Lady Gaga has quickly become a fashion icon with her wild style choices. Out of everything kids could have picked up on—wearing their underwear for daily activities, masks over their faces, wigs in the shape of telephones, other weird things that are for the most part harmless—circle contacts have become the biggest trend and can be dangerous to kid’s (and adult’s) eyes. They are also illegal.
In her video for the song “Bad Romance” there is a part that features the singer in a bathtub with wider than normal eyes. I had thought these were computer generated, looking a bit like the wonky alien faces you can create on iPhoto, and they just may be. However, people who want this look obviously can’t walk around with a computer strapped to their face (Take note-If this is Gaga’s next look, she stole it from me) so they have been using special contact lenses called “circle lenses,” which are imported from Asia, come in colors like violet or pink, and can cause blindness.
“In the past year, there’s been a sharp increase in interest here in the U.S.,” said Joyce Kim, the 31-year-old founder of Soompi.com, an Asian pop fan site with a forum devoted to circle lenses and fans of Anime. “Once early adopters have adequately posted about it, discussed it and reviewed them, it’s now available to everyone.”
The lenses are available at the click of a button, costing $20-$30 a pair online. Unlike most contacts, you do not need a prescription which makes them illegal in the US since all contacts are mandated to be prescribed. The lenses have not undergone the regular safety inspection and can cause harm so severe as to end in blindness.
Karen Riley, spokeswoman for the FDA, said “Consumers risk significant eye injuries, even blindness, when they buy contact lenses without a valid prescription or help from an eye professional.”
If your kid is desperate for a pair, there are other options. First, take them to an eye doctor, get a legitimate prescription, and buy the decorative lenses, called “plano,” from an actual professional. They may not look just like Gaga, but at least they’ll still have their vision in tact for her next hot trend.