Fix Slipping Eyeglass Lanyards




Introduction: Fix Slipping Eyeglass Lanyards

Problem:  Eyeglasses constantly slipping off of their pesky lanyards?  Broken and lost eyeglasses, too many to count?  Arrgh!

I know I am not the only one out there.  My spouse also complains.  I've had glasses slip off their lanyard, catch on things and pull off, several times in a day.   I've lost lanyards and broken many pair of glasses due to slipping.  But seems I am stuck with a lifestyle of wearing lanyards.

Solution:  Here is a simple, easy, almost free fix that has worked for four months.  No more lost or broken reading glasses without a good reason. 

The fix would still be working... but I finally crushed the glasses and broke an ear off while carrying a heavy watermelon last week.   ( Arrgh again!   Over the next few days the eyeglasses constantly slipped their lanyard again -- several times per day.  I'd forgotten how much of an annoyance that could be. )

So, while repeating the fix on the new pair of glasses, I took photos... 

Step 1: Materials


           Electrical Tape and Scissors

Standard narrower electrical tape is fine -- this wider roll just happened to be convenient and saved a trip to the Electronics cabinet.

[ You can see I now have a really nice lanyard.  It's leather with silver fittings, bought from a leather worker on as a treat at Christmas time.  Got tired of the cheap ones, and I've had a lot of those since my eyesight started failing.  The cheap ones slipped, too, but this fancy lanyard has larger super -slippery O-rings.  It seemed to slip even worse.  One of the solutions I considered was hunting down some O-rings of a rougher texture that would grab the glasses and fittings better.  This fix with electrical tape has worked so well, there's no need to go to the trouble.  ]

Step 2: Cut Strips of Tape

Cut  TWO strips of tape -- one strip for each "ear."  If you've got a standard roll of electrical tape, just cut it down the middle. 

The width is a personal decision.  My strips are about 3/8" wide and about 3" long.  I got 4 strips out of this wider tape.

[ Since I had the wider tape out and this fix has been so successful, I decided to go ahead and fix a second pair this time, in advance.  You can see I cut 4 strips. ]

Step 3: Wrap the Tape Around Each Ear

Just place the end of a strip of tape on each ear of your pair of eyeglasses and wrap it around the ears to make a little "grommet"  -- it will widen the ears at that point, and create a little lip.  Seems the lanyard needs that extra grommet to keep from slipping off.  It works surprisingly well -- even when the O-ring is not tightened down on the ear.

Your glasses may need a different sized "grommet" or in a different location.  It's easy to play with it and thicken it with more tape if you need more.  I was lucky first time.  After a few days of watching my success, my spouse tried it on his eyeglasses, too, which had a wider flat plastic ear, and it's worked fine for those.

Step 4: Double Up While You're at It

Go ahead and do two or three pair of glasses while you're at it. 

(We had gotten so used to losing reading glasses when they slipped off their lanyard, we started buying multiple pairs of different magnifications and keeping them in the cabinet.  Using only one pair of glasses in four months is a nice change.  But I went ahead and did up a second pair anyway while I had tape out, and put them back in the cabinet for future need. )

Step 5: Results -- No More Slipping Lanyards

I wanted something inconspicuous.  No one has ever noticed the fix unless I pointed it out.  The black tape blends in with the eyeglass frames.

The tape has not been heat sensitive or slipped.  They've been doused with water when I washed the glasses.  The "grommets" are as good as new, even on the pair I broke with a watermelon.

I had considered using other materials and methods like nesting some heat shrink tubing if this worked -- something more permanent -- but why bother?  This was free and simple.

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    3 years ago

    This only holds for a short while. My glasses are smooth all the way down the ear - no bump to stop the tape from sliding. The tape always slides after a few hours no matter how tightly I've applied it. I've found friction tape to last a lot longer. Might have to give the heat shrink tubes a try though.


    Reply 3 years ago

    Sharon, thanks for the feedback; sorry it didn't work for you.

    Still working for us all these years later. Yes, our glasses have a covering on the earpiece that provides a bump, just not enough of a bump to keep lanyards from sliding off. We rarely have to replace the tape. (As long as we use the good quality stuff.)


    8 years ago on Introduction

    This is a great idea; unfortunately, electric tape will only last a few days - you are better off using shrink tubing. Use 3 - 4 layers of tubing to increase thickness.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Carlo, thanks for your input. Coincidentally I was thinking of nesting shrink tubing recently. I haven't bothered yet to see if the wider ears of these glasses will fit in the size shrink tubing needed, because this fix is still working so well. I've thought of a lot of different ideas until I came up with this. The problem was so aggravating, I even bought some jewelry-making pieces to fix it. Glad I tried this first. Tape wins for simplicity.

    My glasses are still hanging strong. (June to January, six months.) I only changed them out at the time because I crushed the previous glasses and broke them.

    For some, the duration of the fix appears to depend on the quality of the electrical tape:

    My spouse used a roll of tape at work in the lab, fixed up a new pair of glasses, and after a week or so, the tape started peeling a little at the end, and slipping against itself. Hmm. His first pair had worked well for months and months.

    I just checked -- see in the photo, this particular wide roll was yellow and red plaid inside -- it's Scotch 3M, and it has "series 2-0153" if that's worth anything. But the time before I used whatever other narrower roll we had around the house, with similar good results. I know it's not all 3M.

    And I do abuse these glasses. I put them in water every morning to wash them and don't mind the ears getting wet.

    In all these months, my eyeglasses have slipped their lanyard ONCE. YMMV. I'm sure there are other factors affecting adhesion.

    I'd say, if it's not working for someone, give it another go with a different roll of tape. You'll know pretty quickly if it's a good fix. You could also use Gorilla tape, but I kind of shied away from it. This was too easy.