Fashion and comfort aren’t in play here if you wanted to wear contact lenses back in 1948. This video shows several shots show the complete process of making the contact lenses. Australia’s only contact lens maker, Penrhyn Thomas, inserts an impression cup containing material for taking a cast of the eyeball over the woman’s eye (which has been anaesthetised). The substance sets (looks awful, when the woman moves her eyeball the whole cup moves too!) and the cup and cast are removed. Several shots of Penrhyn moulding the lens from the cast and the plastic lens being ground, checked and buffed.
He then fits it into the woman’s eye, using a buffer solution, and dabs the eye with a towel. He checks they are in the correct position. Yikes.