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Go For The Opposite Of Your Face Shape
“There are four main face shapes: square, round, oval and heart,” explains Abbas Manai, co-founder of Bloobloom. “As a general rule, choose a frame which is the opposite of your face shape, so that if you have a square face, you go for a round frame, and so on.” Toby Attridge, designer at Taylor Morris, agrees: “Many like the contrast of an angular square face with a rounded frame, as this tends to soften strong features. If you have an oval face shape, try to accentuate the elongated curve of the jawline by going for a completely round frame, especially wider set ones. If your face is on the rounder side, a rectangular frame will keep things in proportion, while heart shapes do best with something wider at the top of the frame and narrower at the bottom, like a cat eye.”
Find The Perfect Fit
“How you feel when wearing your glasses is very important,” says Nadia Akhtar, marketing and communications manager at Jimmy Fairly. “More specifically, it’s how they sit on your nose which counts – think about how long you intend to wear the glasses and if they’ll be comfortable over extended periods of time. It’s also worth considering the arm of the glasses and how they fit behind your ears.” Abbas echoes Nadia’s advice, adding a couple of extra points: “The width of your frames should match the width of your face at the temples, leaving enough room on the sides to avoid leaving marks and when you smile, your cheeks shouldn’t push the frames up.”
Try Before You Buy
Taking the time to try on a few different styles is clearly the best way to find the perfect pair. In-person advice from an optician is invaluable, but if you can’t make it out to a physical store, there are workarounds. “Bloobloom’s Home Try On service is very popular, allowing you to choose five frames to try for five days, for free,” says Abbas. “Once you’ve made a decision, you can order whichever pair you like best and have your prescription lenses installed.”
Use Virtual Technology
Many eyewear brands also now offer virtual try-on technology, which is much more sophisticated (and realistic) than you might think. “At Jimmy Fairly we’ve developed our online virtual try-on,” explains Nadia. “It allows customers the opportunity to try out different styles and have fun finding the perfect frames from the comfort of their own home – you’ll be surprised how accurate the size, fit and colour looks to the real thing.”
Choose Your Lenses
It’s important to give some thought to the lenses. “The key lenses our customers go for are anti-reflective (MAR) and blue-light filters,” says Toby. “MAR can help reduce glare and reflection, while a blue-light filter reduces the negative impact of harmful rays emitted from devices like laptops and phones. While the scientific evidence around efficacy is up for debate, from personal experience my eyes definitely feel less strained at the end of the day if I’m wearing blue-light lenses.” But what exactly is so bad about blue light? “Research has shown some links between prolonged exposure to blue light over time and serious vision problems,” warns Abbas. “As most blue light passes directly through to the retina, the risk is it can increase the chances of retinal disease such as macular degeneration.”
Know Which Styles Are In
Looking for something bang on trend? Statement styles are the way to go right now. “This season, large 70s-style frames in our bio-acetate and stainless steel materials are proving popular,” says Nadia “Our Dimby is also a great option, as it makes an impact but still works on most face shapes.” Abbas agrees: “We’ve seen more demand for oversized and exaggerated silhouettes, such as our Stylist frame, a 60s-inspired XXL design which looks super cool.”
If In Doubt, Go Classic
“Unfortunately, unlike sunglasses, there’s no such thing as a universally flattering pair of normal glasses,” says Abbas. “However, black, tortoiseshell and clear frames will suit most people. The transparent trend has been big this year, with lots of interesting new pale colours on offer. Expect to see more of the cool metal styles around, too.” As for the shape, round remains the most timeless choice. “If you’re unsure, softer, rounder designs are the most fail-safe option, as is a cat eye – they look great on the majority of faces,” adds Nadia.