Walking into the optometrist’s or optician’s can be overwhelming; the walls are lined with so many different types of fashion frames it can stop you in your tracks. But if you consider the different components of a pair of eyeglass frames: the rims, the nose bridge, and the earpieces or temples, you can choose which features will give you the most comfort and style. This post only addresses eyeglass frames, but if you want more information on different types of eyeglass lenses, see our post from last month.
There are five main types of rims for fashion eyeglasses for men.
1) Full-rim glasses are the most widespread style. The frames wrap all the way around the lenses and come in a variety of shapes such as circular frames, oval frames, and rectangular frames.
2) With rimless glasses, the lenses are connected right to the earpieces. This style is light and stylish but often more delicate.
3) Semi-rimless glasses mean that the frames core only half the lenses.
4) Horn-rimmed glasses are heavy frames and typically come in dark colors and rectangular shapes. The name comes from the fact that these frames were once made from horn or shell.
5) Brow-bar glasses are very much like full-rims except they have a double bridge.
The earpieces, also known as the temples, have a big impact on your comfort level with a pair of glasses. Temples come in three main types: “library” style, “skull” style, and the “cable bow” style.
1) Library style has almost no bend in the earpiece and it is intended for someone who takes their glasses on and off frequently, the way a person in a library would.
2) Skull style temples are the most common variety. They have a slight bend behind the ear and they are most comfortable for extended wear.
3) The cable bow style hooks all the way around the ear and is preferable for people who are very active such as young children and athletes.
The Nose Bridge
The two main types of bridges are the ones where the plastic frames sit directly on the nose and the more common kind in which adjustable nose pads keep to glasses from slipping and add greater flexibility. With the bridges that are flush against your nose, they come in a saddle or upside down “u” shape, or a keyhole shape. If you’re wearing a pair of designer frames for a test run, you should make sure they don’t pinch your nose at all.