Best Optical Lenses

Optical lenses are life-savers, so to speak, for people with vision impairment. Modern technology is responsible for an extensive range of lenses to suit anyone’s style and budget. With so many different types of lenses today, it can be hard to choose the right lens.

Glass lenses are the best optical lenses for scratch-resistance. For years, it was the only material available for eyeglass lenses. Today, glass is still the superior optical lens. However, glass lenses weight twice as much as plastic lenses.

CR-39 plastic polymer is the industry standard for optical lenses. The abbreviation means “Columbia Resin 39.” It was the 39th formula developed by Columbia Resins in 1940. Resin lenses are 50 percent lighter than glass lenses, and they can be easily tinted to any shade or color. They are also more impact-resistant than glass, but they scratch easier.

Some people consider high-index lenses to be the best optical lenses. They are fast becoming the lens of choice for people with vision impairment. Made with the same material as hard resin lenses, high-index lenses are created in a way that bends light differently. They are super thin and light, which makes them ideal for prescriptions with strong corrections. Like standard resin, high-index lenses can be tinted. They also absorb harmful ultraviolet (UV) light.

Some optical lenses darken in the sunlight, making them the right choice for indoor-to-outdoor wear. These photosensitive, or photochromic, lenses are made with glass or lightweight resin. Photochromic optical lenses transition in shades of gray.

Polycarbonate lenses are the best optical lenses for children and people with active lifestyles. Polycarbonate lenses are made from a durable homopolymer, usually Bisphenal-A (BPA). They are the most impact-resistant lenses on the market today. Polycarbonate lenses are high-index lenses that absorb UV light.

The best optical lenses also have one or more optional coatings. Anti-reflective, scratch-resistant, mirror, and UV coatings are examples. Anti-reflective coating is especially important for high-index lenses, which reflect up to 50 percent of the light that should reach the eye, as opposed to 8 percent with conventional resin lenses. An anti-reflective coating works with all lens types, and it is great for night-time driving.