Progressive Lenses

Today's consumer enjoys "Progressive Addition Lenses" that are much easier to use than ever before. Just when we thought that they couldn't get much better, we were surprised by an impressive advancement that came available early in 2006. These new lenses WORK! Even if you have tried Progressives before and didn’t like them, these new lenses are for you. We have always fit what was considered to be the best lens available, and today, that lens happens to be Varilux's S series.  This new lens has virtually eliminated the swim experienced by many users in older Progressive lenses.

Progressive Lenses give the best vision at every distance with less compromise than any other method of correcting your vision. Consider why:

  • With a gradual change of distance-to-near focus, they can focus your eyes at every distance. No more blurry middle zones! No more annoying Trifocals!
  • Your eyes get to work as a team at every distance. The human visual system sees more clearly, more comfortably, and with better depth perception when your eyes work together. Nearly every surgical or contact lens option for correcting the loss of close focus uses some variation of "one eye for distance, one eye for near", which is convenient, but sacrifices the visual perfection of tandem (or binocular) vision.
  • There is no image jump in Progressives Lenses like you find in lined bifocals or trifocals.
  • There are no lines! No one will know you are wearing bifocals but you.

Are there downsides to Progressives?

Every method of correcting the loss of close focus involves some type of compromise. The main compromise with Progressive lenses comes from the way the lenses work–part of the lens for distance, and the rest for near. Your eyes will need to learn to use the technology and some people feel that they need to use their nose like a pointer until using the lenses becomes automatic. They also cost more to do right–lens design matters! Older, less expensive technologies don't work as well.

What does it take to do Progressive Lenses right?

  • Purchase the best technologies. If your lenses pre-date January, 2012, you will enjoy a marked improvement to your vision with today’s best Progressive Lenses. While older technologies don't cost as much and some people are happy with them, the new stuff is so good and so easy to wear, you won't want anything else after trying them. Buying cheap progressives is about like buying computer technology from the past to save money...
  • They must be fit properly. No Progressive lens will work if it is poorly fit. Getting your lenses fit perfectly starts when we select a frame and ends when you are happy with your vision. Fitting is our job–a job we are passionate about!
  • The prescription must be correct. In our opinion, the best glasses prescriptions still come from a good, old-fashioned, hand-crafted refraction by your Optometrist. This is one area where technology and automation still lacks the nuance and perfection that a skilled Optometrist can offer. And the lab that grinds your lenses must deal in precision and have excellent quality control.

Today's Progressive Lenses will work for you if you have the best technology, containing the most correct prescription, and a proper fit. Most people who don't like Progressive lenses bought sub-par technology, or experienced a poor fit.

Lined Bifocals and Trifocals

History credits Benjamin Franklin with the invention of bifocals. This nifty way of making lenses that could focus the eyes for both distance and near in the same lens gave the world one of its first modern conveniences. For the first time, a person could see far and near without the hassle of changing glasses or removing them to change focus.
Bifocals give focus for distance (20 feet and beyond) and near (14-16 inches). Trifocals have a third or middle segment that focuses your eyes roughly at arms length.


  • They cost less than good Progressives.
  • There are no “brand” or design quality issues. Every brand is equally good. If your material and coatings are appropriate, and the Rx is properly ground–your lined multifocal will work as intended.
  • They are generally not as sensitive to where your eyes are pointed. Some people feel that they have a clearer periphery than Progressives (an issue that is becoming less and less noticeable with the latest Progressive designs).


  • They can only give two (or three with trifocals) focus distances–often an inconvenience. Progressive give focus at every distance between near and far.
  • They give an "image jump" across the line(s)
  • Some people don't appreciate the cosmetics of the line(s)
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