Sunday, May 26, 2024

The best prescription sunglasses for 2024

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Vint & York


Now that summer is just about here, it’s the perfect time to upgrade your sunglasses with frames that showcase the latest style, with lenses that protect your eyes while providing the sharpest vision possible. The latest lenses used within prescription sunglasses take advantage of new technologies that enhance detail, while reducing or eliminating glare. 

Prescription sunglasses can accommodate single-vision lenses, bi-focals or progressives. A new pair of prescription sunglasses can make driving safer, provide more comfort and reduce eye strain whenever you’re outdoors. Plus, you have the ability to customize your lenses and the material they’re made from, based on your needs and lifestyle — while the frames you choose can showcase your unique style and personality.

Whether you’re looking for the latest designer sunglass frames (like Ray-Ban prescription sunglasses), a timeless look from a prestigious designer (like Vint & Work), sunglasses for a specific sport, Warby Parker sunglasses that are perfect for everyday wear, or cheap prescription sunglasses that won’t drain your bank account, you’re in luck. Our team of in-house shopping experts have curated this roundup of the best places to shop for prescription sunglasses online. And many of these options will save money.

If you already have a prescription, ordering is easy. And best of all, many of the companies featured here accept vision insurance and HSA/FSA payments. This roundup only features companies that offer a money-back guarantee and easy exchanges. Most either offer a virtual try-on feature, or allow you to order several sunglass frames to try on at home, before placing that final order.

Meanwhile, when shopping for prescription eyeglasses, be sure to also check out our roundup of the best places to buy prescription glasses online.


What are the best prescription sunglasses you can get online?

Whether you need single-vision, bi-focals, or progressive lenses, shopping online has serious benefits. It’s easy, saves money and gives you a much larger selection than what’s typically on offer at the optometrist’s office. If you’re looking for dedicated prescription sunglasses or eyewear with transition lenses that automatically darken in the sun, the largest selection of fashionable and durable options can be found online.

  • Best overall prescription sunglassesRoka
  • Best budget prescription sunglassesGlassesUSA
  • Best prescription sunglasses or transition lensesWarby Parker
  • Best for designer sunglass framesLenscrafters
  • Best prescription sunglasses for vintage or classic style: Vint & York
  • Best prescription sunglass selections from an iconic brandRay-Ban
  • Best frames for specialized sportsTifosiRx

Pro tip: When you’re shopping prescription sunglasses online, be sure to see if the company offers discounts to students, teachers, active military, seniors or first responders. And most of these companies offer an extra discount if you buy more than one pair of sunglasses (or regular prescription eyeglasses) at the same time.


Best overall prescription sunglasses: Roka

Roka Falcon Prescription Sunglasses

Roka


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: No | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: No | Light responsive lens option: Yes | Virtual try-onYes | Home try-on: No | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: Yes  

One of the things we absolutely love about Roka is that the company designs and manufacturers all of its frames. While all of the frames are stylish, the company does not classify itself as a fashion brand. Instead, Roka has developed a reputation for creating premium eyewear you can count on for eye protection and optical correction. 

Proprietary technologies make Roka sunglasses a terrific option for amateur and professional athletes alike. Choose from more than 35 stunning sunglass frame styles that you won’t find elsewhere. Each is made from the highest quality materials and designed to be lightweight, extremely durable and comfortable. 

Each model comes in multiple color options. You can also choose a lens color. This correlates with the percentage of light transmission the lenses offer. Roka offers either single-vision or progressive sunglass lenses. Choose between polycarbonate, Trivex or high-index lenses. All are polarized. Prescription sunglasses are custom made and shipped within 10 business days. Pricing varies dramatically based on your frame and lens selections. Even if you don’t lead an active lifestyle, you’ll discover stunning prescription sunglass options for men and women at Roka.


Best budget prescription sunglasses: GlassesUSA

Oakley prescription sunglasses from GlassesUSA

GlassesUSA.com


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: Yes | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: Yes | Light responsive lens option: Yes | Virtual try-on: For most frames | Home try-on: No | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: Yes  

GlasesUSA is the place to shop for prescription sunglasses, especially if you’re looking for designer frames (from Ray-Ban, Oakley, Prada, Coach, Versace, Gucci and 54 others) or low-cost generic frames that start at $34 (including single-vision lenses). 

When it comes to sunglasses, GlassesUSA has more than 1,100 frame styles to choose from. Each comes in multiple colors, and you can also customize your prescription lenses. In fact, this is one of the few companies that offer prescription sunglasses with your choice of reading or bi-focal lenses, in addition to single-vision or progressive lenses.

GlassesUSA is all about discounts — from frames that are on sale to BOGO offers. Designer frames are typically sold at up to 40% off of retail, and lens upgrades are offered for up to 50% off. New customers who sign up for a newsletter get a coupon good for up to 50% off a first pair of frames.

All prescription sunglasses come with a 14-day money-back guarantee, as well as a one-year warranty. If you have vision insurance, you can submit your receipt for reimbursement, but you can also use health savings funds to make qualifying purchases. 

Pro tip: If you shopping for cheap prescription sunglasses, in addition to GlassesUSA, we suggest checking out what EyeBuyDirect and Zenni Optical have to offer.


Best prescription sunglasses or transition lenses: Warby Parker

Warby Parker Blount Prescription Sunglasses

Warby Parker


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: Yes | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: Yes | Light responsive lens option: Yes | Virtual try-on: Yes, using a mobile app | Home try-onYes | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: Yes 

Warby Parker is a one-stop shop for all of your prescription sunglass needs. Many frames, which include single-vision prescription lenses, start at just $95. Progressive lenses start at $395. 

The company sells only its own collection of high-quality and fashionable sunglass frames — and there are more than 50 styles choose from. The website offers an easy virtual try-on feature. There’s also a home try-on option that allows you to select up to five frames and have them shipped to your home for free. Choose the frames you want, order your prescription sunglasses and return the samples in a pre-paid box. 

You also get a wide range of sunglass and transition lens options, so you can pick only the add-on filters and coatings that you need. An anti-reflective and scratch-resistant coating is automatically included for free. The company uses polycarbonate lenses, but these can be upgraded to 1.67 high-index lenses for an additional fee.

In most cases, you can choose a frame color, or color combination and size. Warby Parker accepts virtually all vision insurance and HSA/FSA payments. If you order two pairs of glasses at the same time (one of which can be regular prescription glasses), you get an automatic 15% discount. And for every pair of prescription eyewear purchased, Warby Parker donates a pair to someone in need. 


Best for designer sunglass frames: Lenscrafters

LensCrafters Prescription Sunglasses

LensCrafters


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: Yes | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: Yes | Light responsive lens option: Yes | Virtual try-on: Yes | Home try-on: No | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: Yes 

If you want designer frames from Ray-Ban, Oakley, Versace, Coach, Prada, Brooks Brothers or any of more than a dozen others, the place to shop online is LensCrafters. Yes, this is the same company that’s been operating more than 1,000 retail locations since 1983, but you can show shop for designer sunglasses with prescription lenses online — and the process is super simple.

LensCrafters makes it easy to shop for sunglasses based on brand, style, color or shape. Once you find the frames you love, you can choose from a wide range of lens options. Once your sunglasses arrive, they come with a 30-day happiness guarantee. For an additional fee, you can upgrade to an protection plan that covers frames and lenses against damage, scratches and other issues for a full year.

Whether you’re shopping for prescription eyeglasses or prescription sunglasses, you’ll find a vast selection of designer frames to choose from, with new options coming in all the time. Some frame and single-vision lens combos start as low as $100. You’ll also discover some designer frames on sale for as much as 60% off, with additional discounts offered to AAA and AARP members.


Best prescription sunglasses for vintage or classic style: Vint & York

Vint & York Prescription Sunglasses

Vint & York


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: No | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: Yes | Light responsive lens option: Yes | Virtual try-on: Yes | Home try-on: No | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: Yes 

One benefit of shopping for prescription sunglasses from Vint & York is that the company designs and manufacturers its own selection of designer-quality frames — many with colors and styles you can’t find elsewhere. It then uses lenses crafted by expert technicians within a cutting-edge lab. This small, female-owned business prides itself on offering meticulously handcrafted eyewear that’s manufactured using premium materials. 

We love that Vint & York offers hundreds of men’s and women’s frames, including some that offer a retro or vintage style. The company’s Luxury collection offers more premium and unusual styles, while the Artista collection features frames with bold colors and attention-grabbing shapes. 

Of course, Vint & York also offers a beautiful selection of classic styles for people with more traditional taste, but also gives you the option to try something from its exclusive Nerdy (Geek Chic) or Hipster collection. Once you select the perfect frames, you can customize your lens with a wide range of options, starting with single-vision, readers, bi-focals or progressive lenses. Next, choose between a polycarbonate, high index, super high index, Trivex or CR39 lens material and add your choice of coatings (like blue light filtering, photochromic, a colored tint, or gradient colored tint) that allow you to make your glasses truly your own — to match your personal style, color preferences and budget. All of Vint & York’s frames can be fitted with fully customized sunglass lenses.

While Vint & York allows you to shop online, you can expect highly personalized attention and customer service via live chat, email or phone whenever it’s needed. Most custom-made, prescription eyewear ships within three to seven business days. The overall eyeglass quality and unusual frame styles are why we added Vint & York to this roundup.


Best prescription sunglass selections from an iconic brand: Ray-Ban

Ray-Ban RB4075 Prescription Sunglasses

Ray-Ban


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: No | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: No | Light responsive lens option: No | Virtual try-on: No | Home try-on: No | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: Yes 

Discover more than 450 genuine Ray-Ban sunglass frames and customize your prescription sunglasses in multiple ways. Be sure to click on the “all promos” button to discover current sales and promotions.

Most of the sunglass frames come in multiple colors and sizes. Next, click on the prescription lenses option and choose between single-vision or progressive lenses, and then choose a lens color. All prescription sunglass lenses include UV protection, a scratch-resistant treatment and an anti-reflective, anti-smudge treatment. 

To further customize your prescription sunglasses, choose between solid-colored lenses, mirror and flash lenses or gradient lenses. Based on your selection, the lens color options are displayed next, along with the total sunglass price (which will vary based on your selections).


Best frames for specialized sports: Tifosi Rx

Tifosi Rx Prescription Sports Frames (Sunglasses)

Tiffosi Rx


Single-vision prescription: Yes | Bi-focals prescription: No | Progressive prescription: Yes | Readers: No | Light responsive lens option: Yes | Virtual try-on: Yes | Home try-on: No | HSA/FSA accepted: Yes | Vision insurance accepted: No 

Improve your sports performance with the proper eyewear — not just for style, but for eye protection and better vision. When you head over to the prescription sunglass and sports frame area of the Tifosi Rx website, you’ll discover more than 15 sports frame styles, such as the company’s bestselling Vero Rx frames. Most frames come in your choice of colors.

Select your favorite frames and then choose between single-vision or progressive prescription lenses. Choose tinted, polarized or transitioning lenses. Lens color options depend on the choices above.

You can also select lens coatings. Your options include anti-reflective, anti-fog, or an anti-fog/antireflective combo. Based on your selections, the price of your customized prescription sunglasses will vary.


How much are prescription sunglasses?

You can easily find everyday wear, single-vision, prescription sunglasses for as little as $95 per pair at places like Warby Parker or GlassesUSA. What determines the cost of prescription sunglasses are the frames you choose, the selected lens material, what lens enhancements you add, and whether you’re shopping for single-vision, bi-focals, progressives or lenses that have a photochromic feature (that starts off clear, but darkens when exposed to sun).

If you choose a premium pair of design frames, require progressive lenses, upgrade the lens material to a 1.74 index (ultra-thin) with a scratch-resistant, UV protection and anti-reflective coating, and then add a photochromic option, you could spend $500 to $1,000 or more on a perfectly customized and expertly crafted prescription sunglasses. 

The good news is that most of the companies featured in this roundup accept vision insurance, HSA/FSA payments, and offer a wide range of discounts (including BOGO sales) you can take advantage of to save money on your purchases. 


What should I look for in sunglass lenses?

All lenses are not alike. The best prescription lenses for sunglasses offer a scratch-resistant treatment, provide 100% UVA and UVB protection (which is essential for eye health when you’re outside in the sun) and polarization. Just because a lens color is darker, this does not automatically mean you’re getting better protection for your eyes. 

Polarization enhances vision clarity and comfort. Polarized lenses help to eliminate glare, enhance contrast and boost color perception. The American Academy of Ophthalmology also recommends that sunglasses have the largest lenses possible to protect your eyes from sun damage. The academy also says you should consider oversized or wraparound-style sunglasses to limit UV-ray exposure.

If you’ll be outside in the rain or boating, sunglass lenses with an optional hydrophobic coating will help to repel water, so the lenses stay clear when they get wet.

Other lens options include:

  • Solid color lenses: Prescription sunglass lenses can often be customized with a grey, brown, green or pink lens. When you choose a solid color lens, it will be the same color from the top to bottom. Keep in mind, lens color does not impact the blocking of light, but it can impact contrast.
  • Gradient lenses: This has a dark color toward the top of the lens, but it gradually lightens, so the bottom of the lens is more transparent. Common gradient color options include grey, green or violet. Gradient lenses are not the same as transition lenses that automatically darken in the sun.
  • Flash Mirrored lenses: These have a mirrored surface which reduces the amount of light that enters the eye. Flash mirrored lenses typically come in your choice of silver, blue or rose gold.

Another important consideration is lens material. The most common options are CR-39 (a lightweight and durable polymer), polycarbonate (which is even more impact resistant and durable), or 1.67 high-index. These are only available to people with certain prescriptions. They’re much thinner than polycarbonate lenses, yet offer the same benefits.

Most prescription sunglasses can be ordered with your choice of single-vision or progressive lenses, although some companies offer sunglasses with prescription bi-focals or readers, too. Precision progressives is always a lens upgrade option and costs several hundred dollars more. While more expensive, these reduce peripheral distortion and offer a wider field of view.


What do I need to order prescription sunglasses online?

Regardless of where you shop, you’ll need:

  • A prescription (less than one year old) from an optometrist. If you don’t have a copy, be prepared to share your optometrist’s contact information.
  • Your pupillary distance (PD) measurement. This something your optometrist can provide, or you can measure it yourself. The Zenni website offers a Custom Dual PD ruler that you can download and print for free.
  • Your vision insurance information.

How long does it take for prescription sunglasses to ship?

This varies by the company your order from and the complexity of your order. Most of the companies featured in this roundup with handcraft your prescription sunglasses upon receiving your order, and ship them out within three to 10 business days. Add a few extra days for shipping, unless you pay extra for overnight shipping.


What happens if the sunglasses don’t fit or the prescription is wrong?

Virtually all sellers, including those featured in this roundup, offer a 14- or 30-day exchange or return policy. If the frames don’t fit, or you’re not seeing clearly, you can typically return the sunglasses for a full refund or have the sunglasses remade. After the return or exchange period, many of the online sellers will offer at least a six-month to one-year “no scratch” guarantee, which means the company will repair or replace the lenses if they get accidentally scratched. 

In some cases, you can purchase an extended warranty, which will cover any damage to the frames or lenses during a predefined period. These extended warranty plans do not cover the glasses if they’re lost or stolen.


How to choose prescription sunglasses that fit

Sunglass frames come in nine popular shapes — rectangular, square, round, aviator, oval, cat-eye, browline, oversized and geometric. From Warby Parker’s website, here’s a basic guide for choosing a frame design based on your face shape. 

  • Round-shaped faces:  Rectangle glasses, square glasses, geometric glasses, cat-eye glasses, browline glasses, or full-rimmed glasses are best.
  • Oval-shaped faces: Just about any frame design will look good on someone with an oval-shaped face.
  • Heart-shaped shaped faces: Oval glasses, round glasses, aviator glasses or semi-rimless glasses are recommended.
  • Square-shaped faces: Round glasses, oval glasses, wire glasses, or semi-rimless glasses are ideal.
  • Triangle-shaped faces: Rectangle glasses, browline glasses or cat-eye glasses are best.
  • Diamond-shaped faces: Browline glasses, cat-eye glasses, round glasses, oval glasses or semi-rimless glasses are all good choices.

Most sunglass frames come in at least several sizes. If you look on the inner side of a frame’s arm, you’ll see measurements engraved on it. 

Three numbers separated by dashes or spaces indicate lens width bridge width and temple length. If you have frames that fit well, you can typically use the same measurements. 

The average person will need a lens width of between 40mm and 60mm, a bridge width between 14mm and 24mm, and a temple length between 120mm and 150mm. Two other measurements you might need to consider include the frame width and lens height. 


Whether your shopping for prescription eyewear, a fitness tracker, a meal kit plan or other products and services that relate to your health and fitness, stay up-to-date on new products and great deals by reading our ongoing health & fitness coverage. And to quickly discover the best online shopping deals, don’t miss our deals & shopping news coverage, which is continuously updated to help you save money.

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