Recently, I’ve been fielding lots of questions from advice seekers on how/where I find my glasses. So, I will now reveal all of my secrets – a run down of tips from my experience finding glasses, after a few years of great trial and error.
First, my signature eyeglasses (which just won #2 on a Boston Band Crush sexiest four-eyed-rockers list) are vintage and I bought them on eBay. When searching for vintage eyeglasses on eBay, it’s important to include the words “new old stock” or “NOS” – this basically just means that the frames have been sitting in some warehouse or old optometrist’s garage just waiting for your face. Most importantly, no one has been fitted for or worn the frames before, which in my experience means that you’ll get a much less used up/fragile product.
Here is my typical eBay search: “NOS vintage cat eye glasses.” You can get vintage frames a lot cheaper if you don’t care about them being NOS, but I think it’s important. Expect to pay anywhere from $20-$100+ for frames. I try to control myself and not spend more than $50 ever on frames that I can’t try on first – most of my collection I’ve gotten in the $20-$40 range, but there are some beauties that tend to start at $95. I’ve also heard that you can find fun frames on Etsy, and you can always search second-hand/vintage stores for the perfect pair. I’m told that Fabulous Fanny’s in NYC is a wonderland of vintage frames. Most of the frames that I have purchased don’t fit my face well, as they tend to run small.
Once you have your frames, you’ll need to get your prescription lenses put in. In the past, I’ve taken mine to Lenscrafters – they will tell you that there’s a possibility that the frames will break during their process, but as far as I can tell, that’s just their way of saying that they are not responsible should any damage happen (seems unlikely). A friend of mine recently said that she found Eye Q Optical in Harvard Square (a local business) to be much cheaper than what Lenscrafters quoted her and she recommended going there. I agree – support the local business. Expect to pay in the vicinity of $100+ to have your lenses put in.
Michael gets his glasses by directly ordering prescription glasses online – the site he uses most is: zennioptical.com. This site is great because you can get glasses with your prescription already in, shipped directly to you in 2-3 weeks for around $15! They have a ton of trendy styles. My white sunglasses are from Zenni, and I love them. There are numerous other options besides Zenni and the site GlassyEyes reviews a lot of the online retailers – it is a great resource if you want to go this economical route. Of course, you do need to know your prescription, including pupillary distance (often omitted from prescription sheets), to do this.
Laws pertaining to provision of prescriptions:
Finally, there are a bunch of boutique eyeglass places popping up like Tortoise and Blonde (recently sponsored a Pearl and the Beard tour, which is how I found out about them). They have some great styles, and they offer a home try on – they send you 5 pairs to try on at home, and you send back the ones that don’t work out for you. That is pretty customer-friendly on their part.
Have more questions? Feel free to email me: firstname.lastname@example.org