While you may be completely comfortable ordering a new pair of eyeglasses, you might find shopping for prescription sunglasses a little intimidating. Not only have many glasses wearers never considered prescription sunglasses in the first place, but some may not even realize they're a ‘thing.' Prescription sunglasses do exist, and they're quite popular, with nearly endless styles and brands to explore. And if you live with a visual impairment, once you own a pair of prescription shades, you'll wonder how you ever lived without them.
The most common reason for buying prescription sunglasses is to see better in sunny conditions. While some alternatives offer a similar level of optical clarity on sunny days, like tinted lenses that clip on over conventional eyeglasses, a pair of prescription sunglasses is an elegant, efficient accessory made to perform. Prescription sunglasses are especially attractive to the active wearer, including the cyclist who needs seamless vision in challenging conditions, the angler who prefers not to fiddle with clip-ons in changing light, or even the daily driver who'd rather reach for a single dedicated pair of sunglasses for those direct-sunlight conditions during the morning or evening commute. There are myriad reasons to prefer prescription sunglasses over alternatives and if you need a prescription, you'll find plenty of options at FramesDirect that make choosing and wearing them worthwhile.
Buying a pair of prescription sunglasses is as easy as buying a pair of eyeglasses, with the single added step of deciding whether you want polarization, or what kind of tint you want in your lenses. If you've purchased eyeglasses and sunglasses separately, then you already know all of the steps, and now you'll simply combine them. If you already have a pair of eyeglasses or sunglasses frames you love, it's likely we can add prescription sunglass lenses to them, or you can order a new pair of those same frames with prescription sunglass lenses included.
The Prescription Sunglasses Buying Process
Next, you'll need to select your lens material and color. Like frame size, some prescription sunglasses models may offer a variety of materials and color options, while others may include only one option for each. The lens material refers to each manufacturer's lens technology, like Maui Jim's Brilliant™ or Evolution™ lenses. Each material has its own benefits, so it's important to research lens materials to figure out which lens is best for you.
Like lens materials, prescription sunglass lens colors fall to personal preference, and where and when you intend to wear them. Each lens color is designed for different light conditions. Use a lens color guide to compare colors and decide which one will benefit you the most. Most, if not all, lens colors and materials available in conventional sunglasses, are also available in prescription sunglasses (depending on the brand and inventory).
If you're shopping for prescription sunglasses, then you most likely already have a prescription. If you don't, you'll need to obtain one. In this section of the prescription sunglasses ordering process, you can just copy your prescription into the form provided. If you need assistance better understanding your prescription, we can help with that too.
Your Pupillary Distance (PD) should be included in your prescription, but if it happens to be missing or omitted, we can help you easily measure your PD. Once your PD is determined, select “one" or “two" from the PD options and then select your measurements in the dropdowns.
The final step in ordering prescription sunglasses is the payment, and you might be surprised you can use your Flex Spending Account (FSA) and vision insurance on prescription sunglasses orders. For vision insurance, you'll need to submit a reimbursement form to your insurer with your receipt for the order attached. If you have an FSA or HSA debit card, you can skip this process and just use your card for payment at the time of purchase.
The price of prescription sunglasses can vary greatly but you can expect to pay in the $150-$500 range for a pair. Factors such as the frame designer, materials, and technology used to develop each model, as well as any add-ons desired will impact the overall price. However, most people don't pay the full price of prescription sunglasses, as their vision insurance or FSA/HSA cover some or all of the price.
Do you have a pair of glasses that fit perfectly, but you'd prefer to fit them with prescription sunglass lenses? Whether you have eyeglass frames or sunglass frames, it's likely we can replace the lenses with prescription sunglass lenses. Follow our "Lenses Only Guide" for further details on how to order prescription sunglass lenses for frames you already own, and to have our expert team install them for you.
Another option for adding prescription sunglass lenses to frames you already love is to buy new, duplicate frames with new prescription sunglass lenses in them. Then you can still wear your existing frames for their original purpose, and enjoy a duplicate pair with prescription sunglass lenses. We can add lenses to just about any frame, but for special requests (frames not offered with prescription sunglass lenses on our site), speak to one of our opticians at 1-800-248-9427 to discuss your options.
At FramesDirect.com we use top-quality Essilor lenses in our prescription sunglasses. And since we can add prescription sunglass lenses to just about any frame, your options are nearly endless. Still, we think a few brands go above and beyond in design and engineering; if you're looking for the top brands in the prescription sunglasses category, then consider these:
The biggest name in sunglasses is also one of the top prescription sunglasses brands. Ray-Ban combines its status as a decades-long leader in sunglasses design, with top-quality prescription sunglass lenses, to yield a truly impressive collection of Rx sun eyewear.
Top athletes worldwide rely on Oakley's performance eyewear design, and the brand extends that same expertise to prescription sunglasses. With Rx sun lenses available in frames like the Holbrook and Flak 2.0, you'll find a pair of prescription sunglasses engineered for Olympic-level performance, even if you choose them merely for their sporty good looks.
Maui Jim takes the same tropical Hawaiian lifestyle approach that inspired their sunglasses frames and award-winning performance lens design, and applies it to their line of prescription sunglasses. Take the aloha spirit with you anywhere with sharp, focused vision on the sunniest beach days, wearing Maui Jim prescription sunglasses.
Saltwater anglers demand the best performance polarized lenses, and Costa delivers. Whether you need a prescription to tie a Perfection Loop on a fishing trip, or you simply want to enjoy Costa performance in your driving sunglasses, Costa prescription sunglasses rise to the occasion.