Warby Parker is an online glasses retailer. You know, like the ones that you wear. Unlike most websites from which you can order glasses, though, Warby Parker is sleek, clean, and not scary. In fact, they're actually one of the best places I've ever purchased glasses from.
They have a wide selection of different style polycarbonate frames, and for each style they have a bunch of different colors available. While there is metal within the frames for the shape, none of these frames would be considered a true metal frame. They are all really high quality, durable polycarbonate. They don't have those annoying metal nose-pieces that can get bent out of shape — instead they have polycarbonate ones. I tried a pair of glasses like these about two years ago from the store I usually bought glasses from and since then would never even think of going back to metal frames. Polycarbonate frames are lighter, sleeker, more comfortable, and — especially all those that Warby Parker sells — look really great. Which is why they are what you would call "in style".
All of Warby Parker's lenses are anti-glare and anti-scratch. You can also get sunglass lenses (for an additional fee) that are all polarized. (Side note about polarized glasses: Just so that you know what that actually means, polarized glasses only reduce actual glare, not your entire field of vision. They are specially treated to only "target" actual glary areas — water, metal, the sun itself — and thus are much more enjoyable to wear than non-polarized lenses. Polarized lenses are usually very pricey though because they're so great).
As great as Warby Parker seems until now, here is the real kicker. All their glasses are just $95. I know. To anyone who has ever purchased a pair of glasses this all seems too good to be true. What's more is that their sunglasses are only $150 (or only $95 if you'd like them without prescription lenses).
Yes, you read that right. $95 for a pair of prescription glasses with anti-glare and anti-scratch lenses, or $150 for polarized sunglasses. That is insane.
And on top of all of that, for every pair that you buy, Warby Parker will donate one pair to somebody in need.
My Pair of Warby Parker Glasses
I was in the market for a new pair of glasses. I had heard a bunch of good things about Warby Parker from around the internet. So I decided to try them, with quite a bit of excitement.
This is what I think makes Warby Parker really work so well. In addition to being able to upload a picture of yourself to virtually "try-on" pretty much any pair of glasses they have (some pairs do not have the virtual try-on available for some reason...), you can select any 5 frames from the site and Warby Parker will ship you a beautiful box with them to your house (with filler lenses), 2-Day Air, free of charge. You can keep them for 5 days to try-on and show your friends and family, and then send them back, for free as well with the return shipping label provided. This solves the problem of not being able to try things when you order online — something crucial to buying glasses.
A few notes on this:
- They do still require your credit card even though the try-on is free. They seem to charge one dollar for some reason, but the charge disappears within 24 hours.
- I found that the virtual try-on is actually very useful to get an idea of which frames to select for your 5 Home Try-On frames.
- Not every frame is available for the Home Try-On. For some frames the site will tell you that all of their trial frames are out for the time being.
- Warby Parker will send you as many sets of 5 frames as you'd like to try on, but they just have to get the old ones back first. (They'll send you an email to confirm this).
Turns out that I wanted to get a pair of sunglasses in addition to a new pair of regular glasses. So, I chose four regular frames and one sunglass frame. When they came (about 2 days later) I liked the sunglasses but did not exactly love any of the other four for my regular pair. So, I sent back the 5 frames, ordered the sunglasses, and am currently waiting to try another 5 frames.
When it comes to ordering the glasses, you can do it one of a few ways:
- Enter the prescription information yourself.
- Send Warby Parker your prescription at a later time.
- Have Warby Parker call your doctor and get all the info themselves.
- Use a previous prescription.
I loved the idea that Warby Parker would call my doctor and get all the information. This way I knew that it would all be right. While I had my prescription info, I was missing one measurement, and just wanted to make sure everything would be done correctly. So I entered in my doctors info and that was that. The site warns that there might be a few days delay due to having to call your doctor, but my glasses shipped out about 3 days after I order them. That is the option I recommend anybody ordering from Warby Parker chooses. I mean, why not?
They fit great. I love that they are polarized. They're comfortable, high-quality, and came in beautiful packaging. Also included: a cleaning cloth.
The sunglasses were everything I had hoped. All of the positive reviews I read were totally well founded. I can't wait to order my regular glasses from them now once I can decide which ones I want.
Ordering glasses online is something that most people at first seem uneasy about, but I bet that after ordering from Warby Parker that uneasiness will disappear.
In fact, I may never buy a pair of glasses from a physical store again.