Here are the Best Contact Lenses for Sensitive Eyes

Person with sensitive eyes

Do your eyes frequently feel dry, irritated, or uncomfortable? If so, you likely have sensitive eyes. 

Sensitive eyes can make simple daily activities become a struggle, whether it be being outdoors, using digital screens, or even wearing contact lenses. Fortunately, you don’t need to resign yourself to a life of itchy, watery eyes—there are effective ways to soothe and protect them. 

This guide will cover tips for identifying your triggers and caring for your eyes, and highlight five of the best contact lenses for sensitive eyes.

What Does It Mean to Have Sensitive Eyes?

If you’ve been experiencing discomfort, redness, or watering when exposed to bright lights, you may have sensitive eyes. This condition means your eyes are more prone to irritation and react strongly to various environmental triggers.

A tell-tale sign of sensitive eyes is photophobia or light sensitivity. Bright lights can cause irritation, so you may find yourself frequently reaching for sunglasses or avoiding sunny days altogether.

Sensitive eyes often feel dry, gritty, and itchy, especially after extended screen time or in arid climates. The eyes may appear red and inflamed due to irritation from dryness, allergies, or exposure to irritants like dust, smoke, or certain makeup products.

Common Causes of Sensitive Eyes

While sensitive eyes are usually more of an annoyance than a serious health concern, understanding the underlying causes can help you better manage the condition. The most common causes of sensitive eyes are the following:

  • Allergies (e.g pet dander or dust mites)
  • Dry eye disease
  • Certain eye conditions
  • Side effects of medications
  • Natural aging process

Can I Wear Contact Lenses Even If I Have Sensitive Eyes?

Contrary to popular opinion, you can still wear contact lenses even with sensitive eyes. However, there are a few things to consider.

  • Eye health. Your first step is to consult your eye doctor. They will evaluate your eye health and sensitivity levels to determine if contact lens wear is appropriate. If so, they’ll guide you toward lens options best suited for sensitive eyes.
  • Type of contact lens. Today’s contact lenses come in a variety of materials, some of which may be more comfortable than others for those with sensitivities. For example, silicone hydrogel lenses allow more oxygen to pass through to your eyes, which can reduce dryness and irritation. Whereas, daily disposable lenses eliminate the need for cleaning and disinfecting, minimizing exposure to solutions that could cause reactions.
  • Eye care. Regardless of which lenses your doctor prescribes, proper eye care and compliance are essential for comfortable wear with sensitive eyes. Be diligent about washing your hands thoroughly before handling your lenses and follow care solutions recommended by your doctor.

5 Best Contact Lenses for Sensitive Eyes

Not sure what contact lenses to get? Scroll through five of the best contact lenses for sensitive eyes and what sets one apart from the other.

  1. Dailies AquaComfort Plus

If you have sensitive eyes but still want to wear contact lenses, put Dailies AquaComfort Plus at the top of your list. As the name implies, these lenses are designed for daily replacement—simply discard them before bedtime and open a fresh pair in the morning. This eliminates the need for any lens care solutions that may irritate your eyes.

What sets Dailies AquaComfort Plus apart is Alcon’s innovative blink-activated moisture system. These lenses release a wetting agent with every blink to keep the entire lens surface continuously moisturized throughout your wear. Combined with their ultra-thin, breathable design utilizing LightStream® Technology, you’ll experience exceptional all-day comfort, even in drying environments. A handling tint allows for easy insertion and removal without affecting your eye color. 

  1. Biotrue ONEday

Second on the list is the Biotrue ONEday daily disposable contacts. Their Surface Active Technology™ creates a dehydration barrier that helps these lenses maintain an impressive 98% of their moisture for up to 16 hours of wear. No more dry, scratchy lenses by mid-afternoon!

Biotrue ONEday uses proprietary HyperGel™ material that also matches the water content and shape of your natural cornea. This bio-inspired blend allows for exceptional breathability and flexibility that synthetic materials can’t match. Additionally, their built-in UV protection makes it ideal for those who spend significant time outdoors. They block 95% of UVB and 70% of UVA rays to help safeguard your precious eyes from harmful radiation. 

  1. 1-Day Acuvue Moist

For optimum hydration and comfort, 1-Day Acuvue Moist daily disposables are another worthwhile investment. Its LACREON Technology creates a long-lasting cushion of moisture that helps keep the lenses optimally hydrated throughout your day. This gives the lens a satiny-smooth outer surface to minimize irritation.

In addition to their impressive hydrating capabilities, 1-Day Acuvue Moist lenses are made of a high-water content Etafilcon A material that’s exceptionally safe and gentle on sensitive eyes. 

  1. Air Optix plus HydraGlyde

If you need lenses that can withstand your everyday environments, look no further than Air Optix plus HydraGlyde. These lenses have a dual-action moisture system and their SmartShield® Technology creates a barrier against irritating dirt and debris buildup.

In addition, the Air Optix plus HydraGlyde lenses are exceptionally breathable. Their high oxygen transmissibility allows optimal airflow to keep your eyes feeling refreshed no matter how many hours you wear them. The lenses are even lightly tinted for easy application and removal while still looking completely natural once in place.

  1. Focus Dailies

Despite their low maintenance, Focus Dailies don’t sacrifice comfort or visual quality. Alcon’s Lightstream Technology ensures these lenses provide crisp, clear vision even in low lighting conditions. Meanwhile, their AquaRelease moisture system continuously replenishes a cushion of soothing hydration throughout your day’s wear.

Focus Dailies’ convenient 3-month packaging makes them perfect for busy lifestyles or first-time lens wearers looking for an easy transition from glasses!

Is There a Way to Fix Sensitive Eyes?

Sensitive eyes are usually a chronic issue without a complete cure, but you can take steps to reduce irritation and discomfort.

  • Identify and avoid your triggers. Common culprits like dry air, bright lights, cigarette smoke, dust, and certain makeup products can exacerbate symptoms. Use a portable humidifier, wear sunglasses outdoors, and opt for fragrance-free personal care products.
  • Use over-the-counter lubricating eye drops. These can temporarily relieve dryness without harsh preservatives. Your eye doctor may also recommend prescription eye drops or ointments if your dryness is severe.
  • Treat underlying conditions causing your sensitivity. If you have dry eye disease, for example, your doctor may suggest procedures like punctal plugs to conserve your tears. For eye allergies, antihistamine eye drops, oral medications, or immunotherapy could provide relief.
  • Adjust your diet. Studies show that increasing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids from fish, walnuts, or supplements can reduce dry eye symptoms for some people. Staying hydrated can also ease dryness.

Key Takeaway

Sensitive eyes can cause dryness, redness, and irritation, making daily activities challenging. To manage this issue, it’s important to adhere to proper eye care and choose the right contact lenses to use. Daily disposable lenses are the best contact lenses for sensitive eyes because of their convenience and hydration. Every one of the aforementioned brands has its unique benefits so surely, there’s one that fits your needs like a glove.