There's nothing worse than when one of your favorite products gets discontinued. It's even more frustrating when that product is your favorite contact lens brand. Unfortunately, this happens somewhat frequently, so it's important to plan ahead so you aren't caught without more contact lenses.
Recently, Alcon announced that they will discontinue their popular Air Optix Aqua family of contact lenses on September 29th, 2021. Below, we'll explain more about why this lens is being discontinued, and some alternatives you have.
Why is Air Optix Aqua Being Discontinued?
Air Optix Aqua was first introduced in over a decade ago. It was a groundbreaking new material at that time, but new advances in technology over the last ten years have made the original Air Optix Aqua obsolete. Alcon, the manufacturer of Air Optix, has introduced a new product called Air Optix Plus HydraGlyde and will discontinue the older Air Optix Aqua at the end of September, 2021.
What is the difference between Air Optix Aqua and Air Optix Plus HydraGlyde?
All new Air Optix contacts now contain HydraGlyde, a new and innovative wetting agent that keeps contacts moist even longer. According to Alcon, the maker of Air Optix, HydraGlyde actually surrounds the contact lens surface with moisture. If you ever suffer from dry eyes after wearing contact lenses all day, then Air Optix HydraGlyde will likely help with that.
Do I need a new prescription to get Air Optix Plus HydraGlyde?
According to Dr. Jennifer Lyerly in the journal Optometric Management, you can use your old Air Optix Aqua prescription to purchase the new Air Optix Plus Hydraglyde. This is because these two brands of contact lenses are the same material and same size. The only difference is the new wetting agent (called HydraGlyde).
If you currently wear Air Optix Aqua for Astigmatism, or Air Optix Aqua Multifocal, don't worry! There is a HydraGlyde version of your contacts too. Check out the table below to see all the options for current Air Optix Aqua wearers. By the way, the new Air Optix HydraGlyde contacts are eligible for a manufacturer's rebate when you purchase from LensesForLess.
Alternatives to Air Optix Aqua
If you tried Air Optix HydraGlyde and it didn't work for you, you should discuss switching to a new brand with your eye doctor. According to the FTC, your prescription is only valid for the specific brand written on it, so you'll need your doctor's approval to switch brands.
If you want to stay with a monthly contact lens like Air Optix Aqua, then you should discuss Biofinity with your eye doctor. Biofinity is our top selling monthly contact lens, and is available in multiple versions for different eye conditions, like toric for astigmatism and multifocal for presbyopia. There is even a toric multifocal version for those with both astigmatism and presbyopia.
Biofinity is made with Aquaform Comfort Science technology to keep the lens moist all day long. It also features a high oxygen permeability material, to make sure your eyes get all the oxygen they need. This combo makes it a great alternative to Air Optix Aqua.
Most of us spend a lot of time in front of screens each day (maybe even too much time!). All that screen time can be harmful to your vision. Biofinity Energys are a special brand of contacts designed specifically to limit the damaging effect of screen time on your eyes.
Acuvue Oasys is the top selling biweekly contact lens. 7 out of 10 patients say its the most comfortable brand they've ever worn, probably thanks to Aucuve's HydraClear Plus wetting agent. If you want to switch from a monthly to a biweekly, your doctor will probably recommend Acuvue Oasys.
Acuvue Oasys is also the only contact lens to feature Transitions light blocking technology. These contact lenses actually darken and lighten in response to the sun, providing you with both UV protection and clearer vision. If you frequently play sports or work in an environment with harsh lights, you may want to consider Acuvue Oasys With Transitions.
Like Biofinity, Acuvue Oasys is also available in a toric lens and a multifocal lens. Another great thing about Acuvue Oasys is that it is now available in a daily disposable lens too.
Unlike other biweekly contact lenses, Acuvue Oasys comes in three different box sizes: 6-packs, 12-packs, and 24-packs. This lets you purchase the exact amount you need, no matter how many or few lenses you need.
Dailies AquaComfort Plus
More and more doctors are recommending patients switch to a daily disposable contact lens. Although they can be more expensive, the health benefits of wearing a new contact lens each day can outweigh the extra cost for many people. Plus, never having to deal with contact lens solutions and cases is an added bonus!
One of the most affordable daily lenses is the Dailies AquaComfort Plus. These lenses feature unique blink activated moisture technology, ensuring the contacts stay comfortably moist each time you blink. These contacts are also available in toric and multifocal, if you need that.
Another positive about the Dailies AquaComfort Plus is they are eligible for a rebate from Alcon, the manufacturer. When you buy an annual supply from LensesForLess, you get an additional $50 back, on top of our already low prices.
Whether you are switching to the new Air Optix HydraGlyde lens or to a different brand, be sure to contact your doctor first. Your eye doctor is specially trained to help you find the perfect brand for your eyes. Besides, regular eye health checkups are a great way to screen for many health conditions.
Whether you have dry eyes, itchy eyes, astigmatism, or presbyopia, Lenses For Less has the contacts for you. Once you and your eye doctor establish what’s best, we’ll be here to provide you with the most affordable, efficient contact lens options. Don’t wait until you’re completely out of your Air Optix Aqua contacts before figuring out what comes next. Instead, find the contact brand that most appeals to you, and have a conversation with your optometrist today.