How To Buy Glasses Online
Buying glasses online is a great way to get more selection and at a lower price than more optical stores. However, it does require that you educate yourself first. There is a lot of information on this website about eyeglasses and prescription lenses, but this page will help you speed up the process, depending on what you need.
It’s now quite common (and easy) to buy prescription glasses online. From the comfort of your home, you can browse a wide selection of styles, enjoy more affordable choices, and avoid traveling all around town just to find the perfect pair.
Eyeglasses can be expensive, which is one of the reasons why people are choosing to purchase glasses online. In 2017, more than 8 million pairs of glasses were purchased online and expected to grow in the years to come.
Convenience is also an essential factor, with many retailers providing a Virtual Try-On feature to ensure you find a pair that suits your style and needs. There are also exciting new solutions for telehealth, such as digital eye exams that offer the same quality and expertise as a traditional eye exam.
However, no matter how attractive prices may be or the convenience it provides, it’s important to know how to shop for glasses. So, here’s a quick guide on how the online purchase process works.
How to Order Frames Only
You can order frames only, without lenses. We ship the frame to you, and you can take it to your local optical store to have lenses installed. Need help choosing a frame, or finding the right size frame? Look at the list of links to the left to help you, or contact customer service. Upload your photo and use our Virtual Try On application. Try our Frame Search page to look through our huge inventory for frames with your specific needs, such as frame size, material, and shape. Still not sure? You can order up to three frames and return them for a full refund.
#1. How To Order Frames with Lenses: First, Get Your Prescription
Before you start shopping, it’s critical to get an up-to-date prescription from an optometrist. You can get this done as part of a routine eye exam, which allows you to address your overall eye health, as well as catch any changes to your vision.
Many common eye problems require specific types of glasses to correct your vision effectively. Talk to your optometrist to ensure you get the right prescription for your needs.
Next, if you’re only looking for frames, you can skip this step and go straight to browsing for frames that you like. Otherwise, keep reading to learn how to get the best fitting and most accurate glasses.
Pupillary Distance Measurement
In addition to your prescription, you need to know the distance between your pupils to buy glasses online that fit properly.
Most optometrists will not measure your Pupillary Distance (PD) unless you ask. Be sure to write down this information on your prescription so you end up buying the right glasses online.
If you don’t have this information or forgot to ask your optometrist, don’t worry. There’s a way you can measure your own pupil distance. To do so, all you need is a ruler and a friend to help take your measurements. Be sure your friend places the 0-mark on your left pupil and takes an average of 2 to 3 readings from the right pupil.
#2. Select Your Frames
The next step is to start looking for the perfect frames. There are a variety of styles to choose from, including different styles, materials, shapes, and colors.
When shopping in-person, you cannot try on glasses. However, many online glasses retailers provide a Virtual Try-On Service. All you have to do is upload a photo and try different glasses that to be virtually fitted to your image.
Something else to keep in mind, different types of frames can have a different aesthetic effect. You may want to find a frame that compliments your face shape as well as a color that compliments your skin tone.
#3. Pick Your Lenses
After selecting frames, it’s time to pick your lenses. Having an up-to-date prescription is very important - it will help guide your selection and let you know exactly what you need from a lens.
With your prescription on-hand, you can start browsing online glasses retailers. You’ll be able to choose from a wide selection of glasses for men as well as a large assortment of glasses for women online.
Types of Lenses
There are many different types of lenses you can choose from, such as single vision, multifocal and progressive lenses.
Here are a few common types of lenses along with the eye conditions and situations they’re best suited for:
--Single Vision: Most common type of prescription lens. It has one viewing area with a single point of focus. They can be used for reading glasses with powers of +1.00, +1.50, +2.00, or +2.50 (or quarter steps in between).
--Bifocal/Trifocal: This is a dual or triple-focus lens that uses the same frame to improve vision both up close and afar. You’ll see a thin visible line that separates the two prescriptions on the lens. The lower portion corrects farsightedness, while the upper-portion improves objects at a distance.
--Progressive: Also known as “no-line bifocals,” these lenses provide have three prescriptions on one lens. These adaptive lenses allow you to seamlessly do close-up reading, middle-range work, or distance viewing.
Next, there are several different materials that can be used to create lenses. Here are a few common materials along with the types of lifestyles/activities they’re best suited for:
--Plastic: Lightweight and durable lens material. Often prescribed for their comfort and impact resistance.
--Polycarbonate: Thinner and lighter than plastic, impact resistant, best choice for children and active adults.
--Trivex: Thin, lightweight and much more impact-resistant than regular plastic lenses. They also provide 100% protection for the sun’s UV rays. Best choice for prescription sunglasses.
--High Index: Lightest weight and thinnest glasses designed specifically for people with strong prescriptions (+/-6.00 sphere). They are made of a hard resin that provides comfort for everyday use.
--Transition: Interacts with sunlight to change the lens from clear to tinted. Great for having a single pair of glasses that can also serve as sunglasses.
--Anti-reflective: Eliminates glare while offering protection from UV rays.
--Photochromic: Changes when exposed to UV rays (i.e., clear indoors, tinted outdoors)
--Polarized: Reduces surface-glare while driving to improve contrast and visual clarity.
--Scratch-resistant: Protective treatment that prevents scratches
--UV Protection: Protects against the harmful effect of UV rays
--Mirror: Highly-reflective treatment to lens to reduce glare
#4. See What Insurance Covers
Once you have selected the glasses you want to purchase, be sure to check out your vision insurance (if you have any) and see what they can cover.
Many insurance policies offer coverage for online purchases. If not, you may be able to get reimbursed for part of the purchase if the retailer is out-of-network. Contact your insurance provider and request for any out-of-network benefits in your plan.
Similarly, some employers offer a Health Savings Account (HSA) or a Flexible Spending Account (FSA). You can use FSA or HSA to cover some of the costs of your glasses. Talk to your employer to see if you’re eligible for these accounts to reduce the costs of your eyewear.
#5. Check Out
The last step in the process is to check out and pay for your glasses. Be sure to review the return policy before finalizing your purchase. Double-check that all of the information about your frames and lenses are accurate before checking out.
Then, all you have to do is wait for your eyewear to arrive before you can enjoy your new glasses.
How To Mail in Your Frame for Replacement Lenses
You can send us your own frames, and we can install new lenses for you - also known as "Replacement Lenses." Mail your frames to us with your new prescription, your name and phone number, and any instructions you may have. If you just want to redo your existing lenses, you do not need to send the prescription in because we can read your prescription from your old lenses. After we receive your package, we will call you to complete the order. You can mail us your glasses, and we can install new lenses. However, occasionally a frame will break while we are installing lenses and we cannot be held responsible if this happens to your frame. We will try to replace your frame at no charge; if that is not possible, we will offer you a 50% discount to purchase another frame from our website.
How to Order Sunglasses
You can order sunglasses, and they are shipped with the non-prescription, manufacturer's lenses installed at no charge. Need help choosing a pair of sunglasses, or finding the right size frame? Look at the list of links to the left to help you, or contact customer service. Try our Frame Search page to look through our huge inventory for sunglasses with your specific needs, such as frame size, material, and shape . Still not sure? You can order up to three sunglasses and return them for a full refund.