PRESS RELEASE: ZEAL Optics Introduces E-llume

March 15, 2013 – Boulder, CO – ZEAL Optics introduced the world’s first and only plant-based lens, which upholds to the highest of optical standards for quality and clarity while minimizing the impact on the environment.

Unveiled globally today at the International Vision Expo in New York City, ZEAL Optics, debuted to the market the world’s first lens using a plant-based bonding agent, thus replacing the petroleum-based bonder.“We are so excited to present our new e-llume lens,” said ZEAL President John Sanchez. “ZEAL has created a lens that will become the new industry benchmark for optical clarity with an environmental purpose.”

Designed and crafted in Boulder, Colo., this lens is proof that environmental initiatives are not a deterrent to an incredible optical experience. ZEAL’s engineering team has found a way to not only reformulate the bonding agent to eliminate crude oil, but to maintain a 38 Abbe value clarity in an active lens.

At ZEAL the brand principles of environmental and social responsibility, along with creating memorable life experiences, are driven by these type of innovative discoveries that push the boundaries of both the green movement and current optical stands. This is the first lens of its kind that can truly provide an ecological alternative to crude oil based lenses.

Currently ZEAL produces all their sunglass frames with Z-resin, a plant-based material that uses castor oil, eliminating harmful crude oil from the manufacturing process.  With the new e-llume lenses, ZEAL will become the first company in the world to lead the way towards completely removing crude oil from sunglass production.

“Castor represents a renewable resource,” stated Dick Auld expert in plant and soil science from Texas Tech University. “We commend ZEAL for taking the initiative to use a product that not only increases their sustainability, but also maintains the high quality of their product.”

ZEAL Optics’ patent-pending bio-based lenses offer unparalleled protection and prevention from UVA, B, and C as well as being able to identify and block a negative light range called High Energy Visible (HEV) light. This was recently cited as a possible cause of cataracts and macular degeneration. The ZEAL e-llume lens not only identifies this spectrum of light but helps to block it out.  The e-llume lenses contain a special hard coating for scratch resistance, along with an exclusive high transmission polarized film for increased eye protection from harmful rays.


Zeal Director of Marketing Joe Prebich shows us e-llume, the world’s first plant-based sunglasses lens

First Mozambican optometrists

The first class of degree-qualified optometrists have graduated from Universidade Lúrio in Nampula this month, becoming the very first optometrists in Mozambique. Nine optometry students graduated alongside peers from other health sciences disciplines, in front of the first lady, Maria da Luz Guebuza, at what was only the second graduation ceremony in the university’s history. In a promising step for long term eye health in Mozambique, four of the graduates have been employed at the university as members of the teaching faculty and in doing so, will become the first local members of staff.
One of those students is Joel de Melo Bambamba, who graduated top of the class. Joel, who is the eldest of five brothers, decided to study optometry because his grandfather was blind and his brother has serious vision impairment. Growing up, there was very limited access to eye care services. Although the course was challenging, Joel said he was very excited to graduate. “I am very happy to have finished,” he said. “To have reached a dream of mine, and my parents.”
Joel was awarded the Jill and George Mertz Fellowship by the American Optometric Foundation and is currently studying for his Masters. He will return to Nampula next year to begin his faculty position. James Loughman, who is a Professor of optometry at Dublin Institute of Technology and one of the project leaders of the Mozambique Eye-care Project, said the graduation is a source of great pride and joy. “To see these first optometrists emerge in a country with little in terms of eye health resources means that the combined efforts of so many people over the past five years have come into fruition,” he said.
“The first graduates will pave the way for the development and integration of a profession into the public health system in Mozambique. They are the future educators and leaders of eye health, not just in Mozambique, but potentially for Lusophone (Portugese-speaking) Africa.” Prof Loughman, who is the Chair of Optometry Giving Sight’s National Committee in Ireland, also highlighted that research in Mozambique has revealed that spectacle coverage for uncorrected refractive error (URE) and presbyopia is virtually non-existent. “As URE accounts for two thirds of the observed cases of visual impairment, the capacity of optometrists to fill this void is tremendous, and represents a real opportunity to transform the lives of those in need of eye health services,” he said.
Optometry Giving Sight is funding partner of the Mozambique Eye Project, which is a project of the Dublin Institute of Technology, the Brian Holden Vision Institute, University Lúrio, Irish Aid & Higher Education Authority in Ireland,  and the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland.
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10 FACTS from World Health Organisation Regarding Blindness

Fact 1

Worldwide, 285 million people are visually impaired due to various cases; 39 million of them are blind.

Fact 2

121 million are visually impaired because of uncorrected refractive errors (near-sightedness, far-sightedness or astigmatism). Almost all of them could have normal vision restored with eyeglasses, contact lenses or refractive surgery.

Fact 3

90% of visually impaired people live in low- and middle-income countries.

Fact 4

51% of all blindness is due to age-related cataract, the leading cause of blindness.

Fact 5

Cataract surgery and correction of refractive errors are among the most cost-effective health interventions.

Fact 6

Age-related causes of visual impairment and blindness are increasing, as is blindness due to uncontrolled diabetes.

Fact 7

Up to 80% of all blindness in adults is preventable or treatable. Among children, the major causes of avoidable blindness include cataract, retinopathy of prematurity (ROP), and Vitamin A deficiency.

Fact 8

Blindness caused by infectious diseases is decreasing globally due to public health action. Blinding trachoma affects 40 million people today, compared to 360 million in 1985.

Fact 9

Around 1.4 million children under age 15 are blind. Yet approximately half of all childhood blindness can be avoided by treating diseases early and by correcting abnormalities at birth such as cataract and glaucoma.

Fact 10

For decades, WHO has been working with global partners to eliminate the main causes of avoidable blindness, strengthening country-level efforts by providing technical assistance, monitoring and coordination.

Blepharitis new treatment options available at [email protected]

Blepharitis is a chronic inflammation of the eyelids which occurs due to an overgrowth of bacteria which breakdown the natural oils around the eyelids causing inflammation. [email protected] has been using the Blephasteam Goggles to assist many of our patients who suffer from Blepharitis.

Symptoms of Blepharitis

  • A sandy, itchy or burning feeling of the eyes is experienced, especially in the morning. 

  • A redness, as well as inflammation of the eyelid with crusting, scaling, deposits or discharge.

  • Excessive eye watering, tears.

  • Stickiness of the eyes.

  • Intolerance to wearing contact lenses.

  • It is more common in people who have eczema or rosacea.

Treatment Options

Hot Compresses
  1. Heat your eyelids, either using a hot (not scolding) compress, or letting warm water run over your closed eyes in the shower for 1-2 minutes.

  2. Massage your lids by gently rubbing your bottom lid in one direction up towards the lid margin or shelf. Also rub in one direction your top lid down towards your lashes. Do this along the entire length of your top and bottom lid. 

Blephasteam Goggles Treatment

According to the manufacturer, Blephasteam “provides, in standardised conditions, a moisture and heat therapy.This dual action melts the meibomian secretions and obstruction.”

  1. A pair of goggles are worn to use steam to gently warm the eyes for 15 minutes. 

  2. The steam softens and melts congealed oil in the Meibomian glands

  3. The Optometrist massages and squeezes out the debris, cleaning the glands which allows for natural lubrication of the eyes to resume.

Use Foam cleansers

SteriLid or OCuSOFT are great products to assist you with eye lid hygiene.  Apply foam wait for 60 seconds and rinse of with warm water, consult the directions on the pack for more detailed instructions.  For more information or to purchase from our online store, select the link below.

  1. SteriLid by TheraTears

  2. OCuSOFT Lid Scrub by OCuSOFT

Choose your makeup carefully

Eye makeup may contribute to acute blepharitis, especially when using eye liner.[1]  Doing so may block your meibomian glands, which in turn stops your eye’s lubrication. Choose eye liners that wash off easily, since they are less likely to plug your glands.

For more information check out


The aim of any of the treatments listed above – is to improve the function of the eyelid glands. Ongoing treatment will be required to prevent future flare ups. Your Optometrist will suggest which combination of treatments options work best for you.  We encourage our patients to have any concerns checked out ASAP, long term Bepharitis may contribute to permanent damage of the oil glands.

(1) Wittpenn JR. EyeScrub: Simplifying the management of blepharitis. J Ophthalmic Nurs Technol 1995;14(1):25-28.

Maui Jim Readers

This August, Maui Jim have expanded their MauiReaders Collection! 

MauiReaders are have a unique, hidden bifocal on the back side of the lens makes the reader visible only to the wearer. The flat top bifocal is positioned low on the lens so MauiReaders function perfectly as a normal sunglasses for distance viewing, but have the reader option when needed for up close work. This is perfect for any situation where you find you have to constantly change from your reading glasses to your sunglasses. 

If you are interested in a MauiReader you now have an incredible range to choose from.

Here are the options available to you:

  • Reading Add powers available:  +1.50, +2.00, and +2.50. 

  • 43 different models to choose from, each model is available in several colours.

  • Lens Colours available: Grey, Bronze, Rose, HT (Light Green).

The great thing about Maui sunglasses is that all their sunglasses are warranted to the original purchaser for two years from the date of purchase against any defect in materials and workmanship. Broken or damaged nose pads and temples are replaced free of charge for as long as parts are available. 

Come and try on a new MauiReader today at [email protected] or contact us on 3886 6061 for more information.