These Are the Best Places to Buy Glasses Online and Try Them at Home

Warby Parker offers eye exams in-store and at-home try on

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Approximately half of the U.S. population wears eyeglasses, according to the Vision Council of America–so you’re not alone. Whether you’re looking for reading glasses, sunglasses, everyday frames, or trendy blue light glasses, these retailers have hundreds of styles to best suit your personal needs. 

Reviewed & Approved

Warby Parker offers eye exams in-store, at-home try-on, and glasses in a variety of colors and styles. For budget-friendly glasses, we'd recommend EyeBuyDirect.

Chris Albanis, MD, an ophthalmologist and member of the American Board of Ophthalmology, told Verywell Health that vision remains more important than ever, “as many spend more time on computers, online meetings, virtual learning, and reading.” She says people should most importantly consider comfort and the size of the lenses when selecting glasses. 

When looking for glasses, Dr. Albanis recommends seeking help from a local eye care professional and finding a pair that fits your unique face shape. We researched dozens of online glasses retailers and evaluated them for reviews, shipping speed, site experience, pricing, product selection, virtual try-on options, and return policies.

Here are the best online glasses retailers on the market today.

Our Top Picks

Best Overall: Warby Parker

4.8
Warby Parker
Pros
  • At-home try on available

  • Color and style variety

  • Eye exams available in-store

Cons
  • No brand names available

  • Virtual try on requires an app

We chose Warby Parker as our top pick because the brand offers at-home try-on, eye exams in store, and glasses in a wide variety of colors and styles. Before even asking you to commit to purchasing a pair, the retailer will send up to five pairs to your front door free of cost. You then have five days to try out the selected glasses before either sending them back or keeping them for yourself. 

The business model, which started at the company’s inception in 2010, works and customers rave about how seamless it is for them to try on glasses from the comfort of their own home. Still not convinced? Warby Parker provides hundreds of affordable styles that are updated frequently as trends evolve. The site even offers a quiz you can take to assist in picking a style. 

Shipping Speed: 7-10 business days | Virtual Try On Available: Yes through Warby Parker app | Customer Service Response Time: Representatives available 9am-10pm ET every day

More Options: GlassesUSA

Ray-Ban 5279

Image Courtesy of GlassesUSA

Pros
  • Brand names available

  • Variety of styles

  • Wide price range

Cons
  • 14-day return period

  • No eye exams available

  • Only available online

With hundreds of name brand and designer options to choose from, GlassesUSA makes it hard for you not to walk away with frames in your shopping cart. Top designers from on the site include Ray-Ban, Prada, Gucci, Michael Kors, and Versace–all of which are often sold at a discounted price. 

If designer frames aren’t for you or your budget, don’t worry. GlassesUSA also offers hundreds of affordable styles to choose from that will fit your personal needs. Glasses with lenses included start as low as $38, making it one of the more affordable places to shop. 

Shipping Speed: 7-10 business days | Virtual Try On Available: Yes | Customer Service Response Time: 24/7 customer service available

Best Styles: LensCrafters

Ray-Ban 0RX5154

 Image Courtesy of Lenscrafters

Pros
  • Name brands available

  • 30-day return policy

  • Eye exams available

Cons
  • Fewer budget-friendly glasses

  • No virtual try on

Shopping online for eyeglasses can be a nerve-wracking experience because you’re unable to try styles on right then and there to best know what works for you. LensCrafters is a safe bet as an online shop because many of its styles are similar to what you would find in stores. 

The retailer also carries a range of designer brands–such as Oakley, Giorgio Armani, Bulgari, and Ray-Ban–at discounted prices that follow current trends, so you know you’ll get the top styles. Best part is that LensCrafters offers a free, 30-day return policy, making it easy for you to send a pair back if they don’t suit your specific needs. 

Shipping Speed: 7-14 business days | Virtual Try On Available: No | Customer Service Response Time: Customer service available every day but Sunday

What the Experts Say

“How the eyeglasses fit is critically important — if the fit is incorrect, not only can a patient experience discomfort, such as pinching and headaches, but can cause additional vision problems.” — Dr. Robert C. Layman, the president of the American Optometric Association

Best Budget: EyeBuyDirect

Outline glasses

Courtesy of EyeBuyDirect

Pros
  • Wide range of prices available

  • Two-day shipping options

  • Brand name options

Cons
  • 14-day return policy


Selecting affordable glasses is not always easy, as the frames alone can have a hefty price tag even before your add in your prescription lens. EyeBuyDirect makes shopping online for glasses easy and most importantly, inexpensive. 

Frames start as low as $6 for the retailer depending on what style you select. But be aware, this does not include the prescription lens you will need to go with your frames. EyeBuyDirect says their glasses end up costing a customer an average $70 for both the frames and prescription lens. So whether you’re on a budget or looking for an inexpensive back-up pair, EyeBuyDirect offers a variety of options.

Shipping Speed: 2-10 business days | Virtual Try On Available: Yes | Customer Service Response Time: Customer service available 24/7

What the Experts Say

Budget-friendly doesn’t mean low quality, says Dr. Sumayya Ahmad, ophthalmologist at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai: “It depends on what glasses you are purchasing and the specs you are getting, [like specialty lenses].”

Best for Sunglasses: DIFF Eyewear

Kaia Sunglasses

Image courtesy of DIff Eyewear

Pros
  • Variety of styles

  • Brand promotes giving back

Cons
  • No brand names

  • No virtual try on available

  • 14-day return policy for prescriptions

DIFF Eyewear has become known for its statement sunglasses that are guaranteed to earn you compliments when out and about. Also, the designer brand is more affordable than others, with sunglasses starting as low as $89. 

As a fashion-forward brand, DIFF Eyewear offers frames in all sorts of shapes–from cat eye to aviator to oversized–that will best suit your face. If you’re looking for other ways to protect your eyes, the brand also offers a wide range of blue light glasses for those who stare at a computer or phone screen for a majority of their work or school day. 

Shipping Speed: 7-10 business days | Virtual Try On Available: No | Customer Service Response Time: 1-3 days

Best Return Policy: Liingo Eyewear

Alice eyeglasses

Courtesy of Liingo Eyewear

Pros
  • 60-day return policy

  • Free in-home try on available

  • Free shipping

Cons
  • No brand names

  • No children’s frames or contacts

Buying glasses online can be a risk with an inability to determine exactly how they will fit on your face prior to purchasing. Luckily, Liingo Eyewear makes it easy for you to try on and return glasses at your leisure. Similar to Warby Parker, the company also offers a try-on program where it will send multiple styles directly to your door. A helpful quiz can also assist in style selection if you’re unsure which pair to choose. 

Once the glasses arrive, the company offers a 60-Day Delight Guarantee Policy, meaning you have two months to test and return the product with no extra cost. Although Liingo lacks the larger selection offered by other retailers, its flexible return policy makes it easy to try glasses without any worries about returning them.

Shipping speed: 7-14 business days | Virtual Try On Available: Yes | Customer Service Response Time: Available every day from 9am to 9pm ET

What the Experts Say

Don’t underestimate the importance of customer service, says Dr. Ahmad: “A return policy is good [and so is] good customer service, good reviews, and experience working with people with more complicated prescriptions, if that’s what you have.”

Best for the Conscious Consumer: Coastal Glasses

Black crystal eyeglasses

Courtesy of Coastal

Pros
  • Brand names available

  • Company donates eye glasses with every purchase

  • Affordable prices

Cons
  • No eye exams available

Coastal’s global mission is to provide glasses to not only those who can afford them, but those who cannot or are without access to vision care. The company runs a Buy One, Give One program in collaboration with Essilor Vision Foundation. For every pair of glasses someone purchases, the company donates a pair globally to someone in need. 

That’s only one plus to shopping through Coastal. The retailer also offers hundreds of styles for men and women–including name-brand designers like Ray-Ban, Tory Burch, and the Brooks Brothers. Besides all these benefits, pricing is also incredibly affordable. The company’s more basic frames, without the prescription lens, can cost you as low as $9. 

Shipping Speed: 7-14 business days | Virtual Try On Available: Yes | Customer Service Response Time: 24/7 customer service available

Final Verdict

If you’re looking for a retailer with hundreds of options and a seamless system to try out the frames, we recommend Warby Parker (view at Warby Parker). If you want more trendsetting frames that are still affordable, we recommend GlassesUSA (view at GlassesUSA). 

What to Look for When Buying Glasses Online

Comfort

If you’ll be wearing your glasses around the clock, they definitely need to be comfortable; but even if you’re only planning to wear them for reading or long distances, you don’t want to be stuck with glasses that pinch, slide around or fall off, sit crookedly on your face, feel too heavy on your nose, or give you a headache. 

“Comfort is critical, especially if you will wear the glasses for several hours per day,” Dr. Albanis says. Check how well your glasses fit you by assessing the way they rest on the bridge of your nose, feel behind your ears, and “sit” on your face to best determine if they will wear well for long periods of time. “There shouldn’t be gaps between the person’s actual bridge of their nose and the bridge of the glasses; It will also often cause the glasses to slip down their face,” says Dr. Maria Armandi, an optometrist and instructor at Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University. “If the temple length is not long enough, then the bend is not going to sit down the ear like it should so again the glasses may slide forward,” she adds. 

If you’re especially concerned about ordering glasses online and getting the right fit, look for retailers that offer deals on any future adjustments, says New York City-based optometrist Jonah Berman, O.D.: “Some online [retailers] know how important adjustments can be, and offer a reimbursement of up to $20 for the actual adjustment.”

Cost

Eyeglasses can be expensive, especially when they are not covered under your vision plan. “When buying glasses, it is important to look at the full spectrum – what is most cost-effective from a financial, time and health perspective,” says Dr. Robert C. Layman, the president of the American Optometric Association (AOA). 

Dr. Albanis says that a higher price tag does not always mean higher quality. The type of material and protective coating on the glasses actually better determines the quality. “Depending on your visual needs, the eye care professional you work with should be able to explain the pros and cons to meet your needs,” Dr. Albanis says.

Also be careful about spending money for added features that you may or may not need, or ones that haven’t been proven to provide much benefit. Blue light blocking lenses, for example, have become extremely popular among eyewear retailers despite the fact that they have not been proven to prevent eye disease, but Dr. Ahmad says the added feature is probably not a good use of your glasses budget.

Frame Shape

Not all frames are created equally, especially depending on the shape of someone’s face. “There are shape rules,” Dr. Armandi says. “For a round face, you shouldn’t get a round frame because it will make your face look too round. If you have a very angular face, you might not want a very square looking frame or angular frame.” There are several reasons why eyeglasses come with rules for how it should rest on the face. For one, it is so the glasses don’t over or underexaggerate any facial features. “Your frame shape should be the opposite of your face shape so you can balance out the features of your face,” Dr. Armandi says. An optician can help guide you on what to look out for when selecting different frames for your prescription glasses. 

There are also rules when it comes to selecting the right lenses that will fit your frame. “It is important to make sure that a particular frame works well with the prescribed lenses, and the doctor (or the optician) can recommend thinner, lighter lenses to improve comfort and the look, especially if someone has a special need for a stronger prescription,” Dr. Layman says.

Warranty or Return Policy

Pay close attention to any retailer’s policy about returning glasses if they don’t work out for you—while some will fully refund you, others will only give you a credit to be used towards another pair of glasses from that same company rather than giving you your money back. “I’ve had people who had difficulty with return policies, even if the glasses were made incorrectly. Understand what the return policies are,” Dr. Armandi recommends. 

You should also make note of any warranty information sent along with your order, in the event that your glasses don’t last as long as you expect them to; there are a lot of factors that go into the lifespan of a pair of glasses, but Dr. Berman says a well-made, durable pair of glasses should come with a customer-favorable warranty.

“The material your frame is made from, the strength and flexibility of the material, the simplicity of the frame and the number of parts that are used, the method of securing the lenses to the frame, how well the frame fits your face, the ease of adjustment, and use of the eyeglass case all play a role in [determining] how long your glasses will last,” he explains, adding that you might want to purchase a second pair of glasses as a backup in case your first pair becomes damaged.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do you need a prescription to buy glasses online?

    Yes, a prescription is necessary to buy eyeglasses online if you’re looking to assist with any vision problems you might have. Glasses are medical devices regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and are not one size fits all,” Dr. Layman says. “Every pair of eyeglasses must be custom fitted to not only comfortably suit your face, but also to meet your particular prescriptive needs.” Eye exams are an important tool for people to utilize so they can know the prescription that will address vision problems. Otherwise, side effects from wearing glasses with the wrong prescription could happen. “Headaches, eye strain, and nausea can result from wearing reading glasses that are not a correct prescription. That’s why doctors of optometry work with patients to not only pinpoint the correct prescription, but also identify the right type and fit,” Dr. Layman says.

  • How often should you replace your glasses?

    How often you should replace your glasses can oftentimes depend on how the frames hold up through constant use. “Sometimes a pair of glasses can last five, six years if they are a good frame, they clean them properly,” Dr. Armandi says. “But people should have regular eye exams regardless of if their eyeglasses are in good shape.” The American Optometric Association recommends for adults ages 18 to 64 to receive an eye exam at least once every two years if they are asymptomatic or low risk. High risk individuals in that age group should get an eye exam annually. Adults ages 65 years and older should get an eye exam at least once every year. “Typically, most people will need new glasses when their prescription changes,” Dr. Layman says.


    Other reasons why glasses should be replaced include if they have any scratches or dents. “They could be affecting your vision in ways you aren't consciously aware of and potentially lead to eye strain,” Dr. Layman says. Trouble cleaning the glasses could also indicate that you should purchase a new pair. “The coatings on glasses can break down over time, leaving a film that makes glasses difficult to clean or even blurry,” he adds.

What the Experts Say

“Regardless of where a patient chooses to purchase, the foundation for having glasses that work well for them is really to ensure that they receive a comprehensive eye examination to assess their eye health before making a purchase. The consequences of making an incorrect or uninformed purchase could cost patients more time and money and have health implications in the long run.” — Dr. Layman

Why Trust Verywell Health

As a seasoned health writer, Danielle Zoellner knows the importance of finding just the right product to fit your medical needs. Throughout her career, Danielle has interviewed a variety of experts in the medical and health fields while reviewing dozens of products. Her experience and knowledge in the field work together to help readers like yourself find the best products for your daily life.

Additional reporting by Sarah Bradley

Sarah Bradley has been writing health content since 2017—everything from product roundups and illness FAQs to nutrition explainers and the dish on diet trends. She knows how important it is to receive trustworthy and expert-approved advice about over-the-counter products that manage everyday health conditions, from GI issues and allergies to chronic headaches and joint pain.

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  1. Vision Council of America. Organizational overview. 2020.