Frame quality: what are you paying for?

Like many things in life, you get what you pay for. With all the low-cost package options on the market, it’s even more important to understand what you’re paying for when making your eyewear decision. 

There are distinct differences in the quality of frames and lenses. Cheaper alternatives may come at a price to your vision and visual comfort. Here we highlight the basic differences you can expect in frame construction and materials so that you choose the best eyewear solution for you and your eyes.

The great news for you is that our independently-owned optometrists have an abundance of expertise in this area. They have the freedom to recommend high-quality eyewear from a wide range of international suppliers that’s right for your unique set of needs.

So, what sets a basic and premium frame apart?

1. Advanced frame materials

  • Made of premium-grade high-tech materials e.g. acetates and titanium
  • Tougher and more durable against wear and tear
  • Increased comfort (as they are often lighter, thinner)
  • Flexibility of material allowing for more innovative design
  • High quality control measures in design and manufacture

2. Quality frame hardware

  • Developed using latest engineering technologies
  • Shock absorbent, heat and chemical resistant hinges
  • Seamless finishes and hinge joins
  • Longer wearing life

3. Original, innovative designs

  • More attention to design detail and quality embellishments
  • Unique colours, prints and textures sourced from boutique suppliers
  • Blends and patterns distributed throughout the frame material, versus coatings used in lower cost frames
  • Nose pads and moulded bridges designed for superior fit and comfort
  • Proprietary, distinctive designs from leading fashion houses, for a unique look you can own

4. Hand-crafted with care

  • Employ traditional hand construction and workmanship
  • Time and care invested into each frame for a premium finish
  • Feature hand-placed embellishments that make each frame a unique work of art

Combine quality with a unique look

The perks of seeing one of our independently-owned optometrists, is that on top of a thorough eye examination, you’ll have access to a unique, hand-picked range of high-quality frame options. PLUS, the expertise of a team who can help you find the right fit with your prescription.


Healthy food recipes for your eyes

We often think about eating healthy as a means to feeling and looking good – but did you know that just like other parts of our bodies, our eyes favour specific nutrients in order to function at their best?

Meal ideas

Here are some meal ideas, jam-packed with nutrients your eyes will love:

  • Soups – pumpkin, minestrone, carrot
  • Stews & casseroles – load them up with veggies
  • Stir fries – change it up with different veggies and sauces
  • Beef and veggie sliders – great way to get spinach into the kids!
  • Roast vegetables – think carrots, sweet potato and squash
  • Kale and spinach salads – throw in some broccoli or grated carrot
  • Eggs – add some greens for an extra boost
  • Oily fish – try a salmon bake with a side of greens

Recipes for healthy eyes

Check out two delicious recipes for the whole family, with the added bonus of being quick and easy to prepare!

Are you due for an eye test?

Eating healthy is only one piece of the puzzle when it comes to looking after our eyes. Having an eye examination every 2 years is essential for maintaining healthy sight, because it allows your optometrist to monitor any changes that may occur in your vision.


What is Keratoconus and how to treat it

What is Keratoconus?

Keratoconus is a progressive eye disease causing the normally round, dome-shaped cornea to thin and bulge into a cone-like shape. The role of the cornea is to help refract and focus light coming into the eye onto the retina. The thinning and irregular shape of the cornea deflects the light on its way to the retina, causing blurred and distorted vision.

What causes Keratoconus?

While the cause of Keratoconus is still being investigated in research studies, there is some evidence to suggest that there is a genetic component, which would explain why often more than one person in the same family presents with the condition.

Other risk factors include excessive eye rubbing, chronic eye irritation and overexposure to UV light from the sun. It has been linked to other conditions including hay feverglaucoma and sleep apnoea.

Who does it affect?

Keratoconus generally affects people in their adolescence or early 20’s and is known to progress faster in younger patients. In most cases is stabilises by the mid-30’s.

Keratoconus treatment & management

If Keratoconus is detected early, vision can be corrected with glasses. However once the condition progresses and the cornea’s shape becomes very irregular, there are a range of treatments and therapies available including:

  • Rigid contact lenses (e.g. gas permeable lenses) – replace the irregular shape of the cornea with a smooth uniform refractive surface to improve vision
  • Corneal crosslinking – strengthens the corneal tissue to stop the bulging of the eye’s surface
  • Intacs – arc-shaped corneal inserts that are surgically positioned to reshape the surface of the eye for clearer vision
  • Corneal grafts or transplants – for advanced cases of keratoconus where contact lenses or other therapies are no longer effective

Early detection is key

Given the fast progression of this condition in a person’s teens and early 20’s, it is vital to get your kids’ eyes examined regularly from a young age. This allows your optometrist to monitor their vision over time and ensure any changes in their vision are picked up early.

You can rest assured that our independently-owned optometrists invest in leading diagnostic tools and have the experience to provide a thorough and comprehensive assessment of your eye health.


Do I need glasses?

Have you been putting up with strained, tired eyes or persistent headaches? Our eyes are central to all we do. So, when our vision isn’t functioning at its best, our ability to perform well in other aspects of our lives can be affected.

If you’ve been sitting on the fence about getting your eyes checked – don’t delay. Vision changes can affect us in every stage of life.

In fact, every 65 minutes an Australian loses part or all of their vision.^ The reality is that you won’t always see early signs of eye disease. Many of the most serious eye diseases develop gradually, often without noticeable signs in their early stages. Only an expert optometrist can see the whole picture, so having an eye examination regularly is essential to stay on top of your eye health.

10 Signs that you need glasses

  1. Strained eyes? If you’re experiencing persistent strain and eye fatigue, particularly when watching television, working on the computer or reading, it may be a sign of a vision problem, allergies or an undiagnosed health condition.
  2. Blurry vision? This is a tell-tale sign that our eyes are not working as they should be. Whether it is a common vision problem or a more serious sign of eye damage, it’s important to seek professional advice in the form of an eye examination.
  3. Squinting? We squint in the effort to reduce the blurriness we experience, by reducing the extra light entering our eyes. Squinting to see clearly is often a sign that we are struggling to see well up-close (long-sightedness, or hyperopia) or far away (short-sightedness, or myopia).
  4. Headaches? The more our eyes strain to focus without vision correction (particularly in the case of long-sightedness and astigmatism), the more headaches can affect us.
  5. Dry, itchy, burning or red eyes? There are many things we can do to reduce dry, itchy eye symptoms, when the root cause is identified. Allergens and dry eye are common conditions that can contribute to these sensations.
  6. Sitting close to the whiteboard, or TV? This is a classic sign of short-sightedness, known as myopia – a condition that is growing in prevalence particularly in children.
  7. Eye rubbing? Eye rubbing is a common sign of vision problems, especially identified in children. It can increase the more our eyes strain to focus in the absence of vision correction, and can also be related to an infection known as pink eye, or conjunctivitis.
  8. Reading the menu at arm’s length? This is often the first sign of presbyopia, a natural loss of near focusing ability that occurs with age.
  9. Struggling to see in low light or at night? Difficulty seeing in darker conditions can be an indicator of cataracts or other eye conditions.
  10. Neck/shoulder/back pain? Sitting in front of digital devices for more than 2 consecutive hours can put a strain, not just on our eyes, but also on our posture, as we lean toward our screens and/or slouch in our chairs.

Learn about the common vision problems and eye conditions that can affect us at various ages and stages of life.

Don’t put up with poor vision – Book an eye test today.

A 30-minute eye test could make a world of difference to your every day – it could even save your sight. Our optometrists are passionate about helping you achieve healthy sight over your lifetime, and it begins with a thorough eye examination.


Myopia on the rise – is your child at risk?

The rate of myopia (short-sightedness) is increasing at an alarming rate worldwide, doubling in children over the course of just a single generation. 

  • It’s predicted that 50% of the world’s population will be myopic by 2050 (compared to 28% in 2010)
  • In Australia, Myopia has doubled in 12 year olds in just 6 years
  • It is projected that by 2020, Myopia will affect about 36% of Australians

What is Myopia?

Myopia is an eye condition also known as shortsightedness or near-sightedness, which causes people to have difficulty seeing distant objects clearly. Short-sightedness occurs when the light coming into your eyes focuses in front of, instead of exactly on your retina. Often, this condition is picked up in early childhood, around 10-12 years of age, and becomes noticeable when kids start to squint when trying to see the whiteboard.

What is causing the epidemic?

Myopia is understood to be caused by both genetic and environmental factors. The reason for the significant rise in myopia is believed to be largely environmental, and correlates with the reduced time our children (and their eyes) are spending outdoors. Experts believe that exposure to sunlight causes a hormone to be released which helps to control the growth of the eye. Without this hormone, the eye grows too quickly, resulting in myopia. The more time our children are spending indoors (and we know this is at an all time high), the greater the risk to healthy eye development.

Earlier onset myopia = long term risk

Research has highlighted that the average age for developing myopia is reducing. This earlier onset of myopia can cause long term risks, including an increased risk of developing advanced myopia and other eye diseases later in life, such as retinal detachment, myopic macular degeneration and glaucoma. All of these conditions are difficult to treat in their advanced form and can cause significant vision loss and blindness.

3 ways to minimise your child’s risk

  1. Choose green time over screen time. It is recommended that children spend a minimum of 90 minutes a day outside (excluding school time) to help with reducing the risk of myopia.
  2. Be aware of the risk factors. If both parents are myopic, a child will have six times higher risk of myopia development or progression.
  3. Book an eye test to assess your child’s risk. An eye test before your child starts school  and every 2 years thereafter is the best way to assess your child’s risk and slow the progression of myopia development with the new technologies and information we have now about myopia.

Get ahead of the epidemic. Book an eye test today.

Although myopia is a progressive condition, we now know that the earlier it is detected and managed, the more we can slow its progression and minimise the long terms risks to our children’s eye health. There are many treatment options available beyond just prescribing a pair of glasses.

Our independently-owned optometrists pride themselves on spending time with you and your child to provide a highly personal and thorough eye examination. So don’t hesitate and book your child in for an eye test today.


Eyewear to suit your life

Relying on one pair of glasses for all your life’s activities and tasks will almost always be a compromise when it comes to your vision, eye comfort and eye health.

We know that there will be times when a different pair of glasses would be an advantage for other aspects of your life. That’s why our optometrists recommend specific-purpose frames and lenses to give you the best visual performance and protection, whatever your day demands.

Eyewear fit for the task

One of the best things about being independent is the freedom it gives our optometrists to select the right lenses and frames from a wide range of quality products, depending on the task at hand. Whether you spend time gardening, on the computer, reading, playing sport or crafting – the lens and frame choice will vary based on your vision needs.

Lenses are not all created equal

Whilst we love frames too, we believe that your lifestyle-specific lenses are key to delivering you the best vision possible. An essential step in prescribing the right lens, is understanding how you use your eyes in the different aspects of your life. That’s because this understanding directly influences how well your new eyewear will perform for your specific needs.

What eyewear options are available?

  • Work Glasses. Based on your work environment and the visual tasks you perform, we recommend frame and lens solutions to maximise your vision, eye and neck comfort, UV protection and eye safety.
  • Computer Glasses / Digital Eyewear. Spend a few hours or more a day on a computer or device? Computer glasses are designed to give you optimal close-up and intermediate vision as well as reduce digital eye strain, neck and shoulder discomfort and blue light emittance.
  • Outdoor GlassesPrescription sunglasses are like sunscreen for your eyes delivering necessary glare and UV protection together with clear vision. Add polarised lenses and you’ll have the best outdoor vision and eye protection available.
  • Sports Glasses. Sports specific eyewear can enhance your performance whilst protecting your eyes against harmful UV rays and injury. Sports-specific coloured lenses highlight colours, alter light levels, enhance clarity and reduce glare.
  • Driving Glasses. Road safety starts with good vision. We recommend progressive lenses for a smooth visual transition between distances, i.e. from road signs in the distance to the dashboard up close, polarised sunglasses and AR coatings to minimise glare and light distortion from oncoming headlights, particularly when driving at night.
  • Reading Glasses. Wear multifocal glasses and enjoy reading and other close-work? A specific pair of reading glasses will provide clear, uninterrupted vision for these activities.
  • Social/Occasion Glasses. You wouldn’t wear the same pair of shoes with every outfit, so why would you wear the same pair of glasses? Consider a conservative style for work, a bolder design for casual wear and something more elegant for formal occasions.
  • Contact Lenses. Most of the time, wearing glasses is no problem, but there are times when glasses can get in the way. Today’s advances in materials and design means almost everyone who wears glasses can enjoy the freedom and convenience of contact lenses.

How do I choose eyewear to suit my life?

Tailored eyewear solutions are our bread and butter. We’ll take the time to get to know you, so that we can design a highly tailored eyecare and eyewear solution that helps you perform at your best in all areas of your life. Find your nearest independent optometrist below.