Your Guide to Buying Prescription Lenses Online

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Posted: 22 December 2017

It’s no secret that online shopping is big business — in fact, fully 80% of Americans with internet access have bought an item online in the past month. It’s pretty easy to buy a book, a smartphone, or a pair of shoes on the Internet, but have you ever considered buying your eyeglasses there?

In the past few years, glasses with prescription lenses have become an increasingly common online commodity. There are a plethora of websites that offer eyeglasses, and some of them are very inexpensive.

However, it can be tricky to buy glasses, er, sight unseen! If you’ve been skittish about making such an important purchase this way, read on for some tips!

1. Get Your Prescription from a Pro

There’s isn’t (yet) a way to gaze into your laptop’s camera and have an eye exam conducted, so you’ll still need to visit your optometrist for this part of the process. Not only will this ensure you get the correct prescription for your vision, but it is also important for your eye health.

Routine eye exams can detect early signs of issues such as macular degeneration, glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes, high blood pressure, and stroke risk.

2. Make Sure to Get Your PD

When you’re ordering prescription lenses online, you will need not just your lens specifications, but also something called “pupillary distance,” or PD. This is a measurement that will help determine the size and shape of frames that will work best for your vision.

Your optometrist or optician can measure this distance for you, and that’s the best option. In a pinch, however, you can have a friend or family member do it for you with a ruler, or even do it yourself in a mirror.

3. Try the Glasses On

Some sites offering glasses allow you to upload a picture of your face, then virtually “try on” the different frame styles. It’s fun to check out how you’ll look in various glasses, and it gives you an idea of what styles suit you.

Other sites take this one step further, by shipping you several frames of your choosing to physically try on. They won’t have your prescription lenses in them yet, but it’s great to be able to see how the glasses fit and judge their quality.

4. Find Out About Returns

When you order eyeglasses at a brick-and-mortar establishment, your optician will make sure they fit, the prescription is right, and that everything is shipshape before you leave.

If you’re ordering online, it’s good to make sure that you can return the glasses if there’s any problem with the fit or vision correction. Some sites will even replace the prescription lenses for free if they get scratched. Look into this before you commit.

5. Buy Progressive Prescription Lenses In Person

If you need bifocals or trifocals, don’t take the risk of buying online. These specialty lenses really need to be ordered and fitted by a professional, like Medical Arts Eye Clinic & Optical medical eye doctor.

Final Thoughts

Buying eyeglasses online can be a convenient and inexpensive way to get a variety of trendy frames fitted with lenses that correct your vision. It’s also a good solution for buying backup glasses.

Other people, especially those who require progressive lenses, are probably better off getting their glasses the old-fashioned way.

Have you ever ordered glasses online, or would you consider it? Let us know in the comments!

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