Optimizing for Fit: How to Make Sure Your Glasses Measure Up

The right pair of glasses doesn’t just influence how you see the world, it affects how the world sees you. A good set of eyeglasses gives you the visual boost you need to move through your life with confidence and grace, while exhibiting your own personal sense of style.

Unfortunately, while most people agree that choosing the right glasses is crucial, many don’t know how to properly source and size their glasses for the ideal fit.

Today, we’ll be discussing the ins and outs of glasses measurements, to ensure your glasses always deliver the right results.

Which Measurements Matter?

Scrutinize your favorite pair of glasses, and you’ll notice a set of three numbers stamped into most designs.

These measurements tell you:

  • Temple length – the length of each arm starting at the glasses hinge
  • Bridge width – the distance between each lens
  • Lens width – the horizontal length of each lens

Taking these measurements into account is crucial, whether you’re ordering your glasses directly from a local optician, or seeking them out yourself online.

Choosing to buy a pair of glasses online doesn’t mean you should ignore the basics of optimizing for a good fit. Ultimately, as optometrists say themselves, a good fit has a huge impact on your overall comfort, and ability to wear your glasses long-term.

Finding Your Fit Online

When buying glasses online, you should still be able to choose from a series of different sizes. If a website only offers a single one-size-fits-all frame, this could mean you’re not going to get the comfort or the style you’re looking for.

If you can choose from various sizes on the website of your choice, find a soft tape measure you can use to get an idea of the measurements you need.

Here are the steps to get you started:

  • Start with temple length: The arms of your glasses should be long enough to fit comfortably around your ears, without tugging. The fit also needs to be snug enough to ensure your glasses don’t fall off when you move your head. Usually, you’ll be able to choose your temple length in 5mm variations. Stick with the length most comfortable to you, and ask your optometrist if you’re not sure where to start.
  • Consider bridge width: Bridge width is the second most important measurement to consider when choosing your glasses. This indicates how much space there is between both lenses in the gap that accommodates your nose. If this width is too small, it could pinch your nose. If it’s too large, your glasses won’t stay in place. Measure the bridge width for the glasses you already use, or experiment with pairs until you find one that seems to fit.
  • Explore lens height: Lens height is more about style than comfort. If you’re not getting multifocal lenses, you can get any kind of frame, based on your tastes. Consider the shape of your face. Rectangular glasses give round faces more length and contouring, for instance. If you’re buying multifocal lenses, make sure your lens height is at least 30mm, to ensure you’re making the most of your prescription.

Other Things to Consider When Choosing Glasses

The most important factor to consider when choosing glasses is comfort. Aside from the three measurements above, you may want to consider “Pupillary distance” when looking at glasses, as this can help you ensure your glasses are positioned properly to help you leverage your prescription.

You’ll need to discuss pupil distance with the company that makes your lenses, as it’s the glass in your glasses that makes a difference here, not the frame.

It’s also worth thinking about how you’re going to demonstrate your own sophisticated style with your choice of glasses. Consider:

  • Weight The bulkiness of your glasses will both have an impact on their appearance and the overall comfort of wearing them. Glasses should be lightweight for long-term wear.
  • Color Consider your skin and hair tone. Which colors are more suited to your specific appearance? Which colors in your glasses will enhance your appearance?
  • Shape The shape of your face will often influence the shape of your glasses. A heart-shaped face is softened by circular, and oval glasses, while oval faces benefit from rectangular frames.

Test Your Glasses

Many modern glasses companies selling designs online now provide return policies and free “taster” packages, so users can experiment with styles before investing in a specific frame. When you receive your glasses, put them to the test to ensure they fit correctly.

Remember, when you’re gazing straight ahead, the center of your pupils should align with the center of each lens. Make sure you measure pupillary distance to get this right. The weight of the frame should be balanced evenly across your nose, not digging into your skin.

The temples or arms of your frames need to securely fit over your ears, without tugging or causing discomfort. You should also be able to move, bend, and shake your head without your glasses slipping and sliding. If you’re confident you’ve got a comfortable, and stylish set of glasses, you’re done shopping! If not, it might be time to go and try on some different pairs of glasses, so you can get a better understanding of your ideal fit.



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A student, amateur photographer, and aspiring automotive journalist. Anything with an engine and wheels has piqued my interest for the longest time. It only makes sense that I share my passion with everyone else. Hope you enjoy my adventures in the automotive world and otherwise.

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