Rimless Eyeglasses

Too many people have a stereotype about bifocal eyeglasses; they envision thick-lensed, oversized caricatures of reading glasses and rarely imagine sleek, stylish rimless bifocals. Surprisingly, you can actually find a wide variety of stylish bifocal glasses these days. Among them are the rimless eyeglasses.

Which to Choose: Semi-Rimless or Three-Piece Rimless Bifocals

There are several types of rimless eyeglasses from which to choose. This variety manifests itself both in style and in function. Semi-rimless (half-rimless) and three-piece rimless eyeglasses have become more commonplace. They distinguish themselves from normal reading glasses by frames which do not entirely encircle the lenses. In fact, the three-piece rimless eyeglass features no frame about the lens at all, with the temples and bridge anchored right on the lens.

Glasses with a semi-rimless design will feature a frame which only encircles a portion of the frame (usually the top). The semi-rimless eyeglass was introduced back in the 1930s. At that time frame builders screwed the lens directly to the frame front. Today most semi-rimless eyeglasses have the lenses secured within the frame with strong nylon wire.

Many people like semi-rimless designs because they provide the stronger support of glasses with frames but they don’t have the annoying line intruding on your vision on the lower part of the eyewear. People who don’t like these defined lines in their vision often prefer progressive lenses or no line bifocal reading glasses. They also provide a more youthful look.

The Clean Elegance of Rimless Eyeglasses

Rimless eyeglasses provide an aesthetic appeal based on clean simplicity. Many people enjoy their lightweight feel and clean, polished appearance. People who feel a little insecure about bolder frames distracting from their face often opt for rimless eyeglasses. In fact, rimless frames with quality anti-reflective coating and high-refraction lenses will be nearly transparent on your face and they work well as computer glasses.


Another potential benefit many people don’t realize is that you’re able to obtain progressive lenses for bifocal reading glasses and mount them on rimless eyeglass frames. Believe it or not, most people won’t even be able to tell you’re wearing progressive bifocals within your rimless frames.

Not only that, but you can actually get rimless progressive lenses for bifocal sunglasses as well. That’s a pretty advanced and fancy set of shades right there. Benjamin Franklin would be proud of his invention’s evolution.

Rimless Eyeglass Lens and Frame Options

Once you decide to proceed with buying rimless eyeglasses, you’ll have to make some choices about the specific rimless frames and lenses to go with them. You can select from either grooved rimless or drilled rimless glasses frames. Both options look great with prescriptions that are a little lower. I don’t, however, suggest people with high prescriptions go with these rimless designs.

You can also go with either plastic or polycarbonate rimless lenses. I urge you to go with polycarbonate lenses. Because rimless lenses don’t have the robust anchoring of a full frame, they’re a little more vulnerable to cracking and chipping. Polycarbonate lenses are much stronger and much more resistant to impact damage.

Also, if you’re a little klutzy or you tend to fall asleep with your rimless bifocals on, I suggest you steer away from 100 percent drilled rimless glasses. They’re a little more delicate and their all-too-common loose mountings will lead to the entire frame becoming loose. These are fine for people who know they’ll be careful with them, but just humbly consider your own habits when making these rimless eyeglasses your selection.

And while it may cost more, I do suggest you almost always go for a titanium frame. They have the nice complimenting features of being both durable and unusually light weight — important attributes for frames which are based on minimalism and yet are a little more susceptible to damage.

As you can see, sleek and attractive rimless eyeglasses or rimless bifocals can still be an excellent option, even for those who require bifocal lenses.