While mentioning eyeglasses, most of us will neglect eyeglass frames. The reason lies in the fact that only few of us have realized the importance of frames in the evolution of eyeglasses.
As it is known, the earliest eyeglass has made its first appearance over 7 hundred years ago. Therefore, it seems that the history of the frames is of the same longevity. In fact, the emergence of the first frame is much later than eyeglass. The data has showed that there is no frame in the original eyeglasses and people use hands to hold the glass while using. Later, some people find it is inconvenient to use glass without anything to support. Therefore, some ribbons are employed in the manufacturing of the eyeglasses and the glass can be tied up to the forehead of wearers.
Still, people find it is not very nice to fix glasses with ribbons and they just want to find some better methods. When it comes to the 18th century, eyeglass frame of modern style has made its first appearance. And eyeglass wearers find those frames so perfect that they can move or do anything without worrying those glasses will slip down. However, those frames are not as nice as what we use today. The real frame that we use now does not appear until the 20th century, a revolutionary period for both eyeglasses and eyeglass frames. And some great changes have taken in the eyeglasses industry.
In fact, the styles and materials employed in the eyeglass frames are the major elements in their evolution.
In the past, eyeglass frames are just used as the devices that can support the lenses. And frames in then time are very rough and ugly. But now almost all the glass frames are delicately made. Therefore, the style of the frames is always one of the sales points for many famous brands. Thus, frame is sometimes the only reason why many people choose to wear glasses of particular types and brands.
The materials employed in the manufacturing of those frames vary a lot in different period. As it mentioned above, the earliest materials of eyeglass frames are ribbons. After that, common metal is used for a very long time. However, in daily lives, some people find metal frames are too heavy and some of them will suffer from allergy. With the large-scale use of plastic in industry, some designers have tried to make glass frames with plastic. And the plastic frames have gained wide popularity, for their light-weight and allergy-resistance. Thereby, plastic frames take a very large market share in the 20th century.
However, in the mean time, some designers have thought of updating metal frames. And some sound results are achieved. For example, metal frames are widely used in some classic glasses. Besides, designers and wearers are always bothered by one matter that their metal frames become loose easily, especially when handled inappropriately. Consequently, a new era of metal frames approaches, with the emergence of memory metal alloys. Of which, titanium is a case in point. Eyeglass frames made of titanium can rebound to their original shape. Moreover, such frames are light-weight and will never cause any allergy to people with sensitive skin.
Eyeglass frames will always evolve as time goes by.
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