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HomemilensesMaking a Difference with Vocational Lenses

Making a Difference with Vocational Lenses

There’s no question that our working lives have changed over the past few years. Work from home, online meetings and webinars are now part of our landscape.

Vocational or occupational lenses, be they spectacle or contact lenses, have never had more importance. And as Alan Saks writes, there have never been better reasons to use them.

I’m sure we’ve all seen progressive lens wearers on online meetings with their chin up to see the screen and a not-so-great view up their nostrils. (Never mind the resultant postural issues that have surely kept physiotherapists busy.)

There are also those wearing certain types of blue-blocking lenses where the screen is reflecting so much blue light off the lenses of the webinar participant that they look like aliens. You can barely see their eyes, reducing eye contact, serving as a distraction, and negating the effect of an anti-reflection coating. Better to use a blue absorbing filter than a blue reflecting coating when selecting the occupational lens?

Another aspect of the work-from-home change – as we see in many offices these days – is that multiple screens have been replaced with a user simply having one large 32-inch screen, with multiple tiled spreadsheets, emails, documents, and chats.

All these scenarios, and many more, lend themselves to the application of vocational lenses.

Although modern premium progressive lenses are fantastic, and great as all-purpose lenses, their design characteristics mean that most of the reading/computer vision in the 40–60cm range is in the lower third of the lens, and as we know, the channel width is limited.

While this is not a major problem on a 13- inch laptop, it certainly means a lot more lateral head movement is needed to see across the range of wider screens. In online meetings, it’s not just the speaker’s face we are seeing – we need to see fine details in spreadsheets, documents, and graphs.

Research quoted by Zeiss reveals that 60% of global spectacle lens buyers are over 40 years old1 while 84% of French people between 45- and 59-years-old report digital eye strain2 and 64% of Americans in their 50s report digital eye strain,3 providing some perspective on the vocational lens target market. But it’s not just presbyopes who need occupational lens designs.

There are many great solutions available in both the spectacle and contact lens realm.

Free-form design and modern manufacturing techniques have allowed even smaller players to quickly and easily bring new designs to the market


With contact lenses (CLs), a variety of multifocal (MF) and extended depth of focus (EDOF) designs can help presbyopes. A ‘digital’ design, like CooperVision’s Biofinity Energys, can alleviate accommodative burden and may be suited to younger asthenopic wearers. Such lenses might also have some potential benefit in myopia.

MiSight, although typically used by younger wearers for myopia control, might also alleviate asthenopia – through reduced accommodative demand – in young people with lots of screen time.

UV blocking CLs and a photochromic contact lens like Acuvue Oasys with Transitions, can also be considered vocational as they might help outdoor workers cope better with harsh sunlight, UV, and glare, providing greater safety and protection. In such scenarios, wraparound sunglasses are still advised to protect the eye and adnexa not covered by the CL.

Multifocal contact lenses may also be ideal for newbies, as well as existing CL wearers who don’t want to add glasses on top for computer use. A great benefit of such MF and EDOF designs is that the vision is concentric, so they can see the top, bottom, left, or right of screens without any head movement. Depending on the patient, we can look at centre-near or centre-distance designs.

Companies like SEED (now available through Capricornia) and VTI (available through CLCA and CLCNZ) offer multifocal options, as do the Big Four with their successful and proven designs. We can also consider proprietary or custom multifocal corneal RGPs, sclerals and hybrid designs.

There is certainly no shortage of options.


Occupational spectacle lenses are a growth area.

We continuously see tweaks and innovative designs coming from the various big and small players. Free-form design and modern manufacturing techniques have allowed even smaller players to quickly and easily bring new designs to the market. If you follow social media, you will see many fans of CR Surfacing’s occupational lens designs. Others, like JP Optical, also offer high-precision occupational designs.

Certain occupations have limiting factors. We need to recommend and tailor the best occupational lens for the individual. Architects and engineers, for example, are notoriously picky. They’re often critical when it comes to narrow fields and distortion, while also being aware of ergonomic factors and posture. Those using computer-aided design (and/or drawing boards) seek a wide field of vision with minimal distortion or head movements. To this end, a regressive/ degressive entry level occupational, like a Hoya Supereader, would likely do the trick. As it might for a stock trader or banker with a 32-inch screen full of spreadsheets and stock tickers. A comfortable visual range of something like 30–80cm or as much as 1–1.2m is possible.

Others might prefer general, proprietary, or even individualised ‘room’, workstyle, or workspace design offerings. With such lenses the range of vision can be adjusted out as far as 2–4m, while still performing well for computer use. Such designs might suit an open-plan office worker who needs to interact with nearby colleagues, or see additional displays/information on a wall, and so on.

These days, many practitioners choose a lens that falls withing the gambit of offerings from their strategic alliances and preferred providers. It does, however, pay to investigate, and indeed try, some of the specialised occupational lenses from other suppliers, as there are differences. Some might perform better for some patients than others, which will enhance loyalty, especially when managing complex cases.

Although published a while back, a Zeiss ‘office lens white paper’4 is worth reading. It has some great images that illustrate the different forms of occupational lenses while providing a detailed overview.

Take a look at the following product information section for more on the fantastic offerings from our many great lens providers.

Those using computer-aided design (and/or drawing boards) seek a wide field of vision with minimal distortion or head movements


  1. The World Market for Vision Correction 2005-2020.
  2. www.statista.com/statistics/426169/computer-usagepenetration- age-group-france/.
  3. Vision Council Eye Strain Report (2016).
  4. www.zeiss.com/content/dam/vision-care/us/downloads/ pdf/oficelens-whitepaper.pdf


Lenses for the Longest Work Day

CR Labs Australis Tradie

CR Lab’s Australis Tradie is a unique lens design that in addition to the standard progressive configuration, offers an extra segment for near vision at the top. This allows the wearer to focus on near objects, not only at the bottom of the lens, but also through the upper segment. Perfect for those tradies who find their standard progressives falling short in their work environment.

Visit: australislenses.com/tradie



Time spent in front of screens is constantly increasing. Research shows that 43% of employees use screens for prolonged periods during the work day,1 which demands more from our near and mid-distance vision. OSA EasyWork offers wearers extended focus lenses that improve visual comfort with a choice of styles that add convenience for all working conditions. EasyWork is available in two distance options, EasyWork Mid and EasyWork Long, to cater to different working distances.

Contact: OSA Account Manager

Reference 1. DigitalEyezed Study by Vision Source.


Varilux Digitime Varilux

Digitime improves visual and postural comfort for near and intermediate distance tasks. Simply provide Essilor with your patient’s working distance and Varilux Digitime’s power shift is calculated to place the correct intermediate power right in front of the patient’s pupil.

Varilux Digitime is available in three designs, for variable screen distances: Digitime Near (for smartphones, near and computer use), Digitime Mid (for computer use, around the desk and near, and Digitime Room (for tasks out to two metres, the computer and near).

Available with Essilor’s blue filter technologies; Smart Blue filter and Crizal Prevencia coating.

Contact: Essilor Account Manager



Hoya’s new occupational lens portfolio includes the Hoyalux iD WorkStyle 3, the Hoyalux WorkStyle Business, the Hoyalux WorkSmart Room and the Supereader.

The most premium of the range, Hoyalux iD WorkStyle 3, is designed for the clearest, most comfortable and natural vision with added AdaptEase and 3D Binocular Vision technologies.

Combined, these technologies improve the width of the visual field around the corridor and control unwanted prismatic effects between the right and left eyes.

Available in three individual designs (Close, Screen, Space) that can be utilised based on visual preferences.

Sync III is also available for the nonpresbyope that may be experiencing symptoms of digital eyestrain.

Full Control is the perfect complement to these lenses; the four-in-one lens coating combination for the ultimate in resistance to scratches and bacterial growth while providing protection from UV light and for more relaxed vision when viewing digital devices.

Contact: Hoya Account Manager


Nikon Home&Office Neo

A lens like no other, Home&Office Neo now uses Nikon Optical Design Engine optimisation to further reduce aberrations for wider intermediate vision versus the original design. Home&Office Neo is a fully customised indoor solution with different power options and progression lengths to match to the wearer’s needs.

Home&Office Neo is available in 1.5, 1.6, 1.67 and 1.74 in clear and Transitions GEN8 with three power option designs and two corridor lengths. Optimum results require pantoscopic tilt, wrap angle and back vertex distance.

Add SeeCoat Blue UV to help increase contrast on digital devices and provide lowered transmission of blue light.

Contact: Nikon Account Manager



The B.I.G. Ergo near vision lenses by Rodenstock are designed for office environments. In the workplace, it is often necessary to focus on a monitor, desk and colleagues at different distances.

With age it becomes more strenuous for the eyes to adjust to these variable focussing distances.

As a consequence, the body makes subconscious changes to posture to ease visual difficulties, which often can result in tense necks and shoulders. Rodenstock office lenses offload stressed eyes as well as physiological discomfort. By focussing on the near and intermediate ranges, Rodenstock B.I.G. Ergo range of lenses provide up to 40% better vision in these zones.

Available in several variations, dependent upon workplace and individual requirements, and with specialised anti-reflection coating. Solitaire Protect Balance 2 is designed to reduce blue light by reflecting it away from the eyes.

Contact: Rodenstock Account Manager


Zeiss Office Lens

The Zeiss Office lens design is optimised for a dynamic, multitasking digital lifestyle and office environment – ensuring a more natural body posture while working long hours and frequently switching between digital devices.

Zeiss Office lenses feature Maximum Intermediate Distance (M.I.D.) Technology. This allows personal adaptation to the wearers near to distance requirements. The Zeiss Office Lens Individual allows for further customisation from 100–400cm, depending on specific intermediate distance requirements. This delivers exceptionally large and comfortable intermediate and near visual fields.

Also available in Zeiss BluePro.

Contact: Zeiss Account Manager


MauiPassport Boost

MauiPassport Boost is a new, clear prescription lens design by Maui Jim that combines the benefits of an anti-fatigue lens in the near vision with the experience of wearing a single vision prescription at a distance. This new lens design reduces the fatigue experienced from eyes that are constantly focussing and refocussing as they shift between various digital devices. An added benefit of the boost is that it also improves the readability of small fonts and other finer details on digital devices.

Available in two Boost powers, the power is strategically placed in the lens according to the severity of your patient’s symptoms. This lens can be paired with the blue light blocking lens material, Maui Blue Light Protect.

Contact: Maui Jim (AUS) 02 9452 5575


Opticare ClearPro Office

The ClearPro Office is an excellent choice for patients who need customised glasses that they can use in their office environment. Simply go to the Opticare website at opticare.com.au and click on Office Range Selector on the top-most menu panel. Enter the patient’s add and then select the range the patient needs. The clear visual zone is displayed, and shift is calculated for the selected range. When you enter the patient’s distance sphere power, it will calculate the range and Rx at pupil centre, so you can use trial lenses to verify this with the patient before ordering. This tool gives you complete confidence in prescribing the Office Rx.

Blue Guardian is an available upgrade that blocks blue light and all other UVA and UVB rays to 420nm.

Contact: Opticare (AUS) 1800 251 852


Shamir Occupational Progressive Lenses

Shamir’s improved occupational lenses are designed to meet the needs of a modern workforce.

This range uses the latest lens technologies to create occupational lenses for diverse needs. Shamir Vocational Digital lenses are ideal for near and mid distance work with three dynamic shifts. Shamir Computer provides a wider field of view (up to 1.5m), while Shamir Workspace offers a greater depth of field (up to 3m), allowing for movement within the workspace.

Shamir Smart Office delivers a personalised digital freeform lens that allows for flexibility and focus through multiple viewing zones.

Visit: shamir.com.au


Contact Lenses for Better Work Life

Ultra One Day Si-Hy Daily Disposable

Whether your patients are working from home, office or an airport lounge, Bausch & Lomb’s Ultra One Day Si-Hy Daily Disposable Contact Lenses provide maximum comfort with 96% moisture retention for up to 16 hours of wear time.

Boasting a water content of 55% and oxygen transmissibility of 134 Dk/t, these lenses will last the working day and beyond, delivering clearer vision, eliminating spherical aberrations, and reducing haloes and glare.

Contact: Bausch + Lomb Account Manager


Biofinity Energys

Contact lens wearers’ lives and eyes are constantly moving between on-screen and off-screen activities. They need innovative lenses that help their eyes feel less tired, while seamlessly shifting focus from their digital devices to their everyday activities and back.

Biofinity Energys is ideal for all existing and potential wearers of spherical monthly and two-weekly lenses, and patients who are highly connected to their smartphone or who spend a large part of their day looking at a computer screen.

Contact: CooperVision Account Manager


Oasys Multifocal Acuvue

Oasys multifocal contact lenses with Pupil Optimized Design offer exceptional visual performance1^ for patients with presbyopia.

These lenses have been designed to provide your patients with clear vision at all distances: near, far, and in-between.1 Acuvue Oasys is the lens never beaten in comfort† and helps provide excellent quality of vision when using digital screens.2

Contact: JJVC Account Manager

References ^Compared to prior JJV multifocal design, technology optimised for both the parameters of refractive error and add power for a multitude of viewing distances and light levels. †For entire Acuvue Oasys brand family: 27 clinical studies posted on ClinicalTrials.gov, a website maintained by the NIH, evaluated subjective comfort as primary or secondary endpoint for Acuvue Oasys Brand 2-week family and daily disposable contact lens families vs. competitors’ products as of 31 Oct 2022.

  1. JJV Data on File 2020. 2. JJV Data on File 2017.


SEED 1dayPure EDOF

SEED 1dayPure EDOF optics are primarily designed for presbyopia management, but there are other potential uses. According to Lynn White, clinical director at Ultravision in the United Kingdom, the EDOF low design can be useful for patients who suffer from visual stress.

One of the benefits of this design is that it reduces vergence and, therefore, phorias. Gong et al1 have shown that phorias in children are pushed into the exophoric direction using multifocal contact lenses, while Kajita et al2 have shown that accommodative micro-fluctuations are reduced by wearing multifocals with a low addition.

The plano EDOF low design can also be useful for emmetropes suffering from accommodative stress due to excessive close work. Relaxing the vergence system can improve reading speed and reduce issues of refocusing from near to far.

Contact: Seed Contact Lens ANZ (AUS) 1300 373 718


  1. Gong et al. Accommodation and phoria in children wearing multifocal contact lenses. Optom. Vis. Sci. 2017;94(3):353-360. doi:10.1097/OPX.0000000000001044
    2. Kajita M, Muraoka T, Orsborn G. Changes in accommodative micro-fluctuations after wearing contact lenses of different optical designs. Cont Lens Anterior Eye. 2020 Oct;43(5):493-496. doi: 10.1016/j.clae.2020.03.003. Epub 2020 Mar 19. PMID: 32201056.



Manufactured by Visioneering Technologies Inc. (VTI), NaturalVue Multifocal 1 Day Contact Lenses are designed with a high amount of relative plus power in the periphery. This uninterrupted plus power progression induces peripheral blur in the brain, which VTI calls Neurofocus Optics.

With this, NaturalVue Multifocal contact lenses focus peripheral light rays in front of the retina to remove peripheral hyperopia. NaturalVue (etafilcon A) Multifocal 1 Day Contact Lenses also are proven clinically effective for myopia progression control.

Contact: Contact Lens Centre Australia Account Manager