Let me tell you, friends. There have not always been easy ways to find cute, affordable glasses. My first time handling my own glasses as an adult involved going to the mall, getting my exam, and then dropping almost $500 on some glasses that were just OK. They looked like something you would get at a doctor's office. Fast forward a decade (or two) and things have changed dramatically.
This year, through the magic of the Internet, I got five pairs of cute, colorful, on-trend glasses for half the price of my one, awkward first adult pair. We're talking pink, jewel encrusted cats-eye glasses, including frames, for $30. Miracles. The Internet can't give you glasses in under an hour, obviously, but what you lose in speed, you make up for in convenience. You can try on virtually, try on at home, or just trust that everything looks good on your gorgeous face (oh, I got anxiety just typing that) because in most cases, you can get hassle-free returns.
So now the question is: do you spend the extra money on a pair of glasses for every occasion, or do you revel in that one perfect, inexpensive pair and bank the rest?
1. Warby Parker
Finch, $95, warbyparker.com
OK, you know this one, but it's worth the reminder. Warby Parker lets you shop for glasses, then try them on at home. You order up a pair (or five) and they will ship them to you so you can post the all over social media with #WarbyHomeTryOn and get all the opinions you need before you buy. Just ship them back once you've made your decision and they'll send out the real ones with the actual prescription lenses to your door. They take care of the labeling and return shipping and everything, so it's no big deal.
2. Zenni Optical
Acetate Full-Rim Frae With Spring Hinges, $23.95, zennioptical.com
Zenni is the company you see all over the Internet advertising the $6.95 complete eyeglasses. It's legit, too. I have several pairs of glasses from Zenni, and they are all great. The best ones are closer to $30 than $7 but that's still a pretty spectacular price for lenses and all. They don't have home try-on, but they do let you try them on virtually with your photo. My experience has been that the glasses look just like they did in the try-on photo, so that's a plus.
3. Oren Isaac
Chloe, $98, orenisaac.com
Oren Isaac Eyewear is another stand-out online company that lets you order the glasses for an at-home test drive. Their price points start at closer to $100, which is still a killer deal for some seriously trendy frames. Plus you get free anti-reflective coating, which is like free icing on a super-delicious cupcake.
Michael Kors Frames, $215, glasses.com
If you like designer frames, glasses.com has your back. They carry most of the big names and designers. If you're scared to pay for designer frames off of the Internet (it gives me anxiety just thinking about it) then you can use their generous 15-day try-on period. That's more than 2 weeks to make sure your designer frames match your designer bags. And not eye bags. Even though I'm sure you look flawless even when you're tired.
5. $39 Glasses
Portland Eyeglasses, $39, 39glasses.com
Most of the glasses, as the name implies, start at around $39. That's a crazy good price for glasses, you guys. They don't have a try-on period, but you can upload your photo to virtually try them on. And if you don't like them, they have a worry-proof guarantee. Plus, they have live-chat customer service, which makes my world go round.
Thank you, Internet, for making it possible to be cute for cheap. And, of course, for you to be able to see how cute you look.