The perfect pair of sunglasses or glasses can enhance your appearance and help you see the world more clearly and comfortably. But if your glasses are the wrong size, you’ll likely find that they slide down, pinch your skin, or clash with your facial features.
To avoid poor-fitting glasses, it’s important to determine your glasses size before buying a new pair, especially when purchasing eyewear online.
Thankfully, figuring out what glasses size you need is pretty straightforward. This guide will explain how to read and take your glasses measurements to ensure your frames fit perfectly.
How to Read Your Frame Size
If you already have a pair of sunglasses or eyeglasses that fit you well, you’re already a step ahead of the game. Most glasses have three numbers (separated by spaces or dashes) printed on the inside of the temple arm.
They will look like this: 49-19-145 (although the numbers will vary depending on the measurements of each pair of glasses).
These are the frame dimensions, and they’re expressed in millimeters. From left to right, here’s what these numbers refer to:
#1: Lens width
If you see a pair of glasses online that are listed as 52 mm, for example, you might be wondering, “What does 52 mm mean in sunglasses?” This number refers to the horizontal width of each lens, measured at its widest part. This does not include the frame itself—just the clear lens that you look through.
Lens width typically ranges from 40 mm to 60 mm. Those who wear sunglasses for small faces are best suited to a smaller lens width, while those with larger faces are best suited to a larger lens width.
#2: Bridge width
This measures the shortest span between the two lenses. It’s the part that goes across the bridge of your nose and typically ranges from 14 mm to 24 mm.
If you have close-set eyes or a relatively narrow nose, you’ll want glasses with a smaller bridge width (lower number). Conversely, if you have wide-set eyes or a wider nose, you’ll want glasses with a larger bridge width (higher number).
Choosing a suitable bridge width will ensure that your sunglasses or glasses sit comfortably and securely on your nose without sliding up or down.
#3: Temple length
This measures the length of the temples (or “arms”) of your glasses—from the hinge to the tip of the temple. It typically ranges from 120 mm to 150 mm.
Choosing the right temple length is important, as it ensures the arms are long enough to extend behind your ears, without protruding too far out.
Note: On some glasses, a fourth number will be noted on the temple. This is your lens height, which refers to the vertical height of the lenses at the widest part.
This measurement typically isn’t required, but may be helpful if you’re getting multifocal or progressive lenses, as these types of glasses require a certain amount of space to accommodate the different visual zones.
How to Measure Your Glasses
If you have a pair of well-fitting glasses, but the measurements aren’t printed on the temple arm or they’ve rubbed off, don’t worry. You can measure your frame dimensions yourself using a millimeter ruler or fabric measuring tape.
Here’s how to measure the following dimensions:
- Lens width: Measure horizontally across the widest part of one lens. Don’t include the frame—just the clear lens that you look through.
- Bridge width: Measure the shortest span between the two lenses.
- Temple length: This measurement requires two parts. First, measure the temple (or “arm”) from the frame’s hinge to the point where it starts to curve. Then, measure from the curve to the tip of the temple arm. Add these two numbers together to get your temple length.
- Lens height: Measure one lens vertically at its tallest point. For multifocal or progressive lenses, the lens height must be at least 30 mm.
What If You Don’t Have a Pair of Well-Fitting Glasses?
If you don’t have a pair of well-fitting shades or specs to reference for measurements, you can easily measure the distance between your temples to determine the best size glasses for your face.
- Look into a mirror and place a straight ruler length-wise across your face, just below your eyes. The ruler should be lined up with your temples—the flat parts on each side of your head, between your ear and the outer corner of your eye. Measure the distance across your face in inches, from one temple to the other.
- Use the chart below to determine the ideal frame size for your face.
Helpful Tips for Finding the Perfect Fit
In addition to taking the above measurements, let’s review some helpful tips for fine-tuning your fit.
#1: Be Mindful of the Frame Width
The frame width is not printed on the temple of glasses, but it can be a helpful measurement to be aware of. To find your frame width, measure horizontally across the front of your frames, including any design features that stick out on the sides.
For the best fit, your glasses frame should be slightly wider than your face (aka the distance between your temples). If your glasses are too wide, they can make your face look too narrow, and if your glasses are too narrow, they can make your face look too wide.
#2: Take Your Face Shape into Account
When buying a new pair of sunglasses or glasses, it can be helpful to consider your face shape. This is because certain frame shapes tend to work better with certain face shapes.
For example, those with round faces tend to look best with square- or rectangular-shaped frames. The bold, angled lines of these frame shapes add definition to the soft, curved lines of round faces. Click here for our ultimate face shape guide.
#3: Don’t Forget About Style
While taking your glasses and face measurements into consideration is undoubtedly helpful, don’t get so involved with measurements that you lose sight of finding a pair of glasses you truly love.
With so many style and color options available, glasses are an excellent accessory for enhancing your look and showcasing your personality. The trick is to find a well-fitting pair of glasses in a style you feel confident in.
Find Frames That Fit Like a Glove
Knowing your glasses measurements is very helpful when searching for new eyewear, especially when buying glasses online.
On Privé Revaux’s site, you can find the precise measurements of each pair of glasses under the “Size Guide” section on each individual product page. You can also search by frame size (small, medium, or large) to hone in on your best options.
We also feature trendy and fashionable sunglasses chain holders to keep your shades secure!