The Brunswick Art Gallery

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Role models inspire Kids to feel ‘cool and confident’ and wear their specs with pride

CHILDREN are more confident than their parents were when it comes to wearing glasses because they feel ‘happy’, ‘cool’ and ‘clever’.


Research by Specsavers [1] a decade ago revealed that wearing glasses often provoked bullying, however a new study [2] by the high street opticians reveals a decline in name-calling and an increase in self-assurance among younger specs wearers.


One in five parents said they felt self-conscious wearing glasses as a child because they were bullied or picked on, compared to 77% of children aged five to 16 who said they are confident wearing glasses because they make them feel happy (34%), cool (32%) and clever (29%).


Proving that glasses are now viewed as a must-have accessory, more than a third of children (34%) who don’t currently wear them said that they would also feel cool if they were prescribed specs.


Bianca Sarre, Specsavers style advisor, says: ‘Our research shows just how much the times have changed and it’s wonderful that, instead of feeling self-conscious or at worst, bullied, children are now happy to wear their specs and wear them with pride. Many people now see their glasses as a fashion accessory and an extension of their style, and for children in particular, there are many glasses-wearing role models for them to look up to, which may have been less the case when their parents were young.’


The most popular specs-wearing heroes for children, according to the Specsavers study, are Harry Potter (57%) and Superman (41%). Heartwarmingly, 45% of children also said that their mum or dad were their biggest hero who wears glasses.


Their heroes were selected because their glasses made them look cool (40%) and never made things difficult for them (32%). As a result, almost a third (31%) of children say that these people or characters make them feel more confident about wearing their own specs.


Bianca adds: ‘It’s very encouraging that children feel more confident in their glasses than in the past, but unfortunately name-calling does still exist, albeit to a lesser extent. Our study shows that shockingly, nearly half (48%) of parents were called names as a child because they wore glasses, compared to just over a quarter of children (27%) now. This could account for why 44% of parents say that they worry about their child wearing glasses.’


Specs-wearing dads worry slightly more than mums (46% v 43%), possibly because 52% of them were called names as a child compared to 45% of mums. It is a gender split which is still reflected among children today, with 33% of boys saying that they have been called names because of their glasses compared to 21% of girls.


But things have greatly improved since Specsavers’ initial survey in 2009 when almost 50% of spec-swearing children were called names in the playground and one in five skipped school because they were bullied about their glasses. Almost a quarter of children said then that having to wear glasses to school made them feel sad while 60% didn’t think glasses were cool.


Bianca comments: ‘While it is upsetting that the usual nicknames, such as ‘‘four eyes’’ and ‘‘geek’’ still exists for those who are picked on, it is promising that it is happening less and attitudes are changing, with one in five specs-wearing children being likened to their heroes, such as Harry Potter.’


Children’s anti-bullying charity, Kidscape, which has been a long-standing Specsavers charity partner, also finds the new research promising.


Lauren Seager-Smith, CEO at Kidscape, says: ‘Specsavers has been a huge supporter of Kidscape and bullying prevention for many years.  This includes raising significant funds to help Kidscape deliver practical support to children and families impacted by bullying. We are delighted that the experiences of children in school are changing and that this generation can wear their specs with pride.  Through working together, united against bullying, we can change the lives of young people for the better.’


On October 23, Specsavers is launched a new offer where children receive free glasses from the £64 range, with the choice of a second pair at half price, giving both children and parents something to smile about.


For more information or to request an appointment you please contact Specsavers Brunswick Centre. Visit to find out more about Kidscape.


[1] Specsavers 2009 survey of more than 1,000 children and their parents

[2] Specsavers 2020 survey (07.09.2020 – 17.09.2020) of 1,000 parents with children aged 5-16, who have worn glasses since they were children, 500 children who wear glasses and 500 children who don’t wear glasses

Specsavers at The Brunswick will stay open with safety front of mind

SPECSAVERS at The Brunswick will remain open for all eye care and hearing needs when the country moves back into lockdown on Thursday 5 November.


Research* by the retailer showed that a third of people in the UK noticed a deterioration in their eyesight during the first lockdown, so is urging customers to keep their scheduled appointments.


While most retailers will close under the new restrictions, the government has recognised that opticians and audiologists provide essential health care services. This means that Specsavers will continue to keep their doors open to the public and offer a full breadth of services to the local community, including:

  • Comprehensive eye examinations
  • Hearing tests and hearing consultations
  • Home eye examinations for people with a physical or mental disability who are unable to leave their home
  • Contact lens consultations
  • Enhanced optical services for people experiencing any eye problems
  • Frame repairs and the provision of new glasses
  • Hearing aid repairs and the provision of new devices
  • Purchase of vision care products, such as an anti-fog lens solution for glasses wearers through to dry eye drops


Specsavers will also continue to offer its remote services for people who are self-isolating, vulnerable or unable to leave their home. These services include:

  • RemoteCare – a free nationwide consultation service offering advice and care via video and telephone link
  • Online shopping – glasses and contact lenses can be bought online with a current prescription
  • Ask The Expert – a Facebook group designed to give people access to professionals seven days a week, who can answer questions about general eye and hearing health concerns


Clinical services director, Giles Edmonds, says: ‘We understand the concern customers have as we move back into lockdown and want to reassure them that it is safe to go ahead and book an appointment or come in as scheduled.


‘As providers of an essential health service, we have played a key role in looking after people’s eye and hearing health throughout the pandemic and are delighted that we can continue to do so, while also playing our part in relieving some of the strain on our partners in the NHS.’


Specsavers has put in place various safety measures, including restrictions on the number of customers allowed in store at any one-time, social distancing, and bank card instead of cash payments, where possible.


Mr Edmonds adds: ‘We remain vigilant with our safety measures to guarantee the ongoing safety and wellbeing of our customers and our colleagues. We have adapted our ways of working so we can remain open to serve the public’s health needs and every store is adhering to strict government guidelines to ensure customer and colleague safety remains paramount.’


In line with NHS recommendations, Specsavers colleagues use personal protective equipment (PPE) throughout the stores, wear face masks and other PPE during tests, and all testing equipment and frames are thoroughly sanitised before and after each use. Customers are also asked to request an appointment in advance by phone or online through the Specsavers website to help manage social distancing and minimise time spent in store.


Stores in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland currently remain open for all eye and hearing needs. Specsavers will adhere to each country’s industry guidance if and when changes to local rules are made.


To find out more information, you can call Specsavers Russell Square, Bloomsbury based in The Brunswick Centre on 020 7520 0010 or book your appointment online.