Once, not so very long ago, seeing well and looking good didn’t necessarily go hand in hand. But as corrective-vision technology progressed, so did the demand for prescription frames that matched the public’s growing interest in fashion and personal style. This burgeoning demand inspired Jack Cohen to start his own designer-eyewear business in 1927, and soon, he was selling fashionable eyewear up and down New York’s Orchard Street from a humble pushcart. The concept was so successful, however, that he was soon able to open the first Cohen's Fashion Optical storefront on the corner of Orchard and Delancey. The near and farsighted from across the city flocked there, most to find frames that flattered their faces, and some because they misread the sign while looking for City Hall.
Today, there are more than 100 Cohen's Fashion Optical stores throughout the United States and Puerto Rico offering sunglasses, designer frames, and the most advanced prescription lenses and contact lenses available. State-licensed optometrists screen patients for problems and determine prescriptions with eye exams and then steer them toward staff trained to advise customers on which frames will best suit their face shape. Titanium, stainless-steel, and plastic frames bear logos from designers such as Prada, Calvin Klein, Gucci, Ralph Lauren, Dior, Cartier, Chrome Heart, Fred, and Ray-Ban, and a variety of lenses incorporate progressive, polarized, and transition technologies, or feature rose-colored glass to counteract pessimism. Customers can also shed frames in favor of contact lenses, with options that include disposable lenses, toric lenses for astigmatism, bifocal and multifocal lenses, and color lenses.