Do Your Eyeglasses Reflect Who You Are?

June 29, 2010

We all know that the first place people look when they meet you is your face. Your eyes, your smile, your teeth, your hair…they all say something about who you are and the image you want to project. In fact, anything on your face becomes a focal point and that includes your eyeglasses. Many people who wear glasses own only one pair and wear them every day. Depending on the glasses (or your personality), this can be good or bad.

As we’ve seen in the movies, glasses can figure prominently in creating a character. The main difference between Clark Kent and Superman (other than the obvious costume) is the glasses Clark wears. They help him present a reserved, bookish character in contrast to the worldly, heroic Superman. Want to look like a nerd? Choose the appropriate glasses, and you’re done. Want to look cool? Choose a pair of sunglasses that scream trendy (and are appropriate, of course, to your coloring and personal style), and you’re there. It’s truly amazing that something as seemingly benign as some wire or plastic and glass can so significantly affect how someone looks. But it can and does.

Just look at Sarah Palin who became known almost as much for her trendy eyeglasses as for her political views or the Jonas Brothers who have popularized ‘obvious’ glasses – their purpose is to wear glasses that scream “glasses!” Now every young person who idolizes the Jonas Brothers wants a pair. I know this because I was just shopping with a client for eyeglasses and the thick-rimmed plastic glasses are everywhere in almost every color.

So, if you want that look, you’re all set. If, however, like my client yesterday, you want something more befitting of your personality, I thought I would share a few tips:

  • First, consider how often you replace your eyeglass frames? Is it every 1-2 years or more like every 5-10 years? Obviously something trendy will not stand the test of time, and a more classic look will serve you better.
  • Take someone with you whose opinion you value–especially if you can’t see how you look when you’re trying them on.
  • Go to a store that has lots of choices so you can really get an idea of what looks and feels good to you and not feel forced to choose from a limited selection.
  • Glasses should complement your face, bone structure and coloring. If you’re only going to own one pair, be sure they do not overpower your features. If like my client, you want more than one pair then you can have “statement” glasses that are fun, quirky or creative.
  • The top of the frame should cover your eyebrows or be slightly lower – never above your brows, or you look like you have two sets of eyebrows. I know this seems obvious to some but there are still a few people who are stuck in the 1980’s. (The only exception is sunglasses.)
  • Your pupils should be centered in the lense of the eyeglasses.
  • Get non-reflective, anti-glare lenses (no exceptions – although the saleswoman was telling us about one woman who refused to get non-reflective lenses because she was hoping the glare would detract from the wrinkles around her eyes!). They allow people to see your eyes more clearly when they talk with you, and they reduce the glare so you can see more clearly when you are driving at night. This is not a place to cut costs!
  • No tinting – unless you have more than one pair of glasses. It obscures your eyes.
  • This is not a time to let style, comfort or durability suffer in order to reduce the cost. You wear your glasses every day for the world (and you) to see. You should love how you look in them!

Glasses can be a wonderful accessory, but be careful. They can change your look immensely, for better or worse, and believe me, I’ve seen worse!!! The right glasses, on the other hand, are a fabulous expression of who you are. There’s a big difference!

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