CUSTOM EYEWEAR CONSULTATIONS
Our goal at SPECS OPTICAL is to make the process of getting custom-made eyeglasses as enjoyable as possible. All of our certified opticians have many years of experience dispensing prescription eyewear, so you can trust us to provide you with professional advice relating to what frame style, lenses, and lens treatments will best fit your prescription and lifestyle needs.
WE’RE HERE TO HELP YOU
When you come to SPECS OPTICAL for your eyewear consultation, one of the first things we’ll ask to see is your prescription. This is an important first step because it helps us to guide you towards frames that will work optimally with the lens options that are available with your individual prescription. We’ll help you achieve the best balance between technical performance and aesthetics when choosing your particular combination of eyeglass frames and lenses.
Our skilled opticians will take a good look at the architecture of your face to help you select frames that sit comfortably, making sure the bridge is centered properly and that your nose and ears are happy. A frame that fits properly ensures that you’ll be looking through the optical centers of the lenses, seeing the world as your ophthalmologist or optometrist intended. Our frame offerings have been carefully selected for their quality, durability and excellent regard to fit. If you have specific fitting needs, we have a variety of custom-order eyeglass frame options to accommodate. Just stop by the shop or call us at 612.374.2114, to discuss your needs.
MEASUREMENTS, PLEASE & THANK YOU
We always take precise measurements to determine the pupillary distance (PD), or distance between your pupils, and the ocular center (OC) height. The OC height is the center of the lens vertically from the bottom of the lens to the center of the pupil. An accurate PD measurement, in conjunction with an accurate OC height measurement, is needed to properly place the lenses in your frames so that the ocular center (the area that gives you the truest vision) is directly in front of your pupils.
There’s an emerging trend to use automated machines to take optical measurements. We’ve tested these machines and determined that they do not achieve the same accurate results as a highly skilled optician, who not only takes measurements, but also uses their professional experience to evaluate your fitting needs based on many parameters that a machine cannot discern, such as your posture. The human element should not be dismissed from the eyeglasses consultation process.
SPECIALTY TREATMENTS AND LENSES
Yes, we have them. No, we won’t oversell you. The bottom line is that we know that you want the best options to maximize your visual acuity.
ANTI-REFLECTIVE LENS TREATMENT
With very few exceptions, our clients choose anti-reflective (A/R) treatment on their lenses to improve their vision. The benefits of A/R include sharper vision with less glare when driving at night and less reflection from computer screens. By reducing reflection of light on the lenses, A/R also makes your eyeglass lenses look almost invisible. This helps folks see your beautiful eyes and not your lenses. Get used to people asking you if you have lenses in those frames!
The A/R treatments that we employ are hydrophobic and oleophobic. The hydrophobic property means that water spots won’t form on the surface of your lenses, while the oleophobic property means that your moisturizer or skin oils will be repelled by the lenses. Because it reduces the occurrence of smudges and the rainbow effect of oil on lenses, anti-reflective is very popular with our clients.
In addition, SPECS OPTICAL provides a full range of lens treatment options. Our trained opticians can help you decide which scratch-resistant, anti-fog, ultraviolet filter, Transitions or other options best fit your visual and budgetary needs. To further discuss any of these options, stop by the shop or call us at 612.374.2114.
For most client applications, we suggest polarized lenses, as opposed to a standard dark-tinted lens. Intense reflected light from horizontal surfaces, such as light reflected from pavement, snow, and water, is filtered out by a polarized lens, creating a much crisper visual picture. Sports enthusiasts, such as boaters, cyclists, golfers and runners, appreciate the sharper vision that polarized lenses provide. However, anyone who is sensitive to light will certainly benefit. A consultation with an optician is very beneficial in determing the correct products for any special vision needs.
Today’s progressive lenses seamlessly allow you to see objects at a distance, in the intermediate range (arm’s length), and near points. During your consultation, our certified opticians will discuss with you how you will use your progressives based on your prescription needs and lifestyle. For example, there are specially-made progressive lenses, known as computer/office lenses, that have a larger intermediate zone that are especially useful for computer users, cooks, artists and musicians. Depending on your intended use, we can guide you into the progressive lens style with the best viewing corridor. We carefully take all the necessary measurements of your eyes within your frame to make sure that these viewing corridors are placed in the right location to ensure that your eyes can easily, naturally and comfortably see at all distances.
COMMUNICATION IS KEY
Once you and your optician have completed your frame and lens consultation, SPECS OPTICAL places your order with the surfacing optical lab. A surfacing lab starts with the raw material of your lens, cuts your prescription into it, and applies all desired treatments (including A/R, mirror coating, scratch resistance, etc.) In communicating your specific order to the surfacing lab, we employ an extensive library of frame shapes and dimensions. A digital tracing of each frame is sent so that the surfacing lab can optimally design the lens based on the exact frame shape that SPECS OPTICAL will later cut the lens to fit. This unique, extra attention to detail ensures that we receive the quality of lenses that we demand from the surfacing lab.
OUR FINISHING LAB
What sets SPECS OPTICAL apart from most optical shops is that we have our own finishing optical lab onsite. We’re very proud to have well-trained staff who do the final finishing of your lenses to ensure that they are mechanically and cosmetically superior. In our finishing lab, we cut your lenses to size to fit your frame, incorporating the precise measurements we have taken while determining the most aesthetically pleasing combination of lens beveling, grooving, custom drilling, and edge treatments/polishing to complete the overall look of your specs. The best lenses are only as good as the person who installs them. So, we take great pride in the skill of our optical lab staff.
After we receive your lenses from the surfacing lab, we inspect them to make sure they match our high standards of quality. We verify the accuracy of your prescription, including a complete inspection of lens treatments and the material quality of the lens. Our criteria for lens quality is tighter than ANSI (American National Standards Institute) standards, which are the benchmark of the optical industry. Our lab reps often joke that there are ANSI standards and then there are SPECS OPTICAL standards.
BLOCKING AND CUTTING
The key to the accuracy of a lens is that it is blocked correctly before cutting it to fit the frame. Here again, the human element is undeniably important. Correct blocking requires an eye for detail in order to ensure that the ocular center, pupillary distance, height of the progressive, and alignment of astigmatic axis are all set properly within the eyeglass frame, as designated by the optician’s measurements.
EDGING AND DRILLING
An edger trims away excess material and applies the correct bevel or groove so that the lens fits the eyewear frame and is safe to wear. Our opticians take time to ensure that your lenses are finished with attention to detail so that they mechanically perform to our high standards and result in superior aesthetics. There’s a bit of artistry to skillfully piecing together each distinct combination of frame and custom prescription.
One specific example of executing proper lens installation occurs with the Lindberg collection of rimless eyewear. We’ve invested in a custom drill and template system specifically designed for the Lindberg line, as well as other specialized optical equipment. This ensures that we can do all the proper finishing for this highly technical line of rimless eyeglasses onsite…consistently…every time.
TAKE A TOUR OF OUR LAB
The best way to appreciate the craftsmanship and the technological expertise that goes into hand-crafting lenses is to stop by SPECS OPTICAL and take a look at our opticians at work in our lab. We’ll be happy to show you the care that we take with all of our lens orders for eyeglasses and sunglasses. Feel free to ask for a tour of the lab.