Once the trusty, UV-quashing sidekick (decades ago) to any good frame, clips are popping up today in a wide variety of eyewear collections. From luxury and high fashion to lower-end lines—and from innovative magnetic styles to classic clips—EB is seeing clip-on sun lenses fast becoming a trend du jour.

Are consumers picking up on this vibe?

According to The Vision Council VisionWatch Consumer Barometer September 2016, the number of American adults wearing sunglass clips continues to grow year over year. From the 12 months ended September 2015 to September 2016, the amount of adults in the U.S. wearing sunglass clip-on styles grew from 9.6% to 9.9%.

Who is the target customer for clip-ons?

Men sport clips more than women, according to the VisionWatch report, with nearly 11% of American males saying they are currently wearing sunglass clips compared to 9% for women (for the 12 months ended September 2016).

The biggest consumer for clip-ons is the 55+ age group (15% currently wearing) followed by the 45- to 54-year-old age group (11.3%).

—Erinn Morgan

Calvin Klein style CK5938 from Marchon with clip-on option available
Photo by David Kressler

Eyeballing New Technology

9 exciting new vision-related releases served up at the CES show

Self-driving cars? Check. Robots? Check. Drones of all sizes? You bet.

The CES 2017 technology show had all that and more when it rolled into Las Vegas Jan. 5-8.

And, in the midst of all that new, disruptive technology was a surprising amount of eyewear-related products (and we don’t mean those ubiquitous virtual reality headsets).

Check out nine of the notable, game-changing launches EB found on the massive CES floors:

Smart Eyewear

Oakley had athletes demonstrating its new Radar Pace ( ), a smart sunwear frame that collects and analyzes performance data as it connects athletes to a real-time, voice-activated coaching system.

The Radar Pace from Oakley

Safilo unveiled its partnership with science tech company Interaxon for SafiloX, a brainwave-sensing eyewear platform designed to help wearers hone their ability to focus their brain and body. SafiloX will be rolled out this spring in Smith Optics’s Lowdown Focus ( ).

SafiloX, a line of brainwave-sensing eyewear to be released soon, will start in Safilo's Smith brand

On the enterprise and occupational use front, Vuzix ( ) debuted new smart glasses, including its Vuzix Blade 3000 smart sunglasses and the M3000 smart glasses.

Eyewear-Assisted Cameras

Recording your view without having to look through a lens is now possible, thanks to a host of eyewear products that either have a camera embedded in the frame, such as the Sunnycam from Lyte Wearable Tech ( ), or allow a camera to be attached.

The latter category will be making a splash in the optical channel when PogoTek launches its PogoCam this spring with partners ClearVision Optical, FGX International, Argus Vision, and Vista Eyewear. PogoTrack technology allows a tiny camera to attach to the specialized temples of ophthalmic and sunwear frames and capture photos and videos at the touch of a finger—directly from the wearer’s temple.

The PogoCam (seen here in action on a ClearVision Optical frame) takes pics and videos with a click

Attendees try out the latest in virtual reality technology

Health Focus

Health tech company RightEye, LLC, maker of eye-tracking technology for use in vision testing and vision training, debuted several new tests and testing platforms, including those for reading, neurological issues, and concussions ( ). And OrCam Technologies showed off even more uses for its OrCam MyEye assistive device for low vision patients—including face recognition and spot reading ( ).

Also on the show floor were RetiCare ( ) and EyeJust ( ), two companies that make digital device screen protectors that help filter the potentially dangerous blue light rays emitted by the backlit devices.

—Susan Tarrant


You cannot improve what you do not measure. Which is exactly why the folks at Glimpse ( ) launched a service to help eyecare professionals succeed by making business analytics simple.

Glimpse is the industry's first "PUSH" informatics service designed to help business owners measure and track performance, identify growth opportunities, forecast future trends, and compare results among peers.

Glimpse dashboards capture transactional data as a service to help businesses quickly analyze their performance. Data is updated nightly and confirmed accurate utilizing Glimpse’s Verifeye software. Today, Glimpse serves 1500+ locations.

Below, Glimpse gives us a look at changes in the sales performance of lens materials and lens types across its national base of locations.

Meeting Today’s Challenges

Essilor sales meeting focuses on #ThisIsWhy

the beautiful Colorado mountains served as the backdrop for the Essilor National Sales Meeting, held Jan. 7-9 in Colorado Springs. Though mostly focused on the innovative technologies, products, and services that will benefit Essilor customers and their patients, the team also got to do some celebrating, and enjoyed a surprise visit from Olympic beach volleyball medal winner April Ross, who also serves as an Xperio UV ambassador.

The capstone of the event was the awards ceremony honoring the labs and Essilor personnel who excelled in their support of promoting good vision in 2016.

The 2016 Lab Awards of Excellence winners were:

  • OnSight Optical, Essilor IDD Lab of the Year
  • X-Tra Lite Optical, Essilor Transitions Award of Excellence
  • Walman Optical, Essilor Xperio UV Award of Excellence
  • OnSight Optical, Crizal Award of Excellence
  • Cherry Optical, Inc., Varilux Award of Excellence and X-Cel Outstanding Achievement Award
  • VSPOne Optical Technology Centers, Essilor IDD Managed Care Lab of the Year

Members of the brand sales group kick off the meeting with smiles (and popular Snapchat Spectacles)

Bob Colucci, president, Independent Distribution Division, receives the Essilor Vision Foundation President’s Award from its president, Kim Schuy

Fran Lynch is awarded the Mary Lou Maguire Award by Essilor's Howard Purcell, O.D., during the awards banquet

Learn More About the Essilor/Luxottica Deal

Last month, Luxottica and Essilor announced a historic merger that still has the industry talking. Learn more about the plan as an Essilor executive discusses what it can mean for independent optometry.

Visit .