By David Goldberg
Let’s frame up the current situation in the eyewear industry.
After rebounding from the pandemic, the biggest brands are now running full steam ahead to keep up with the intense demand for new specs.
In fact, recent projections have the global eyewear market valued at nearly $250 billion by 2027.
Now, the biggest brands are trying to stand out to your patients by incorporating new technologies that make a pair of glasses more durable, easier to buy and eco-friendly.
“The technological aspects of frame design are becoming increasingly important as consumers become more sophisticated and demanding in what is important to them when choosing their glasses,” says WestGroupe’s vice-president of product development and creative director Beverly Sultineau.
“Spring hinges are a key component that has seen vast improvements from both a technological and aesthetic perspective.”
WestGroupe has put a lot of resources behind developing spring hinges for both KLiiK and Evatik that are superior in function and, at the same time, work seamlessly with the design.
KLiiK K-705 features a custom integrated spring hinge with a sleek minimalistic design that is actually a key design feature of the temple.
Evatik E-9210 was developed around a Japanese titanium hinge that is capable of the same movement as a spring hinge due to the mechanically intuitive spacing within the structure.
Meanwhile, Maui Jim continues to roll out impressive additions to its specialty metals collection, including the MJO2221, MJO2222 and MJO2223, with one of the most compelling design stories in the industry.
“In meticulous and delicate execution, a solid piece of pure titanium is spun and carved on a lathe to create the rounded temples, each style with slightly different accents and bevels,” explains managing director-Canada, Jeff Speiran.
SWITCH IT UP
Alternative Eyewear is all about transformative pieces that quickly go from ophthalmic frame to sunglasses in one fluid movement, without hooks or magnets. No glare or ghosting, just a seamless transformation. Hard coated colours and laser welding complements contrasting hues with RX frames.
“The convenience of swiping skin options is the hottest trend for ease when switching from RX to sunglasses,” says CEO Paul Storace.
“The Transformative Eyewear Experience creates ease with your vision while having options, whether driving at night with yellow lens option or maximum UV protection with our polarized grey lens protection.”
Many parents dread shelling out money for kids’ glasses because they know it’s only a matter of time before they get broken in the schoolyard.
Well, now ECPs can show them the virtually indestructible Nano Vista design.
“It offers a special design that allows 360-degree hinge rotation with no breakages while ensuring a quick release between the temples and headband,” explains Storace.
And if you or your child is still feeling anxious about in-person shopping, Ogi Eyewear has launched its revolutionary Virtual Try-On experience.
“We use cutting-edge Augmented Reality (AR) and facial recognition technology to map and measure your face, instantaneously, and reflect an image of exactly – not almost, not approximately, but exactly – how those frames will look on and fit you,” says Ogi’s creative chief officer David Duralde.
“It’s part virtual mirror, part Snapchat filter, except with this product, the only reason you know that the frames aren’t actually on your face is that you can’t feel them there.”
The work done in the store is fine-tuning and confidence-boosting, leaving a customer feeling savvy, sensible and stylish when they leave.
And it will be impossible for your clients not to feel stylish if they go with Safilo Group’s latest offerings from the Jimmy Choo and Carrera collection.
Jimmy Choo’s Val/S sunglasses offer the timeless style of cat-eye sunglasses in acetate, embellished with hand-applied glitter fabric insert on the tubular metal temples. These elegant sunnies come in black with rose gold temples, Havana with rose gold temples and gold crystal fabric insert, brown shaded lenses or nude with palladium temples and silver crystal fabric insert, brown/silver mirror lenses.
The Flag Lab from Carrera pushes the boundaries of traditional designs to the highest peaks of distinctiveness.
It features a shield with a rectangular aluminum front and temples in aluminum and plastic, elevating the brand’s authentic sports style to an urban setting. Available in black/brown with brown shaded lenses, white with dark blue lenses, black/yellow with yellow lenses, black/pink with red lenses, matte black with grey lenses.
A GREENER CHOICE
Zeal Optics continues its commitment to eco-friendly products with revolutionary design features, such as stainless steel frames that are fully recyclable.
“This durable, corrosion-free material packs high tensile strength, allowing the thin frames, which are the lightest in our collection, to stand the test of time and fashion,” says director of marketing Mike Lewis.
Another attractive feature of many Zeal products, explains Lewis, is the ceramic nose pads engineered from a mixture of clay and earthen materials.
“Our ceramic nose pads are hypoallergenic, easy to clean, incredibly durable and provide remarkable hold to keep your glasses from slipping in any weather condition or adventure.”