3D printing is blooming in the eyewear industry, it is changing how glasses are designed and manufactured. Many eyewear manufacturers or even, individuals are starting to adopt this layer-by-layer method, mainly to differentiate their products from their competitors and bring more innovation to their glasses design.
For instance, Binokers, one of our customers, just launched its crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter to build the future of 3D printed glasses. Discover their project, as well as other brands, and the benefits of 3D printing when it comes to the eyewear industry in this blog post!
Photo credits: Binokers
Why is 3D printing a great technology for the eyewear industry?
1. 3D printing brings unlimited possibilities of designs
There is a simple sentence that clearly defines the whole potential of 3D printing when it comes to creation and design: “The only limit is your own imagination”. Indeed, this technology allows you to create extremely complex structures, and in some cases, designs that you could not even make come true without 3D printing due to traditional manufacturing constraints.
In the eyewear industry, this technology has been used more and more to create 3D printed glasses since it opens a broad range of possibilities. You can easily create either simple and complex designs.
2. Custom-made 3D printed glasses are more comfortable
For the person wearing glasses, choosing the right pair is not an easy task. Finding comfortable glasses with a good design takes time. Also, the limited choices of design, in some cases, lead the wearer to sacrifice the design above their own comfort. Thanks to this cutting-edge technology, 3D printed glasses can be customized to fit the individual’s need. It gives the wearer a feeling of comfort and at the same time a cool style.
Besides offering freedom of designs and shapes, 3D printing uses less material to produce glasses frames. Therefore, the 3D printed glasses frame is likely lighter.
3. With 3D printing, you can produce high-quality glasses
When it comes to choosing glasses, quality of the material, resistance and durability are the main elements that need to be taken into account. To produce the same quality of glasses, Polyamide 12, known as Nylon, is commonly used to 3D print glasses frame. This material has the expected properties, being resistant, durable and offers a great freedom for design. Thus, thanks to 3D printing you can create high-quality 3D printed glasses.
The Market of 3D printed glasses: Discover 5 brands
3D printed glasses have been around for years and many companies started to adopt this innovation to improve their design. Here are some 3D printed glasses manufacturers that adopted this technology to improve their products.
3D printing is at the core of Binokers, a Spanish-based startup which aims to create an online platform that allows everyone to produce their own line of eyewear products by transforming their design into 3D printed glasses and sunglasses with a minimal investment.
One of the co-founders, David explained several steps on how Binokers operates. When they receive the sketch of a new concept, they turn the file into a 3D model by following the design requirements. Manufactured in partnership with Sculpteo, the 3D model is then 3D printed using Nylon, a highly resistant and lightweight 3D printing material. When the 3D printed frame is ready, Binokers assembles parts and lenses, packs the final product and sends it to the clients.
2. One of the first ones that used 3D printing to manufacture glasses: Mykita and Ic!
Mykita and Ic! was one of the first-movers in the eyewear industry to adopt the 3D printing technology. In 2007, the company started to explore the potential of Polyamide, particularly using SLS (Selective Laser Sintering) to create their first 3D printed glasses collection. Combining craftsmanship and 3D printing innovation, each 3D printed glasses frame for their Mylon collection is customizable and can be adjusted to fit each customer.
Safilo Group, an Italian giant eyewear company has recently launched its new 3D printed eyewear collection OXYDO, which consists of four different frame styles. They adopt this technology to integrate very fine ornamentations into their designs, in order to create 3D printed glasses that combine minimalism and opulence according to the designer himself.
Collaborating with Francis Bitonti, a New-York based artist who incorporates the 3D printing technology into his work, Safilo aims to bring more innovative 3D printed eyewear creations and to show how this breakthrough technology can shape the future in the eyeglasses industry.
Aiming to bring innovation to the fashion industry, Monoqool manufactures its own 3D printed glasses. In its new Slider Collection, this Danish-based company creates ultra-thin and lightweight glasses thanks to 3D printing.
5. Protos Eyewear
Another eyewear company that adopts this cutting-edge technology to create 3D printed glasses that really fit you. Protos Eyewear is using 3D printing at a more complex level than the previous brands: Protos created a software which allows them to alter a design of glasses to fit your facial structure. Using hypoallergenic bioplastics, Protos Eyewear creates innovative designs that are impossible to replicate using a traditional manufacturing process.
So, do you have any idea in mind about your own 3D printed glasses design? Try to upload your 3D file now and create your own 3D printed glasses now!
A Strong believer in the potential of 3D printed glasses? Do not forget to contribute to the crowdfunding campaign of Binokers!