is complicated and involved to say the least. Lenses require highly specialist laboratory precision in their construction, while frames with their tiny parts and detailed features, require equal attention and care. Technology has improved vastly in the last 30 years, and creating spectacles with cutting edge design and materials that increase comfort and flexibility, while still offering durability and aesthetic appeal, costs money. You definitely get what you pay for, trust us!
It seems today that every fashion label has a range of eyewear; from the sportier options such as Nike, to the classic retro Ray-Ban, with many more in between. Here is a list of some you might want to look out for, apart from the ones we stock of course:
Tiffany & Co
‘Beauty is in the eye of the beholder’ when it comes to an opinion on style, but what we would say is that because branded frames offer so much more choice, you have endless options when it comes to creating your eyewear style. We can help you find a range that suits your face shape, skin tone and lifestyle.
You may or may not be surprised that many of our clients ask us about looking younger and, strangely enough, your choice of frame can definitely have an effect on how you look in terms of your age. Black is a classic colour option and black specs suit all hair colours but look particularly striking with grey hair. We have even had clients tell us that after they have purchased their black frames that they have given up the hair dye and gone grey permanently! Blue seems to have the same effect. Other styles that can take years off your face are oversized or cat eye options.
When it comes to styles to avoid for the more mature client, we would definitely steer away from Aviator styles and rimless options.
We hope we have answered the question, ‘What are designer glasses?’ Our team members at the shop are well versed in explaining the difference between off the shelf specs and the branded options, and believe wholeheartedly that the latter is worth the extra expense.
When you’ve booked in with one of our opticians for your regular eye test, you can look forward to a personalised and professional service that takes you through the eye exam and beyond to choosing the right frames for you. We want you to leave knowing that your new eyewear is the perfect choice for you, whatever you decide.