Ray-Ban has been a classic American brand since 1937, but Ray-Ban glasses have not been manufactured in the USA for quite some time. In 1999, Bausch & Lomb sold Ray-Ban to the Italian eyewear company Luxottica. Today, Ray-Bans are made in both Italy and China.
When Luxottica started manufacturing Ray-Bans in 1999, they were made in Italy. Throughout the years, Luxottica has grown exponentially and opened factories outside its native country. Their factories in Italy and China produce Ray-Ban's entire line of eyewear and Luxottica guarantees the quality of the products from its Chinese factories is in no way compromised; the glasses are made from the same materials, with the same machines.
But while "Made in China" is not a red flag for fake Ray-Bans, there are still plenty of cheap Ray-Ban knockoffs crowding the market. If you happen to come across an American-made pair of Ray-Bans from Bausch & Lomb, you've found vintage frames or fakes.
The only way to guarantee you've purchased authentic Ray-Bans is to get them from an authorized retailer. If you purchase frames secondhand or own a pair you're not sure about, a few easy ways to tell if they're authentic include a logo attached or etched (never printed) on the lens and temples, a product booklet without errors, and if they have the heft, weight, and feel of high-quality materials. Here are several ways to help you to spot real Ray-Bans from fake.
Authentic Ray-Bans should:
The easiest way to spot fake Ray-Bans is if they're missing the logo etching. For further confirmation, you may need to dig for more clues.
If you've come across current Ray-Ban eyewear models discounted at more than 30% below suggested retail, then they might be fake. The Italian eyewear giant Luxottica bought Ray-Ban in 1999 and set rules about how much Ray-Bans can be discounted.
On modern Ray-Ban lenses, you can find the logo attached to the temple and etched onto the lens. On pre-2000 models, you'll find the letters BL, representing Bausch & Lomb, the company's former owner. Many models also include the logo on the nose pads. If you can smudge the etching or easily remove the temple logo, that’s a sign your frames are fakes.
If you find spelling and grammatical errors in the included booklet, there is a good chance your frames are fake. Genuine Ray-Ban packaging comes with a branded cleaning cloth in a plastic sleeve and a small booklet with information about your glasses and lifestyle images of the products.
All Ray-Bans come with a limited two-year manufacturer’s warranty, which guarantees against manufacturer defects. This information should be included in the packaging of the frames, along with the booklet. Additionally, if you buy your Ray-Bans from an authorized dealer, that dealer will likely have their own warranty, like FramesDirect.com’s warranty for lens and frame defects.
Did you purchase your frames from a licensed retailer or some sort of sketchy website or store? Remember, if you got them at a discount that seems too good to be true, it probably is.
Ray-Ban protective carrying cases have a round seal with the Ray-Ban signature logo in the middle, "100% UV protection" at the top, and "Sunglasses by Luxottica" at the bottom.
Genuine Ray-Bans have a solid weight to them. Most have glass or glass-like lenses—not cheap plastic. If your glasses feel conspicuously light, they may not be the real deal. Ray-Ban creates their glasses and sunglasses with proprietary lens technology, so if you slip the frames on and experience distorted views, they may not be real.
Pay attention to how the temples fold and unfold. Real Ray-Bans have metal hinges and should open and close with ease. Many models (not all) include seven interlocking "teeth" in the hinge. Glasses with plastic or bolted-on hinges are fake.
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