Something I’ve become more interested in in recent years is my eyewear – I do love a pair of glasses. I will admit that when I was told several years ago I needed glasses for reading and close work I was more than a little excited: That meant choosing frames, hurrah!
Since I had my first pair I’ve gone through many different styles and looking back, I perhaps didn’t choose glasses that suited me all that well (in the same way you get to know your own style in clothes, I’ve got to know what suits me frames-wise).
Of course fashions come and go in glasses as much as they do in clothes, but there is such an amazingly wide range of styles to choose from these days. Therefore I was really excited to be asked by Specsavers to choose three summer styles from their current range: I’ve been going there for a few years to get my eyes tested and to be honest I now wouldn’t go anywhere else.
The Specsavers eye test and service
Aside from the huge range of glasses available, this is probably the best thing about Specsavers: Their service is second to none. I’ve honestly never had anything but super helpful and friendly assistance and I’ve been to both my local store in Exeter and the Tottenham Court Road store in London.
The Tottenham Court Road store visit happened because I was invited to go the Specsavers Spectacle Wearer of the Year Awards event at the end of last year, and part of that trip was to not only cover the event on social media but choose and style two pairs of glasses. As my eye test was due I had it done all in one fell swoop while I was up in London for the event.
Believe me when I say Specsavers are THOROUGH. Compared to other opticians I’ve been to in the past, the whole experience is swift, easy, well organised and actually quite fun. There’s always a nice atmosphere in there. As I had my eyes tested quite recently I didn’t need to have them tested again so for the purpose of this post it was simply a case of choosing glasses and getting them glazed and fitted [to my somewhat small head].
Although I’m skipping ahead here (pretend I’ve chosen the frames already), the chap that served me was incredibly friendly, gave me all the options but wasn’t at all pushy sales-wise. Like I’ve always found at Specsavers, he knew what he was talking about. In fact I’ve told my husband he needs to go to Specsavers, the service is so good.
How to choose the best frames
This is the fun part: Choosing frames. As well as designer ranges (Love Moschino, Tommy Hilfiger, Karl Lagerfield, etc.) they also do their own range, and they are equally as stylish. And being Specsavers’ own brand range they’re often more affordable than some of the designer frames so you can get yourself a very cool pair from just £25.
Since wearing glasses a lot I’ve eventually got to know what rough shape my face suits. I have a small, quite round face, and a long nose. If I go for frames that are too straight across at the top it makes my nose look even longer and my face even smaller. So I always go for a style that “dips” at the bridge – it keeps my nose in proportion with the rest of my face. Plus a curved top (rather than straight across) doesn’t fight with the shape of my eyebrows, and if the frames are too small my face looks rounder, so I tend to go for a medium-size frame.
DON’T TRUST THE MIRROR, TRUST THE CAMERA.
Getting to know what style suits can be quite hard, however I have a fail-safe trick for working it out (this helps if you’re on your own and having to choose frames). It’s the same principle I use for working out if an outfit looks good:
Don’t trust the mirror, trust the camera.
In other words, take a photo and study the photo, not the reflection looking back at you. What we see in the mirror is weirdly VERY different to what everyone else sees – that back-to-front thing plays havoc with your brain. It means you can be totally subjective about how the frames look when you’re looking at an image, not a reflection.
The other option is to use Specsavers’ “Virtual try on” app. You need a device with a camera, and you take shots of yourself from all angles which are then used to create a 3D image of you wearing the glasses. So if you want to choose frames online rather than spend hours in the branch trying them on, why not consider this option before you go in – it’s genius!
So here are the three frames I chose in the end and why…
Pair 1: Love Moschino LM 03
Now, I’d had my eye on (see what I did there) these Love Moschino LM 03 frames since October last year when I attended the Specsavers Spectacle Wearer of the Year Awards – unfortunately they weren’t in stock at the time so they just weren’t to be last year. However, these were the first pair I looked for this time around so I was super happy to see they were still current.
They’re bold, they’re black (I think every glasses wearer needs at least one pair of what my family calls “Joe 90” glasses) but they have this lovely pink trim which sort of glows around the frames and gives them a “tough but feminine” edge.
Also I love a cat eye when it comes to glasses but the extreme ones don’t seem to suit me all that much (I think my face is too round), but these have just a hint of a cat eye shape which I love because it makes them look a little 1950s.
Pair 2: Specsavers Clover
Whilst choosing frames I didn’t take too much notice of whether they were designer or Specsavers frames – as I said their own brand range is spot on so I simply looked for colours and frame shapes that I liked. This pair is the Specsavers Clover frames and I chose these for that two-tone colour that goes so nicely with my hair colour and skin tone. I also like the little gold “tabs” at the outer corners – a small detail that adds to the styling. These are a lot softer than the first pair, but again it’s nice to have different styles for different looks.
Pair 3: Specsavers Eclipse (as sunglasses)
Last but not least – the Specsavers Eclipse frames. They had me at “tortoiseshell”…! Again, a great colour(s) that tones beautifully with my hair, and the bridge dips to shorten my nose. I already have a pair of red tortoiseshell glasses, but as I was choosing three pairs this time I had a brainwave: WHY haven’t I chosen a pair to have as sunglasses? Admittedly, as my glasses are only for reading I wouldn’t need them that much (it’s not as if I need a pair for driving on a sunny day), but I’m often out and about and on my phone and a pair of reading glasses that are also protecting my eyes from the glare of the sun would be incredibly handy.
Now, I did think about the style of sunglasses I normally wear, and they’re big. I mean, I like HUGE, oversized sunglasses. These are not. But I had a think, and it seemed sensible to choose a pair that’s roughly the same size as my other reading glasses because if I needed to look up and into the distance, you simply can’t peer over the top of a pair of oversized sunnies. It brings me onto considering varifocals for that exact reason, but at the moment my eyes aren’t bad enough I feel to warrant varifocals – I’m happy taking them off and putting them back on again. It’s a process I quite like doing, weirdly…
Stop, take off your glasses, bring your hand to your chin and have a think, put them back on again. And repeat.
But varifocals are something to consider for the future, that’s for sure.
Back to the service: I went back to get my glasses about a week later, and if you haven’t had glasses before or if you’ve been to another optician this is where you may be surprised. I used to think you popped back, they find your glasses, and hand them over. Job done. Oh no – the service at this part is just as good. (Read on to the end for my thoughts on this part of the service.)
How I styled them – two reading, one sunglasses
So with the idea that different styles work with different looks, here’s how they look when I’m wearing them “properly” – these are my own, fully glazed glasses.
For some reason I feel that sometimes glasses look better on me when my hair is up. Don’t ask me why – maybe it’s the librarian thing when you take the pin out of your bun, let your hair tumble down and take off your glasses. (Can you tell I live in a cheesy romance novel in my head?)
But as I do with my outfits, I like to style my hair according to what accessories I’m wearing – and that includes my glasses. Certain frames suit certain hairstyles. Here are my three looks:
1. Love Moschino LM 03
As the stronger, bolder pair of the two clear glasses, the Love Moschino frames suit darker and brighter patterns and colours. It’s nice to have a choice of glasses to wear with different outfits, so Specsavers’ 2 for 1 offer gives you the perfect opportunity to do just that.
2. Specsavers Clover
Like the dark frames suit bolder colours, the soft ombré of the Clover pair go perfectly with the warm peach of my jacket, the beige of my sweater and of course my hair. They’re the perfect choice for warm colours or when I want my glasses to be a little more subtle – I say subtle but they still make a style statement.
3. Specsavers Eclipse
I thought it was quite apt that I chose to have a pair of frames called Eclipse glazed as sunglasses…! The style I chose was spot-on in terms of shape and size – a really large pair definitely wouldn’t have worked for when and how I use them. It was great to be able to read outside without either sacrificing clearer reading or protection from the sun. And tortoiseshell goes with everything, so I made a perfect choice.
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Why I’d recommend Specsavers
Once again, when I collected my glasses the service was first class. The girl that served me this time made sure they fitted my (small) head properly, she cleaned them up, gave me vouchers for another pair and explained about different options I could consider (back to those varifocals). She couldn’t have been nicer.
Overall, as a regular customer of Specsavers anyway I can say that I shall continue to get my eyes tested there and I shall continue to enjoy the huge range of stylish frames they sell. To be honest I could have come away with 30 pairs of glasses, it wouldn’t have been any problem to choose that many – in fact it might have been easier to choose 30, not three (I took absolutely FOREVER to make up my mind about which ones to go for).
So when they say you should’ve gone to Specsavers, they really mean it.
ARE YOU A GLASSES WEARER, AND HOW CONFIDENT ARE YOU ABOUT WHAT STYLE FRAMES TO WEAR? COMMENT BELOW, OR TAKE IT TO TWITTER @NOTLAMB!
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1. Jumpsuit: Asos | Bag: Jennifer Hamley c/o
2. Jacket: Topshop | Sweater: Thrifted | Trousers: Asos | Bag: Accessorize
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Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Specsavers (click here for my full disclosure). All content is original, however, and opinions are my own and 100% honest.