Contact Lens Market - The Number of Contact Lens Wearers on the Rise in the UK and Ireland

Medical And Dental Instruments August 09, 2015
Author: Olga Minchina
Account Manager

contact lens market

A report published by the Association of Contact Lens Manufacturers (ACLM) states that the number of contact lens wearers in the UK and Ireland has increased by more than twofold over the last twelve years, reaching 3.5 million people in 2014.

Approximately 1.5 million people use daily disposables and 1.6 million people use frequent replacement contact lenses. The number of lens wearers was obtained by the ACLM, based on the number of contact lenses sold, coupled with estimated wearing schedules.

The ACLM estimated the size of the UK and Ireland contact lens market at 226 million pounds last year, and defines the market as stable. In all, more than 600 million contact lenses were purchased, the most popular selling category being daily disposables with an approximately 60% share; soft frequent replacement lenses held a 36% share.

Ireland dominates in the global contact lens trade. In 2014, Ireland exported 14 million units of contact lenses totaling 1,165 million USD, 2% under the previous year. Its primary trading partner was Japan, where it supplied 47% of its total contact lens exports in value terms, accounting for 48% of Japan's total imports.

From 2007 to 2014, Ireland was a net exporter of contact lenses. Over this period, exports consistently exceeded imports in value terms.

The United Kingdom and the U.S. were among the other main global suppliers of contact lenses in 2014. The fastest growing exporters from 2007 to 2014 were Hungary (+89% per year) and Belgium (+28% per year). Of all countries, however, it was the United Kingdom that was able to notably strengthen its position in the global export structure.

In 2014, Ireland's top 5 trading partners were Japan, the United Kingdom, the U.S., the Russian Federation and the Republic of Korea, with a combined 79% share of Ireland's contact lens exports. The share of the Russian Federation increased (+7 percentage points), while the share of the U.S. illustrated negative dynamics (-10 percentage points).

Do you want to know more about the global contact lens market? Get the latest trends and insight from our report. It includes a wide range of statistics on

  • contact lens market share
  • contact lens prices
  • contact lens industry
  • contact lens sales
  • contact lens market forecast
  • contact lens price forecast
  • key contact lens producers

Source: World: Contact Lenses - Market Report. Analysis and Forecast to 2020