In The Know shopping editors reveal what it’s like to buy prescription eyeglasses online

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Buying prescription glasses online is easier than ever these days. However, if you’ve never done it before, it can feel pretty daunting. Will the frames look good on your face? Can you trust that the prescription will be right? How can you tell if the website you’re shopping at is trustworthy?

With so many things to consider when shopping for prescription eyewear online, we decided to put to the test and share our shopping experiences with you. With hundreds of frames to choose from — including designer styles! — is one of the more popular places to purchase prescription glasses online. That said, knowing how to navigate the site and take advantage of its key features are critical to your success.

If you’re on the fence about buying prescription glasses online, there are definitely advantages, especially if you choose to shop on Not only are there lots more frame options to choose from, but chances are you can get a better deal than you’d find in a store. Plus you can shop from the comfort and safety of your own home.

Still need a bit more convincing on the benefits of buying your prescription eyeglasses or sunglasses online? Read on to get the scoop on what three different editors think about buying prescription glasses from

Jeanine Edwards, Commerce Director

Credit: Jeanine Edwards

Stella McCartney SC0098O, $146.40 (Orig. $365)


You know the way some people are with jewelry or shoes or handbags? That’s how I am with glasses. Rather than be annoyed that I have to wear them, I embrace them as an accessory that I switch up depending on my mood or outfit. When I first visited, I felt like a kid in a candy store. There were so many good options! There were cute frames by high-end designers, but also really nice frames from brands I’d never heard of before. It wasn’t long before I favorited a bunch of eyeglasses and needed to do some serious narrowing down to decide on just one.

I began the process of editing my favorites down by first eliminating anything that would be too big or small for my face. The sizing of glasses is often printed on the inside of the arm, so I compared the measurements of a pair of glasses I already owned (and liked) to some of my options on Anything significantly larger or smaller got the ax.

Next, to help make my decision a little easier, I relied heavily on the virtual try-on, which gives a scary-good rendering of what the different frames on will look like on you. After lots of different photo uploads and looking at the glasses from all different angles, I finally went with these Stella McCartney SC0098O lenses and I couldn’t be happier. The prescription is spot-on, the fit is perfect and I am hardcore resisting the urge to go back and buy another pair. — Jeanine Edwards, Commerce Director

Moriba Cummings, Commerce Editor

Credit: Moriba Cummings

Ray-Ban RB3648: The Marshal, $187

Credit:’s user interface is surprisingly intuitive and user-friendly. With a face classified as both round and oval-shaped, it’s hard for me to purchase glasses without trying them on in person or fearing I’d look ridiculous when they arrive.‘s virtual try-on tool made it easy to see what the frames would look like on my face. Also, the eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses selections were much more diverse than I expected. After selecting my frames, entering my prescription, etc., my RX sunglasses arrived in under two weeks. This experience has definitely restored my faith in shopping for glasses online. — Moriba Cummings, Commerce Editor

Brittany Nims, Managing Commerce Editor

Ray-Ban RX3447V Round Metal, $177


I’m no stranger to buying glasses online. In fact, I’ve been buying my glasses online from many different retailers for years because they’re much more affordable and often easier to navigate than purchasing new glasses in person. 

But the main reason I love buying glasses online is that I can try new, trendy styles without breaking the bank. I might not typically splash out on a funky color or new style of frames if I know it’ll lighten my wallet, but when I buy online I’m more willing to edge out of my comfort zone.

My latest gifted pair of frames and lenses from were a great example of this. I wanted a pair of thin, gold wire-frame glasses, and spotted a pair that I loved in my eye doctor’s office a few weeks ago. But even with insurance, that pair would have set me back more than $300 and would have eaten up my entire eyeglass-frame reimbursement allotment for the year. Not cool. At, however, I was able to get a shockingly similar-looking pair of these Ray-Ban RX3447V round metal frames in gold for a fraction of the price. 

Purchasing online with GlassesUSA was super simple, too. I was able to input my latest eyeglass prescription and could even customize the lenses to my liking, be it bifocals, transition lenses or even just non-prescription fashion glasses.

Best of all, if you’re worried about whether your insurance will cover the cost of glasses purchased online, has thought about that, too. If you have an FSA or HSA, you can use those debit cards at checkout. You can also email GlassesUSA for an itemized receipt after purchase and send the form to your FSA or HSA provider for reimbursement. 

Even if you don’t have an FSA or HSA, getting reimbursed by your insurance is really easy, assuming your vision insurance includes an out-of-network benefit. Simply fill out GlassesUSA’s insurance reimbursement form, attach the itemized receipt of your prescription glasses to the form and submit everything to your insurance provider. — Brittany Nims, Managing Commerce Editor

If you liked this story, check out the best websites to buy prescription eyeglasses online.

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