Glasses should feel comfortable, accentuate your features, and, of course, help you see.
Choosing glasses is about much more than your personal style preferences; it’s actually an important part of eye care. If you have the wrong fit, even if you love the frame style, you could experience eye strain, problems seeing properly, or even have troubling side effects, like nausea or headaches.
How to get the right fit
Check with your optician
Your optician will take measurements to help you find a properly fitting pair of glasses. He or she will look at your face shape, your prescription, and take measurements.
Without those measurements, it’s just about impossible to know which frame size you need.
The measurements that the optician takes will indicate which frames will fit you best, and you’ll be able to find corresponding measurements stamped on the inside of the glasses frame.
Know your measurements
On the inside of your eyeglasses (usually stamped on the temple or bridge), you should find three numbers separated by hyphens or dashes. These are the measurements that your optician is looking for, and they’re specified in millimeters (mm). For example: 52-20-140.
Even though millimeters are small, having any of these numbers off could result in big problems with your glasses. Here’s what each of those measurements stand for.
- Lens width: The horizontal width of each lens at its widest point. A typical range is between 40mm to 60mm.
- Bridge width: This refers to the bar in the center that sits on the bridge of your nose. The measurement is the distance between the lenses. Small bridge glasses are in the 14mm to 16mm range; medium bridge widths range from 17mm to 19 mm; and large bridge widths range from 20mm to 23 mm.
- Temple length: The length of each arm, starting at the hinge. There aren’t as many options for temple length. They’re typically stated in increments of 5mm: 135mm, 140mm, 145mm, and 150mm.
Understand how glasses should look and feel
How glasses should fit your eyes
Your eyeglass frames should line up horizontally with the center of your eyes, and the frame should extend no higher than your eyebrows.
Your pupillary distance (PD) — the distance between your pupils in millimeters — is needed to determine where your eyes should align with your lenses. When you look straight ahead, the center of each pupil should be in the optical center of each lens. Getting this right is critical for your glasses to fit and function properly.
How glasses should fit your nose
Eyeglasses should rest on your nose without slipping or imprinting red marks on your nose. Your frames should feel like they are balanced or equally distributed across the bridge of your nose — you shouldn’t have to fuss with them.
How glasses should fit your cheeks
Your glasses shouldn’t rest on your cheeks when you smile. They should be level on your face.
How glasses should fit the side of your head
The temples of your eyeglass frames should feel secure around or over your ears, without pinching or feeling uncomfortable. If the width of the frames is just right for the width of your face, your glasses won’t budge when you look down and shake your head.
Common fit problems
What does it mean if…
…your glasses keep sliding down your face?
This could indicate that the frame is too narrow for your face.
…your glasses leave red marks on the bridge of your nose?
This probably means that your glasses are too tight, or the frames might be bent or crooked. If your glasses are indeed the right fit, adding nose pads could do the trick.
…your glasses pinch your head or dig into the spot behind your ears?
The temples of your glasses probably aren’t hugging your ears the way they should.
…your glasses feel crooked?
Most people have crooked eyebrows, which can make your glasses appear crooked. Check the straightness of your glasses by looking at the bottom of your eyes, not your eyebrows. Sometimes, people’s ears don’t line up, which could also cause glasses to feel crooked.
Is it time for your eye exam and a new pair of fresh frames? Make an appointment with your eye doctor to get started finding those perfectly fitting glasses today, or learn more about our services.