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12 Jan 2008 - 16:521379
Contact lenses
Hi there!

As you've probably guessed by the title I am looking about buying some contact lenses for a few of my cosplays this year. However I haven't gone about it before and am at a bit of a loss for where to start.

I've been looking over webpages that sell different coloured contacts and they all come out at about £50 the cheapest, is this the standard price? Or is it possible to get certain colours at a cheaper price? Also, when looking on American websites they say you have to have a perscription so the contact fits the eye. Is this what you have to do all the time? And does that mean I would have to go out and get an eye-test or something so I know what sized contacts to wear?

Thanks very much in advance!

I'm going to slash your pillow and tear out all the stuffing with a motorbike made of jelly.
12 Jan 2008 - 17:011381
well, id imagine thats probably how much they would cost, I wouldunt be wanting to put anything cheaper in MY eyes! But im no expert, but my guess is that is how much they cost.

Stay In the phazon, MetroidManiac out.
12 Jan 2008 - 17:141382
Yes that's one thing I'm a tad worried about, don't want to put something bad in my eyes at all! ^^; Of course, £50 does mean I won't be able to eat for a week, haha, oh well, suffer for cosplay-art

Has anyone got any websites or specific shops maybe that they recommend getting contacts from also? ^^ Thanks!

I'm going to slash your pillow and tear out all the stuffing with a motorbike made of jelly.
12 Jan 2008 - 17:471383
i'm scared of contacts but have to wear them for 3 different cosplays this year >.<!!

but theres a company i think called 4eyes or something and there around £30ish my favourite hair extension and make-up store in camden sells them ^_^

all my friends at home own a set and they are pretty good and they do all different types!

12 Jan 2008 - 19:551384
Ive used contacts a few times now

Basically you hear good and bad and some awful horror stories...

My self i have had only had good experiences buying non prescribed lenses for £20 a pop from here http://www.eyesbright.com/

You can use this site as well which have a way better better selection but i my self have never used it http://www.fashion-contactlenses.com

If you don't want to run the risk of going blind (which is always there) you can book a free contact lens consultation through a Spec Savers or other opticians then buy some lenses that are a custom fit to your eye i think thats from about £25 per pair but you wont have a great selection.

Once you've bought some lenses you need to get use to wearing them so about at least a week before the con you should wear them for an hour one day, then two hours the next and build up to about 8 hours wear so you know your not going to have any problems on the day.

i hope this helps

13 Jan 2008 - 13:561390
MangaChild has some good advice there, to add to that:

I don't know if you actually *need* a prescription in this country, and there are probably sites where you can get hold of lenses regardless, but I strongly suggest you go to an optician first. I think it's a common misconception - prescription doesn't just mean whether you need correction for your eyesight, it's also about measuring your eye to get lenses which fit. Besides comfort, if you've never had an eye examination before, you may find you require toric lenses or something, which is important to know.

Opticians will also give you good advice and practice on how to clean and wear the contacts, and you may find it simplest just to buy your lenses from them too. So yeah, very much agreeing with MangaChild there. It is really important to know what you're doing: you only get one set of eyes, take care of them. And yes, you do need to practice wearing them to build up a tolerance.

Once you know your prescription, you can then pick a brand which has measurements closest to your eyes, and you can get hold of lenses online quite cheaply. Does depend on the colours you want - natural eye colours are more readily available, and thus cheaper, and there's some variety in cost between brands. Some brands will look more natural than others, their colour choices vary etc. so you need to browse. Something to watch out for is if you have dark-coloured eyes, since not all colours will show up well, so read the info and look for lenses which will work.

I've got most of my lenses here. I'm fond of their Freshlook Colorblends which are only £6 per lens. This is not only cheap, but often sites make you buy several pairs at once, and you can't always buy individual lenses, so it's helpful to be able to buy only the one pair, or just a single lens if you want mismatched colours, or something)

13 Jan 2008 - 17:531394
Thank you very very much for all the help and information! I really was at a loss and like you've all said, I didn't really want to go sticking things in my eyes if it ended up making something bad happen!

But thanks again, I shall follow your advice and see about going to an opticians and then seeing what to do. Thanks again!

I'm going to slash your pillow and tear out all the stuffing with a motorbike made of jelly.
16 Jan 2008 - 08:311406
Thanks for the link Angela, I hadn't noticed that site before, will definitely be trying it out ^^

Just wanted to add a few pointers: some types of special effect lenses are only available in one size so it's not always possible to get it fitted without getting custom ones made and paying a fortune. I've used lenses which are not fitted to my eyes several times without bad repercussions, but yes, you do need to know how to insert and care for them properly. The only problem is that because they're not fitted they do tend to move around a bit and get uncomfortable quickly so I can't wear them for more than 2-3 hours at a time.

Mangachild reccommended Eyesbright: I've used their lenses plenty of times and would recommend them. However, I wouldn't recommend their all-in-one solution, it irritated my eyes. You can get a better one from Boots or Specsavers for the same price.

Lastly, a little trick: most soft lenses claim they have a 30-day expiry date. This is usually wrong. It actually means you can wear the lenses 30 times, so if you don't wear them often they will keep for longer. This is especially useful if you want to wear your costume at 2 conventions which are months apart. I've worn 6-month old lenses before and was told by a BBC sfx make-up artist this is safe. HOWEVER I would ONLY recommend doing this once you have a lot of experience using lenses. It also only works if you care for the lenses properly. Like Angela said it's not worth ruining your eyes just to save money >_<;

PR officer for the Grand International Cosplay Ball

16 Jan 2008 - 14:131409
Not wanting to put anyone off contacts - they are safe and fine as long as you are sensible and hyginic, but I got an ulcer in my eye last year that was almost certainly caused in part by contacts, and I wouldn't want anyone else to go through what I did.

I think it was a conbination of two things - all month lenses (ones you leave in overnight) and having a cold. So be careful if you are feeling run down around the time you are planning to wear them. That said, you shouldn't have a problem, I think I was just unlucky.

I still wear contacts for events like conventions, so it hasn't put me off completely, but I tend to wear glasses for day to day stuff now.

17 Jan 2008 - 17:121416
When I went to get contacts (yes, I have ones that don't burn my eyes now... apparently I was allergic to the solution after all... *sweatdrops*) the optician said never to use tap water to clean them. He said it was better to throw away monthlies (although I have daily disposable's cos of allergies. lol.) that are still fine to wear otherwise than risk getting some sort of bug that lives in tap water in your eyes in combination with the contacts.

If you're worried about being allergic to contact lens solution (there's loads of different brands/types), use saline solution with them, cos it's not as irritating or something. Dunno, it's what mine come in and they don't burn and itch like the monthly ones I got before.

20 Jan 2008 - 15:241432
I've only worn contacts twice, (one successful and one severely unsuccessful attempt) and I can repeat what most people have said above, just be careful what lenses/suppliers you choose as your eyes can not be replaced!

I have so much trouble putting them into my eyes (it comes with practise I know) that now I'll only wear them if the character has blatently wierd coloured eyes. The above advice from you lot is awesome though, cheers for all the handy tips.

For all you guys who have suggested various sites though it would also be useful if you could add them to the shops directory? That way they'll be easy for people to find, and give some guidance for people who happen to miss this thread

21 Jan 2008 - 00:411433
best advice i got from my friend who almost lost her eye sight due to contact lenses..

get eye lotion!!


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