Ricky Tomlinson pops in

All our customers are stars to us - but sometimes a real-life star comes into Specs2U. Ricky Tomlinson and his lovely wife came to Specs2U for an eye test and new specs.

We did Ricky's new reading specs in 20 minutes! He's just like you'd expect him to be - down-to-earth, charming and cracking jokes. A real gentleman.

And he said "Thanks Lurkio" when I made him a cup of tea. I was made up! 🤣🤣

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Fogged up specs?

There are some lens coatings that provide anti-fogging and under 'normal' conditions, they work quite well. You can get also sports glasses with special anti-fog lenses.

Outside, fogging normally occurs when warm air (such as your breath) is deflected upwards towards your specs - such as wrapping a scarf around your mouth and nose. The warm air condenses on your cold lenses and steams up. The obvious solution is to move the scarf down a bit and let the warm air dissapate

You can buy anti-fogging wipes - these basically create a layer between the lens and the outside world. Other suggestions are a drop of shaving foam or soap wiped over the lens and 'buffed off which do the same as the anti-fogging wipes. However, soaps with microgranules in them could damage the lens and we wouldn't really recommend any of the above.

However, in the extreme weather we have at present, nothing is going to be much use. Stepping from a very cold environment into a warm house, car or office is going to make them steam up regardless!

A quick wipe with a good lens cloth will take the surface moisture off the lens and help warm the lens up and so reduce the incidence of condensation.

But do not attempt to drive until your lenses are clear!

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Project Australia

Project Australia. You won't have heard about it but it was successfully completed.

An Ellesmere Port customer came to us with a problem at the start of the year.. A relative had died in Australia and the funeral was scheduled for a week's time. Coincidentally his son also lived in Australia so he was going to spend a week in Adelaide and attend the funeral then spend the rest of the month in Sydney with his son.

But his glasses were broken and the repair to the frame and the time to replace the lenses would be finished after he was due to fly out - and he couldn't do without his specs!

So we made him a cheap pair to use temporarily for the journey while his main pair were being repaired. We then sent the main pair all the way to Adelaide do he'd have them for the majority of the trip.

The customer came in today to tell us all went well - where he was staying in Adelaide was a bit off he beaten track so the 'postie' just left the package on the front porch (so much for 'Signed For' delivery! They got there safe and sound however and he got full use out of them 'Down Under'.

Would your optician do that?

Don't fix your specs yourself

After having a couple of people coming onto the branch with broken glasses this week, a word of advice. Do NOT attempt to fix your glasses using superglue (or any other glue for that matter).

Superglue can wreck the coating on your lens and is also very hard to remove once on. In addition, the fumes can be an irritant to the eyes.

When used on the frame it can prevent the arms from folding and also clogs up screw holes (meaning that old screws cant be removed or new screws put back in). The residue left usually means that replacement lenses can't be put back either. If you have a loose screw in your specs get an optician to put a new screw in - don't glue one in!

The best bet in the event of a broken frame to take the specs to your opticians first. Usually metal frames can be repaired and / or the lenses put into a new frame. They can at least advise what to do next.

And you won't glue your fingers together either!

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More word of mouth recommendations...

Just booked a lovely lady in for an eye test. When I asked her how she'd heard about us she said she'd been recommended by a friend.

She then asked if anyone where she works knew about us and had a glowing recommendation (apparently) from one of her work colleagues.

She then decided to check us out on our website and as a result of that (and reading some of our customer testimonials) she decided to give us a go!

We've obviously set the bar high! I hope we can live up to her expectations but its great to now how well thought of we are in the local community!



Is it a coincidence? Twice in the space of two days (in separate branches) we've had darts players in who are struggling to play their favourite sport as their eyesight has deteriorated.

One has to ask his friends if he's hit a double and the inevitable reply is "Hit a double? You've not even hit the board!" 🤣

Clearly their distance vision has depleted slightly. This happens to most people as they pass 40. The solution is obvious - get a decent eye test and a pair of glasses (usually with only a minor prescription) and sharpen up your vision.

We can't hep you play darts better, but at least you'll see clearly where they land!


A message from Missouri

A message from Missouri

"Thank you for all you have done to help us. My son absolutely loves his Migratech lenses. He said it took a few hours to adjust but then everything became more crisp and defined. The fatigue he experienced due to his dyslexia is no longer an issue. He is thrilled with the difference these glasses make. Sincerely-Terri"

That has given me the biggest smile I've had this week.

Cup of tea?

Amazingly, while in Sainsbury's I bumped into another couple of my customers - and we chatted for about 5 minutes about holidays, glasses (obviously) and family. Again it shows the type of relationship we enjoy with our customers - you are certainly not just a name and number at Specs2U.

We're on first name terms with many of our customers and some pop in for a cup of tea and a chat when they're in the area. Indeed many book their eye tests by popping into the branch in person rather than just calling on the phone. I'd like to think its for my sparkling personality but I suspect its my tea and coffee making ability.


A testimonial

A testimonial from Mike Brougham of Kitchcleanse.

"We recently used the services of Specs2U with reference to my mother who was suffering from cataracts.

Specs2u's professionalism, knowledge of the job and speed of service has been excellent from when we first contacted them right though until the completion of treatment.

The appointment was given very quickly which was welcome and has led to the surgery of my mother taking place sooner than we expected with very positive results. I'd like to thank Phil and his team for pushing this through for us, avoinding any lengthy delays.

I would recommend Phil and Specs2U to my contacts and any of my clients.

Specs2U deliver excellent service at a competitive price. Thank you very much Phil".

The downside of Irlens

We've had a sad story told to us by a woman who found us through the Internet.  Her daughter has Irlen Syndrome and she has to wear coloured lenses to read.  Because of this she's been subjected to bullying at school and the experience has left her unwilling to read and also having to be taught at home for the time being.

She's coming into our Ellesmere Port branch on Saturday for an eye test and to see if our clear Migratech lenses will help her read without having to use coloured lenses.  

So she can go back to school and start enjoying reading again.



Going the extra 3,000 miles

OK - so why a map of Missouri? Quite simple really.

We had an email message from a mother who read about our special lenses that could help her son who has Irlen Syndrome. This means he has to use coloured lenses to read and work - but being 19 he's a bit self-conscious of doing so. So the mother asked if we could provide him with our special lenses that are - incidentally - clear (so they do the same job but look just like normal glasses).

The only problem? You guessed it - they live in Missouri.

No problem - because we're Specs2U. They're sending his old frame over together with his prescription. We're going to fit the new lenses in and send them back. And he'll hopefully never need to wear coloured lenses again!

Would your optician do that?



Diabetic screening - within a week!

We've been providing diabetic screening in the West Cheshire region for some time at our Ellesmere Port branch.  More and more people are starting to use us for the first time and have commented how quickly we can see them compared to their usual optician.  

It could be because we don't have a set day for screening and instead can provide screening on our test days (2-3 days a week normally).

If you're having trouble booking a place for diabetic screening in your opticians, call us on 0151 357 3456.

Would your optician do this?

What do you do if you have customers who can't pick up their glasses before Christmas...but need them before Christmas (as they're away or working)?

If you're a typical optician you tell them to pick them up in the New Year.

But we're not a typical opticians - so when we close the branch today, I'll be driving round the local area dropping those customer's specs off at their homes to make sure they've got them before Christmas Day. Good customer service is at the heart of what we do - and we aim to deliver it every single day.

If your current optician wouldn't go that extra mile (or two) for you, then think about Specs2U next time you need an eye test or glasses.

A happy customer indeed

A lovely story from our Liverpool branch. A lady came to us for an eye test and we found she had an issue that could adversely affect her vision. We suggested our new MigraTech lens to help sharpen her vision to correct her particular issue.


On collecting the glasses she told us it was the best vision she'd ever had from a pair of glasses (and incidentally the best eye test she'd ever had).


She came back around a week later to have an adjustment to her glasses and our optometrist came out to help - and got a hug from our lady customer for her troubles!


She then came back for a second pair and also popped in to provide a box of chocolates for the staff (which Rob in the lab managed to demolish in an hour!) and also this amazing hand-made card to thank the staff for helping her. What a lovely gesture!

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Always learning...

A customer of ours lives some miles away from the branch and told us that her friends had questioned why she travels so far to come to us when there are other opticians closer to where she lives. She said the reason is that we look after her, make her feel welcome and also she learns something new about her eyes every time she visits. We do try to educate our customers on their eyes and their glasses so its good to know that our efforts are noticed! :)

The difference is the service

We often get asked what makes Specs2U different to other opticians.  Rather than use our own words, here is just one example of what our customers say about us...

"I recently visited Specs2U at Ellesmere Port in order to assist my 84 year old mum who was fed up with her "High Street" varifocals.

When we arrived we were immediately given a warm welcome and a cup of tea. My Mum had her eye test which was very detailed and took over 45 minutes. The optician was very patient and explained to my Mum how the varifocals would work with her particular eye prescription.

Then my Mum was shown the selection of glasses and was helped by the staff to choose a pair of frames along with sunglasses.

This took another 30 minutes and at no time did my Mum feel she was being rushed.

The whole experience was very calm and you would certainly not get this sort of service anywhere else.

A couple of weeks later we went back and Phil very kindly fitted the glasses and explained to my Mum how they would help her vision and how to wear them.

Again, we were given a nice cup of tea!

My mum received a pair of varifocals and prescription sunglasses that she is delighted with and will have no hesitation in telling all her friends about the great service.

I would recommend Phil and Specs2U every time."

June J. Wirral


Google Doodle - Ferdinand Monoyer

Today's Google Doodle celebrates the work of Ferdinand Monoyer. You will probably never have heard of him (until today) but this French ophthalmologist is very important in the world of optics.

He invented the dioptre (the scale of measurement of visual acuity) based on how far away from something you need to be to see it clearly.

He also invested the eye chart that helps measure visual acuity - and which has been used around the world by billions of people. So when you next have an eye test, you'll now know who invented the chart they ask you to look at!

Going the extra mile - again...

The scenario?  Simple.  A lady loses her glasses in Chester and needs to replace them.  Simple, right?  Except she lost them on Saturday afternoon and needed a replacement for work on Monday morning.  And her prescription was out of date.   Rebuffed by all opticians in the area she came onto us.  The long and the short of it was that we arranged to get her prescription to the lab on Monday morning and hand-made the lenses to prescription. I then gave up half my day off to drive to Widnes with the frame, wait for the lenses to be fitted then on to Ellesmere Port so she could pick them up.  

The result  was she could go back to work on Monday afternoon (no-one else could sort her out for around 2 weeks).  Result is one happy new customer.

That is the kind of customer service we do.