Whether you’ve worn contact lenses for years or you just received your first box of lenses via FedEx from lens.me, the science behind your favorite lenses is astounding. Just think for a moment that placing a small piece of thin material over your eyes can dramatically change your vision or at the very least can give you an entirely new look!

When it comes to your specific type of contact lenses, you’ve probably noticed several numbers on the packaging. Have you wondered what BC means? How about DIA? These aren’t foreign codes but in fact, are important pieces of information to ensure your contacts fit you correctly. Let’s dig a little deeper to find out what exactly these numbers mean.

The Specifics

Different contact lens brands of both corrective lenses and colored contact lenses make products in different sizes. Although many people’s eyes are a globe type of shape, there are still unique variations that prohibit contacts from being a one size fits all item.

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Let’s start with the letters BC, which stand for base curve. This number indicates just how steep or flat your contact lenses are in relation to your own specific eye features. While it seems counterintuitive, the higher the base curve is, the flatter the surface of your eyes are. Common base curves are dictated in millimeters and can range anywhere from 8.0 to 10.0. Most of the time you’ll see 8.6 or 8.8 on your box of lenses.

Similar in theme is the diameter measurement, seen on your box as DIA. Again, not all eyes are shaped the same, and some people find that their contact lenses are more comfortable with specific diameters. Also measured in millimeters, common diameters are around 14.2.

Related: How To Put In Contact Lenses Like A Pro

Power And Dates

If you wear colored contact lenses but don’t need a prescription, the power of your lenses is obviously zero. However for people who need a vision correction, the power listed on the side of the box matches with the prescription given to you by your doctor.

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Trusting Your Doctor

Don’t worry, you aren’t responsible for knowing what your own base curve or powers are, as that job is left for your optometrist. He or she will take a series of careful measurements during your eye exam and will include all of this information on your written prescription. If your contact lenses are ever uncomfortable, your doctor might try a different measurement to see if you have greater success.

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Understanding The Values of Your Color Contact Lenses Packaging

If you think it’s complicated to understand the values written on your color contact lens packaging, we’ll make that easy for you to learn every part of the values. Below is an example of how to read the values written on Solotica yearly color contact lenses:

The Meaning of Values Behind Your Color Contact Lens Packaging

DIA (DIAMETER) - this stand for color contact lens diameter which is the overall size of the contact lens measured as the width from edge to edge. 14.2 is the most common contact lens diameter and this would vary to be taken after your contact lens fitting by your optician.

BC (BASE CURVE) - this is the measurement of the curvature of the back surface of the lens. It is measured by millimeters and may be classified as median, flat or steep.

DIA (DIAMETER) - this stand for color contact lens diameter which is the overall size of the contact lens measured as the width from edge to edge. 14.2 is the most common contact lens diameter and this would vary to be taken after your contact lens fitting by your optician.

PWR (SPHERICAL POWER) - this denotes the prescription power or the values to correct your vision. On some other brands, it may be written as D which means diopters. If it’s written in - , it means you are nearsighted whilst if it’s + it indicates you are farsighted. If you are using colored contact lenses for cosmetic purposes, the values should only be 0.00 which translates to Plano or zero power.

If you have astigmatism, the additional values for CYL and AXIS will be seen:

CYL (CYLINDER) - this stand for the extra power to correct the vision of an irregularly curved eye. The values will always be a minus number and imply the higher the number, the higher extra power your need to correct your astigmatism

AXIS - this indicates how your lenses are to be positioned directing the cylindrical power to ensure that it’s placed at the right place. The number ranges from 1 to 180.

DATES - you can see two date formats from the Solotica yearly packaging. On other products, it can be seen either on the side or behind the front packaging. These dates indicate the production date and the expiry date. If you read the values correctly, these colored contacts were manufactured on 27th October 2021 with a shelf life or expiry until 26th October 2026. The expiry date will be valid if the packaging is fully sealed and stored correctly accordingly. Keep in mind that once the vials or blisters are unsealed, the period after opening applies which means the contacts are to be disposed of by their replacement cycle. For instance. if you have bought the Solotica yearly lenses, once you have broken the vials, the colored contacts may last for up to a year of daily wear and to be disposed of after the given period – of course, the quality of the lenses and durability depends on how you take good care of your contact lenses.

BAR CODE - the numbers serve as the manufacturer’s reference for stock control

PRODUCT/ ITEM NAME - this part shows the item name or product you got – most especially for colored contact lenses where it indicates the collection and the color name.

If you are looking for colored contact lenses with prescription, lens.me offers the widest range of colored contacts from safe US-FDA Approved brands with over 250 shades to choose from. If you are searching for colored contact lenses for astigmatism, you can order your custom-made colored contacts from Solotica called toric lenses for astigmatism.

Now that you know what all of those numbers mean, it’s even easier to place an order online with lens.me. Simply enter the values you see on your prescription and get ready to enjoy fast shipping and beautifully packaged products. We offer high-quality lenses at affordable prices so you can look and feel your best!