This is a vision we are all familiar with seeing, plastic waste and single-use plastics are now everyday terms. So what can we do to help rectify this issue and play our part in saving our planet?
An explosion…of plastic!
Developments in plastic production from the 1940s up to now lead to the mass production of huge numbers of different styles, colours and glasses frames. The 20th century saw a rapid and ever-changing facet of fashions in eyewear. From the ‘cat-eye’ and Wayfarer specs of the 1940s and 50s, to the round-rimmed specs of the 70s to the oversized frames of the 80s and 90s. The ease and facility of production have made glasses an important element of one’s personal expression of style and personality. Advances in lens technology have also brought photochromic lenses and progressive lenses, and almost all lenses are now made out of plastic.
What’s going on?
The fusion of eyewear with fashion has generated big business — yet huge amounts of waste. Frames for glasses are mainly made from heavily laminated acetates or other plastics derived from non-renewable oil. Most frames are cut from larger sheets of plastic, with the ‘negative space’ ending up as non-recyclable waste material. The short shelf life of glasses, along with the huge amounts of unused stock, mean that thousands more go to landfill. With rapid changes in fashion and the disposability culture that encourages us to update our styles with the season, the ever growing eyewear industry now contributes to the millions plastic waste that is washed up in our oceans or found in landfill all across the world.
There are solutions!
It is of course difficult to delete all environmentally damaging processes from eyecare and as a consumer, you are dictated by what’s available in the marketplace.
Here are some things that you can do to help….
Reglaze, don’t replace your glasses
One of the biggest impacts you can make and easily the most convenient, especially if you have frames already, is to reglaze your glasses.
Quality frames, taken care of, should last you years, and so by only changing the lenses when required you can make a significant difference to landfill and plastic waste and manufacturing emissions when changing your glasses, so here at lensesinglasses we are doing our bit for the future of the planet.
Something else to ponder
Choose 100% aluminum frames that can be recycled, the designs are amazing and very fashion-forward indeed.
The future of eyewear is still in motion — but we have a responsibility to our planet and those we share it with.