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How do I Choose the Best Non-Prescription Contacts?

By Tara Barnett
Updated May 17, 2024
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Non-prescription contacts can be obtained through many retailers, both online and in physical locations. These lenses are typically used to change a person's eye color or for special effects. While all reputable contact lens companies sell lenses that are uniformly safe, there may be some differences between brands in terms of comfort. The primary factor to consider when choosing the best non-prescription contacts is the design of the lens and how the design will look when the contact is worn.

For most people, non-prescription contacts are used to change the color of the iris of the eye. There are some contact lenses, called scleral lenses, made to cover the white of the eye as well. Some cosmetic lenses are entirely opaque, while others allow some natural color to show through. While neither strategy is necessarily superior, covering dark eyes with light colors only works using almost entirely opaque lenses.

It can be difficult to gauge how contacts will look on different people. Often, the lens may look as though it is floating above the eye if it does not blend well. Trying on the lenses can help determine which are the best.

One of the most important features to consider when purchasing non-prescription contacts for cosmetic purposes is the design of the iris. Naturally, the human iris is not a single ring of color, but is variegated and has a darker ring around the edge. Many cosmetic lenses, particularly those made cheaply, give only a rough approximation of what the iris should look like. The best non-prescription contacts carefully paint an image of the variegated colors of the eye.

When choosing non-prescription contacts for special effects or events, you should consider how well the contacts fit the effect needed. If you are choosing, for example, contact lenses in a sports team's colors, it might be acceptable to choose cheap contacts without much detail. On the other hand, contacts for a movie set must be extremely detailed if they are to be at all realistic. The purpose of the lenses has a large impact on which lenses are the best.

Like prescription lenses, non-prescription lenses are made for different durations of use. Some colored contact lenses are made for single use, while others can be worn for long periods of time. Scleral lenses, while not prescription, often must be fitted to the eye of the intended wearer and cannot be interchanged. It is important to make sure that the lenses fit and can be used safely in order to minimize the possibility of damage to the eye.

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Discussion Comments

By chivebasil — On May 17, 2012

Is it always safe to buy non prescription contact lenses? I get the sense sometimes that they are made by retailers who have nothing to do with the medical field. I do not want to put something into my eye that is not absolutely safe.

Especially when it comes to those colored lenses. Are we sure that it is OK to put that kind of thing next to the eye for extended periods of time?

By Ivan83 — On May 17, 2012

I find it really unsettling every time I see a person wearing colored contacts. The colors are so unnatural. You almost feel like you are looking at an animation or something.

I can remember meeting up with a friend once and being amazed at her deep green eyes. I had never noticed them before but I tend to be bad at recognizing eye color so I didn't think too much of it. Still I was amazed that I could have missed her incredible green eyes for so long. I asked her about it and she said that her eyes were normally brown but she had just gotten colored contacts. It kind of ruined the appeal.

By backdraft — On May 16, 2012

I have some really cool prescription colored contacts that make my eyes look black. I do not wear them that often, but for the right place and the right time they look amazing.

I bought them online through a retailer that offers all kinds of funky contacts and eye wear. You can make your eyes look just about any way you want to these days.

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