Liberty, a leading American sports prescription eyewear manufacturer known for the Rec Specs sports protective brand, was looking to innovate their Rec Specs Active Z8 & X8 Men’s Ophthalmic product lines of everyday prescription frames for youth and adult males. Liberty sought advanced solutions extending beyond the limitations and capabilities of the common list of materials available in the industry, such as nylon and polycarbonate.
Liberty wanted the designs for young kids to have fun aesthetic qualities like sparkling glitter and color changing styles, as well as unique properties such as head-hugging flexibility and ‘grippy’ textures for active lifestyles. In addition, Liberty needed to ensure the frames offered the highest level of durability, not only for parents who complain about routinely having to replace their children’s frames, but to meet Liberty’s lifetime warranty and “nearly indestructible” standards.
The proposed new eyewear designs included complex shapes and forms that required adhesion of hard and soft materials, which have historically been a challenging combination to manufacture. Seeking solutions for this engineering and design challenge, Liberty found Lubrizol’s portfolio of ESTANE® VSN TPU for specialty eyewear applications.
Liberty determined Lubrizol’s ESTANE® VSN TPU provided the exact qualities and characteristics needed to achieve the product line’s innovative requirements. Liberty collaborated with Lubrizol from concept design to market launch. Liberty relied on Lubrizol’s testing capabilities to ensure the materials met a high standard of performance and utilized Lubrizol’s technical support along its global supply chain. Liberty also benefited from ESTANE® VSN TPU’s sustainable characteristics, since the material is BPA free and required a lower temperature to process, it therefore required less energy.
Liberty was able to design and manufacture unique, yet durable frame styles with the glitter effect and color-changing ability that they were looking to achieve using Lubrizol's ESTANE® VSN TPU. “With the recent success of the new line of prescription eyewear for youth and adults, Liberty plans to launch additional Rec Specs designs by Q1/20, with added innovation and style, as we gain experience with the ESTANE material.“ states Carmine Di Chiara, V.P. Products at Liberty.
All photos are owned by Liberty.