Photos by Hillary Ehlen
A Positive & Clearer Focus on a Life-Changing Fashion Accessory
A significant portion of the world’s population wears glasses, and I got my first pair (red wire frames) in 2nd grade. Being the bookworm and huge Harry Potter fan I was (and still am), I was thrilled to get glasses because I’d have better vision and be like Harry Potter! Present day, I see the whole concept of wearing glasses so differently. I fortunately didn’t have problems with getting bullied or teased as a kid for wearing glasses. However, two good friends of mine, Josh Legg and his girlfriend Amanda Egenes, both got glasses in elementary school and were teased for their specs. Josh said he couldn’t read the board from the first row in class, and he told me, “I was skeptical about wearing glasses at first, but when I could see more clearly, I was hooked. Over the years I was teased all the way through school and I didn’t let that bother me.”
Amanda, initially not excited about getting glasses and afraid of being teased, said, “The nervousness went away when I saw all the different frames there were to choose from, but I did have to watch how hard I played during gym and recess because I couldn’t break them. Since then, my glasses have been a part of me. I currently wear a pair with deep purple frames because that’s my favorite color. So I use them almost as an accessory that I just wear every day.”
Local photographer, Kristina Coyle, also provided input, saying, “Just like you wouldn’t make fun of someone for any other medical reason, glasses are necessary. But they can look cool while serving a purpose.” Kristina said that her 7-year-old son got his first pair of glasses recently and that he was scared of getting made fun of. When the day came for her son to pick out his first glasses, Kristina and her husband stayed positive and encouraged their son. He chose a pair of Nerf glasses that his mom says looks so handsome on him.
These days, I have black Giorgio Armani glasses and recently got a pair of Coach glasses. I love them and they’re two of my favorite accessories! Like the jewelry you polish off your outfits with, glasses are also super accessories that can elevate and sharpen your personal style. For many years, I’ve gone to LensCrafters in the West Acres Mall for my glasses, and I’ve had many positive experiences finding stylish frames and working with the friendly, helpful staff.
The Store Market Manager of this location, the very kind Laura Brahos, calls glasses, “jewelry for your face.” I couldn’t agree more. They have many fantastic glasses that suit a lot of different fashion tastes for women, men and children. Right now, you can get 40 percent off lenses when you buy the frames at LensCrafters and 50 percent off lenses and frames for kids 14 and under. Also, kids 6 years and younger get 50 percent off both lenses and frames plus a free Blue IQ upgrade. Laura said their staff members are trained with up-to-date material and to help recommend glasses for customers based on things like a customer’s eye shape, face shape and lifestyle. “It’s a really emotional purchase, glasses, so you really want them to be something that the person connects with on a different level,” she said.
LensCrafters supports OneSight, a nonprofit that has enabled over 9 million people in 46 countries to see clearly. LensCrafters employees and eye doctors partake in missions across the United States. Locally, in each store they work with homeless shelters, schools and various countries around the world, providing eye exams and glasses for people that can’t afford them. For some, thanks to these missions, they can now see clearly for the first time in their lives. These missions are something LensCrafters employees can apply to go on after a year of working at LensCrafters.
Laura’s headed to China this October for her very first mission, adding, “It’s pretty fortunate to be part of a company that gives back so much.” Interested in donating to OneSight? You can bring old (even broken) glasses into a LensCrafters store and donate to OneSight in-store at LensCrafters or online at onesight.org.
To all of my fellow glasses wearers out there, wear your “jewelry for your face” with pride. Perhaps it’s the people who bully and tease those with glasses who are the ones that truly need their vision checked – they can’t seem to see how fun and wonderful glasses really are!
For more personal style, fashion and life inspiration, check out my blog!