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About Frames

Eyeglass frame diagram

1. Bridge: The area that arches up over the nose between the lenses thus supporting the majority of the glasses weight. There are several different types of bridges:

    • A keyhole bridge is shaped like an old-fashioned keyhole and rests on the sides of the upper part of the nose. This style is best suited for those with small or flat-topped noses.
    • A saddle bridge is shaped like a saddle and spreads the weight of the frame across the sides and the top of the nose. This style works well for heavy glasses or for those with sensitive noses.
    • An adjustable bridge includes nose pads that can be bended and moved for fit and comfort.
    • A double bridge has a reinforcing bar over the top of the bridge.

2. End pieces: The portions of the frame front that extend outward from the lenses and connect to the temples.

3. Eye Wires/Rims: Part of the frame front into which the lenses are inserted.

4. Frame Front: (not pictured) Outermost front part of the eyeglass frame which holds the lenses in place and bridges the top of the nose; consists of bridge, end pieces, rims and lenses.

5. Hinges: Portion of the frame that connects the frame front to the temples and allows the temples to fold inward in a closing motion.

6. Lenses: Eyeglass parts which hold a wearer’s prescription.

7. Nose Pads: Plastic pieces which may be attached directly to the frame or pad arms. These help keep the frame in its proper position on the wearer’s face, while providing comfort and a snug fit.

8. Pad Arms: Attachments that hold the nose pads in place; typically allow adjustments so that they may conform to the wearer’s nose.

9. Rimless Frames/Mountings: (Not pictured)When the temples and bridge attach by mountings, or metal fixatives, directly to the lenses without the use of eye-wires or rims.

10. Screws: Tiny metal fasteners found at eyeglass hinges which connect the temples to the frame front; and on the bridge, which hold the nose pads in place.

11. Temples: “Arm” pieces of the frame that extend over and/or behind the ears to help hold the frame in place. There are several types of temples:

    • Skull temples are most popular for plastic frames. They appear bent down slightly over the ear and follow the contour of the skull.
    • Comfort-cable temples hook behind the ear with a flexible metal cable. These are suitable for children’s styles and sport-safety glasses.
    • Riding bow temples are similar to comfort-cables, except they are rigid and made of plastic.
    • Spring-hinged temples include hidden springs in the hinges that help keep the frame from slipping. These are sometimes more expensive, but typically more resistant to breakage.
    • Library (or paddle) temples are straight, so they can be slipped on and off easily. This type is often used in reading glasses.

12. Temple tips: Plastic coatings that often cover the ends of the temples behind and/or over the ears to provide wearer comfort. Their use is common in regard to metal glasses.

13. Top bar: A reinforcing bar that crosses the top of the glasses, between the two lenses, on some metal frames; popular in aviator style glasses.


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