Recs for website or app that recommends eyewear based on design specs?
June 30, 2016 10:22 AM   Subscribe

I.e., frame size, materials, style, weight. Alternatively, actual recs for a frame are welcome!

I'm wondering if there might be something that scrapes this info from catalogues (if that’s even possible) and will provide an actual model number that I could then use to follow up with local opticians. (Have a slightly complicated script, want properly centered lenses etc., glasses will cost $500+ no matter what, don't want to mess around.)

Plus, I'd like to try these glasses on. I know some US and UK companies offer "try on" services, but haven't seen this offered by a Canadian site. Not worth shipping/customs etc to try international options, imo.

There's lots of advice on retailers' sites on considering frame size, but not much help in using this information to sort through options, at least on the sites I've seen. (There's one UK company that does this, but most of the recommendations are for their own brand / brands I wouldn't be able to easily find here.)


Alternatively, can anyone recommend a frame for me?

Frame size: 52-54/~16/140; lens height ~ 35-38 mm. (PD: 68)

Style-wise, must be:

* full rim, mixed materials (non-nickel metal bottom, ideally gold-coloured; tortoiseshell, brown, or burgundy plastic up top) with nosepads

* highish bridge but not a very high “browline”

* cat eye or squarish-rectangular shape, with slightly rounded edges at the bottom.

Must be lightweight - have rosacea; heavy, plastic frames have been causing dilated capillaries on my skin, due to the way the weight is distributed on the bridge. Hence the need for nosepads, and preference for mixed materials. (Used to wear plastic frames, no problem, but the capillary thing is getting worse with evil, evil time :/ Metal-only frames = visibly thick lens edges all around, because of the high prescription. Also just dislike the look of titanium frames.)

I can’t decide between polycarbonate lenses (which are lighter than high-index, but will look sort of bad with the metal bit), and high-index lenses (which will look better because they're thinner, but weigh a bit more than polycarbonate). Thoughts on that appreciated.

It would be great to get info on materials used for the frames (unlikely, I know). I'm allergic to nickel, and I know some plastics are lighter than others.

I loved these (54/16/140, 38 lens height). But I know that once my lenses go in there, there's going to be that face-distorting, funhouse-mirror effect. Apparently, the lenses need to be less wide to minimize that. But any frame that's narrower than 52 mm looks terrible :/

These are pretty great for me as far as the lenses go (35 mm height; frame: 54/16/135); they're like the other ones, but curve in a bit at the bottom, bit shorter, there's less face-distorting surface area. Except the arms are 5 mm too short, and feature ridiculous rhinestones. (Sadly, the arms can’t be changed, I asked.)
posted by cotton dress sock to Shopping (4 answers total)
This probably isn't helpful (sorry!), but in case, David Kind ups the free try-at-home you mentioned (Warby Parker, Fetch...) with personal service: you pick 3 pairs to try on free, and a stylist works with you via email to recommend (and send for free try on) 3 additional pairs (so, like a human-powered version of searching for various design specs? but they only do US shipping and are limited to their own selection... still, maybe worth contacting just for recommendations about designs that work with your desires and face?)
posted by rollcredits at 4:31 AM on July 1, 2016 [1 favorite]

Best answer: If you go with smaller frames and lenses, it will help make them lighter overall. It will also reduce the visual distortion of your face.

I knew someone with similar problems for whom this strategy worked really well. Iirc, they went with the tiniest lenses they could find and glasses with no bottom framing on the lenses. They looked more attractive without the funhouse mirror distortion to their face and were vastly happier with how well the glasses worked for them.

This seems to be a Canadian site and they have some very attractive semi rimless frames:
posted by Michele in California at 7:15 PM on July 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Thanks MiC :) is indeed the best online option in Canada, as far as I can tell. They do have a limited number of styles, unfortunately. I ended up triangulating, like I guess everyone does. Searched on a bunch of different sites for dimensions (thought had the most usable interface, not want I wanted but close enough). Found frames I thought might work. Searched for those on Canadian brick & mortar retailers' sites. Went and tried a bunch on. To see how they looked, obviously, and for a sense of weight. (Although if you search on - not .ca - the shipping weight is indicated.) Good to go into the store anyway, because staff can advise on the polycarbonate issue, nosepad adjustment viz a viz the focal centre of the lens etc.

Chose the frames! Pleased with the decision. (Went semi-rimless instead.)

Was quoted $515 in the store (with a 50% "discount" on the lenses, too.) Ordered the frames on ebay, an optician I know will fit the lenses, total will be more like $280.

It didn't occur to me that any nickel content in the frame is a sort of non-issue if you've got nosepads and plastic arms. I did find the glasses of my dreams (very lightweight, attractive gold-plated titanium with plastic; perfect dimensions and nosepad placement), but that would have cost me close to a grand, all told, and they are not 2.7 times more beautiful than the thing I got.
posted by cotton dress sock at 7:46 PM on August 23, 2016

Response by poster: Aha, this needed updating. I returned those, they were too heavy. Went with a model from Ray Ban's titanium range (model 7031 suited the absolute best). Very light on; also got custom nose pads attached, to raise the frames from the bridge of my nose.

Updating Nov 16th 2016. It's quite apparent to me now that this is a ridiculous question. I'm hoping this sort of frivolity can still be entertained in a few years, though, and that the four-eyed won't be reduced to scrabbling around in some post-apocalyptic wasteland.
posted by cotton dress sock at 8:01 PM on November 16, 2016

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