In the days when the NHS still funded all of your glasses there were only seven main frames to choose from, today there is a huge variety of styles in different colours, sizes and materials. I hope that by the end of this article I have shed a little chink of light on how we choose spectacles for you!
There are five main face shapes; Oval, Round, Square, Long and Heart.
Oval faces are well balanced and softly rounded with a wider forehead than jaw. Kylie Minogue and Jude Law are both examples of oval faces. Oval faces are ideally suited to spectacles and look good in most frames. Particular shapes to try are angular or small aviator styles
Round faces have full cheeks and a round chin, short and fairly wide. Jack Black and Kelly Osborne have round faces. Ideally you are looking for a frame that ‘slims’ the face, elongated shapes work well as long as they are not too narrow. Square and upswept styles can help to highlight the upper face. Try to avoid small and round or very large square shapes which make the face look rounder.
Square faces are angular and tend to be short and wide. Jennifer Anniston and David Beckham have square shaped faces. Avoid shapes that emphasis the sqaureness and instead look for round or oval shapes that soften the jawline.
Long faces feature high cheek bones, a deep forehead and a strong jaw line. Liv Tyler and Keifer Sutherland have long face shapes. Avoid small square styles. Look for wider frames to counteract the narrow face. Frames with a strong top line or round frames can work well.
Heart faces have a broad forehead with a small neat chin and mouth. Katie Holmes and Justin Timberlake have heart shaped faces. Try to avoid heart shaped frames and look for delicate rounded or squarish styles.
Hair colour and complexion also play an important part when choosing your spectacles, just as they do when you choose commentary colour clothes to suit your skin tone. If you have fair hair, softer pastel shades or transparent frames will ensure that your glasses don’t overwhelm your face. Black or brown hair works well with more dramatic frames.
The most important factor in choosing spectacles is your own personality. You can follow all the rules you like, but sometimes bold glasses will not suit someone with a shy personality and vice versa. It’s always a good idea to ask for a second or even third opinion, after all you don’t look at yourself, other people do!
I find helping to choose spectacles one of the most rewarding parts of my job, so never be afraid to ask for help or an opinion. It is very satisfying when a person wears a frame I have helped choose and they look and feel good wearing it.