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In Person or Online? 4 Significant Benefits of Purchasing Eyewear from Your Local Optical


What matters most to you when it comes to purchasing eyewear?

It’s old hat to mention that nearly half of eyeglasses purchased online are made incorrectly, but that doesn’t stop people from buying eyewear online. 

It seems that for some, that saving money is a top priority. But how much value do you actually receive when you buy eyewear online, especially at such a high risk of it being made incorrectly from the outset? 

There are several benefits to purchasing eyewear directly from your eye doctor that levels the playing field and ensures your eyewear investment is worth it! 

When you purchase eyewear from your optometrist, you have several immediate advantages. Firstly, you can try on a large selection of frames to see how they look and feel; this might not seem like a big deal initially, but when purchasing eyewear, a proper fit is crucial. A frame that doesn’t fit correctly or comfortably can have disastrous outcomes for seeing clearly. 

Secondly, a skilled optician will be able to understand how your prescription interacts with the frames you select. Many online retailers sell frames made to fit numerous people, which results in glasses that are often extremely wide and unflattering for many prescriptions. 

Thirdly, when purchasing eyewear from your eye care provider, you’ll have access to warranties, care and maintenance, and more which are unavailable through online retailers. We’ll expound on each of these benefits below. 

1. Purchasing from your optical provider helps ensure your eyeglasses fit comfortably and work with your eyewear prescription. 

Trying on eyewear is critical to ensuring that it will fit comfortably. Purchasing eyewear in person from the optical guarantees that you will experience how it looks and feels. You’ll know nearly immediately whether or not you like it. Comparatively, relying on a virtual try-on feature increases your risk of having eyewear that looks odd. Not only because your frames might be too large or too small, but because your prescription can interact with the frame in a way that could make them look unflattering. The technology of try-on features merely superimposes an image of the frame onto your face and adjusts the image to fit your face, making its accuracy questionable at best. 

2. Buying eyeglasses from your local optical provides you with accurate, custom eyewear.

Opticians are skilled in knowing how all the pieces of eyewear interact.

After selecting your eyeglass frames, you will need the correct measurements for your prescription eyewear. Custom measurements such as pupillary distance (PD), ocular center, and segment/fitting height are critical components of functioning eyewear, yet they are not one-size-fits-all. If these measurements are incorrect, they can compromise your eyesight.

The pupillary distance measures the distance between your pupils. The PD measurement is a core element of your eyewear and is unique to each individual.

The fit (or segment) height is the starting point of your bifocal or progressive; minimum fitting heights depend on the style of lens you choose, and not all frames provide a comfortable fit height. 

The ocular center (OC) is where your pupils sit in the frames; this measurement should be nearly perfectly centered, though that won’t always be the case. 

Guessing at these measurements often results in ill-fitting eyewear that can cause temporary and, in some cases, permanent vision problems. The best way to ensure correct fitting eyewear is to have these measurements taken by a professional optician. 

3. Eyewear from your eyecare professional promises warranties and customer care that you won’t find anywhere else.

Happiness with your eyesight is the goal of the optical staff. Eyewear purchased from your eye doctor will have more integrity than eyewear purchased online. Why is this? Because your eye doctor works with you on a personal level. They know you use your eyewear daily and want to guarantee it works for you

But what does that mean?

Often, your optician will ask how you use your eyewear to ensure their recommendations fit into your lifestyle. Not only will your eyewear be tailored to you, but your eyewear will have a warranty for at least a year, and in some cases, even two. 

It also means any adjustments or defects will be taken care of by the opticians. While some people experience prescription changes or struggle to adapt to new prescriptions, your eye care team will verify your eyewear and make the necessary adjustments or changes to resolve your issue. If necessary, they will also have the doctor recheck your prescription.

In contrast, when you purchase eyewear online, you’re left alone to make adjustments, repair the breakages yourself, and deal with the hassle of trying to make a change to your prescription. 

4. When you purchase eyewear online, you are at the mercy of a company that doesn’t know you on a personal level. 

When you work with your local optical, you build a relationship with your optometrist and the optical staff as they get to know you and help you find your perfect eyewear. They will also assist you with routine adjustments and tune-ups of your eyewear. Best of all, rather than leaving you to search for a frame that might fit you, the opticians will select frame options specifically for you! 

So the next time you’re looking for new eyewear, consider every aspect of what value means to you. Accuracy, comfort, and service should be the top priorities!