Since their invention in the late nineteenth century, contact lenses have steadily become more and more popular. An estimated 45 million people in the United States alone currently wear prescription contact lenses to correct their vision. And it’s not hard to see why. Contacts boast several tempting advantages over traditional lenses. Since they stay on the center of your eye, they give you a full range of corrected vision. If fitted properly, you won’t even feel the lenses. And perhaps most importantly, when you wear contacts, nobody further than an inch from your face will be able to tell.

But contacts aren’t right for everyone. There are different types and choosing the wrong one could make your experience with contact lenses a bad one. If you’re considering buying contact lenses, here are some questions to ask yourself first.

How often do you plan to wear them?

If your vision is just shy of perfect, you may want to wear your glasses or contacts only when you have reason to–for example, if you are going sightseeing or plan to watch a movie. If this is the case, then avoid hard contact lenses. These lenses, known as rigid gas-permeable lenses, must be worn consistently for your eyes to get used to them.

Do you have astigmatism?

Astigmatism just means your eyeball isn’t a perfect sphere. In reality, all humans have astigmatism to some degree, but for a few people it’s significantly worse. Astigmatism won’t prevent you from wearing contact lenses, but it does make fitting them more difficult. Contacts won’t work if they can’t smoothly fit to the shape of your eye. For severe cases of astigmatism, your eye doctor will have the best advice on which lenses may work best for you.

Are you far-sighted, near-sighted or both?

Most people who wear contacts need help seeing distant objects. But contact lenses actually come in a lot more flavors. It is possible to get contacts that function like bifocals. If you need both close and far vision correction, you can also try something called monovision, where one contact lense corrects for near-sightedness and the other for far-sightedness. When worn together, they have a similar effect to wearing bifocal lenses.

Do you have the energy to clean your lenses each night?

This may be the most important question and it needs an honest answer. Can you trust yourself to properly clean your lenses every night? Failure to do so can seriously harm your eyes and your vision. If you don’t want to mess with reusable contacts, don’t worry. There are one-use contacts that may be perfect for you. If you need help finding the perfect pair, has you covered.