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I never bought into the "AR Hype" when I was being screwed by the mall stores for my eyeglasses. I'd hear, "Look how easily people can see your eyes," and think "Who cares?" The last time I checked I'm not exactly sporting dazzling eyes that all the world needed to see. "But you'll get headaches," she'd say. "Lady, you're giving me a headache -- right now."

Certainly I must have needed the hi-index lenses. Why would they lie to me about that? But the Anti-Reflective thing? That's wasn't necessary -- especially if it was going to add $80. Sitting on that stool, across from the lab-coated cash register operator, I'd see the total hovering around $300 and I'd instinctively begin my resistance. It was either that or reintroduce myself to ramen noodles.

She'd produce the sample lenses from the pouch and begin to pressure me into the anti-reflective coating, I'd kindly say, "No thanks," usually followed with, "Seriously, no thanks."

These places push the "AR" coatings the same way the Best Buy folks push the extended warranties, and when finally rebuked, move on and try to sell the extended warranty the same way the Best Buy folks push the extended warranties. The coatings are a HUGE money-maker.

The years passed like this for well... years, and then I stumbled upon all of this and could finally afford to give AR a try -- in some cases for free.

Roughly two-thirds of my eyeglasses now have AR and after spending the morning in a coffee shop with too many windows without it, I'll choose it for work glasses every time.

So, is it worth it? Not at typical brick-and-mortar prices, but give it try using one of the places listed over to the left, you might find you can't live without it.


Goggles4U and Optical4Less include Anti-Reflective coatings for FREE. If you're AR-curious, give 'em a try.

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At February 26, 2008 at 5:33 AM Andreas said...

it's not only that people can see your eyes better... more light is passing through the lens which actually makes you see better also. So it is very useful for reading glasses, even though I think most people buy their reading glasses without AR.

At February 26, 2008 at 8:50 AM Tom Karches said...

When i got my first pair of glasses (after 47 years without) at Costco last year, the optician recommended that I NOT get the AR coating. So not all the opticians are pushy about it.

At February 28, 2008 at 8:13 AM Anonymous said...

I've ordered 3 pair of glasses online now: two from Zenni and one from globaleyeglasses. And in all three cases I've opted for anti-reflective lenses for one major reason: NIGHT DRIVING. They make all the difference in the world.

At February 28, 2008 at 4:29 PM Anonymous said...

Not a huge money-maker, sorry to break it to you. We get tons of people who get it, then mistreat it, then want us to redo it (which, in the end, we do). I would put it at the top of my list of things to get, well above thin lenses. Nothing nicer than a set of polarized lenses, with backside AR, if you are into the outdoors.

At February 29, 2008 at 3:34 PM Anonymous said...

I think it is a must. I got cheap and didn't put it on my last pair. They are worthless. Like anon 8:13 said night driving is horrible.

Also, If I am reading with a lamp over my shoulder I can see the light bulb in my lenses. It is like having mirrors implanted in the lenses 'cause you can see everything behind you. (maybe that is a bonus since no one can sneak up on me.)

Definitely buying the next time.

At March 2, 2008 at 7:54 PM Anonymous said...

your pretty stupid.
i like reading your entries and laughing at how much you don't know about what you talk so much about.

do some research about anti-reflective lenses and revise your post so you can seem less like an ignorant ass.

At March 2, 2008 at 8:44 PM Ira said...

@abo certified optician,

I laughed out loud when I read this. I think others will too.

Thank you!

At March 4, 2008 at 6:18 AM GG said...

I have been using AR for years now. It´s pretty addictive. I cannot go without it now.-

At March 31, 2008 at 2:13 PM JC said...

I got my first pair with AR coating back when I was involved in theatre... it made a nice difference on stage under the lights. Every pair of glasses I've ever gotten with it, until this most recent pair (so far), it's come off in the first year and had to be replaced... but never had a problem after that. And definitely good for night driving.

At March 20, 2010 at 12:57 PM Unknown said...

If you work in a dusty/greasy environment, pass - it makes cleaning glasses harder, and they scratch more. It's annoying for me, but a mechanic friend had to switch - not possible to keep them clean


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