The NASA-approved Austrian eyewear brand: Silhouette

Silhouette is not your average trend-driven eyewear brand. The Austrian eyewear maker has been designing and producing innovative, technically brilliant eyewear since 1964.

Their iconic Titan Minimal Art (TMA) series weigh less than 2 grams each and was selected by NASA to be used by their astronauts in space. This not only due to its lightness and how it is devoid of hinge screws, but because of the unyielding reliability of its eyewear components.

Silhouette frames are also highly customisable—you can combine your choice of temple colour with any lens shape you can dream up of to create something truly unique. The same temple and bridge set was used to create over 18 different looks, as modelled in the video above.

For those who are not fans of the rimless look, Silhouette has come up with slim, full-framed alternatives that are just as light and comfortable. See: Urban NEO and Urban LITE (featured in the video below).

Since 1999, Silhouette has sold over 15 million pairs of frames and this number continues to grow. It might be difficult to understand its appeal without trying on a pair and experiencing it for yourself.

So make sure you do the next time you visit Kwong Shin! 🙂

By |April 10th, 2018|Brands of KS|0 Comments

Spectacle Lenses 101

If terms like ‘high-index’, ‘progressive’ and ‘multi-coat’ always puzzled you, you’re not alone! We’re here to breakdown the eyewear jargon and help you understand the basics of choosing a pair of prescription lenses.

Credit: Oliver Peoples


Plastic lenses are the norm nowadays as they are much lighter (than glass), less brittle and allow for the layering of special coatings (see Coating).


The index of your lenses refer to the thickness of it. Typically, the index is chosen based on your degree or type of frame you choose. As metal frames are slimmer than plastic frames, thicker lenses tend to look more obvious. So in this case, we would recommend opting for higher index lenses.


There are two main types of lenses: single vision or multifocal.

Single vision lenses correct one type of vision problem e.g. looking near or looking far.

Within the category of multifocals, there are bifocal, trifocal and progressive lenses. These lenses provide correct multiple fields of vision best explained in this graphic:

Credit: Pinterest

Single vision lenses are then enhanced by coatings based on the wearer’s lifestyle and needs (see below). Multifocal lenses, especially progressive lenses, similarly come in many variations with new features constantly being developed and released every year. Examples of improved features include wider field of vision, gentler graduations and most recently, lenses that minimise head movements typically required to find focus.


R&D in recent years has also given rise to a variety of lens enhancements. Some features are exclusive to certain brands while others are offered by multiple brands. The quality/durability of each feature varies according to the manufacturer and here at Kwong Shin, we usually make recommendations based on the feedback we receive from customers who have tried out the lenses themselves.

Starting with the terms that are more easily understood, these coatings are commonly found:

  • Anti-reflective
    a.k.a. multi-coated lenses that reduce reflection on the surface and increase light transmission
  • Scratch resistant
  • Water repellant
  • Smudge resistant
  • UV blocking
  • Dirt repellant
  • Impact resistant
  • Anti-fog
    a.k.a. lenses that are less likely to fog up when moving from a cooler to warmer environment

The following coatings are a little more complex and we have further elaborated:

  • Blue light filter
    a.k.a. lenses that neutralise blue light and reduce digital eye strain
  • Photochromic treatment
    a.k.a. lenses that change colour when exposed to sunlight to reduce glare and protect against UV rays
    Available variations:
    > Extra dark lenses that also change colour when the user is seated in the car, and remains slightly tinted indoors (grey)
    > Standard colours (grey, brown, green)
    > Special colours (amethyst, amber, emerald or sapphire)
  • Digital lens by ZEISS
    a.k.a. lenses designed for people in their 30s and 40s who are experiencing the first signs of presbyopia and require a pair of lenses that will ease them into progressive lenses
  • Office lens
    a.k.a. lenses specifically for near and mid distance reading and computer work
  • Myopia-stabilising
    a.k.a. lenses designed to slow down the rate of myopia progression among children
  • Post contact lens usage (EnergizeMe) by ZEISS
    a.k.a. lenses meant to help contact lens wearers relax tired eyes after a long day and prevent eye strain caused by digital devices
  • Driving lenses
    a.k.a. lenses designed to help drivers cope with difficult light conditions and provide a field of vision best suited for driving


And that’s it! We hope this helps you in making a more informed decision the next time you make a pair of glasses 🙂

By |February 7th, 2018|Brands of KS, Education|0 Comments

Eyewear trends in 2018

The first month of 2018 has gone by in a snap!

We speak with lady boss, Annie, about her opinion on the 5 eyewear trends that will be hot in the coming year.

1. Clear/Transparent 

“I don’t really know how the trend came about but transparent frames are trendy for some reason right now.”

From top: Matsuda, RayBan, Factory900, Yellows Plus, Giacoma Puccini

2. Round

“The vintage look is a thing now but I find modern round frames nicer than those in the past.”

From top: Kansaku, Yohji Yamamoto, Lunor, Masunaga, ODD

3. Slim Metal

From top: Viktor & Rolf, MYKITA, Oliver Peoples, PANROAD

4. Gold

From left: Tom Ford, RayBan, Acoustic Line, Lunor

5. Forest Green

“Personally, I have been liking the colour green of late. But it’s not for everyone.”

From left: theo, Yellows Plus, MOSCOT, Silhouette, MCM, Viktor & Rolf

And that’s the end of our—very concise—eyewear trend round-up for 2018! You can find all of the frames above in store if you’re looking to sport a brand new look this Chinese New Year 🙂

By |January 24th, 2018|AOB, Brands of KS|0 Comments

The most self-willed brand in the world: theo eyewear

As optical people (see: people who interact with glasses everyday), there are few frames in the world that we would call truly unique. If you have been looking through trays of glasses like my mum has for 30 years, you will tend to agree. So amidst the current era of “black”/”tortoiseshell”/”rectangular”/”round”/”plastic” frames, theo is truly a breath of fresh air (or helium) because look:

This photo alone is enough to showcase the vibrancy and individuality characteristic of theo frames. They have mastered the art of creating these wild-looking glasses that constantly redefine our expectations yet prove incredibly wearable at the same time. If you are thinking about how these seem to be made exclusively for extroverts, over the years we’ve found they can help lend more reserved individuals a subtle way of revealing their personalities…

We won’t bore you with an origins story, you can read all about Antwerp-based, family-run theo here, while popping balloons (volume up!) and fiddling with their nifty time machine. A gallery of their current collection + inspiration behind each model can also be found here.

If you like what you see, we are running a rare sale on past season theo frames, with 30-50% off selected models that have yet to find a face to frame. Otherwise, feel free to browse their new collection, now available in store!

By |January 17th, 2018|Brands of KS|0 Comments