Photography & Edit: Juliette Carton / Words: Zoe London
I remember the crushing feeling of being something like twelve/thirteen years old, already with a mouth full of braces, when the optician told me my eyes had worsened. Ugh, I thought. This meant one thing only: I needed glasses. Typical that I was still early in at secondary school, already filled with dread and anxiety at the new life ahead of me, worried already that I was too tall, too skinny, not right to fit in with the other kids. The cool kids. They would already think I was a dork, with all my braces and that, surely i’d never be accepted with glasses too? I hated it and I used to take them off when I didn’t need to at school, opting to walk around the corridors semi-blind rather than wear them and actually see. Teenage life is cruel, huh.
When Emo kicked off along with MySpace and I was more like fifteen years old, I suddenly didn’t feel so bad about my glasses anymore. My braces had just come off, and I’d managed to persuade mum that I needed new glasses (“no, really mum, I neeeeed them!”) and off we trotted down to the local opticians, where I was able to pick a pair of large black rimmed glasses. Perfect. Suddenly, at least for a while, glasses were cool again in the eyes of teenage me and I was happy to wear them. Flash forward five ish years of wearing them pretty much to death before I inevitably switched to contact lenses and never looked back. Until now.
A few months ago Specsavers contacted me asking if I wanted to style up some of their latest frames for some instagram photos, and well, I thought “why not?” Having worn contact lenses relentlessly for about eight years or so eventually takes a toll on your eyes and it turned out they had taken a toll on mine. I’d been so bad at leaving them in for long days and nights, and i’m slowly but surely making my eyes really dry and increasing in prescription. Not good. I was advised to switch from contact lenses when I get home from being out, instead of sitting in them until they eventually went dry and began to hurt anyway. So with that in mind, I picked two different styles to wear over on instagram, and well, of course they quickly became part of my life. This was an ad project, and it’s definitely made a positive impact on my life. I do anyway only accept ad work that is stuff I genuinely believe in, but I felt while this one was connected to my eye health – it needed a follow up.
It’s tough when you’re a kid and you’re told that one thing isn’t right, and you desperately want to fit in. That wonderful freedom of growing older and realising you don’t really care what anyone thinks anymore, is so validating and free that you realise it actually is cooler to not care, and to just be you. I think there’s such a stigma attached to glasses that they aren’t cool, when these Kylie frames prove otherwise. I’ve totally fallen in love with wearing them, and i’m so happy they are in my life!
Let me know what you think in the comments about my new glasses, and whether you had the same traumatising glasses childhood as me – trust me we can totally get over it and get back to glasses! By the way, this isn’t an ad i’m not disclosing, the two instagram posts were ads, but I felt this needed a follow up post as it was something important!