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The best places to buy eyewear online

David Carnoy / CNET

In recent years, the number of websites selling eyewear and sunglasses has increased – and this is not just Warby Parker. More and more people are finding out what they learned about eyeglasses 25 years ago: not only is it easy to buy online, it's also much cheaper. We're talking about hundreds of dollars in savings.

For this purpose, we have put together the six best online eyewear providers we have found. However, before you dive, be aware of the following prerequisites, precautions, and tips:

  • Before using any of these websites, you must know your prescription and the distance between the pupils. Make sure you get a printed version next time. Your eyes have been checked. But as soon as you have that, on most websites you can upload a picture of this recipe from your phone the first time you make a purchase.
  • Most of the sites highlighted here offer first time buyers a certain discount. This means that your first purchase can be the best deal and it pays to test multiple online retailers.
  • For more tips, see Buy Eyewear Online and Save Hundreds of Dollars .

Please note that all of these services were personally used by me or a CNET employee.

Please note that the services discussed here are independently selected by our editors. CNET can earn a portion of the revenue when you buy something featured on our website.

Warby Parker

Screenshot by David Carnoy / CNET

Several CNET editors have bought their glasses from Warby Parker, which has a good selection of sharp-looking frames. (Somehow, the editors Dan Ackerman and Scott Stein have independently chosen the same frame.) They pay more for Warby Parker goggles – about $ 180 to $ 200 – depending on the recipe and lens type, but the finished products are usually an increase over what more budget-oriented websites offer. For example, Warby has no problem manufacturing progressive or photosensitive (photochromic) lenses.

Remarkable Page Functions : With the company's app for iOS and Android, you can virtually try different frames (it works surprisingly well)) and even better, you can have up to five frames at home for five days for free try out. Once your five days have expired, place your box in the mail with the prepaid return label. Hopefully, among the five styles you've selected for the home test, you'll find at least one you like.

Warby also has physical stores in some places across the country if you want to deal with frames this way. Some of these sites also offer eye tests – and this recipe can be used at Warby or elsewhere.

Warby Parker also offers the program "Buy a pair, give a pair" to companies referred to a couple for someone in need, either for free or at "affordable prices". (See details.)

Delivery time: According to Warby, "It takes 7 to 10 business days for us to be with you from the time we have all the ordering information." Sunglasses and progressive glasses cost 10 to 12 business days to reach you. "(These estimates are consistent with the experience of CNET editors who have used the service.)

Roka Eyewear

David Carnoy / CNET

The Austin, Texas-based Roka recently joined the online prescription business. The marketing slogan is "The most technically advanced glasses that do not look technical". The glasses are impressively light, robust and look stylish. Like Warby Parker, they are at the top of the RX spectacle spectrum. Priced goggles are priced around $ 200, depending on some of the lens upgrades you may have added.

Roka started producing sports glasses for runners, bikers and triathletes. Many of the prescription eyeglasses are bendable at the ends and have rubberized rails for a more secure fit. The frames also come with three sizes of grippy nosepads for a better fit. They are among the most comfortable eyewear I've ever worn – and they really stay on your face.

Remarkable features of the site : As with Warby, there is a home experiment program. You can test up to four images at home for up to seven days. The box comes with a prepaid return label – you just drop it off at a post office to return it.

Shipping Times: Roka does not give any general estimates. Instead, you will receive a shipping estimate if individual orders are placed based on your chosen shipping option (next day, second day, or reason).


Screenshot of David Carnoy / CNET

Founded 10 years ago in Israel, GlassesUSA.com offers better value options than websites like Warby Parker and Roka. But there are also several premium brands available, including Ray-Ban and Persol. These frames contain more – they start at $ 89 for a finished RX basic goggle – but discounts can lower the price.

The easy-to-use website offers a 65% discount on your first images and discounts on lens upgrades (such as photochromic). In addition, a landing page for flash sales of non-prescription sunglasses has recently been set up. And you can search for seasonal specials around major holidays.

Remarkable Site Features : Using a virtual "mirror" feature, you can upload your photo to the site and see what a frame looks like on your face. A new try-at-home feature is currently in beta, expanding the try-at-home approach. Instead of just sending the frames to you, GlassesUSA sends you the frame with your current recipe so you can try it for up to 14 days. At startup, the function is limited to specific frames and lens options. The site also offers a 100% money-back guarantee so you can return your glasses if you do not like what you're getting. And while we've found some negative online reviews for GlassesUSA.com, the company seems to be following each one closely and responding to them.

Delivery times: Depending on the type of eyewear and the selected shipping option, between the order and the arrival of the GlassesUSA.com products at least 10 to 14 days can be expected.


Screenshot by David Carnoy / CNET

What do you do if you already have a pair of frames that you like but your prescription is old (or your lenses are scratched) and you just want to replace them ? the lenses? Lensabl is one of the few websites where you can send in your own pairs of glasses and get a new lens for these glasses. The motto is: "Your version, our lenses". Prices for a simple pair of single-vision lenses start at $ 77. A pair of tinted sunglasses costs from $ 97.

You upload your recipe online, select the lens type you want, and Lensabl will send you a box with a prepaid return label. You just send them your glasses in the box (shipping is free). First time customers receive a 15% discount.

This website is also a good option if you have old glasses that you want to turn into RX sunglasses.

Special Website Features : For $ 35, you can renew your recipe online. Not everyone can participate in the online eye exam – you'll need to answer a few questions to see if you qualify – but if so, Lensabl says, "All you need is your computer, your smartphone, and about 15 minutes Time." Your results will be reviewed by an authorized ophthalmologist in your country, who will then email you a new prescription.

Delivery Times: Lensabl promises a processing time of "approximately two weeks" from the time you ship your frames to the time you receive them back.


Screenshot by David Carnoy / CNET

Zenni has been around for a while and it's the first website I've ever bought eyewear online. It's more of a price-conscious side, and over the years I've received some good offers, especially when Zenni occasionally did a three-for-two eyewear sale. I did both standard eyewear and sunglasses here, as well as my colleague David Katzmaier, who has now graduated from Warby Parker (though he said he would still buy sunglasses at Zenni because they are cheap and decent enough). ,

Remarkable Site Features : There is a "Mirror" frame adjustment feature that allows you to upload a photo and see the frames on your face, as well as a new "virtual" fitting feature ( Enabled) This allows you to see the glasses on your face while you are using the webcam on your computer or your phone's camera. This is similar to Warby Parker's virtual fitting.

Delivery time: "Your glasses will be delivered about two weeks after receiving your order," says Zenni. In my experience, that sometimes goes closer to three weeks.




Screenshot by David Carnoy / CNET

Coastal has some similarities with Zenni, as it leads to low prices, a 40% discount on new customers, and sporadic two-on-one deals on various holidays , There are no virtual customization features, but there is an option to enter the size of your current frames, and the site offers options based on the dimensions that best fit your face.

Coastal Some eyewear from the premium brand (Ray-Ban, Oakley and others) are on offer, but with lenses that cost up to $ 100.

Features of the Website : Coastal maintains a philanthropic partnership with the Essilor Vision Foundation to improve the perspective of people who can not afford glasses. According to Coastal, "we donate glasses to the needy for every pair of glasses we buy."

Delivery time: Expect 10 to 14 days.

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