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Color Contact Lenses: What You Need To Know

Colored contact lenses allow you to change your eye color. Using them, you can create a look that's subtle, bold, and anything in between. Maybe you want to enhance your everyday look, maybe rock a crazy design for Halloween, or maybe it’s just for a special occasion.

But… are colored contact lenses safe? And, if so, which ones are right for you?

Are Colored Contacts Safe?

Yes and no. Colored contact lenses are safe if they are properly prescribed, used, and cared for. Here are 4 things to keep in mind before wearing a pair:

  1. You Need a Prescription: All contacts, clear or color, are serious medical devices that can potentially damage your eyes. So serious that, in the United States, you legal need a prescription to purchase them. That means it’s illegal (and unsafe) to order color contacts from online retailers or websites that don't require you to have a prescription.

  2. Color and Clear Contacts Are Similar: There are no huge differences between clear or color contacts except that one contains color. Color contact lenses can be slightly thicker than clear ones, which means they may take getting used to and are often easier to put in and remove. If you are used to regularly wearing contacts, you should be fine handling colored lenses.

  3. Wear Colored Lenses With Perfect Vision: Color contact lenses are available in both prescription and plano. Plano color lenses have no power for vision correction and are worn for cosmetic purposes only.

  4. Keep Color Contacts Clean: Just like clear lenses, color contacts need to be properly used and cared for. That includes cleaning and storing color contacts with appropriate lens care products, never sharing color contacts with another person, and contacting your eye doctor if you experience any eye discomfort.

When choosing color contact lenses it's essential to see your eye doctor. An optometrist will provide you with a proper contact lens exam and fitting to ensure that your color contacts are safe and comfortable.

The Different Types of Color Contacts

Color contacts come in four styles:

  1. Visibility: Visibility tints are relatively faint and do not affect your eye color. They usually contain a light blue or green tint to help you see it better during insertion and removal, or if you drop it.

  2. Enhancement: This is a solid but translucent tint meant to enhance the natural color of your eyes. Enhancement color contacts are best for people who have light-colored eyes and want to make their natural eye color more vibrant.

  3. Opaque: This is a non-transparent tint that completely changes your eye color. If you have dark eyes, you'll need this type of color contact lens to change your eye color.

  • Custom: A few contact lens manufacturers specialize in creating custom color tints for both prescription and non-prescription contact lenses. They can camouflage a congenital eye defect or injury by mimicking the appearance of a healthy pupil. Custom tints are increasingly popular among professional athletes to increase their visual performance.

Color contacts can also have potential drawbacks. These include:

  • Creating a less than natural appearance

  • The lenses can become displaced, sometimes slide over the pupil

  • Varying light conditions can affect your vision when wearing colored lenses

  • Prescription color contacts can be more expensive than clear

  • Colored contacts can increase your risk of infection

Before choosing a color contact style, speak with your eye doctor about any potential limitations and concerns.

Talk With Your Eye Doctor About Color Contacts

At Eden Prairie Eye Care, we’ll help you find color contacts that are right for you. Dr. Oker’s professional and friendly team will ensure that your contacts are comfortable to wear while best suit your personality and desired appearance.

Schedule your appointment today by contacting us at (952) 944-2792 or via our online platform. We’ll help you get that fun, new look you’ve been craving!


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