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10 Best Online Sites for Stylish Eyewear

If you’re still going to the big names in eyewear for your glasses and sunglasses — you know, Lens Crafters, Pearle Vision — then allow me to introduce you a different, and quite possibly better, option.

Us four-eyes know how expensive it is to replace a pair of glasses, and it’s not uncommon to blow over $500 on a single pair. We justify it, of course, because it’s our vision and it’s important — but man. That’s a serious hit.

Not to mention the fact that eyewear has become a style statement in fashion — from hipster “nerd” glasses to retro cat-eyes, in every color imaginable. In a perfect world, we could all afford four or five pairs of eyeglasses to swap out like jewelry, mixing and matching our outfits and moods. But at $500 a pop, that’s not always a reality.

Except that maybe it can be.

Online eyeglasses has been a growing trend, with independent designers and discount retailers selling stylish prescription glasses for less than $100. Most offer at-home try-ons (or at least virtual try-ons), 30-day full refunds, and even personal shoppers. And unlike a traditional brick-and-mortar shop, the styles are endless online.

It can feel overwhelming, but I did the research for you. Here are my top picks…

  • Best Sources for Online Eyewear 1 of 11
    stylish-glasses1

    You might be skeptical about shopping for glasses outside the big-name eyewear stores, but allow these 10 examples to change your mind...

  • Rivet and Sway 2 of 11
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    Perfect for: Ladies looking for unique, personalized style at an affordable price.

    At home try-on: Yes. Pick three pairs online, try them out for three days, and then ship them back for free.

    More perks: They offer an online personal stylist, as well as extensive buying guides (like the best glasses for your face shape). They also include ultra-thin prescription lenses and coatings in the price, rather than hit you with a slew of additional fees.

    Price: $199 

    Shop Rivet & Sway

  • Warby Parker 3 of 11
    glasses02

    Perfect for: Women and men attracted to structured glasses with a retro vibe — especially the "nerd" or "hipster" chic style.

    At home try-on?: Yes. Try five pairs for five days, and then ship back for free. They also have a virtual try-on, as well as a 30-day no-question return policy.

    More perks: Warby Parker has a "Buy a Pair, Give a Pair" program — so for every pair you buy, a pair is donated to someone in need. (And, for what it's worth, Warby Parker is the original "stylish glasses under $100" trendsetters, with a top-notch reputation behind it.)

    Price: $95+

    Shop Warby Parker.

     

  • BonLook 4 of 11
    bonlook

    Perfect for: Stylish, fun-loving women craving options.

    At home try-on?: No, but they offer a (high quality) virtual try-on and stylist — which is pretty darn spot-on. (No trips to the post office necessary.)

    More perks: For pickier vision issues, BonLook sells bifocal, multifocal, and progressive lenses (at an up charge). They also have the cutest kids' sunglasses you ever did see.

    Price: $99+

    Shop BonLook

     

  • Mezzmer 5 of 11
    mezzmer

    Perfect for: Confident shoppers who know what they want.

    At home try-on?: No, and they don't have a virtual try-on either. But Mezzmer does offer a Fit Guide, with measurement and face shape recommendations. They also offer a 30-day return and free shipping.

    More perks: Mezzmer will donate a portion of your sale to a charity of your choice (choose one of five charities at checkout).

    Price: $69+ ($30 extra for ultra-thin lenses, recommended for the stronger prescriptions)

    Shop Mezzmer.

     

  • Lookmatic 6 of 11
    lookmatic

    Perfect for: A mix of classic, retro, and modern.

    At home try-on?: No, but they have a pretty stellar virtual try-on, considering they have a standard "upload your photo" try-on or a more advanced 3D try-on using your webcam.

    More perks: Although they don't sell bifocial lenses, they do offer progressives. And they have a 30-day refund policy.

    Price: $95+

    Shop Lookmatic.

     

  • Eyefly 7 of 11
    eyefly

    Perfect for: Style-loving shoppers looking to swap out their glasses like a fashion accessory. (Eyefly is a partner with Bluefly —the place for online designer clothes.)

    At home try-on?: Not yet (they're working on it). But they do have a virtual try-on program, as well as a 30-day return/exchange policy.

    More perks: Like Warby Parker, Eyefly will donate a pair of glasses for every pair they sell.

    Price: $94+

    Shop Eyefly.

     

  • Classic Specs 8 of 11
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    Perfect for: Picky shoppers. 

    At home try-on?: Yep!  You can try up to six frames, which is more than any other online glasses program.

    More perks:  For every purchase, Classic Specs donates 6% to New Eyes for the Needy.

    Price: $89 (including coatings, polycarbonate lenses, and shipping).

    http://www.classicspecs.com

  • Coastal.com 9 of 11
    coastal

    Perfect for: OPTIONS. Lots and lots of options. It's also great for anyone looking for bargain-priced contact lenses. (Overall, it's a good first stop in the online-glasses search.)

    At home try-on?: No, but they'll give you your first pair for free (as long as you don't need extra-thin lenses — then it's just a steep discount). So there's that.

    More perks: Listen up, do-gooders: Coastal.com does more than just donate glasses to thousands of people in need (although they do do that). They also supply Vitamin A tablets to kids under that age of 5 to ensure at-need areas have the vitamins they need for healthy eyes, as well as donate UV-protected sunglasses to areas of the world where the environment is especially harsh on eyes.

    Price: $40+ (plus extra for specialized lenses)

    Shop Coastal.com

     

  • Glasses.com 10 of 11
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    Perfect for: Lens Crafters' designers at a lower price. Rather than design and manufacture their own glasses at a lower price, Glasses.com sells all the big-wigs: Ray Ban, Kate Spade, Versace — you name it.

    At home try-on?: Yes. Pick four frames and ship them back after 7 days (for free). And bonus! They just launched a virtual 3D fit with their new iPad app.

    More perks: Whether you're looking to stay on a budget (they have a "Complete Pair Package with frames + lenses for $90) or you're just looking for your favorite designer frames for less, Glasses.com has a pretty impressive collection for women, men, and even kids.

    Price: $90+

    Shop Glasses.com.

     

  • illesteva 11 of 11
    illesteva

    Perfect for: Those with a midcentury/1960s style and a downtown New York aesthetic, willing to pay a little more. 

    At home try-on?: Nope

    More perks: Keep an eye out for their killer designer collaborations — like their recent Zac Posen and House of Waris collections. In fact, the New York Times Magazine claims that the "House of Waris for Illesteva's sunglasses ($250) might be the single most essential frame of the summer."

    Price: $220+ with only a five-day return/exchange policy.

    Shop illesteva.

     

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