Eyeglass frames have the important job of positioning your lenses in front of your eyes correctly so you can see better.
Because of this reason, price and style shouldn’t only be the factors to consider when choosing new frames for your glasses.
When shopping for eyeglass frames online, you also have to look into their durability, flexibility, comfort, and corrosion resistance.
Popular Types of Glass Frame Materials
Eyeglass frames come in various forms. You can have a better chance of choosing one you like that also meets your lifestyle needs when you have an idea of the different materials used to make them.
Below is an overview of the most commonly used materials for glass frames:
Titanium frames are lightweight yet strong and corrosion-resistant. They are hypoallergenic as well, making them a popular choice among people allergic to certain metals, such as nickel and chromates.
Since titanium frames are highly durable, they are recommended for older, active children.
This type of frame is also the best option for adults who are physically active and into sports and other activities that can put their eyeglasses at risk for damage.
Titanium is an expensive material, which means many frames made of this alloy are not pure and are combined with other metals.
However, even if the frames are not pure titanium, they are still durable and lightweight, and may be relatively affordable.
Beryllium is a steel-gray metal that costs less than titanium. However, like the latter, it is flexible, lightweight, and strong.
The biggest advantage of beryllium is its corrosion resistance. This metal does not tarnish easily.
Because of this quality, glasses with a beryllium frame are an excellent option if you live near the sea, spend plenty of time around saltwater, or regularly engage in various water sports or activities. They are also recommended for people with a high skin pH.
Beryllium frames come in different colors and designs, so you won’t have difficulty finding one that complements your style and personality.
3. Monel alloy steel
Monel alloy steel is a material made of nickel, 20 to 29% copper, and small amounts of iron, manganese, silicon, and zinc.
This material is stronger than steel and has the ability to resist corrosion, thermal expansion, and distortion.
Due to these impressive qualities, Monel alloy steel is often used in the making or is added to the production of valves, springs, sinks, water tanks, wind instruments, and even aircraft parts.
Although this material is durable, it is flexible and lightweight. Therefore, glasses with this type of frame are comfortable to wear even for long periods.
However, Monel alloy steel glass frames are often thin and hard to color. Because of this reason, your choices in terms of hue and patterns may be limited.
Pure aluminum is exceptionally malleable and easy to shape. But when combined correctly with the right amounts of additional alloys, it becomes stronger yet maintains its lightweight quality.
Its pliability makes it easy to sculpt, allowing eyewear designers to create interesting and unique styles and designs for glass frames. Aluminum also has a high-end, aesthetically pleasing look and appeal.
These qualities of aluminum make it a popular material for exclusive and luxury eyewear.
Lastly, aluminum is recyclable. Choosing a pair of glasses with this frame material means you’ll have an eco-friendly and sustainable pair of eyewear.
5. Stainless steel
Stainless steel is a lightweight metal made of iron and carbon steel with chromium and other elements. It is slightly less durable and more affordable than titanium.
However, this material is strong enough for use in eyewear frames.
When at least 10% of chromium is added, the resulting alloy becomes less prone to stain and rust.
Stainless steel is a popular choice among eyewear designers due to its durability and sleek appearance.
Nylon or acetate is a type of plastic that has been used in eyeglass frames for years.
This material is lightweight yet durable and can resist both hot and cold temperatures.
Nylon is often used for sports glasses and sunglasses since this material can be easily molded and designed into wraparound-style frames.
Since nylon glasses are lightweight, they are also usually recommended for athletes, children, and adults who need to wear glasses when playing sports or engaging in outdoor or physical activities.
7. Cellulose acetate
Cellulose acetate, which is sometimes called zyl, is a plant-based plastic that’s easy to mold and design. It is one of the most sustainable frame materials around.
This substance can be colored, patterned, laminated, and even layered with other materials, including fabrics.
As a result, glasses with this type of material come in bold and interesting colors and patterns.
It is because of this reason that cellulose acetate is often used in designer frames.
Cellulose acetate is also lightweight and hypoallergenic. Aside from titanium, you can consider this option if you are allergic to certain metals.
When you still need help choosing the right frames for your new glasses, ask your optometrist to discuss the features and benefits of the different materials. This way, you can find the best one that meets your lifestyle and other requirements.