Eye Health Central

Trivex vs. Polycarbonate Lenses

Trivex vs. Polycarbonate Lenses Explained

When it comes to choosing your eyewear, it's just as important to ensure that the lenses are the correct ones for you, as well as how the frames look on you! Both Trivex and polycarbonate lenses are popular choices and provide many beneficial characteristics which is why many people choose them.… it's important to fully understand these benefits, and what the differences are between them so you can make the best decision and select the best lenses to cater to your needs! Here are the benefits and differences of both Trivex and polycarbonate lenses to help you make the right decision!

Trivex Lenses: A Balanced Approach

Trivex lenses are renowned for their balanced combination of lightweight design, and exceptional optical clarity. Made from a urethane-based monomer, Trivex lenses offer several advantages with little disadvantage.


Crisp Accurate Vision - Their high ABBE value means that they minimise chromatic aberration, providing crisp and accurate vision. This makes Trivex lenses an excellent choice for those who demand optical precision, such as individuals with higher prescriptions.

Impact Resistance - One of the standout features of Trivex lenses is their remarkable impact resistance. Comparable to polycarbonate lenses, Trivex lenses excel in protecting your eyes from potential hazards. 

Thin Lenses - Trivex lenses tend to be thinner and more aesthetically pleasing than polycarbonate lenses, which can be thicker and bulkier and are particularly noticeable in higher prescriptions.


Trivex lenses might come at a slightly higher cost compared to other lens materials. While the price difference might not be that substantial, it's a factor worth considering when making your decision.

Trivex or Polycarbonate lenses

Polycarbonate Lenses: Superior Impact Resistance

Polycarbonate lenses have been a staple in the eyewear industry for their unparalleled impact resistance. Originally developed for industrial applications, polycarbonate lenses have found their way into eyewear due to their durability. 


Impact Resistance - They are incredibly resistant to shattering, making them an ideal choice for sports enthusiasts and individuals with an active lifestyle. Parents often opt for polycarbonate lenses for their children's eyewear, ensuring added safety during play.

Durability - Polycarbonate lenses are far less likely to chip, crack, or shatter if you drop them, or they get hit with something.


However, while polycarbonate lenses offer exceptional impact resistance, they can sometimes compromise slightly on optical clarity. Their ABBE value is generally lower than that of Trivex lenses, leading to potential issues with chromatic aberration and distortion in peripheral vision. For individuals with lower prescriptions, this might not be a significant concern, but those with higher prescriptions might notice the difference in optical quality. 

Comparative Analysis

Both Trivex and polycarbonate lenses offer valuable benefits, and the choice between the two largely depends on your individual preferences and needs. If optical clarity and precision are your top priorities, Trivex lenses might be the better option. On the other hand, if you require maximum impact resistance without compromising durability, polycarbonate lenses are a strong contender.

Both Trivex and Polycarbonate lenses offer great advantages to a pair of glasses, however, the lens material that is the most ideal for you will vary depending on what your specific needs are… from optical clarity to being better at withstanding a fall to the floor, each have something to offer.

It's important to consider how much you're willing to spend on the lenses alone and what your prescription allows, these pros and cons help you make an informative choice and enable you to engage in a dialogue with your optometrist or dispensing optician. It's a wise idea to get your optician involved in your choice and see what they recommend the most.  

Whether you choose to go with Trivex or Polycarbonate lenses, you will have made the right choice for you. The eyewear demands of today vary so much, so it makes sense that the lens options don’t have a "one size fits all" approach!  

Author: John Dreyer Optometrist Bsc(Hons), MCOPTOM, DipCLP
Created: 18 Oct 2023, Last modified: 20 May 2024