Thursday, July 4, 2013

Miru: Bringing Thin to a Whole New Level

Lets play a game. Below is a picture of me holding an item that some people would use everyday. Can you guess what it is?




Is it a plaster? Or chewing gum? Or did you guess it as a sticky note?

It's not anything of the above though. Curious to know what it is? Here's the answer:




This thin strip of plastic is actually a case for contact lenses! Yep, rather than finding a piece of chewing gum or sweet inside, you would instead find a piece of your everyday disposable lens greeting you inside.

Called Miru, this award winning contact lens pack design, together with the lens inside, is manufactured by Menicon, Japan's first and largest contact lens and eye care product manufacturer. Gone are the bulky daily contact lens pack that is no different from the monthly ones, Miru comes in a 1mm thick case that allows you to slot it almost anywhere, be it your wallet, your phone case or your card holder.

I had the chance to attend the official launch of the product yesterday at Goodwood Park Hotel and I must say, I am actually quite impressed with what Miru has to offer.


camwhoring like any blogger should before going for the event


A lot of work has been put into the development of the lens and the packaging, that I can say. The whole time that I was sitting there listening to the presentation of the product by Menicon's managing director, I cannot help but feel that I was back in NUS, sitting in a lecture theater listening to my professor again (I later found out that Stephen Newman, the managing director, has actually published papers and given lectures before on contact lens wear, which might explained why I felt like being in a university lecture again).


the presentation by menicon singapore's managing director, mr stephen newman


To avoid from going too detailed into the product and to keep it simple, basically the ultra thin case is designed not only to improve the convenience of being able to carry your contact lenses almost anywhere, it is also packaged in a way to avoid the user from contaminating the inside of the lens when taking the lens out.

You know how we use to dip our fingers into the lens pack in order to search for contact lenses, sometimes even having our finger touch the inside of the lens? Even if we might have washed our hands, touching the inside of the lens increases the chance of bacteria transmission from our hand to the lens and then to our cornea, which might cause irritation and discomfort when wearing the lens.

Miru avoids this problem by having the outside of the lens facing the same direction when you peel of the cover, thus your hands will only come into contact with the outside of the lens, reducing the chances of bacteria transmission through the inside of the lens. It requires some training though to be able to pinch the lens without fumbling around, that I can say, but it reduces the need for us to constantly dig the solution for our lenses when we want to wear them.


live demonstration of how to use Miru


I personally tried wearing contact lenses before, but ditched them and jumped back to glasses because the daily ones are too expensive because you cannot buy them in bulk because of the size of the pack (one daily size pack is around 8mm and if you want to wear it for a month you'll have 240mm long pack) while the monthly ones are just too troublesome, with all the washing and taking care of.

Miru essentially solves this problem by having a incredibly small pack and there's no need to wash or take care of them after using as you can easily dispose of them afterwards.


miru comes in small packs like this with 30 lenses inside. photo courtesy of SPRG and Menicon

to give you an idea on how small actually is the case. photo courtesy of SPRG and Menicon


So essentially you're like carrying a pack of mints for your contact lenses. Easy and convenient.

Next comes the question of cost. Daily disposable lens are famous for their higher cost than monthly lenses but I was pleasantly surprised to learn that Miru retails at 58 dollars per 30 lens (prices may wary depending on where are you getting your lenses), which on my opinion is quite affordable for daily lenses. Not to mention the added convenience of it. Besides, the cases come in varying designs to make you look cool while wearing it. I wonder if they have Hello Kitty design, in light of the recent trend? :p


the chic and cool designs of the cases


Of course, talking about it and actually trying it is two different things, which is why Menicon and SPRG offered to let me try the lens for myself for a month. Am looking forward to it because there are somethings that is just easier to do with contact lenses, for example exercising, and the first thing that I'm am going to is just that. Stay tuned for the next post!


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