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Thread: Did I Get Real Transitions Lenses?

  1. #1
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    Did I Get Real Transitions Lenses?

    Last week, I purchase my first pair of progressive lenses from LensCrafters. At the time I ordered them, I specifically asked for Transitions progressives. At the time I picked up my glasses, I didn't thoroughly examine the receipt, and now I wish I had. Here's what the receipt says:

    0050000123 Lenses Reactint (Poly), Progressive - Illumina

    After noticing that the lenses did not appear to perform even close to what Transitions advertises, I decided to go online to investigate the term "Illumina". Found out that Illumina appears to be a line of progressives from Vision-Ease.

    To further help identify these, these lenses have little squares etched into the "glass" on both the outside and inside edges. In addition to that, on the outside edges under the little squares, there's the number 17 and on the inside edges (near the nose area) there's what appears to be sort of curvy "V" under the little squares. These are the same sort of marks that appear on Vision-Ease's Product Reference Guide, so I'm pretty sure that's the type of lens I received.

    What's disturbing is that this Vision-Ease brand is not listed on Transitions' Product Availability Chart. So further investigation leads me to find that Vision-Ease has their own photochromic lenses called LifeRx and now I'm wondering whether I've been duped and been told I've got Transitions lenses when in fact I've got Vision-Ease's "version" of Transitions.

    If anyone could verify for me whether Vision-Ease's photochromic lenses are Transitions brand lenses or not, it would be most helpful. Thanks in advance. :)

  2. #2
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    One way to know for sure is to go and ask your optician at lens crafters. Just tell them that the brand of lens is important to you and you really wanted Transitions. See what happens, perhaps they will just give you new lenses and all will be well.

  3. #3
    OptiWizard
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    Hi vrwl,
    What Lenscrafters dispensed as Reactints are not Transitions products. You can go back and demand Transitions Lenses along with a certificate of authenticity that allows you to register your purchase with us (and go into a drawing for prizes!).

    My understanding is that LC can only offer you what the corporate buyers authorize. For a photochromic product, the choice is one material (poly) and one PAL design. Anything else is special order and costly to the patient. There will be an added cost in your situation because Lenscrafters does not stock or offer Transitions branded products.

    I suggest returning your Reactints, let them know your disatisfaction, demand your money back, and head straight to an eyecare practice that will offer you the latest in technology, materials that best match your Rx and frame choice, plus are in a position to offer 30+ and counting premium PAL designs from the many manufacturers that are partnered with Transitions Optical.

    Sorry you learned about this the hard way.
    Jim
    Jim Schafer
    Retired From PPG Industries/
    Transitions Optical, Inc.

    When you win, say nothing. When you lose, say even less.
    Paul Brown

  4. #4
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    Thanks so much for the help Jim, you essentially confirmed what I had suspected. I'll be taking the lenses back for a refund and finding a reputable place to fill my prescription.

  5. #5
    That Boy Ain't Right Blake's Avatar
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    LC has stocked Transitions lenses in the past, so it's possible the person you dealt with didn't realize the new product was not the same. Before stores started carrying polycarbonate variable tint lenses, they carried a Transitions lens called Ormex that many of us felt wasn't a "real" Transitions lens. For those who requested the real deal, we ordered the Transitions III lenses. These were a special order and were more expensive. However, changing from one polycarbonate variable tint lens to another may not cost you any more. I only work for LC once every six weeks or so (everyone needs a hobby, right), so take my information with a grain of salt as it may be outdated.

    If you decide to get a refund and go elsewhere, explain to whoever you deal with at LC why you are doing so. Might save someone else the trouble you're having.

    Finally, I have processed a few of these LifeRx lenses, and when activated under a UV light they darken pretty much like the Transitions brand lenses. But that's just my observation, and outdoors is where it matters anyway!
    Light travels faster than sound, which is why some people appear brighter before you hear them speak.

  6. #6
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Bronze Supporter LENNY's Avatar
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    Hmm!
    I did not know that LC sleeps vith VE and not with Transitions!?
    I am surprised!
    When did this happened!

  7. #7
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Bronze Supporter LENNY's Avatar
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    BTW!
    Are you happy with Ilumina design Progressive lenses?
    You would have to switch to something else if you want transitions!

  8. #8
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    I did go back to LC and asked for a refund for the LifeRx lenses. And I did tell the person I dealt with that I was returning the lenses because they were NOT what I asked for, specifically Transitions lenses. Surprisingly, I got no grief over the refund request. I figured I'd have to fight to get my money back. But they processed the refund right then and there back to my credit card and then I went to one of the independent optical centers listed on the Transitions web site to get what I wanted to begin with. :)

  9. #9
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    And as an added side note, the LifeRx lenses, when outdoors, just turned the palest shade of grey in full sun. I even set them out on our deck for about 15 minutes in the blazing sun, and was very disappointed in the resulting change.

    When at the independent optical center recommended from the Transitions web site, they had a sample lens they allowed me to take outside to see the change speed and color difference. What a world of difference between that and what the LifeRx lenses had done. So from personal experience, they are not even close to being the same.

  10. #10
    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Silver Supporter Jubilee's Avatar
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    To give LC the benefit of the doubt, you were probably a victim of branding...

    Transitions was the first and the most widely known photochromic, and as being the market leader now have a brand that is synonymous with the actual product. Such as Kleenex is a generic term for facial tissue and Coke can be any cola (except if you are a big pepsi lover..)

    While LC in the past has been able to get the transitions V product, I am glad you found an independent to provide you with the real deal.

    FWIW when they first started to use LifeRX there was still the option to get acutal Transitions as well.

    Cassandra
    "Some believe in destiny, and some believe in fate. But I believe that happiness is something we create."-Something More by Sugarland

  11. #11
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    FYI, LC doesn't have Transitions. They haven't made the deal with the manufacturer or whatever. Reactints, though, had the reputation for not getting out of the lab w/o a scratch. I'm not sure why, but all LC employees secretly know it's a terrible product.
    And I agree about the branding thing. If someone walked and asked for Photochromatic lenses, it'd be quite a surprise. People usually ask for 'transitions' or 'photogrey' or even 'progressive' meaning transitions. Kleenex is a brand, but a tissue is a kleenex. Same thing.

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    lc currently carries vision-ease illumina as their in-house photochromic progressive lenses. they do offer transistions brand lenses at higher cost and would have to special order them. on the receipt, instead of saying "reactint," it should say "photo poly" for polycarbonate transitions.

  13. #13
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    Nothing works anywhere near as well as Transitions advertisements.

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    OptiBoard Professional Ory's Avatar
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    1.5 year old thread.

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    Master OptiBoarder OptiBoard Gold Supporter Judy Canty's Avatar
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    AND a consumer post...

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    OptiBoard Professional OpticianVlad's Avatar
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    :) Chip, you're right.....
    Not even Transitions perform like the Transition advertisements :)

    Any how, LC does offer Transitions at $40 more on top of the Reactint/LifeRx cost.

    The catch is that their LifeRx price in poly is around $245 for a single vision lens



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