Air Optix Aqua Vs. Acuvue Oasys: What Are the Differences


We found Air Optix Aqua vs Acuvue Oasys contacts to be a popularly requested comparison, which is interesting as one is a monthly replacement lens (Air Optix Aqua), while the other is a bi-weekly lens (Acuvue Oasys). The truth is, despite the difference both are extremely popular, well-marketed contacts so it’s no surprise to see consumers curious about how these two compare.   

In this guide, we’ll provide a detailed comparison between Air Optix Aqua and ACUVUE OASYS® contacts, including differences in features, wearing schedule, and more. Along with the recommendations from your eye care professional, you’ll be better equipped to decide which contact lenses are right for you.

Manufacturer Alcon Johnson & Johnson
Replacement schedule Monthly replacement Bi-weekly replacement
Material Lotrafilcon B (67% Polymer) Senofilcon A (62% Polymer)
Silicone Hydrogel Yes Yes
Water content 33% water 38% water
Vision problems corrected – Nearsightedness
– Farsightedness
– Nearsightedness
– Farsightedness
Key features – TriComfort™ Technology
High wettability through low contact angle.
Permanent plasma treatment for a smooth surface.
– SmartShield Technology
– HYDRACLEAR® PLUS technology
for more moisture and lens surface smoothness
Lenses per box 6 contact lenses per box
(6 month supply)
12 lenses per box (6-month supply)
24 lenses per box (1-year supply)

ACUVUE OASYS 1-DAY and Air Optix Aqua in detail

Air Optix Aqua is made by Alcon and ACUVUE OASYS® is manufactured by Johnson & Johnson. They were launched around the same time with Acuvue Oasys debuting in 2005 followed by Air Optix Aqua in 2008. 

In fact, apart from the wearing schedule difference that one notices at first glance, there are a number of specifications that make these 2 contacts comparable. Both contacts are silicone hydrogel-based. Both contacts are within a stone’s throw away from each other in terms of important factors like water content (33% for Air Optix Aqua, and 38% and for Acuvue Oasys), and oxygen transmission (138 Dk/t and 147 Dk/t respectively). Even their wearing schedules are more similar than you think. Although Air Optix Aqua is a monthly lens, while Acuvue Oasys is a bi-weekly lens, both lenses can be worn in extended wear mode (overnight) for up to 7 days, with approval from your ECP.

ACUVUE OASYS 1-DAY and Air Optix Aqua differences

We have to look carefully to find any differences between these 2 that may matter to wearers. There are a couple. Air Optix Aqua is an aspheric lens design while Acuvue Oasys uses a spherical design. Once again though, one type of lens shape does not provide a clear benefit for everyone over another type. Spherical lenses are essentially more curved in their profile, while aspheric ones have a slightly flattened aspect across the visual plane. For many wearers an aspheric lens can provide sharper vision due to better peripheral imaging but this is not the case for everyone. Aspheric lenses can lead to over-correction in some and therefore a worsening of vision.

Acuvue Oasys has a slightly lower modulus, meaning these lenses are softer and more flexible. These can be a benefit for some that perceive very soft lenses as more comfortable. However soft lenses can be tricker to handle as they are prone to folding or inverting if not handled properly.

There is at least one feature difference as well. While both lenses incorporate wetting agents into the lens material to aid comfort and moisture. Air Optix Aqua boasts a technology they refer to as SmartShield, which is a coating to the surface of the lens meant to resist the buildup of deposits that tend to accumulate over time. For wearers prone to this, it may be a factor in favor of considering Air Optix Aqua as it appears to be unique to this lens. 

Here are some of our customer’s reviews for Air Optix Aqua and Acuvue Oasys:

Air Optix Aqua contact lenses have 422 reviews with an average rating of 9.3/10 on

Some additional quotes from wearers:

“These are the most comfortable lenses I’ve ever worn. I’ve suffered from dry eye for a while now, and my doctor recommended these. Will keep buying them because they’re so comfortable and my eyes don’t feel dried out or gritty.” – Anonymous

“I have tried other contacts and these are the most comfortable and my eyes don’t burn or itch when I wear them.” – Margaret N.

Acuvue Oasys contact lenses have 785 reviews with an average rating of 9.2/10.

Here are some additional quotes from wearers of Acuvue Oasys:

“I should not have to expand on how great these contacts are, they are Acuvue brand contacts. I have purchased many contacts over the course of my 26 years of wearing contacts. I can not complain about these contacts.” -Sara

“I just switched to the Acuvue Oasys from the Acuvue 2’s, and my eyes overall just feel so much better. Way more comfortable. I advise trying them if you have not.” -Anonymous

Conclusion: which contact lens is right for you?

In these lenses, we have 2 of the more popular contacts on the market. In fact, in’s yearly most popular by sales-list for 2021 Acuvue Oasys takes spot #5 while Air Optix Aqua occupies a spot within the top 15, amongst 200+ offerings. Going aspheric vs spherical is one difference to consider. This does not make one lens better than the other though. Air Optix Aqua does maintain an advantage in its claim with a technology that resists deposit buildup. This too matters more to some than others. In the end, these contacts may have more in common than their differences, in terms of water content and breathability, 2 of the most consequential factors for wearers. Teasing out further differences that’ll matter to you can be done with the help of your ECP.