I am as blind as a bat.
I am also somewhat cheap.
Each year I need to have the prescription updated in my glasses or I face the wrath of constant headaches and nausea. The problem with this is the outright expense and the fact that I get sick of my glasses after a year and want new frames. Usually this costs me $400 – $500 a shot with all the scratch and UV coatings added in. I do not necessarily purchase designer frames nor do I go to a ridiculous ’boutique’ optical store – so really my cost is quite normal.
Now that we have The Dictator and The Deuce is fast approaching I have come to realize that children are very hard on my glasses. They are always dirty from sticky little hands and more then once I have outright thrown an old pair out because someone broke them. I have also always wanted prescription sunglasses (because I break the clip-on or lose them almost immediately) but the cost of such an item has been prohibitive.
I have been looking online for a while at glasses, and one day Googled Cheap Prescription Eyeglasses and was taken to at least 6 different sites offering wicked deals on glasses. After doing some research online and reading reviews I decided to go with Zenni Optical for my first foray into the cheap eyeglasses world.
Zenni Optical is a company that is registered in the USA, but your glasses will come from Hong Kong. This made me a little nervous at first but the overall reviews were favorable so I decided to go for it and order 3 pairs of glasses.
I have always wanted a completely rimless frame but with my high prescription I needed to upgrade to such a high index lens that they just were not a financially viable option (considering I may hate them). At Zenni Optical you can pick the color of the metal and the actual lens shape and size, the ones below are the exact ones I purchased. They showed up with beautifully polished lenses and my prescription was bang-on. Maybe even better then what I got for $500 here in Hickville City. I like them, but I am pleased I never paid $800 here for them, because they really are not worth it.
Rimless Frames with Upgraded Super High Index Lens/UVA and UVB coatings/ Anti Scratch $40.95
Next I picked something a little more sassy then I would normally choose, since they have almost a full frame on them I decided to go for the regular lenses. I am very very pleased with these glasses.
Burgundy fashion frame with regular lenses with UVA and UVB coatings/ Anti Scratch $34.95
Finally I picked a funky frame to turn into sunglasses (upgrading to sunglasses lenses is under $8 extra, unlike other places who want to charge a $150 for tinting on top of the prescription). These are great and I love them, but next time I will choose a larger frame for sunglasses to get more coverage.
Prescription Sunglasses with regular lenses and with 80% Grey tint and scratch coating $35.85
In every pair my prescription was bang on and the quality of the lenses seemed perfectly fine to me. The lenses were all nicely polished on the outside edges (note my last pair of $500 glasses did not polish the lens edge leaving them looking dull and cheap – a big deal if you have coke bottle lenses like me). They were well assembled and all fit pretty well right out of the box with minimal tinkering.
A few tips if you do go this route:
- Get a copy of your prescription from the eye doctor. By law they have to give it to you. Maybe go for a whole new eye exam and start fresh.
- Make them also measure your pupillary distance and give you those values. Often they will try to tell you whoever sells you your glasses will do it for you but I told them I needed them to order custom made goggles through work.
- Have some patience. It took a week to get my glasses made and then another 1.5 weeks to get to Canada. I have heard of much longer time-lines, but at under $40 a pair I was OK with waiting.
- Take a good look at your glasses. Measure the width, lens height, temple arm length and bridge so you get an idea of what will fit similar online. I also took into account that I am usually drawn to rectangular glasses with the hinges close to the top and not in the middle. These things all come into play when choosing a frame online.
- Don’t be too set on the color that appears on your monitor; it will likely be a bit different when you get them since not all computer display colors the same.
- If you are squeemish depending on online glasses initially, remember they are cheap online and maybe try ordering your “backup” pair or get some sunglasses to see how it all goes.
- They have children’s frames too, and you know how expensive those can be and how often they need replacing.
Also keep in mind: Total invoice including shipping, eyeglasses cases and nice microfibre cleaning cloths for each pair: $118.65 (American funds). For. Three. Pairs. Of. Glasses
Totally worth it.