Zero Waste

Sustainable Eye Care

ff45f7f8_contact-lenses-advantages

If you are one of those lucky people with 20/20 vision (like my husband), I envy you.  But for the unlucky souls like me, I wanted to offer a few tips on keeping your eye care as sustainable as possible.

Glasses

I wear glasses at least 1 day out of the week, just to give my eyes a rest from contacts.  I also switch to glasses the minute I am done with work for the day.  Glasses are a lot more sustainable than contacts, but obviously they aren’t the best option for everyone.  Here are a few tips to keep your waste down when you use glasses:

  • Re-use your frame: Glasses prescriptions last 2 years.  When your prescription is up, just have your optomistrist swap out the lens.  You will save a lot of money.  I spent about $150 on my Ermenegildo Zegna frames, and I don’t plan on swapping them out anytime soon.  If you absolutely need to change your frame, you can have your optomistrist swap out the lenses for a pair of shades or no prescription lenses.  You can have a cute fashion statement or sunglasses.
  • Ditch the lens wipes: These are expensive and usually packaged individually, creating lots of waste.  I just use castile soap, warm water, and the cloth that my glasses came in to clean my lens.

Contacts

There are no zero waste options for contacts.  Nor do I think there should be.  I feel like in order to make sure everything is sterile, it’s impossible to have a zero waste option for contact solution or contact lens.  However, you can still be conscious and sustainable to divert 100% of the waste from landfills.

  • Switch to bi-weekly or monthly contacts:  It’ll save you lots of money.  Dailies typically cost a lot more than bi-weekly or monthly contacts.  You will also save a lot of packaging from being produced.  For example, if you use monthly contacts, you will only create 12 pairs of packaging.  If you use dailies, that’s 365 pairs of packaging a year.
  • Recycle every part of your contact solution packaging:  These usually come in a cardboard box that is recyclable.  The bottle will also have a little plastic shrink wrap on the cap.  I drop these off at my local grocery store (where you can also drop off plastic bags).  The plastic bottle is typically made from #2 HDPE plastic, which is easily recyclable.
  • Recycle contacts blister packaging and your lens:  Depending on your municipality, your blister packaging might actually recyclable through your curbside recycling program.  If not, Bausch + Lomb has this cool recycling program where you can send in your contact packaging (and the used contact lens) for free.
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