Your glasses say a lot about you, your unique personality, and your lifestyle. For that reason, you should approach shopping for glasses with the same care and diligence as any other important purchase you make.
Cost is only one factor, but in order for you to be completely satisfied with your glasses, there are other considerations to keep in mind that will be more important. Here are five questions to ask when shopping for glasses that will help you find the right eye care center and the right pair of glasses for you.
What Should I Look For In An Optical Center?
Communication is the key. Your eye care provider should provide you with a comprehensive consultation and give you the opportunity to ask questions and express concerns. You want to feel comfortable and confident that your optical provider is focused on your particular eyewear needs.
- What do you like or dislike about your old glasses?
- How will you make my correction look thinner and keep the frame as lightweight as possible?
- How durable is the frame?
- Are their frames handmade in Europe or USA or mass produced in a Chinese factory?
- An innovative optical dispenser will offer more than just name brand frames that are mass produced and sold at higher costs. Some of the best made, and most fashionable, frames come from small independent boutique brands at a fraction of the cost.
- Are their frames made from nickel silver? These tend to corrode and turn green. Choose a titanium or stainless steel style when opting for a metal frame.
- Do you have a warranty and do I have to pay for it or is it free?
- Do you know the best size and style that takes into account my prescription strength?
- What is the most economical or the fanciest style I can get here?
- A good optical dispenser should be well-versed with all aspects of lifestyle dispensing to get the look you want at a comfortable price that is conducive to your optical prescription.
- What kind of selection does the optical have? Are the frames displayed well?
- Is there a lab on premises for faster and more accurate service?
- Is there an owner-doctor involved in the decision process that can make sure standards of quality are maintained and who can recheck your prescription if needed? Or, are you working with a chain owned by an international conglomerate interested in boosting their stock price with a phony everyday sale?
- Are the optical staff trained to answer your questions and be competent to help you on your journey to develop your eyewear wardrobe?
Are Online Reviews Important?
Yes! Looking at the experiences people have had with various eye care centers can be a very valuable way of selecting the right one for you.
- When looking at reviews, be aware of how many reviews are listed. An eye care center with two 5 star reviews is less relevant than a place with 60 reviews at 4.6.
- An office with 50 or more positive reviews, over a period of time, is probably one to put at the top of your list. Remember that people often complain about insurance copays and minor delivery delays that are beyond what is in the control of the business or practice.
- Do businesses fake reviews? Yes, some do. But you can smoke these out by seeing how chronologically spaced the reviews are. Most people are more likely to complain than offer kudos for great service. Also, a series of six-word reviews with seven exclamation points are more likely to be fake than when someone tells their story.
How Will I Know The Best Shape and Color For My Facial Features?
- Choosing the best frame shape and color is a collaborative process based on your prescription, sense of style, and the look you want to portray that is compatible and complimentary to your coloring and facial features.
- Is your style retro, sporty, hipster, designer, high fashion or classic?
- Is your personality bright and flamboyant or cool and muted?
- A good optical center will help you find the perfect style and color.
- Make sure they are not on commission and just recommend something to benefit the stylist.
What Considerations Should I Make For Choosing My Lenses?
In addition to your frame style, a respectable eye care center will help you pick out lenses and frame styles that also fit your lifestyle.
- If you are physically active, like children are, safety will be a consideration. Think about Trivex or polycarbonate lenses.
- Are you in front of a computer all day? Think about Blue Light protection.
- Just about all lenses should be glare-free with using a high-quality multilayer anti-reflective coating that cleans well.
- Multifocals come in no line lenses called progressives. These can be made as glasses suited for all-day computer use to not have to crook your neck to see.
- If you wear glasses all the time, you may want ultra-lightweight rimless or semi-rimless glasses.
- Do you play a sport? There are lenses specifically for every sport to enhance performance and concentration on the ball.
- Chemistrie clips can be added to about any lens to have a custom-made pair of sunglasses with a lightweight sunglass clip-on pair of lenses.
- Staff should be trained to not only recommend these features to you, but also to explain the benefits that impact and improve your lifestyle.
What Should I Expect In Terms of Replacement and Repairs?
- The goal of your eye care professional is to provide you with the perfect pair of glasses. That means making sure your vision is optimal and your glasses are properly fitted and comfortable.
- Choose a professional who will do whatever is necessary to ensure that you are completely satisfied with your eye wear purchase.
- A quality frame should rarely need repaired. If you are losing screws and your glasses are constantly too loose, quality is probably lacking.
- Many eye care centers provide some kind of warranty and adjustments on eyewear, so be sure to ask for the specifics. Don’t pay extra for a warranty. Big box stores make a lot of extra cash on warranties that should be no charge.
- Once you’ve picked out the perfect eyewear, don’t forget to ask about the logistics. How long will the manufacturing process take?
- Are the glasses made in the USA or even in-house?
- What are your delivery options? Do you need them shipped to you?
- Can the glasses be hand-delivered to your door, do you need to make time to come back into the office?
- What type of patient education is offered to enhance the wearer experience and know the rules-of-the-road about how your glasses will be used?