Coloured contact lenses

These are also known as ‘fashion’ contact lenses: they are worn, mainly for aesthetic reasons in that they allow you to change the colour of your eye on a temporary basis. This is popular with people who are going to a fancy dress party or work in the film and entertainment industry.

They are also worn by clubbers and people who have an active social life in general. Plus they can be worn by people who do not have problems with their vision as well as those who normally wear corrective contact lenses.

Plus they also have a therapeutic use in that they are worn as a ‘bandage lens’ in order to correct a deformity in the eye.

There is another similar type of lens called a ‘novelty lens’which features images, e.g. smiley faces and other similar effects. These are discussed in greater detail in our novelty lenses section.

Two types of coloured contact lenses

Coloured contact lenses are worn to enhance the natural colour of your eye or because you desire a change. They are available in two forms:

  • Opaque
  • Tinted

Opaque lenses cover the entire surface of the eye and as a result of this only allow a small amount of light through to the eye. They are suited to people who want to completely change the colour of their eye, e.g. from blue to black.

Tinted lenses differ in that they allow more of the natural colour of your eyes to show and are chosen by people who want to enhance but not change the colour of their eyes.

Worn for cosmetic reasons only

Coloured contact lens are available as a ‘Plano’type of lens which mean that they are not designed to correct faulty vision but to alter the colour of the eye for cosmetic purposes.

Normal corrective contact lenses are tinted with a light blue or green colour which is to help you when placing the lens into your eye or finding your lens if you accidentally drop it on the floor. Coloured lenses are available in a variety of shades which include red, yellow, purple and even black (for the gothic look).

The colouring of the lens is done via a series of tiny dots and regularity and concentration of these dots will determine the strength of the colour and the visual effect on your eyes.

There are groups of lenses which change the colour of your eye in different ways. Some lenses enhance a dark coloured eye whereas others change the colour of a lighter eye to something entirely different.

Other types enhance the colour of your eyes by giving them a shiny, sparkly look.

Coloured contact lenses appear to work best when used as a form of eye enhancement rather than a new type of colour for your eyes.

Issues with coloured contact lenses

What you need to be aware of is that these lenses allow only a small amount of oxygen as well as light to reach the eye. This means a greater risk of eye infections.

Plus they do not always sit in place as well as a corrective lens and can affect your vision at times of the day such as at night. But the same rules regarding cleaning and hygiene of these lenses applies in the same way as for normal corrective lenses.

In other words, they need to be looked after and worn as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Do not be tempted to swap these lenses with other people in order to try different colours and handle them as you would any type of contact lens.

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