Glasses of Binyon – Calana experiences Migraine Relief with Avulux Lenses

Ever since her freshman year of high school, our office manager Calana has experienced debilitating migraines. Officially diagnosed with chronic migraines 17 years ago, she experiences at least 12 migraines a month. Triggered by light, then experiencing extreme light sensitivity, halos, nausea, fatigue, this condition has been very difficult to manage.

Since Calana excels in administrative positions, her work path has led her through a variety of office environments. Working in an office invariably leads to lots of computer time and overhead fluorescent lights. We’re so glad she ended up at Binyon Vision Center because we get the benefit of her talents. Over two years ago, aware of her condition, Dr. McEathron sent an article on this new migraine-relief lens technology to Calana. She pursued a trial of Avulux migraine relief glasses and they have been life changing for her. We hope the Avulux lenses now available at Binyon will also be life changing for more of our patients who deal with migraines.

Now available at Binyon- Avulux migraine relief glasses, proven glasses to prevent migraines and decrease light sensitivity for migraine sufferers.

How Avulux lenses work

Avulux lenses uniquely filter out blue, amber and red light, only allowing soothing green light to pass through. Blue and amber light affect cells in your eyes that secrete melanopsin, which can lead to migraine attacks and increase light-triggering pain.

Now available at Binyon- Avulux migraine relief glasses, proven glasses to prevent migraines and decrease light sensitivity for migraine sufferers.

The patented Avulux lens technology removes up to 97% of the triggering wavelengths. An independent, third party study conducted a double blind, placebo controlled study comparing the benefits of wearing Avulux lenses vs. clear plano lenses on patients with regular migraines (reference: It was found that wearing Avulux in addition to a healthy life style statistically improved symptoms on an 11-point pain scale between 2-4 hours after wearing the lenses. The Avulux lens filter is the most scientifically researched and tested glasses device for migraine symptoms. Over eight years of development have gone into these lenses that are now available in single vision, progressive and plano (no prescription) lenses.

Now available at Binyon- Avulux migraine relief glasses, proven glasses to prevent migraines and decrease light sensitivity for migraine sufferers.

How to use Avulux lenses

Glasses with Avulux lenses can be worn either for preventative measures, or as migraine symptoms start. Calana’s main triggers are overhead lighting and heavy perfume smells. Without doubt, lighting in airports and airplanes have always triggered a migraine during the flight or upon landing. Calana recently traveled for work on two separate occasions and decided to wear her Avalux glasses. On all legs of her journey, she was migraine free! Instead of heading to the hotel to curl up in a dark room- she could go enjoy the sights and sounds of the city she visited. As a preventative measure, Calana wears her Avulux glasses when she is in an environment that triggers her migraines.

In addition- when Calana feels a migraine coming on, she grabs her Avulux glasses. Instead of craving a dark room- she feels relief. After a few minutes, she describes the feeling like when you relax and lower your shoulders- but in her eyes. Because lights are a main trigger for Calana’s migraines, she tried several other “migraine-reducing” glasses on the market and the popular tints. Avulux has been the best solution by far. She also likes that while other glasses distort color, the unique filter in these lenses keep colors true, something important in computer work. While migraines would often send her home from work before- she can keep working.

Now available at Binyon- Avulux migraine relief glasses, proven glasses to prevent migraines and decrease light sensitivity for migraine sufferers.

For more information on Avulux lenses

Binyon Vision Center is the only provider of Avulux lenses north of Seattle and south of Vancouver, BC. Our opticians have been trained in the specifications and fitting of these lenses. We have the ability to create Rx lenses in partnership with Cherry Optical lab in both single vision and progressive lens styles. We can also create a plano (non-Rx) lens and have fitover glasses with Avulux filters to pair with prescription glasses. To schedule time to discuss Avulux lenses with an optician- please call 360-647-2020.

Avulux offers a 60-day return policy for full refund when patients have tried continuous use for two weeks with no relief. Additional resources can be found at

Glasses of Binyon – Scott Stiglitz must have color

“I’m always looking for the brightest frames. It takes me no time to pick, I see it and say that’s the one.”

glasses of binyon bellingham washington

We’re back with a new Glasses of Binyon highlight! See past Glasses of Binyon stories here, here and here!

Scott Stiglitz may have entered his bright colored glasses era a little later in life, but he has jumped right in with both eyeballs! After wearing more conventional, silver metal frame bifocals, Scott (or Stiggy as he’s known to many who call on him at the Hardware Sales cable shop), took inspiration from news anchors to go bold with his frame choice in 2021.

Stiggys’ first two Binyon glasses frames were a carbon fiber printed Ovvo frame and a Face a Face cobalt blue frame with tortoise temples. Next time, he designed a Seahawks-themed Feb31st wood frame and this year, purple was calling his name with the photographed Brutal No. 20 by Etnia Barcelona. After years of shopping at big-box retailers for basic frames, he loves the variety of choices, personal service and attention he receives at Binyon. He’s quick to decide- he knows he wants bold and as soon as he sees it- he gets the opticians approval on the fit and he’s sold. Check out the independent frame lines that Binyon carries that Stiggy has to choose from here!

glasses of binyon bellingham washington
Brutal No. 20 in purple by Etnia Barcelona the Bold Collection

For these 2024 glasses, Scott decided to pay tribute to his college team – the UW Huskies. He was on a mission for purple frames. These were the first ones he tried on and even after Heather showed him a few more purple options, they agreed the fit, the style and obviously the color were perfect!

Glasses of Binyon – Lenses matter too!

Stiggy has worked at Hardware Sales for 20 years, and his job has become more and more computerized in the cable shop, which also manages concrete sales. Due to vertigo, he was fit into lined bifocals when the birthday-onset vision changes first set in, but as his prescription changed, he found himself craning his neck pretty far back to see the screen and he asked about solutions. Stiggy now wears a trifocal lens, three distinct lined zones for distance, intermediate (computer) and close up (reading). It’s not as popular as a lens today making availability more limited, but the Binyon team sourced what he needed so he could stick with what works well for him.

Stiggy brings his great personality everywhere he goes. We’re thankful for the opportunity to help him bring color to his world and joy to him and all those around him, who often comment on his fun glasses. It’s not the usual choice for a hardware store employee, but it’s the perfect choice for Stiggy. If you’re looking to stand out in color or style, please stop by and check out the selection at Binyon Vision Center!

Patient Appreciation Month 2024

Each of you who trusts us with your eye health, contact lenses and eye glasses needs are invaluable to our business. For patient appreciation month we celebrate YOU. Thank you for your support.

Our community’s support of local, independent businesses is above and beyond. Inspired by the “Think Local” campaign – we’ve put together a drawing with prizes from some of our favorite local businesses and multiple ways for our patients to enter! In 2024, we’re going bigger – more prizes and more ways to win!

Here are the ways you can earn entries to the patient appreciation drawing:

  • Coming to the Face a Face trunk show on April 12th- 1 ticket
  • Purchasing a new complete pair of eye glasses (new frames and lenses) – 4 tickets
  • Purchasing new lenses for an existing frame – 2 tickets
  • Purchasing a complete pair of eye glasses (new frame and lenses) at the Face a Face trunk show – 6 tickets
  • Purchasing a new frame at the trunk show – 4 tickets
  • Stopping by the office to say hi! – 1 ticket
  • Stopping by the office to refill eye glasses cleaner spray bottle – 2 tickets
  • Purchasing a year-supply of contact lenses – 5 tickets
  • Purchasing less than a year supply of contact lenses – 2 tickets
  • Bringing contact lens packaging to the office for recycling – 2 tickets

Here is a list of *some* of the possible raffle prizes!

  • Ovvo Optics frame (your choice from our best selling line in 2023!) plus new prescription lenses!
  • Non-prescription sunglasses from Invu
  • Many more prizes from some of our team’s favorite local businesses!

Face a Face Paris Trunk Show April 12th!

trunk show face a face paris frames eyeglasses eye glasses Bellingham, WA

You are invited to the Face a Face Paris Trunk Show!

We are so excited to welcome back to the office our Face a Face company representative Dustin, who will bring with him all the latest styles from this outstanding eye glasses frame line! You are invited to make an appointment for an exclusive showing by emailing our office manager Calana at or stop in to browse between 10:00 – 4:00 pm. There will be snacks, trunk show specials and entry opportunities to our annual Customer Appreciation month raffle (info about last year’s raffle here)!

Also introducing – Nifties Eyewear!

In addition to presenting the Face a Face Paris collection, we are so excited to announce we will be launching a new line of petite eyewear at this event! Nifties specializes in high fashion frames in smaller sizes (eyesize 44-49). It’s a common observation from our more petite patients that they wish there were more options that fit them- and we’re excited to be able to provide a wonderful line that will fit this need!

Stop by April 12th and bring a friend! It’s a great time to find your next pair of glasses!

Feb31st Frames Sale in February!

feb31st eye glasses frame sale february 2024 binyon vision center bellingham

Each of these Feb31st frames were custom designed by their wearer! We’re extending that opportunity to you for the month of February with a 31% discount! (See what we did there?). There’s never been a better time to design a frame unique to you- a true reflection of your style and personality! Stop in or give us a call to schedule time with an optician to talk about your custom Feb31st!

See more information about the Feb31st eye glasses frame line in our recent blog post here and on their website here!

Specialized Office Lenses a Life Saver for Extended Computer Use

In our increasingly digital world, many of us find ourselves spending prolonged hours in front of computer screens. Whether it’s for work, entertainment, or staying connected, our eyes are constantly exposed to the strain of digital devices. The team at Binyon Vision Center understands the unique visual challenges posed by extended computer use and is thankful to be able to prescribe and fit specialized lenses designed to alleviate digital eye strain.

Understanding Digital Eye Strain

Extended computer use can lead to a range of visual discomfort known as digital eye strain. Symptoms include blurred vision, headaches, dry eyes, and neck and shoulder pain. The blue light emitted by screens can also contribute to sleep disturbances. To address these issues, specialized office lenses offer a tailored solution for individuals spending more than 4 hours per day on computers. Binyon Vision Center offers carefully curated packages for specialized office lenses.

Features of Specialized Office Lenses:

  1. Anti-Reflective Coating: Specialized office lenses come with an anti-reflective coating that reduces glare and reflections from computer screens. This not only enhances visual clarity but also minimizes eye strain caused by intense light sources. Our office lens packages come with Shamir Glacier Expressions Anti-Reflective Coating. After trying many coatings, we find this anti-reflective coating to be the best at reducing glare, but maintaining sharp vision – and it’s the easiest one to keep clean with anti-static and hydrophobic layers worked into this multi-layer coating.
  2. Blue Light Filtering: These lenses incorporate blue light filtering technology to reduce the exposure to harmful high-energy visible (HEV) blue light emitted by digital screens. This feature helps alleviate eye fatigue and supports better sleep patterns. This is an optional add on to the Binyon lens packages. Please ask for more information and a demonstration of how the blue light filtering works!
  3. Optimal Reading Distance: Unlike regular glasses, which may not be optimized for intermediate distances, specialized office lenses are designed to provide a clear and comfortable vision at the typical distance of computer screens. This ensures a more relaxed and ergonomic posture during extended computer use. There are two Shamir lenses Binyon offers- the Computer lens is designed for seeing up to a 5′ distance and the Workspace lens works well for up to 10′ distance.
  4. Progressive Design: Some office lenses often have a progressive design that allows for smooth transitions between different vision zones. Whether you’re focusing on your computer, documents on your desk, or engaging in face-to-face conversations, these lenses offer seamless vision correction. As mentioned above, the two progressive lens styles work up to difference maximum distances- depending on the needs of the wearer- but have a larger viewing area of the lens optimized for computer distance than a traditional progressive lens.
  5. Customization for Your Needs: We understand each individual’s visual needs are unique. The optometrist and optician will recommend a specific office lenses, best suited for your prescription and work space.
Shamir Computer Lens, image courtesy of Shamir.
Shamir Workspace Lens, image courtesy of Shamir

Tips for Digital Eye Health

In addition to investing in specialized office lenses, consider incorporating the following practices to promote digital eye health:

  • Follow the 20-20-20 rule: Take a 20-second break every 20 minutes, looking at something 20 feet away to reduce eye strain.
  • Adjust screen settings: Ensure proper screen brightness, contrast, and font size to minimize eye strain.
  • Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water to keep your eyes lubricated.
  • Regular eye exams: Schedule regular eye examinations to monitor and address any changes in your vision.

We are committed to enhancing your visual comfort in the digital age. Specialized office lenses are designed to provide clear vision and alleviate the challenges associated with extended computer use. Invest in your eye health and experience the difference of customized eyewear tailored to your unique needs. Schedule an appointment today to embark on a journey toward clearer and more comfortable vision.

The End of the Year is Coming – have you used your vision benefits?

Have you been paying for vision insurance or into a flexible spending account all year?  Are you familiar with the details of your insurance plan?  Many benefits expire at the end of the year- let us help you find out more details about yours!

Calendar year vision benefits

Many plans are on a calendar year cycle. This means they renew on January 1st no matter when you used them last.  A common plan in our area that has this benefit is the Regence plan. This plan is an option for employees at Western Washington University.  This two year benefit now renews every even calendar year. If you haven’t used your benefit dollars in 2022 or 2023 – it’s a missed opportunity!

Flexible Spending Accounts

Some employers offer their employees to defer part of their salary to a tax-free savings account. This can be used towards medical expenses.  These are “use-it-or-lose-it” plans. These plans will expire with the funds going away either at the end of the year or in some cases on March 15th.  Talk with your employers or the manager of your FSA fund to make sure you understand the balance in your account and when it might expire.

Money saved into flexible spending accounts can be used for medical expenses that are not covered by insurance- but must be medically related.  In our world that means – eye exams, copays, glasses, contact lenses and prescription sunglasses.

There might be no better time to update your glasses or stock up on contact lenses!

Please give us a call to check on your vision benefits or to answer any questions on how you could maximize the money you’ve saved in your FSA account!

We have a large number of frames in our “red-dot” sale section right now- all 30%-50% off!  Our in-stock sunglasses are 50% off this month (some exclusions apply) and can be used for prescription sunglasses! We look forward to seeing you before the end of the year!

We’re thankful for progressive lenses!

If you’ve crossed over the 45 birthdays mark… you know what we’re talking about. For someone who was nearsighted and wearing glasses since 2nd grade, the experience was much different than I expected. I knew the blur of not being able to see in the distance, but this was weird. All of a sudden, my eyes wouldn’t focus when my kids shoved something close to my face to read. “Mom! What does this say?” would elicit this response – “Whoa… move that back a little bit.” When I thought things would get blurry- they didn’t- instead my eyes started to pull funny, feel strained and the natural instinct was to move my head back until ahhh… I could read.

My yearly eye exam confirmed – it was time for progressive lenses. I anxiously awaited the arrival of my first pair with a +1.00 add. After helping fit people with +1.75 to +2.50 add powers for years, this seemed like a baby step that probably wouldn’t make much difference. But to my surprise it did made a big difference! I’ve since graduated to a +1.25 add power as another birthday came and went and that strain feeling came back. The joy of this particular birthday change called presbyopia.

What is Presbyopia?

The lens of our eye (see image below) is actually flexible and along with the surrounding muscles, it changes shape to focus on objects at different distances. Presbyopia is an age-related condition when the lens and muscles connected to the lens become weaker, preventing it from moving into a shape that is able to focus at near distances. Like nearsightedness and farsightedness, presbyopia is a diagnosis of a visual acuity deficiency in the patient’s eyes.

The eye’s lens stiffens with age, so it is less able to focus when you view something up close. – source:

How do Progressive Lenses Help?

Progressive lenses in eyeglasses are the most common treatment for presbyopia. A progressive lens is a line-free multifocal lens. In other words, there are multiple vision prescriptions incorporated into one lens for the wearer to be able to see clearly at multiple distances. Unlike traditional lined bifocals or trifocals, progressive lenses offer a seamless transition, allowing wearers to see clearly at varying distances. The same lenses allow one to see the far distance (driving or watching a movie), mid-distance (face-to-face conversation or looking at a computer) down to close up (reading a book or looking at a phone).

Take a peek at the diagram of a progressive lens below. It’s not completely accurate because it does look like 3 focal distances when in face there are infinite focal lengths for the wearer which progress from distance to near as your eyes look downward through the lens. The diagram clearly shows something important – the lighter, unidentified areas on each side of the lens. This is what we call a blending zone. The combination of manufacturing limitations and physics means this progressing zone through the lens does not extend all the way to the edges. That is a limitation of these lenses that can cause difficulty with adaptation to wearing progressives.

Diagram of a progressive lens – source: Tatum Eyecare

On the market today, there are several progressive lens manufacturers. The first lens was designed and released by a company called Varilux in the 1960’s. Thankfully there has been a lot of improvement in design and manufacturing during this time. Each company has a unique approach to creating this visual corridor of the progressive lens. We highly encourage you to understand all the options and benefits of the different types of progressive lenses.

How to select the proper Progressive Lenses

  1. Customization: At Binyon Vision Center, our experienced opticians take the time to understand your unique visual requirements. We offer personalized progressive lenses tailored to your lifestyle, ensuring optimal clarity and comfort.
  2. Lens Technology: Our opticians stay updated with the latest lens technologies. From anti-reflective coatings to blue light filters, we offer a range of options to enhance your visual experience and protect your eyes from digital eye strain. There has been much innovation in the world of progressive lenses, and we partner with the top lens manufacturers to provide the best, most effective lenses available. Our preferred progressive lens partner, Shamir, has an unmatched number of lens designs and invest highly in research and development to understand the wearer’s experience.
  3. Frame Selection: Our extensive collection of frames complements the style and preferences of every individual. Our knowledgeable staff can help you choose frames that not only look great but also accommodate progressive lenses seamlessly.

If your experience with progressive lenses has left you anything less than being thankful – we encourage you to explore more options. Lens designs continue to improve and with a better understanding of how they work, we hope they will be more successful for you. It’s unavoidable – that up close vision will go someday and being comfortable in the progressive lenses is something we would love to help you with!

Feb31st Wood Glasses

I’ll never forget when one of our opticians at the time, Christie, returned from a Vision Expo conference in 2013 and said- “You won’t believe these wood glasses. There’s an Italian company that figured out how to put prescription lenses in wood glasses and they custom make every frame with wood layers and you pick the colors. We could be one of the first in the United States to carry this line.”

Looking down on the layers of wood that will be manufactured into glasses fronts – from

Ten years later… a rough count of shops on the website shows over 130 stores in the United States and a few hundred Binyon patients have worn or do wear Feb31st frames.

John designed these color-blocked green and black and white patterened wood frames himself.

Bespoke Eyewear – manufactured to order!

In addition to a cool concept – a design that allows for manufacturing a one-off custom pair of prescription wood glasses, this company is always innovating. They’ve created a more robust product over the years by changing hinge designs and reinforcing the layers of wood. Many new wood finishes and material combinations have also been introduced into the product line, allowing for infinite customization possibilities. One of the most unique and rewarding features is the custom engraving possibilities on the temples of the frames. Dates, initials, symbols are all examples of amazing designs we’ve seen created on the wood glasses.

Another custom design- note the patient provided a drawing for the custom engraving inside the temple.
Wood chip color swatches

Sustainable manufacturing from tree to glasses

In addition to the uniqueness of design and manufacturing, we want to highlight another vital part of this company – it’s dedication to sustainability and eco-friendly practices. All wood is FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified for being sustainably forested. Every frame produced is made to order therefore eliminating waste in stocked inventory. There is also an opportunity to use a wood from fallen trees, mostly from unusual hurricane force winds that hit the Northern Italian Alps in October 2018. If there is an opportunity to improve sustainability or manufacture in a more eco-friendly way, this company will act.

Trees fallen during the October 2018 storm in Northern Italy – from
Frames manufactured from the wood of the fallen trees from the storm – from

Feb31st at Binyon Vision Center today

Over the years, the Binyon team has loved designing Feb31st frames for our inventory and has held design appointments on special days with our patients interested in designing their own pair. With a variety of shapes, so many colors and size possibilities the customization options are endless. In addition, some of the frame models in the EVO line incorporate metal, which comes in many colors for a unique spin on the wood glasses- plus the engraving option mentioned above. This design your own eyewear option that this unique made to order company provides through it’s wood glasses is amazing. Another important benefit of Feb31st eyewear is they are very light and comfortable to wear. For some of us four-eyes, these are our most comfortable pair of glasses. We had a patient who was very sensitive to metals and plastics and found these to be the only glasses she could wear! Here are a few of our other favorite Feb31st designs. We hope to see you in the office soon to design your own!

Please note – our next opportunity to design a pair of Feb31st glasses is October 19th, 2023 – email to schedule an appointment!

Recycling Update for all things Eye Care!

New recycling options for eye drop containers and contact lens cases!

We are into our fifth year of recycling contact lenses and contact lens packaging as a Terra Cycle partner! A common concern for our potential daily wear contact lens wearers was the amount of waste the daily disposable contacts would generate. We’re excited to have this solution available and we’ve now shipped over 460 pounds of contact lens waste that has been dropped off by you Bellingham for proper recycling. Yes – I calculated that twice to make sure. Municipal recycle pick up would sort out these little pieces of plastic from the recycle and now we’ve diverted the equivalent weight of a tiger out of the landfill!

An average Bengal Tiger weighs 450 lbs. Binyon Vision Center has shipped over 460 lbs of contact lens waste for recycling since 2018.

We’ve worked hard to get the word out about our contact lens recycling program and these results show it has been successful! Now we’re excited to introduce a new recycling program available for more eyecare products. Binyon Vision Center is now also a drop off point for recycling the following items:

  • All brands of contact lens cases
  • All brands of contact lens solution bottle caps (bottles can be recycled through the city recycling program- but caps are too small!)
  • Eye drop single dose vials
  • Eye drop packaging

Hard to remember? Here’s a little image to help. If it has to do with your eye care or eye wear and it seems too small to go into the City Recycle… we will probably be able to recycle it!

With the addition of eye drop packaging, this spreads to non-contact lens wearers! We’d appreciate helping us get the word out- if you can share this image above with your friends, family members and social media followers we can get more people recycling these items. As with the contact lens packaging, anyone can drop by a container of these products, we’ll take the goods and return your container if you’d like. You can drop it through our mail slot (if it fits!) during our closed hours.

Recycling around the office with Ridwell

Our optical business receives many boxes via courier service and various package delivery outfits every day. Yes, this is so fun- new frames for our showroom floor, our patient’s completed prescription glasses, office supplies, and more to keep us going! After the thrill of opening the boxes of new glasses, the let down was the amount of unrecyclable waste. Over a year ago, Dr. LeClaire opened an account with Ridwell, a unique pick up service for hard to recycle items. Check out here if they are available in your area.

Recently, we upgraded our Ridwell service to the unlimited plan. This allows us to recycle:

  • Plastic film (many frame companies send their frames to us in plastic film bags for protection)
  • Batteries
  • Threads
  • Light bulbs
  • Multi-layered plastic (food storage bags for example)
  • Clear plastic clamshells
  • Styrofoam
  • Latex paint and fluorescent lights for a minimal extra fee

We received a bin to fill for monthly pick up but with our unlimited plan, we can add extra bags (and we always do!) outside of the bin and they will take those also. We love the knowledge the extra waste that comes in the door can be recycled and what is especially cool about Ridwell is they will tell us where it’s going! They are transparent and accountable for how and where the recycled materials are used. See more details here.

With Terra Cycle and Ridwell, small recycling steps add up!

You can help us with our mission to divert small eye care waste from landfills – reference the image above and drop by these new items along with your contact lens waste to Binyon Vision Center. If you haven’t started using Ridwell yet, we’d encourage you to give it a try! The service can be canceled any time if it’s not a good fit. For the Binyon Vision Center team, the peace of mind all of us get from not throwing these previously unrecyclable items into the garbage can is priceless!