Dry Eye Glasses (Info Only) Ziena Eyewear

We no longer sell 7Eye AirShield glasses, but have attempted to consolidate here useful information we have collected about the glasses, for what it's worth! 

About Ziena Eyewear

General information

Ziena series glasses have two distinctive features that set them apart from other moisture retaining eyewear:
  1. They resemble glasses more than goggles, and
  2. They utilize a semi-opaque silicone shield rather than a dark foam seal.

This combination of features means that, while offering quite a lot of dry eye protection, they are also aesthetically much more appropriate for the workplace. Just two other options exist that I'm aware of (as of summer 2018): custom moisture chamber glasses fashioned by an experienced optician, and "microenvironment glasses".

How do Zienas work? 

The removable silicone eyecup of the Zienas keeps out infiltrants, blocks airflow and increases humidity around the eyes, reducing evaporative tear loss and improving eye comfort, making them ideal for people with moderate to severe dry eye symptoms. They are available with many different types of lenses, from clear to standard sunglass lenses, polarized, photochromic, and extra dark photochromic.

In a well fitting pair of Ziena glasses, the shield, which is a delicate silicone attaching to the frame with micromagnets, will brush the skin on three sides but will be well vented on the fourth to prevent fogging. Not everyone will experience the same seal of course as this will depend on fit, facial bone structure etc. 

The important thing to know about Ziena eyewear is that it is not about completely sealing you in like a goggle, but rather about dramatically reducing evaporative tear loss by enclosing your eyes most of the way. This is most important when you are reading or using a computer because when you are fixating (staring at print) your blink rate is greatly reduced, which decreases tear secretion and distribution. Another vital function for the workplace is blocking much of the blowing air from vents, which is so damaging to already dry eyes.

One more thing I really like about Zienas is that the seal is a whitish semi-opaque silicone and while you can't see through it, light does pass through, meaning you don't get the same tunnel-vision feeling that happens sometimes with the deep black foam seals. (On the other hand, people suffering severe photophobia may well prefer the dark seals because of how they block peripheral light from painfully stimulating sensitive nerves.)

How do they look? 

Let's be honest: No moisture chamber glasses of any kind will ever look like normal glasses. It is not possible to make an effective seal that is also... invisible. But the silicone shields of the Ziena series are a lot more discreet than the dark foam gaskets of most of the alternative products, and that's a big step forward. Other than custom moisture chambers, to the best of my knowledge Ziena eyewear are the only real option out there for people in jobs dealing with the public and particularly in professions where eye contact is vital to performing effectively. From teachers and professors to counselors and psychotherapists, many of the dry eye patients I've worked with over the years have welcomed this option as helping them balance comfort with being able to do their job effectively.

What are these glasses used for?

Ziena series eyewear are designed to improve comfort for people with dry eye disease without the aesthetic compromises of goggles. Their delicate removable silicone shields are much less noticeable and do not obscure peripheral vision in in the same way as classic moisture chamber glasses with black foam shields, but they perform close to the same function - blocking drafts and wind, reducing evaporative tear loss, increasing humidity around the eyes, improving eye comfort, and reducing the frequent need for eyedrops.

The most common use of Ziena eyewear is for the workplace, especially computer users and office workers at the mercy of heat/a/c vents. They are popular among people for whom advanced protective eyewear is essential but for whom conventional moisture chambers are too unsightly or distracting for their workplace. Ziena eyewear offer an alternative that is much closer to ordinary glasses. Professionals such as therapists who need to have eye contact with their clients find them valuable as do people with jobs where the air tends to be dry and harsh (nurses, teachers are among our most frequent callers).

Ziena glasses are available with a wide assortment of clear, tinted and photochromic lenses, so they can be used primarily indoors, primarily outdoors, or both, depending on your lens selection. For outdoors uses, they will not offer the complete windproofing of an AirShield, but a well-fitting pair will block most wind as well as heating and a/c in cars.

Cleaning and care 

Ziena glasses come with a microfiber polishing cloth for the lenses and frame.

The removable silicone shields need replacing periodically (6 months is a fairly common interval, but it varies greatly with daily usage, soiling from makeup, etc.). 

The manufacturer recommends cleaning them with either makeup remover or baby wipes, rather than soap and water, because water weakens the adhesive and can cause the magnets to come out sooner, meaning more frequent replacement. 

Silicone shields

As of 2017, Ziena silicone shields are available in Clear Frost or Black. Those suffering from excessive light sensitivity will find the black shields helpful, particularly in conjunction with tinted lenses.

Adjustable nose pads

All four styles are, I believe, now made with adjustable nose pads, but if you feel you will need these, it may be helpful to confirm with the seller first.

Framestyles

 Style Notes
Oasis
OASIS was the very first Ziena frame introduced by 7Eye. It has distinctive styling and lovey color options - besides glossy black, the tortoise frame is quite elegant.

I wish they were as functional, however. I have consistently run into fit issues with the Oasis; returns are always fit related. I would say that fewer than half of the people who try them find the fit to be appropriate for them. If you are an average to larger fit however, these might be a good option for you. Even those who need a smaller fit sometimes get them to work by having an optician adjust them, and there are some nose pads included that you'll definitely want to install. On the Oasis, the shield tends to go right to the skin on the sides and bottom but has a larger gap at the top (that's the vent to prevent fogging). I found this counterintuitive when I first tried them, but found that they performed better than I expected in practice. However, I do not think they would be ideal in, for example, an office where you have a vent right above your desk. In such a case I'd prefer the Verona or Nereus.

Verona

Verona and Oasis are distinctly ladies' styles, while Nereus and Seacrest are unisex/mens. I find the Verona a little underwhelming in terms of styling - not to be unfair, it is not unattractive, it's just not particularly distinctive. But in terms of the all-important fit, it's quite successful- fitting average to smaller sizes quite well in most, though not all cases. Verona is not always suitable for very small or narrow faces and this remains the group I find most difficult to fit with moisture chamber glasses, unfortunately, but the addition of adjustable nose pads in late 2016 has helped a lot and 7Eye are working on another smaller style.

Quite a few ladies prefer the Ziena Nereus. But I think that for the majority, Verona is and will continue to be the first choice in terms of fit. - Oasis, on the other hand, runs large and is a somewhat awkward fit... lovely styling but more questionable on getting a comfortable fit.

Nereus
NEREUS was the first men's (well, unisex really) model introduced in this series and it has been a resounding success since its launch early in 2015. The fit has proven to be versatile enough for most, though of course not all, men - for some it's too small, but it's rarely too large and all things considered I am really, really pleased with the high percentage of successful fits for men. Many women wear Nereus as well, though.
Seacrest
SeaCrest is the most recently released style and is a modification of Nereus. It's a men's/unisex style, but redesigned specifically for a better Asian fit - that is, built to accommodate facial structures that have a shallow nose bridge and higher cheek bones. The silicone shield is re-designed for this fit as well. NOTE: SeaCrest's shield is substantially shallower than Nereus'.