Over the course of the last twenty years, I have cringed every time I looked in the mirror to comb my hair or brush my teeth. It’s not the visage of my aging face that troubles me, it’s the decrepit condition of my eyeglasses that gives me pause—more specifically it’s the sight of the frame. What started out as a gold-colored, wire-rimmed frame, is now a multi-colored one, with sections of gold interspersed with sections of silver where the gold plating has worn away.
The thought of replacing them has crossed my mind on numerous occasions, but what has always held me back is the exorbitant cost. The last time I purchased eyeglasses, the price tag was somewhere around $500 for the frame and lenses (I wear progressive lenses). Even though I had cataract surgery about eighteen years ago, I still require prescription eyeglasses to correct the astigmatism that the artificial lenses implanted in my eyes fail to remedy. I shudder to think what an opportunistic optometrist would charge for a pair today—probably around $700. What to do? What to do?
The answer to my dilemma is the Internet. I know what you’re thinking: Is he really going to buy eyeglasses from Amazon.com? No, no, of course not. But the Internet is where I went to begin my search for affordable eyewear. “The best best places to buy eyeglasses online” is the phrase I searched with, and, lo and behold I found a site that told me just where to shop: Thewirecutter.com. The site is an affiliate of the “failing” New York Times, and the article I found on it listed the top ten, online eyeglass emporiums, along with the pros and cons of each. The best, according to the article, was WarbyParker.com, followed closely by felixandiris.com. I checked them both out.
Both Warby Parker and felix+iris provide a terrific service that permits you to try on frames at home—with no cost or obligation. You choose as many as five frames and they will mail them to you, pre-paid each way, to try on within a five-day period. So, I am anxiously awaiting my first five frames from Warby Parker, which should arrive sometime this week. Then, once I have chosen a frame, I will submit my written prescription from my optometrist, and they will make my glasses and mail them to me within a week. If I don’t like the frames from Warby Parker, I’ll repeat the process with felix+iris. Both have a 30-day, no questions asked, return policy, and a one year warranty against manufacturer defects. And the best part? A fixed price of roughly $300 for the frames and progressive lenses—and much, much less for single prescription (somewhere around $11-$150). And scratch-resistant, anti-glare coating is included.
At last, within a week or two, thanks to the Internet, I will be able to finally look in the mirror without wincing. I can hardly wait. (Pictures to follow, once the deed is done.)
(TO BE CONT’D)