Getting your head around your prescription doesn’t have to be a hassle. We’re here to simplify it, so all you have to worry about is finding the right set of frames.
Our prescription chart looks like this:
The first column is the prescription for the right eye, and the second is for the left eye. There are four values in each column: Sphere (SPH), Cylinder (CYL), Axis (AXI) and Pupillary Distance (PD).
The SPH number corrects for myopia: nearsightedness and indicated by a minus (-), or hyperopia: farsightedness, shown with a plus (+). It’s normal for them to be different, so check you have both the correct SPH value and sign for each eye.
CYL and AXI correct for astigmatism, which is when the cornea of the eye is slightly rugby-ball shaped instead of round. They always come as a pair: CYL is the amount of astigmatism and AXI is an angle, ranging between one and 180.
Lastly, Pupillary Distance (PD) measures the distance between your pupils in millimetres and ensures the centre of the lens sits in the right place.
If you can’t find PD on your prescription, use our online tool for the quickest way to figure it out.
Your prescription may also include the field ADD, which corrects for the additional reading power needed for multifocal lenses. Think you might need multifocals? Learn more here.
It’s really important to have all this information when ordering prescription glasses and when in doubt, book an eye test. Prescriptions usually expire after two years so, if it’s been a while, get tested.
It’s handy to know that you cannot use your contact lens prescription when ordering new glasses, since they sit directly on the eye and require different measurements.
If your prescription contains PRISM values then we’re sorry, but we’re not able to make glasses for you.
If you’ve had your eyes tested in one of our stores, your prescription will be stored in your online account. Get in touch if you’re struggling to find it or book yourself in for a check up.
You can also enter your prescription manually. Just use the drop down filters to fill it in. Be extra sure to check whether your numbers are plus (+) or minus (-) and that all fields are completed. One final check for good luck, and you’re good to go!
Don’t want to look like you’re wearing bottle cap lenses? Not to worry, our expert opticians will automatically select the thinnest lenses, without any additional charges. Pretty cool, huh?
However, if your prescription is outside the range of +/- 6 dioptres, we don’t advise you to go for a metal frame, because they are more likely to expose the thickness of the lenses. Browse our acetate frames instead, we’ve got loads of nice ones.
So we’ve broken down exactly what the values mean but, if you’re curious about what’s really going on in your eye, here’s some more info.
Myopia is commonly known as nearsightedness and people with it struggle to see objects from far away. It’s caused by the eye growing too long from front to back, so the lens focuses in front of the retina (the light-sensitive tissue in the back of the eye), instead of on it, causing blurry vision.
Known as farsightedness, hyperopia is a common type of refractive error where distant objects can be seen more clearly than objects that are close by. Some people don’t even notice it, especially when they’re young, but for those with significant hyperopia, objects can look blurry at any distance.
Astigmatism is a common condition that causes blurred vision. It occurs when the cornea (the clear layer that forms the front of the eye) is irregularly shaped, or sometimes due to the curvature of the lens inside the eye.
Now that you’re prescription-savvy, you can go and get some of our glasses
Visit a store to try our entire collection, get style advice from our team, or have your eyes tested for free. Find out more about opening times and available services near you on our individual store pages.
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