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Place To Buy Glasses Online

Where To Buy Prescription Glasses

Buying prescription glasses online: What they don’t tell you

Several retailers offer prescription glasses online. Some brands include:

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.

A Budget Optionsort Of

Its possible to score a great pair of prescription eyeglasses from Zenni. And judging by customer reviews, as well as our own testing, many people do. But this retailer offers only store credit or partial refunds for returns, making it a higher-risk choice.

Buying Options

If youre comfortable taking a risk on a retailer that offers an inferior return policy, you may be surprised at how little you need to spend at Zenni Optical for prescription glasses that are on a par with those youd receive from an optician. Despite Zennis ultra-low prices, we found that it surpassed our expectations, sometimes impressively so. A tester who ordered $19 glasses from Zenni was perfectly pleased with them. Another tester preferred the $149 progressive-prescription glasses she received from Zenni to the comparable, $295 pair from a competitor. Zennis frame selection is the largest of all the companies we tested. If the glasses you order from Zenni dont work for you, though, prepare to accept store credit or just half of your money back, excluding shipping.

Who This Is For

More than 76% of US adults use some form of vision correction, according to research from the Vision Council, a nonprofit trade association. The average pair of prescription glasses is priced at $315, according to vision insurer VSP. So its no surprise that, according to the Vision Council, eyeglasses are a $43 billion business in the US .

If you buy glasses online, you can cut your bill by up to half the brick-and-mortar price , with comparable frame and prescription lens pairings from our picks going for anywhere from $12 to $237 at the time of our research. Note, though, that with optional upgrades or specialty-lens needs, your online costs can quickly add upsometimes even matching what you might encounter in person with an optician.

Buying prescription glasses online is not ideal for everyone. The collective advice from the eight eye-care professionals we talked to was that buying online is generally okay if you have a low or uncomplicated prescription. Individuals who have very strong prescriptions or other complications, such as the need for prism correction or progressive lenses, may feel more comfortable getting glasses from a brick-and-mortar shop to ensure prescription accuracy . There is no official designation for what constitutes a strong prescription, but, in general, it means prescriptions of +/-6 power or more, Dr. Neil Pence of the Indiana University School of Optometry told us.

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Choose Your Lens Coatings

Here are some popular types of lens coatings and when you should consider them, according to Dr. Young.

  • Anti-reflective: Anti-reflecting coatings are recommended for lenses that reflect more light, such as high index and polycarbonate lenses. AR coatings decrease halos around lights, which is especially helpful for night driving. These may also be helpful for anyone who frequently uses a computer screen.
  • Anti-scratch: Currently, many plastic lenses have built in anti-scratch resistance. But if it doesnt have scratch protection, plastic is soft and needs an anti-scratch coating. If you have kids or tend to be rough on your glasses, consider getting durable lenses or ones with an anti-scratch coating.
  • Anti-fog: These coatings help to minimize moisture condensation that occurs going from an indoor environment to outdoors, especially during winter months.
  • Blue light blocking: Perhaps one of the most popular add-ons, these coatings help block the blue light emitted from screens to help reduce eye strain. This is a great option for anyone who wears prescription glasses regularly and works at a computer.
  • Transitional: Another common add-on, this coating allows your lenses to automatically transition to sunglasses in the sunlight, then return to clear once youre out of the rays.

What We Liked About Zenni

The 14 Best Online Glasses in 2022

Zenni has been a consistently popular choice because it sells a full-featured pair of glasses for significantly less on average than its competitors. Its possible to get a pair with all the fixings premium, high-index progressive lenses, with the latest Transitions XtraActives photochromic treatment and a full suite of protective coatings for under $300, even before coupons or discounts. Plus, the company has made the shopping and ordering process among the simplest and most straightforward of all the retailers we looked at for this review.

The companys offerings have expanded over time, and while styles tend toward bright, fun colors and fashion-forward looks, you can get anything from classic wire rims to wraparound nylon activewear models at this point. Everything is well made, with quality fittings like spring hinges employed across the line. That said, Zennis glasses dont have the fine-tuned, substantial feel youd get from a luxury frame Zennis acetate finishing is not always up to the level of a Moscot or Salt frame, for instance but at the price is a whole lot of bang for the buck. The pairs we received were all solidly built, with no creaking or looseness, and adjustments were easy to make where needed. Nothing feels cheap here.

Zenni offers a limited selection of frames with single-vision prescriptions with a Fast Frame three-day delivery guarantee. But even outside of the models covered by the two-day offer, shipping is very fast .

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Best Shopping Experience: Felix + Iris

Price: $119 and up lenses included

Shipping: Free. Delivery takes 3 to 5 business days.

Returns: 30 days

Felix + Iris goes above and beyond to ensure that everything goes smoothly when youre shopping for new glasses. They allow you to select four pairs of glasses to try at home risk-free, provide free frame adjustments to make sure you have the perfect fit, and include free anti-reflective, scratch-resistant, and UV lens protection on all lenses. They also have consistent pricing, so you know exactly how much youre going to spend. Felix + Iris doesnt work directly with insurance providersmeaning youll have to pay in full and then file for reimbursement from your insurance companybut they do accept FSA and HSA payments.

Price: $69 and up single-vision lenses included

Shipping: Free. Delivery takes 14 days.

Returns: 60 days

If theres a company out there that really wants to be sure you love your new glasses, Liingo is it. Its website features both virtual try-on and Find My Fit tools to help you select the ideal frames, but if thats not enough, theyll send you up to five pairs to try at home completely risk-free. What really sets apart this site, however, is its 60-Day Delight Guarantee. You have a full 60 days to try out your new glasses, and if you dont love them, Liingo offers free returns, providing the most generous return policy out there. Here are another 14 stores with the absolute best return policies.

The Best Places To Buy Glasses

Whether you prefer shopping online or in a store, my research shows that Costco Optical and Zenni Optical are two of the best places to buy glasses, though they arent the only retailers worth considering.

In fact, there are a lot of things to consider before you decide where to buy glasses. Some of the most important factors include the quality of frames and lenses, services, the total price, customer service and accessibility.

Based on these qualities and my research in July 2022, here are eight of the best places to order eyeglasses.

$99.95 Cheapest eye exam

As you can see, some starting costs for single-vision lenses are $0. At these retailers, the cost of single-vision plastic lenses is included in the cost of the frames.

Below, youll find additional information on each retailer including details about the selection, how to shop for the best deals and how to place an order online.

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Why You Should Definitely Consider Foregoing The Brick

Nota bene: If you buy through the links in this article, InsideHook may earn a small share of the profits.

As someone who has worn prescription glasses since middle school, I understand the burden of not only having to acquire new glasses every couple of years but wanting those glasses to complement my face. The latter is often harder. No offense to my eye doctor and brick-and-mortar optical shops, but sometimes the selection just isnt up to par, and in an age where glasses are so stylishthat even those with 20/20 vision want to wear them , the visually impaired among gotta keep up. May I introduce to you, then, the world of online prescription eyeglass stores?

Before I tested these services, I had no prior knowledge, or real interest, in shopping for glasses online. For whatever reason, they just seemed like a hassle what if they dont fit my semi-large face, or what if the frames arent what I expected? Then Ill have to ship them back and start the entire process over. As with all online shopping, you always run this risk when buying prescription eyeglasses on the internet. However! There are a ton of pros I wasnt aware of.

For starters, buying your prescription eyeglasses online is often more cost-effective because youre cutting out the middleman. According to Consumer Reports, people paying out of pocket for their glasses paid a median of $91 online, while those buying in-store paid $234.

Why You Can Trust Our Expert Review

How to Buy Glasses Online | Eyebuydirect

We conducted extensive research when exploring where to find the best glasses online. We mystery shopped big and small brands, interviewed experts, and researched the user experience.

We rated the brands based on the following factors to help you find the best glasses online:

  • Cost and payment options, including vision insurance billing and lens costs
  • Shipping and return policies, and if the brand makes it fast and easy for you to find the right pair of glasses
  • Customer-friendly features like virtual try on, online vision exams, and consultations with a professional
  • Variety and style selection for both lenses and frames
  • Brand reputation and reviews from trusted third-party review sites like the Better Business Bureau and Trustpilot

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Also Great: Liingo Eyewear

If you want to try frames on for fit and style before buying them, consider Liingo Eyewear. Liingos single-vision and progressive glasses are both less expensive than those from other retailers that provide in-home frame trials. And Liingo offers a return window thats about four times as long as Eyebuydirects . As with our other picks, all of the prescriptions we ordered from Liingo were deemed correct by an independent optician.

Liingo offers a selection of more than 100 frames, about the same as other in-home trial retailers we tested. But its glasses typically cost more than those from our other picks. Even though we spent more on comparable frame-and-lens pairings from Liingo versus Eyebuydirect, our panelists liked their Eyebuydirect glasses the same.

Liingo has grown significantly since we first looked at it, in 2018 it now offers progressive lenses and partial reimbursements for professional frame adjustments , among other things. We found its shipping and return processing times comparable to those of Eyebuydirect.

Liingo glasses come with a one-year warranty against defects and breaking from standard wear and tear. Its spectacles ship with a hardshell case and a lens-cleaning cloth.

Our long-term testers remain happy with their glasses from Liingo, with no reported complaints.

Vint And York: Best Vintage

Old-school-style specs combined with an ultra-modern shopping experience? It doesnt get better than Vint and York.

For anyone nostalgic for the elegance and retro glamour of yesteryear, Vint and York make glasses for you. Each pair of glasses is inspired by vintage trends but made with a thoroughly contemporary commitment to quality and craftsmanship. The result is premium eyewear that captures a sense of a unique time period.

Whether you opt for statement-making 60s-style cat-eye glasses or conservative but classic frames in a bold shade of black, Vint and York is the dream online shopping destination for anyone bewitched by the romance of bygone times.

Best for: Self-certified eyewear nostalgics looking to start a retro revolution.

Price: $$$International Shipping: YESReturns: 15 days 

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A Great Selection And Helpful Shopping Tools: Glassesusa

GlassesUSA, a sizable online retailer thats part of Optimax, one of the big international eyewear companies, offers a huge selection. With a ton of familiar name brands along with house brands such as Muse, Ottoto and Revel, theres likely to be something youll like here, whether youre looking for oversized aviators or chunky acetate, retro or futuristic.

What we liked about GlassesUSA

Shopping tools begin with a style quiz that aims to point you in the right direction based on some questions about what youre currently wearing, along with your stylistic and brand preferences. It got us in the ballpark pretty effectively, but you can fine-tune to be as general or specific as you like.

From there you can use a very well-implemented virtual try-on service that lets you upload an image , and GlassesUSA also provides interesting tools like a prescription scanner that lets you scan your existing glasses if you dont have a copy handy. The GlassesUSA virtual try-on tool asks you to place crosshairs on your pupils to take a virtual PD measurement, then to enter your actual PD if known this made for about the most accurate sizing of any of the virtual try-on tools we tested, in line with Eyebuydirects great tool.

As is typical of the sites in this review, youll get the best deal on simple single-vision prescriptions progressives, high-index lenses, tints and coatings can add up, though youll generally save compared to brick-and-mortar opticians.

Bottom line

Lenscrafters Styles For The Online

The Best Place To Buy Eyeglasses Online is the web-only retail storefront for the Luxottica brands. The offerings are similar to LensCrafters, though youll find a more streamlined experience and some different models on sale between the two shops.

What we liked about

As you shop, youll want to pay attention to sales and special offers, which can reduce prices by a significant amount. We waited for a 50% off lenses offer, which we were able to couple with a 20% off total coupon, bringing the price of pair of Ray-Bans with all available options down to a very reasonable price not quite in the Zenni range, but competitive with online-first retailers like GlassesUSA and Warby Parker. is an in-network provider for a range of major insurance plans . so depending on your coverage you may be able to save without having to put in for reimbursement.

As with LensCrafters, we really liked the glasses we got from the brand-name and house-branded frames and lenses were well-executed, with clear optics and solid fit and finish. All spare parts for the Oakleys were included, and as with LensCrafters, you get a data sheet detailing the lens construction.

What we didnt like about

Bottom line

If you like LensCrafters selection, dont plan on visiting a physical store and want a slightly slicker online shopping experience, gives you that, along with a discount structure more like other online-only direct-to-consumer brands.

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Why You Should Trust Us

To learn more about buying prescription eyeglasses online, we spoke to Dr. Christopher Quinn, a past president of the American Optometric Association. And we interviewed seven optometrists, ophthalmologists, and opticians in person, by phone, or by email: Dr. Neil Pence, associate dean for clinical and patient care services at the Indiana University School of Optometry optician Nancy Kirsch, director of the Essilor Eyewear Center at the University Eye Center and assistant clinical professor at the State University of New York College of Optometry Dr. Camille Cohen, an optometrist in private practice in New York Dr. Michael Chiang, a professor of ophthalmology, medical informatics, and clinical epidemiology at Oregon Health & Science University Dr. Jeff Pettey, vice chair of education at the John Moran Eye Center and an associate professor at the University of Utah Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences Dr. James Salz, an ophthalmologist in private practice in Los Angeles and Dr. Abdhish Bhavsar, an ophthalmologist in private practice in Minneapolis. We also consulted Alysa Bernstein, an attorney with the Federal Trade Commissions Bureau of Consumer Protection.

Since 2017, weve spent more than 100 hours evaluating the websites of online glasses stores, comparing their policies, ordering and returning dozens of pairs of glasses, playing with fitting tools, and learning how to find glasses that fitwith or without being able to try on frames first.

Is There A Difference Between Cheap And Expensive Glasses

There most certainly isactually, there are quite a few differences between cheap and expensive glasses. First of all, cheap frames are usually made with lower-quality materials and they may not be as comfortable to wear.

Furthermore, cheap lenses wont come with additional protective coatings, so you may notice they dont last as long as your last expensive pair.

Heres the bottom line: even though its super convenient to buy cheap glassesand I appreciate that online companies are making glasses more accessibleyou may be better off with a more expensive pair if you can afford them.

After all, the more you spend on your glasses, the higher in quality theyll be and the longer they should last you . Fortunately, online glasses companies can offer the same types of treatments, coatings, frames, and lenses as your optometrist would, and getting help online is quick and easy.

Basically, you can get cheap and expensive glasses from the majority of online glasses retailers, its all about the frames you choose and the add-ons you pick.

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