Minding The Details: Cheap Glasses


MInding Details

I have needed glasses since I was 18. I can’t wear contacts thanks to severely dry eyes, but I am happy to embrace my inner nerd and sport some specs. I’ve been lucky that my prescription hasn’t changed very often, so I have only replaced my glasses about every 3 years.

The last time I needed new glasses was in 2013, right before I became pregnant with the toddler. I used to have a pair of prescription sunglasses, but my prescription has changed so much that I can’t wear them anymore without acting like Mr. Magoo. I was really hoping to get some cheap, reliable glasses, a backup pair (in case one of my kids breaks them),  and some sunglasses to boot.

Our insurance company has better glasses benefits this year. They were willing to pay for up to $250 for frames and lenses. I opted for a free pair for my normal pair. I crowdsourced some ideas on Facebook for online glasses, and came up with two options:  Zenni Optical and Eyebuydirect.

Zenni has glasses for as low as $6.95, and can make any pair clip on sunglasses for a few dollars more. Eyebuydirect has cute modern styles, but is a little pricier than Zenni. They did have a nice selection of sunglasses too.

We had a budget of $150, so I decided to buy one pair of glasses with clip-on sunglasses from Zenni (a $6.95 pair), and a pair of hipster glasses and a pair of sunglasses from Eyebuydirect. I spent $145 in all for 4 pairs.

I got them both in the mail last week, and I am happy with all of them. The Zenni pair was somewhat thin plastic frames, but don’t seem too fragile. The glasses from Eyebuydircet seem to be equivalent in quality to what I have gotten at the eye doctor all these years. I am loving the sunglasses.

Everything went smoothly, and it was easy to order, I just had to make sure when my eye doctor printed the script, they also gave my pupillary distance. You can also print out a how-to and measure it yourself, but I found it easier to just tell my doctor up front when I went in for my exam.

I admit, finding a good fit and the right shape would have been difficult if I wasn’t familiar with what looked good on me already. I did take measurements of my face and was able to find glasses that would fit best, using each site’s search filters. I have a petite frame, and have bought children’s glasses in the past. Zenni had fewer options for very small-boned women, but I was able to find several pairs that could work in my size. I did have more options on Eyebuydirect.

If you have never had glasses before, I would recommend going somewhere and trying some on before buying any from the internet.

If our insurance ever cuts back on the glasses coverage, I’d be happy with buying from both of these places in the future.

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