A month ago I had a contact lens trial at Specsavers. As I was growing more and more dependent on my glasses, I was intrigued by the idea of wearing contacts, but also incredibly freaked out by it! I really hate anything going in my eyes and I am useless if I am ever prescribed eye drops! However, the trial at Specsavers was free and really useful.
I first enquired about the trial when I had my latest eye test – to have a lens trial you need an up-to-date eye test first. The optician helped me book a lens trial and suggested I wait to buy new glasses until after my trial as my prescription hadn’t changed that much and if I was going to mostly wear lenses, it wasn’t necessary for me to get new glasses too.
As I booked my appointment, the woman kindly explained the whole process of the trial so that I knew what to expect. This was particularly reassuring at the first stage is to see a ‘fitter’. The fitter’s job is to check that you are suitable for lenses and work out your prescription…then he fits them for you. As I knew what was coming, I felt pretty prepared but it is a strange experience to have a man looming over you and forcing something into your eye. Luckily he was patient as my left eye refused to cooperate and eventually he managed to fit the lenses. I was amazed by the fact that you couldn’t even feel the lenses there and it was incredibly strange being able to see with peripheral vision, rather than just straight ahead like with glasses.
After working out my prescription and having my lenses fitted, I went booked in for my next appointment, the ‘teach’. As you leave after your fitting, the woman on reception shows you how to ‘practice’ holding your eye open with your finger over the pupil (but not touching) so that it gets used to having something there. Then, where you come back again, you have to insert and remove your own lenses twice in half an hour, once under guidance and once on your own. I didn’t manage it on my first attempt, struggling to remove the second lens until a fitter came and did it for me, but on my second ‘teach’ appointment sheer determination saw me insert and remove the lenses surprisingly easily! Once I had proved that I wasn’t going to get the lens stuck in my eye (although I have had a couple of difficult occasions where it has taken half an hour or more to remove them) the care of the lenses and my eyes were explained to me along with a list of do’s and don’ts. I was then given a sheet telling me how many hours I could wear my lenses for as you have to build up wear, then I got to take them away with me.
For the first month of the trail, the lenses and solution are free. I also lost one of my lenses and ripped another when I was on the trial and these were also replaced for free. Once my trial was up, I had another appointment with the fitter who examined my eyes again to check that everything was ok, then he removed my old lenses and put new ones in for me (which was much less traumatic than the first time he did it!)
As I wear my lenses most days, I wasn’t going to bother buying new glasses and just make do with the ones that I already had, but as I set up a direct debit to pay for my lenses (which are posted to me every quarter) I was entitled to a free pair from their £45 range or a discount on their more expensive ranges. I didn’t want to have to pay for some more glasses that I didn’t need, so I chose a pair from the £45 ones.
I have had my old glasses for two years now, and I had had similar glasses for the two (possibly four) years before that. I usually opt for pretty angular yet chunky glasses as I have had these for a long time and feel comfortable in them, but this time I took the plunge and went for a change.
Here are my old glasses:
And here are my new ones:
I love the bigger look that is more fashionable at the moment and I was surprised to discover that it suits me! Or at least I think it does anyway! The colour of the frames is also ideal as, being blonde, black chunky frames look far too dark on me.
Although I won’t be wearing my glasses all that much as I will be wearing my lenses, it is nice to have a new pair and now I have the choice of wearing my lenses, my old glasses or my new glasses depending on what I fancy!