As we continue to battle the COVID-19 crisis, businesses throughout our country have answered the call for help by using their factories and resources to manufacture much needed Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). Some of these companies are our very own optical industry counterparts located right here on American soil—in this case Los Angeles eyewear crafters DOM VETRO.
In response to COVID-19, Dom Vetro used its manufacturing expertise to create the Shield, a unique face protection device designed to help essential workers and those on the front lines of the pandemic. Produced in its Culver City, Los Angeles factory, the company created a solution sourcing local materials to minimize production time.
The Shield is a clear sheet of fog-free, high-clarity plastic with two industrial strength fasteners that the wearer can use to attach to his or her glasses. Fitting comfortably over surgical and N95 masks, it provides full coverage of the wearer’s eyes, nose and mouth, without affecting their central or peripheral vision. The Shield is reusable and can be cleaned with disinfectant.
“In light of current events, we sought to find a way to use our factory and expertise to help protect those on the front lines. The Shield is compatible with anyone’s existing eyewear and made from locally sourced materials to keep our production time as short as possible,” says Dom Vetro founder Ashley Bezamat. “It’s reusable, making it far less wasteful than some of the other options currently out there. We hope that using what limited resources we have as an independent manufacturer, we can help those who are risking their lives to help us.”
Since launching, the Shield has received an overwhelming response, even sparking a social media giveaway with 20/20 via Instagram. One ECP tells us she plans on using it for pre-testing patients and frame selection at her practice. “The response has been extremely positive from the industry and in our community,” adds Bezamat. “We’re honored that we can play a small role in being part of the solution. It’s been especially inspiring for our team to work on this project and truly motivating for us to help those in our community. It really brought us together.”
The Shield is sold in a kit, which includes one face shield, eyewear fasteners and a microfiber cleaning cloth. The kits are available for purchase at Dom Vetro’s website at domvetro.com/theshield, and there’s an option to have personalized messages custom etched onto the shields. All profits from sales are donated to the World Health Organization COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund.
Dom Vetro was most recently featured on 20/20’s September 2019 issue with cover star Alec Baldwin, and it’s likely you see Al Roker every morning on the “Today” show wearing his trademark electric blue Dom Vetro glasses. More than a celebrity favorite, Dom Vetro fans (including 20/20 editors) treasure the handcrafted artisan quality of the frames as well as the independent heritage they originate from. And they’re made here in the U.S., where a renewed appreciation for premium American made eyewear has been reignited. All the reasons for making Dom Vetro’s shield project even more inspiring.