I have been MIA for several months and for good reason too. I'm always missing in action for good reasons not because I have nothing to post. I always have things to blog about.
I am saying a big thank you to all the readers that bumped into me at the store where I work and said hello. I had no idea you guys would even recognize me. It was so heart-warming. Thank you. And for the endless calls on various inquiries I receive almost daily, I'm glad I could keep up with your needs and requests.
Over to today's post.
I remember many years ago when contact lens were all the rave and only the "big girls" who could afford them could be spotted with them. Now they come in so many various brands and different colors that consumers even find it difficult to know which is best to choose. And what's more they're even cheaper.
What are they?
Contact lenses, fondly called contacts, are lenses that are worn by placing them directly on to the eyes. They are worn either for vision correction (as an alternative to eye glasses) and for cosmetic purposes.
Today's post is basically centered on soft lens which is the most common kind available and also on cosmetic lenses as I have no experience whatsoever with the ones worn for vision correction.
|2010: My 1st Contact Lens. It's a green contacts from FreshLook.|
They come in plain colorless and in many color varieties. Most of the colorless ones are usually made for eyesight correction. All the same, you will still find some people who have vision problems that dread eyeglasses, wearing coloured contact lenses.
Except of course it's forbidden to wear colored lenses to one's place of work or it's based on the individual's personal preference, I see no reason why I should wear colorless contact lenses. I mean, what's the point of taking your time to wear something as delicate as a contact lens and no one knows or notices it's there? What a bummer!
|I got this one called Sapphire from FreshLook on the dame day as the green.|
The colors are endless from a bold ring of single color, to streaks and even blends of various colors of blues, greens, grays, browns, violet etc.
There are even wierd designs like crosses, butterflies etc. Some lenses even illuminate in the dark. I am pretty sure the wierd designs are limited for shows and performances. I definitely wouldn't be seen walking around the streets of Lagos with a contact that has cockroaches imprinted on them.
Note: that when going for colors, do not follow the colour examples on the seller's catalogue. They are merely just to guide you but I don't think they serve as guide enough for most black skinned people. This is because colour output will depend on individual eye colour, and skin colour. Most of the models do not originally have black irises and this always affects how the lens looks.
So, if it were up to me, I will say buy contacts because you like the color of the lens. Don't expect the seller to give you a true picture of what it will look like on you. Only you can tell when you finally wear it. Besides, several other things will affect how the lens looks on you: hair color, makeup etc.
|Still my first contacts: the green one. Lighting affected the color here,|
Duration of wear
They are usually available in:
1. Daily Wear: these are the traditional "clean-wear-remove-clean" kind. You wear at any time of the day and remove before going to sleep.
2. Extended Wear: these ones are designed for overnight wear of up to 6 consecutive nights before they are removed to cleaned and re-worn.
3. Continuous Wear: because these lenses are made from newer materials like silicone hydrogels they allow for a longer wear period of up to 1 month before they are removed to be cleaned.
What makes the first different from the second and third kinds is that the last 2 allow more oxygen to pass through them while the eyes are closed. This is why it is dangerous to why a daily wear contact lens to sleep!
I'm sure you never thought that your eyes needed oxygen too!
|2014. My favorite: Soft Grey can't remember the brand now but definitely not FreshLook|
Many contacts fall within the in 1day disposables (also known as single wear), 2 weeks, 1 month, 3 months before they need to be replaced. There are other lenses with longer expiration dates but I will not bother mentioning them because they are not very common or available.
|Mesmereyez contacts in Midnight Blue.|
Same lens different days.
Contact Lens Solution
These are the liquid made to clean the contact lens. They come in different kinds from multi-purpose to saline solutions etc But I will not dwell on that here. I will focus majorly on the cleaning mode which is either Rub or No-Rub Formulas.
The Rub formula will require you to clean the lens by placing the lens on your palms, pouring in solution in your palms and gently rubbing the contact lens. Even after rubbing, it will still require to be soaked for a stipulated amount of time, usually 5-10 minutes to disinfect it. Read your solution's leaflet to be sure.
A No-Rub formula, as the name implies, requires you to just soak the lens in a fresh solution for a stimulated amount of time. Always read your solution's leaflet.
|Mesmereyez contact lens in Jade Green.|
Please bear in mind that all contact lenses solutions have expiration dates too. So, if you love yourself and your eyes, you had better follow the instructions. Most of the myths surrounding contact lens here in Nigeria are born out of sheer ignorance. Nigerians don't read leaflets neither do they follow instructions. Here are some of the many myths I have heard and have decided to bust.
Contact lens makes you blind.
This is the most common one you are bound to hear. A contact lens has not been made to make you blind. All lens come with instructions and as such if you do not follow them you are bound to cause harm to yourself.
And we all know that not following instructions nor studying leaflets of any products is very common in this part of the world. We either claim we already know how to use the product or that the leaflet is too long to read.
With all products, especially products concerning your eye, NEVER assume! Follow instructions to the last.
Contact lens can disappear into your eye and get missing.
This has got to be the funniest. Where exactly will the contact lens pass through? The back of your head or your eye? And where exactly will it get stuck at? Nigerians have no chill, seriously. The shape of all contact lens were made to fit the curve of your iris (the colored part), so if the contact moves to any other part of your eye eg. the cornea (the white part) it becomes uncomfortable and the wearer will know. In fact, the lens can only sit comfortably on the iris. The end. lol.
Contact lens can give you eye problems.
As with the first myth, this can only happen if you do not follow simple instructions like washing your hands with soap and clean water before wearing and before removing. Seriously, is that so hard to do???
I have seen people wear their contact lens with their hands that they assumed was clean. Even using a hand sanitizer to clean before wearing is not advisable. They always say wash hands with soap and clean water. Simple.
|Mesmereyez contact lens in Sea Blue.|
Bear in mind lighting and photography affects
how the lens appears.
How to wear
Now that we've busted some of the myths, let's see how to wear them.
1. Wash both your hands with soap and rinse well clean water.
So it is clear that the instruction focuses on both the washing well with soap and the rinsing well with clean water.
2. Remove the lens from the paper pack and you will find a pair of lens in blister pack. (This step is for new contact lens only)
|My new Opticom Lens in Satin Grey|
3. Place the lens case on a clean, flat surface.
A fresh case always come every new solution. So throw away old cases as soon as you get new a solution. Also make sure you identify which part is for the right and left eye, usually indicated as R and L. These letters are always boldly written on the case covers and/or on the bottom of the case.
|The L part of this case has a pink cover.|
4a. Now, tear open the blister and place each pair in the case. (This step is for new contact lens only)
4b. Gently pour away the old solution from each part of the case; one cover opened at a time to avoid mixing up covers. (This is for already worn lens)
Whichever lens you place in the R part automatically should be worn for the right eye. Same for the left. Do not interchange it at any time. This is done just to avoid transfer of eye infection. Prevention is always better than cure.
5. Then pour the lens solution into each pair of the case to cover the lens.
Follow the instructions that comes with your leaflet with regard to cleaning and cleaning time.
|See the instructions in this solution|
I love how this Opticom Refresh Lens Solution comes with an undetachable cover. This saves you the pain of losing your cover or where to place it.
After cleaning/cleansing time is exhausted, ensure you wash your hands again before you wear.
The first hand washing you did was for handling. Now it's time to insert it.
6. Place the lens on the tip of your index finger and center it with no side bending. See the picture below.
7. Now place the lens directly onto your iris or your cornea which ever side feels comfortable for you.
|October 20th, 2015: This is Opticom Satin Grey|
8. Blink your eyes repeatedly until the lens fits itself on to your iris.
If it doesn't, place the lens in the case filled with solution to clean it and repeat from Step 6.
If you are still having troubles with one eye, replace the lens in its side of the case, cover it and start with the second eye.
Note: When you wear a contact lens, it should sit comfortably. Only a slight discomfort may be felt as it touches the eye because of the solution. This discomfort soon fades away as natural tears from your eyes helps balance the eye pH.
- If it feels like you have particles in your eye or the lens is still giving you irritation, gently remove it, inspect it to be sure you're not wearing it inside out, then rinse it again in the solution and re-wear.
- If after this the discomfort still continues, please do not wear the contact lens. Fashion is not by force. It may be that your eyes are tired or strained probably due to staring at a computer all day/night or mere lack of sleep.
If you know you did not sleep well the night before please do not attempt to wear contacts. You can't cheat nature.
So as with all new things, you just have to muster courage to do it well. Once you get the hang of it, it becomes really easy to do next time.
How to remove
1. Wash both hands with soap and rinse well with clean water.
2. Place the lens case on a clean flat surface.
3. If you're starting with your right eye, open the lens case that indicates "R" and discard any solution from previous cleaning.
4. Now remove the lens by sliding it to the outer corner of your eye and gently pinching it with your thumb and index finger.
5. Place it in the case, pour in fresh solution and cover.
6. Repeat the same thing for the second eye.
Here are some dos and don'ts summarized.
Do wash your hands with soap and clean water.
Do read your contact lens leaflet.
Do read your contact lens solution leaflet.
Do wear your lens before applying makeup.
Do remove your lens before taking off your makeup.
Do clean your contact lens only with the solution designated for it.
Do use a fresh solution for every use: either wearing or removing.
Do replace your case with every new solution you get.
Don't pour contact lens solution directly into your eye.
Don't let anything come touch the tip of your solution's dropper even your hands.
Don't sleep with your contact lens on.
Don't clean your contact lens with water.
Don't forget to clean your lens case.
Don't leave your lens without solution.
Don't wear contact lens on strained or tired eyes.
Now that you know the truth and nothing but the truth about contacts, brave your fears and give yourself a new look by changing the color of your iris today. Live a little! Some things are worth doing and doing yourself.