Why Not to Buy Glasses Online

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Blog by Envision Eye Care

Nowadays it’s so common to do most of our shopping online. Whether it’s groceries, electronics or clothing, there is almost no limit to the things you can buy with the help of the internet and a computer. But there is at least one thing that is still better to buy in person… eyeglasses! There are many reasons why you shouldn’t buy glasses online. As great as the internet is, sometimes a personal touch makes all the difference.

Shopping for eyeglasses online sounds great, but consider…

Did you know? At Envision Eye Care we have on-site optometrists and a full-service optical shop. For fashion frames in Halton Region, check our selection!

The idea of buying glasses from the comfort of your couch might sound super appealing, especially with some programs that allow you to upload a photo of yourself and virtually try on different frames. But there are some serious drawbacks to choosing prescription frames this way.

Your eye doctor is essential

When you go in for an eye exam and to buy glasses, your optometrist is usually right there with you, helping to make sure that your prescription is accurate and that your pupillary distance is measured correctly. When buying online there is a very good chance that you’re not even dealing with an optometrist in the first place!

Quality may be lacking

When buying anything online you always run the risk of receiving something that is lesser quality than it was presented to be. The same is true when it comes to buying glasses online. The big difference is that with glasses, you want them to be high quality. Since different countries have different laws when it comes to product testing, there is a good chance that your new glasses wouldn’t stand up to Canadian standards. Weak lenses can increase the risk of them breaking, and when dealing with your eyes, broken glass is the last thing you want near them.

In fact, purchasing eyeglasses online might be downright unsafe, as reported in the national news.

Frames need to be tried on

Sure, you can check how the lenses look when shopping online, but there’s no way to know how they’ll feel. It’s possible that your new glasses will sit too tight on your face or slide down the bridge of your nose, which isn’t something you can tell when shopping online. When shopping in-store you can always get your frames adjusted by the optometrist to ensure a comfortable fit.

The prescription might not be accurate

Clear vision relies on a precise measurement prescribed to you by a doctor. When you get this prescription and send it off to an online glasses shop, there’s a good chance that your glasses won’t actually be as accurate as they should be. This can lead to headaches and blurred vision. When dealing with your optometrist to buy glasses, they can retest your vision with the new glasses to ensure they are perfect for you. One study even found that almost half of all glasses ordered online had the wrong prescription!

Pupillary distance and your optical center are another factors that an optometrist needs to measure to ensure a perfect fit. Most online retailers place the optical center at the center of your lenses, but depending on the frames, this should actually be placed higher or lower than the center. Making an error in these placements can negatively impact your vision.

Returns might not be easy

Many online glasses stores don’t have warranties on their frames, so they won’t accept returns. This can leave you ultimately paying more than you would have initially, had you just gone to a store, to begin with. In addition, many of these retailers won’t accept insurance.

There’s something to be said for personal experience

Shopping from your couch in your pj's can be fun, but heading out to a retail store to try on lenses and get some opinions from people in the store is part of the fun of choosing new frames!

Get some ideas online, but head in-store to buy

If you’re a fan of online shopping there is nothing wrong with using a website to virtually try on some frames. But once you have an idea of what you like, you should head into a retail store to make the final decision. What can start out as a convenient way to buy glasses can turn inconvenient very quickly if they don’t fit right or the prescription has you seeing double!