Special Effects Contact Lenses

Looking for a quick and easy way to create an extreme eye transformation? Look no farther than our industry-leading range of fast shipping special effects contact lenses. Sometimes also known as SFX contacts or theatrical contact lenses, they are the most common method of transforming the eyes of actors, actresses, extras and models for live-action movies, TV shows, commercials, theatre productions, and photo shoots. Serving as an essential part of a professional Special Effects Makeup Artist’s tool kit, they are often used in conjunction with special effects makeup and prosthetics in order to create a specific look for a character, whether that be based on visual descriptions from a novel, a comic book, movie script, or some other source.

The use of special effects contact lenses can be traced back as far as 1926 when Lon Chaney wore a pair of blind effect contacts in the film The Road to Mandalay. However, it is most often the late Dr, Reuben Greenspoon who is credited with being the first to develop and fit them. Initially called upon by legendary SFX makeup artist William Tuttle to develop a pair of blue FX contacts to transform the natural brown eyes of an actor in Miracles for Sale (1939), Greenspoon subsequently went on to spend more than half a century as an optometrist to the stars. Working on movies such as Dracula (1958) where he developed and fitted a pair of contact lenses with a bloodshot effect and Flaming Star (1960) where he fitted Elvis Presley with brown contacts, his most famous work comes in the form of Michael Jackson’s iconic ‘Thriller’ video (1983) in which he developed and fitted Jackson with a pair of wolf eye lenses. Meanwhile, more recently he worked on the Twilight Saga (2008 – 2012) where he created and fitted custom SFX contact lenses for cast members including Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, and Taylor Lautner, many of which can be accurately replicated with designs from our range of Twilight contacts.

Originally manufactured from glass, today’s special effects contacts are manufactured using the same materials (silicone hydrogel or polymacon) and processes as soft and clear vision correcting lenses. However, special effects contacts are diferentiated by the inclusion of an opaque hand-painted, hand-printed, or even machine printed design that covers the iris, and sometimes also the pupil. Nowadays they are used so extensively that it seems almost impossible to name an actor or actress who hasn’t worn them, let alone a move that does not incorporate them. Some recent examples of their use include Vin Diesel who wore a pair of mirror contacts in The Chronicles Of Riddick (2000 – 2013), Angelina Jolie who wore green contacts in Maleficent (2014) and Maleficent: Mistress Of Evil (2019), and Kate Beckinsale who wore blue contacts in Underworld (2013 – 2017), all of which can be replicated using special effects contacts from our movie replicating range.

The best SFX contact lenses for movie-quality eye transformations

Home to one of the world’s biggest selections of professional special effects contact lenses, we have more than 500 unique designs including extreme SFX contacts that can be used to create the illusion of glowing eyes, injured eyes, infected eyes, enlarged eyes, blind eyes, and even vertical pupils. Although the majority of these measure 14.2mm in diameter, we also stock a selection of special effects contacts in mini sclera (17mm) and full sclera (22mm) form. Meanwhile, we also stock an extensive selection of natural effect contacts which feature coloured blends that accurately replicate natural blue, green, grey, and brown eyes, for when a simple natural colour switch is all that is required.

UK-manufactured special effects contact lenses

Proudly manufactured by the UK’s only approved manufacturer of coloured lenses, our professional quality, soft, reusable, non-prescription special effects contact lenses are hand-printed on the outer facing surface using various shades of highly pigmented approved dye. Formulated to provide exceptional levels of comfort and durability, they contain a combination of 62% medical-grade polymacon and 38% water. Packaged within sterile foil-sealed plastic blisters, our FX contacts are sold in pairs with a lifespan of 90-days and are suitable for up to eight hours consecutive wear.

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