How Much Do Contacts Cost? Your Questions Answered
Contacts are quite popular. In fact, it's estimated that 45 million Americans wear contact lenses. It should come as no surprise then that we have such a wide variety of contact lenses available on the market.
While that's great in many aspects, it also makes finding the best lenses for you a bit overwhelming.
Then you have to consider the cost too. Shopping for your contacts is a matter of getting value for money. You want to find the brand that works best for your prescription and is affordable as well.
We know you want the answer to the question: “How much do contacts cost?” So keep on reading! You’ll find that out, and more!
How Much Do Contacts Cost Online vs in a Store?
If you wear contacts, then you probably have an eye exam every year to renew your prescription. Once you have your prescription in hand, it's up to you where you buy your lenses.
You can buy them at your doctor's office. In this case, you can usually take them home immediately.
You can also buy your contact lenses online. Purchasing online allows you to do a price search. That means you can take the time to find the best deals on your favourite lenses. The only trade-off is that you have to wait for delivery. Though, online retailers ship directly to you, so you can avoid the hassle of a trip to a brick-and-mortar store.
Look for Free Trials and Rebates
If you're still deciding between a few brands, make use of their free trials. Many brands offer one box for free so you can test them out before committing.
You can also save money by searching online for rebates. Each lens manufacturer offers their own, and they vary in price and availability throughout the year.
Choosing the Best Contact Lenses
Modern contacts consist of a variety of materials. These include plastic, hydrogel and silicone hydrogel. Silicone hydrogel lenses offer the most comfort but also tend to be more expensive.
There are continuous improvements made in contact lens designs. So you have a growing number of available options. Most cost around just $1 per day! Let's take a look at some of your choices:
Gas Permeable Contact Lenses
Gas permeable (GP) lenses can last up to two years before needing replacements. They are more resistant to build up and offer the sharpest visual acuity. But they are also harder than other types, which makes them less comfortable for many people.
Traditional lenses last up to six months or longer. These lenses are also softer than the gas permeable ones.
Disposable lenses can last anywhere from two weeks to three months. When you reach the specified time frame, you throw your contacts out and open a new pair.
Daily Disposable Lenses
Daily disposable lenses are best for people who are forgetful or busy. You wear each pair for a day and discard them each evening. There is no cleaning routine. While convenient, they can be a more expensive option.
Contact Lenses That Correct Special Eye Problems
Let’s consider some contact lenses that correct special vision problems:
Lenses for Myopia and Hyperopia
Myopia (nearsightedness) and hyperopia (farsightedness) are the most common types of eye conditions. There are a variety of contact lenses that can correct these vision problems.
Lenses for Astigmatism
Astigmatism is blurry vision caused by an irregularly shaped cornea or lens. If you have astigmatism, you can correct your vision with a variety of contact lenses, including rigid gas permeable lenses, special toric soft lenses and even disposable soft lenses. Toric lenses are more expensive, so they’re less used.
People who have astigmatism tend to pay more for their contacts, due to the technology and materials involved. Also when choosing disposable lenses, the price will depend on whether you choose, daily, two-week or monthly lenses.
Lenses for Reading Correction
As people age, they experience presbyopia. Presbyopia is when the eyes lose the ability to focus on close objects. Before, a person with nearsighted contacts would also need reading glasses. Multifocal contacts that correct both conditions are now available on the market. This is much easier than having to wear glasses while also wearing contact lenses.
Multifocal lenses are available in a variety of different designs. You can also get them in daily, two-week or monthly options. Again, the cost will increase if you need multifocal lenses.
Other Types of Special Lenses
Some people wish they were born with a different eye color. You can now buy colored contact lenses that let you try out a new eye color.
If you’ve always dreamed of having cat eyes or something similar, you can also buy special effect lenses. But you must be careful not to buy these lenses without a prescription. You risk Infections and vision loss when you buy lenses from unauthorized sellers.
Custom lenses might be right for you if you can't seem to find a brand that feels comfortable. These contact lenses are made to order and based on your eyes’ measurements.
Prosthetic lenses are available for those who’ve had eye injuries or suffer from an eye disease. These lenses help mask flaws and match your healthier eye.
You wear myopia control (or orthokeratology) lenses overnight to reshape the corneas. These contacts are effective for correcting adult myopia. They are also used to help slow and control nearsightedness in children.
UV-blocking lenses help protect your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet rays. But you should still wear protective sunglasses, as each lens won't cover your entire eye.
Scleral lenses are gas permeable contacts that also cover the sclera (white part of the eye). They’re designed to treat unique disorders like keratoconus and corneal irregularities. They’re also great for people with severe dry eye syndrome.
Research Contact Lens Reviews
Go online and take a look at contact lens ratings. You will see how the brands you're interested in rank. Reading reviews from people with similar eye conditions can also help you narrow things down.
But ultimately, choosing the best lenses should be a discussion between you and your optometrist. Together, you can choose the best contacts for your needs and budget.
So How Much Do Contacts Really Cost?
There’s no simple answer to the question: “How much do contacts cost?” While lenses with simple prescriptions can cost just $1 a day, there are many factors that can raise the price significantly.
The best thing you can do to find out how much contacts will cost you is to do some online research and to talk to your eye doctor about your options.