How good are bargain glasses?

January 31, 2018


How good are bargain glasses? We put three companies to the test

Author: Doug Currin

Published: 7:41 PM CST November 16, 2017

Today, glasses can cost more than an iPad. And, the high dollar amount people with vision problems are paying for prescription lenses is sending some consumers to websites that offer bargain glasses.

But, are you getting what you pay for when you try to find cheap prescription glasses? We ordered glasses from three different popular websites, then took the glasses to an optometrist to find out.

The three websites we chose were Zenni Optical, and EyeBuyDirect.

Once they arrived, we took them to Dr. Stacie Virden -- a Waco eye doctor, who told us about a big study done not too long ago that put online glasses stores to the test.

"They ordered 200 frames and only 154 actually arrived," Dr. Virden explained. "Of those, 29-percent of those came back inaccurate -- not made to the proper prescription...You're definitely getting what you pay for."

Dr. Virden said big optical chains were buying in bulk and shipping those glasses nationwide in order to keep prices low. But, there was a risk those glasses would not be made to your specific optical needs, as a result.

Here's how Dr. Virden ranked the glasses we ordered. Zenni Optical fared the best. The measurements were off, so they failed Dr. Virden's tests -- but they were not as bad as the others, according to her. Next up were a pair of tortoise shell glasses from The location of the prescription on the lenses was incorrectly measured, according to Virden, who gave that pair a failing mark. And finally, a very round pair from EyeBuyDirect was delivered with a prescription that did not match up -- and the glasses fit poorly, according to Virden, who also gave that pair a failing grade.

So, when it came to our three pairs, they all arrived. But, the low price came with lower quality.

© 2018 KCEN


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