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Don’t Be Framed: Pitfalls of Online Prescription Glasses Purchases

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While buying eyeglasses online may be convenient for consumers, it may cost more in the long run. Why? Because incorrectly fitted eyeglasses or inaccurately filled prescriptions may be what you get if you make that quick online purchase. The American Optometric Association (AOA) teamed up with the Optical Laboratories Association and The Vision Council to look into the online market for prescription eyewear. They published their results in the Optometry: Journal of the American Optometric Association and found a disturbing number of problems with prescription compliance and impact resistance. In fact, almost half of the online prescription glasses tested in the study (44.8 percent) didn’t have the correct prescription strength or presented problems with safety.

The Risks of Incorrectly Made Online Prescription Glasses

In today’s digital age, shopping for eyewear online has become increasingly popular. The convenience of browsing through a wide selection of frames and ordering from the comfort of your home appeals to many. However, there are significant risks associated with purchasing glasses online, particularly when it comes to the quality and accuracy of the lenses. Here are some of the reasons why many glasses purchased online are made incorrectly and what you should consider before making a purchase.

Quality Control Challenges

One of the primary concerns with online eyewear purchases is the lack of direct oversight over the manufacturing process. Unlike visiting a traditional optometrist or eyewear store where professionals handle your prescription and ensure accuracy, online retailers may not have the same level of quality control for their online prescription glasses.

  • Prescription Accuracy: Obtaining an accurate prescription is crucial for ensuring clear vision. When ordering online, there’s a risk that the prescription provided may not be verified or interpreted correctly. This can result in lenses that do not correct your vision as intended, leading to discomfort and potential eye strain.
  • Lens Quality: The quality of lenses varies widely across online retailers. Some may use substandard materials or incorrect lens coatings, affecting visual clarity and durability. Poor-quality lenses can also pose risks to your eye health if they do not provide adequate UV protection or cause distortion.
  • Fit and Comfort: Proper fitting of frames is essential for comfort and effective vision correction. Online purchases often lack the personalized fitting services provided by optometrists, leading to ill-fitting frames that may slide down your nose or cause pressure points.

The Issue of Incorrectly Made Glasses

A significant concern in the online eyewear industry is the prevalence of incorrectly made glasses. This can occur due to several factors:

  • Miscommunication of Prescription: Online platforms may rely solely on the prescription information provided by the customer and many to not verify its accuracy. Misinterpretation of prescription details or errors in data entry can result in lenses that do not meet the intended specifications.
  • Automated Manufacturing Processes: Some online retailers use automated systems for lens fabrication. While efficient, these systems may not account for nuanced prescription needs or individual preferences, leading to inaccuracies in lens power, axis alignment, or lens thickness.
  • Substitution of Materials: In an effort to cut costs, some online retailers may substitute prescribed lens materials with cheaper alternatives. This compromises optical performance and can affect the longevity and durability of the glasses.

Protecting Your Vision and Investment

To mitigate the risks associated with online eyewear purchases, consider the following steps:

  1. Consultation with an Optometrist: Schedule regular eye exams with a qualified optometrist who can provide an accurate prescription and recommendations for suitable eyewear.
  2. Verification of Prescription: Before ordering online, ensure that your prescription is current and verified by a licensed eye care professional. This reduces the likelihood of receiving incorrectly made glasses.
  3. Research and Reviews: Choose reputable online retailers with positive customer reviews and transparent policies regarding prescription verification, lens quality, and return procedures.
  4. Understanding Return Policies: Familiarize yourself with the retailer’s return and exchange policies in case the glasses do not meet your expectations or have manufacturing defects.

Counterfeit Online Prescription Glasses

In the age of online shopping, the allure of luxury items at discounted prices can be tempting. However, it’s essential to be cautious as many luxury items purchased online turn out to be counterfeit. From designer handbags to high-end watches, the market is flooded with replicas that mimic the appearance of authentic goods but lack the quality and craftsmanship. These fakes not only deceive consumers but also undermine the value and reputation of genuine luxury brands.

When shopping online for eyewear, vigilance is key. Researching sellers, reading customer reviews, and verifying product authenticity through official channels can help safeguard against purchasing counterfeit goods. By making informed decisions and supporting legitimate retailers, consumers contribute to maintaining the integrity of the luxury market while enjoying genuine and superior-quality products. To avoid falling victim to counterfeit scams, consumers should prioritize purchasing from reputable retailers or directly from brand-authorized websites, ensuring authenticity and quality assurance.

Optical Illusions is an Authorized Dealer with all of our brands, ensuring authentic, new eyewear from the latest collections.

Schedule Your Annual Eye Exam Today

While online shopping offers convenience and a wide selection of eyewear options, it also comes with inherent risks, particularly regarding the accuracy of prescription lenses. Incorrectly made online prescription glasses can compromise your vision and overall eye health. To ensure clear vision and optimal comfort, it’s essential to prioritize accuracy, quality, and professional guidance when purchasing eyewear. By staying informed and making educated choices, you can protect your vision and make confident decisions when shopping for glasses online.

For personalized eye care and accurate prescriptions, visit a trusted optometrist who prioritizes your vision health above all else. At Optical Illusions: An Optometric Practice we are proud to offer the most comprehensive eye exams with the highest quality premium eyewear. Contact our team to schedule your appointment at 1 of our 4 conveniently located offices and take the first step towards clear and comfortable vision.

Written by Dr. Will To

Dr. William To has multiple years of healthcare experience providing design-based ocular care, with an optometric emphasis in Pediatrics, Dry Eye Therapy, and Ocular Surface Disease.

He graduated from UC San Diego with a Bachelor’s in Human Biology and a minor in Psychology and earned his Doctorate in Optometry from Western University of Health Sciences. Dr. Will is regularly invited to several Optometric Conferences and Colleges of Optometry each year to lecture to his colleagues and students, having given over 100 lectures and written several published editorials.

When he’s not caring for his amazing patients, Dr. Will enjoys traveling every chance he gets. As a Bay Area native, he has taken on leadership roles both in the local community and beyond, serving as the President of the Santa Clara County Optometric Society and on several California Optometric Association and American Optometric Association committees. He is actively involved with a variety of community outreach and social programs.

Dr. Will is an avid Golden State Warriors and 49ers fan.

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