Why are some eyeglass lenses thicker than others?

by , January 12, 2024

Why are some eyeglass lenses thicker than others

Eyeglasses come in all shapes and sizes, but not just the frame selection that varies. Your lenses can be thicker or thinner for a variety of reasons.

In this article, you will learn what kinds of factors will influence the thickness of your eyeglasses lens and how to choose the right frame for your lens.

Factors Contributing to Thick Lenses

Lenses come in different materials and thicknesses and with different coatings based on your specific vision correction needs and preferences. Below are a few issues that could require you to have a thicker lens.

The strength of your prescription

The more vision correction you need, the thicker your lens will be. Traditionally, strong prescriptions always require a thicker lens, but newer high index lenses also offer the option of thinner lenses for stronger prescriptions, although this may come at an additional cost. Overnight Glasses offers a wide range of lens options and materials and will match the right lens for your chosen frame. We guarantee your lenses will be as thin as possible and will automatically upgrade your lenses to aspheric design.

Lens index

The index of your lens refers to the amount of refractive power they have. Refractive power refers to how your lenses bend light. Some newer high-index lenses have more bend with less bulk, but your vision needs will largely dictate the thickness of your lens.

There are also some other differences between traditional and high-index lenses to consider outside of thickness and style. Traditional lenses are thicker and heavier but are often more durable and less expensive than some other lens materials. High-index lenses are thin, light, and efficient but can be fragile and pricier. Overnight Glasses has lens and frame options to fit every prescription need—and budget.

Pupillary distance

One of the measurements needed to ensure a proper fit to your eyeglasses is pupillary distance. This is the distance from the center of one pupil to the other. Each lens should be centered on the pupil, which can impact how much bend and the size of your lenses. In general, smaller pupil distances require thicker lenses.

Why is one lens thicker than the other?

Each lens is crafted to address the needs of each eye. Many people have different vision needs in different eyes, and one eye can be stronger or weaker than the other. Different lens thicknesses from one eye to the other are usually the result of different correction needs for each eye.

How thick can glasses get?

Your vision needs will determine the thickness of your lenses, but you can also make choices to reduce the bulk of your lenses.

Lenses can range from about 2 millimeters to 8 millimeters in thickness. Traditionally, stronger prescriptions result in the thickest lenses, but high-index lenses offer more vision correction than thinner lenses.

How to find the right shape of frame for thick lenses?

If you need thicker lenses, it’s important that your frame choice can do the job. Some styles of frames —like wire rims—are not particularly suited for thicker lenses. Talk to your eye care provider about the thickness your prescription will require. You will want to ensure that your lenses are thick enough to cover the edges of your lens and provide adequate support for your glasses.

You may also want to consider the weight of your glasses based on lens thickness and find frames that can comfortably support the size and shape of your lens.

Larger frames can also increase the thickness of your lens, so if you already require a thicker lens, it might be best to choose a frame with a smaller shape, like a cat eye or a wraparound frame.

Some frame types that best suit thicker lenses are:

  • Smaller
  • Full framed
  • Round designs

Avoid rectangle and frameless options if you need a thicker lens, as these can make them appear even bulkier.


Choosing frames that fit your face and style is a challenge on its own, but you also need to consider the thickness of your lenses when choosing a new pair of glasses. Consider lens thickness, face shape, pupil distance, and weight of the glasses when making your choice. OvernightGlasses.com has frames and lenses to fit any need, and live customer support specialists are available if you need help.

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Rachael Zimlich, RN, BSN, has been writing for a variety of news and health publications for more than 20 years.... "Read More"