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Ordering Eyeglasses Online - A Guide

Welcome to our Eyeglasses Buyer Guide, here you will find support and answers to help you buy eyeglasses online confidentially. If you need further assistance, please visit our customer services.

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Contents

Is buying eyeglasses online safe?

Placing an order for prescription glasses online via Glasses2You is 100% safe.  It’s as safe as buying other products online, providing the item is purchased are from a reputable and trusted retailer.  Understandably, buying prescriptions glasses online is slightly different to a standard ‘in shop’ product, but we can assure you that our glasses are made from the very best materials available and are of the highest quality standard.  If you are worried about using a credit card online with us, please don't be, your payments are processed through secure payment merchants.  We do not store your credit card information.  We also accept payments by cheque (UK only) or through established payment systems such as PayPal.

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How do I get my prescription?

In order to buy prescription glasses from us you will need your prescription.  If you have not had your eyes tested in the past 2 years then we highly recommend visiting your local optician for a checkup. This test will tell you if you require glasses and it also acts as a general health check. After you have had your eye examination, ask your optician for a copy of your prescription. The optician is legally obliged to provide you with a copy of your prescription after your eye test. If they don’t give you this, make sure you ask them.  If you have forgot to ask for your prescription after an eye test, no problem. Please re-visit your optician and ask for a copy of your prescription.

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How recent does my prescription have to be?

To ensure that you get the best possible prescription glasses for your eye sight, we recommend that your prescription should be no older than two years. Your recommended intervals between eye tests vary depending on your age and health.

How often should you have your eyes tested?

According to Practitioner Services (one of 11 divisions within NHS National Services Scotland), how often you should have your eyes tested depends on your age and health. (See www.psd.scot.nhs.uk.)

How old are you
How often you should have your eyes tested
Under 7 years old
Every 6 months
7 to 16 years old
Every year
16 to 59 years old
Every 2 years
60 to 69 years old
Usually every 2 years, but sometimes every year
Over 70 years old
Every year
Your health
How often you should have your eyes tested
If you are diabetic
Every year
If your family has a history of glaucoma
Every year

What is PD (Pupillary Distance)?

This is the distance between the center of one pupil to the center of the other pupil measured in millimeters. Usually written as one value (60mm) but sometimes written as 34/33 if one eye is slightly further away from the center of the nose than the other.

Unfortunately, many prescriptions do not include a PD measurement or Pupillary distance measurement. Your Optician does not yet HAVE to give you this as part of your eye test and so often chooses not to so as to encourage you to pay over the odds for your glasses rather than using our fantastic service at glasses2you. So therefore we encourage you to ask your Optician to supply you with this measurement. However, don't panic if you haven't got this or don't want to ask your optician.

We can still make your glasses up using an average pupillary distance measurement based on your gender, the size of the frames you have ordered and the experience of our dispensing optician. In the majority of cases this method works extremely well but there will be certain customers who through having very strong prescriptions or who significantly differ from the average may encounter some problems. In these cases the specs won't damage your eyes but may well cause some discomfort. If you know that you have a particularly strong prescription or you suspect that you may not fall close enough to what is seen as average sizes we would recommend that you try one of the following methods of obtaining your PD measurement.

How do I check my PD?

Method 1: Ask your partner or friend to help you.

Make sure your friend is sat at roughly the same height as you are and ask them to place a ruler across the bridge of your nose upside down so that the millimeter measurements are on the edge of the ruler closest to your eyes. The measurer holds the ruler in their left hand across the bridge of your nose and closes their LEFT eye to avoid any parallax error. With their RIGHT eye open, they then first line up the ruler with the center of your left pupil. Then without moving the ruler they close their RIGHT eye and with their LEFT eye open, read off the measurement to the center of the RIGHT pupil. (See diagram below). Best results are achieved if you fix your gaze on the bridge of the nose of the person taking the measurement. This point should ideally be around 16 inches or 40 cm's away.

Measuring pupillary distance


Method 2: Taking a measurement yourself

This is easily measured looking in a mirror and using a ruler! Please follow these steps

  • Stand in front of a mirror at a distance of about 20cm (8 inches)
  • Close your right eye
  • Place your ruler flat against the mirror and align it horizontally with the millimeter scale pointing upwards
  • Looking over the top of the ruler with your left eye, align the zero mark of the ruler in the center of your left pupil
  • Now open your right eye and close your left but keep your head still and the ruler in the same position
  • Read the millimeter measurement corresponding to the center of your right pupil

To be sure, you can repeat this process a few times for consistency

Method 3: (With a helper)

Please follow these steps:

  • Put your glasses on
  • Ask your helper to stand in front of you and mark a dot on your glasses directly above your pupils left and right
    • Please be sure to use a NON PERMANENT MARKER PEN
  • With a ruler, measure the distance between the 2 dots

Understanding the words on your prescription

IMPORTANT – A very common mistake!

The most common mistake we see on an almost daily basis is the wrong selection of "+" and "-" values when entering prescriptions online.  We cannot stress enough that extra care must be taken when selecting these values!

Reading the words on your prescription receipt can look confusing but it is actually quite simple to understand.  This is how your prescription will generally be laid out (depending on the country):

Let's look to see what each of these measurements mean.

SPH / Sphere

The sphere (Sph) specifies the strength of lens required to correct your focus - a plus sphere to correct long-sightedness (hyperopic - difficulty focusing on close objects) and a minus to correct short sightedness (myopia - difficulty focusing on distant objects.)

The sphere is measured in Dioptres.  Your prescription may have the word Plano or Pl or an infinity sign, this means that you are neither long nor short sighted but zero power for the Sphere. Most values range from 0.00 to +/- 20.00 and go up in steps of 0.25.

CYL / Cylinder

The CYL and AXIS compensate for an astigmatism. What is an astigmatism? An astigmatism is where the eye is shaped slightly like a rugby ball or referred to as ‘toric’ (not a perfect sphere like a football). This means that the eye has difficulty focusing at certain angles.

This box maybe empty or have a plus or a minus value in it. The measurement is the Dioptre. Most values range from +/- 0.25 to +/- 4.00 and will go up in steps of 0.25.

AXIS

The AXIS is only present if there is a value in the CYL box, the AXIS tells us where the astigmatism is on your eye. The measurement is in Degrees. The values range between 0 and 180 and may go up in steps of ½, 1, 5 or 10 degrees, we only show the AXIS to a whole number but if you have a ½ degree on your prescription you can list this in the additional information box when ordering.

ADD / Addition

The Add (an abbreviation for Reading Addition), is the additional correction required for reading.  This can be used to make reading glasses, bifocal glasses or Varifocal glasses.

This figure is an indication of how much extra power is required ‘on top’ of the distance prescription for near or intermediate glasses. This extra power will ALWAYS be the same for each eye and may only appear once on your prescription but it is understood to apply to both eyes. The measurement is the Dioptre, and most values range from +0.50 to +3.50 and will go up in steps of 0.25.

The 'addition' is only required if the glasses are going to be used for reading or close work. If your glasses are for distance only, this will not be an issue. Sometimes opticians use the word 'Add' or 'Near' instead of 'addition'. They may only write it once, but it normally applies to both eyes and is almost always the same value for both eyes (e.g. 'Add' +2.50 - should be entered for both eyes).

PRISM

A prism is required to try and correct a lazy eye.  This is included with a prescription to correct some special conditions or some eye disorders (like squints) that require the focused image to move position. The measurement is Prism Dioptre. The value may be as high as 10 and can go up in steps of ½ or 1 Prism Dioptre.

If your prescription contains a prism, kindly contact us with your full prescription.  We may be able to add this to your prescription for a small additional fee.

Remember, if you are still unsure of your prescription you can easily fax, post or email a copy to us when you place your order.

Understanding Different Frame Sizes

The lens size is the width across the widest part of the lens (in mm). The bridge size is the width of the nose bridge. The arm length is the length of each arm. These sizes can usually be found on your current glasses by looking on the inside of the frame (usually the arms or the bridge).  For example, a frame with the following measurements 56-16-135 will be as follows:

  • 56 = 52mm Lens Width
  • 16 = 16mm Bridge Size
  • 135 = 135mm Arm Length

Please can you explain the different Lens Coatings available?


UV Protection

UV or Ultraviolet light is found in sunlight and can be damaging to the eye and may lead to cataracts, pterygium and pinguecula formation.  A UV coating on your glasses stops the UV light from penetrating the lens and potentially damaging your eyes.
Scratch Resistance

Our scratch-resistant coating


is a hard and clear coating that helps to prevent minor scratches that may occur from day to day wear meaning the life of the lens.  This will help you to enjoy clearer vision for longer.

Anti-Reflection

An anti-reflective coating will eliminate surface reflections on a lens that will increase light transmission through the lenses providing you with clear defined vision night or day.   This coating is recommended for computer use and night-time driving.

Choosing the Correct Frame Style to Suit your Face Shape

There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to finding the perfect pair of glasses for your face. However we have compiled a simple guide that will help you chooses the right style for your face (but please remember these fashion, personal style and trends often break many rules):

People generally fall into the following categories:

image showing a square face

Square Face:

Your face is as long as it is wide with a deep forehead and a square jaw line.

Celebrities with this type of face include: Elton John, Demi Moore and Sandra Bullock

Choose frame styles that are more rounded or oval and avoid slim square or angular shaped frames.

image showing an Oval shaped face

Oval Face:

Your face length is roughly equal to one and a half times the width. Your face is well balanced with high cheekbones and a gently curving jaw. Your forehead is slightly wider than your jaw.

Celebrities with this type of face include: Julia Roberts

You're in luck, most frame shapes suit your face shape. Just make sure the size is in proportion to your face.

image showing a round shaped face

Round Face:

Your face is as wide as it is long and is fairly short in height with a wide forehead. You have full cheeks and a rounded jaw line.

Celebrities with this type of face include: Cameron Diaz,

Choose frames with lenses that are wider than they are deep and squarer in shape. Frames that have decoration where the arm meets the frame and with arms that meet the frame at the top would suit. Avoid big round frames that make your face look rounder.

image showing a heart shaped face

Heart-Shaped Face:

Your face is narrow at the jaw line with a small neat chin and mouth and wide at the cheek bones and forehead.

Celebrities with this type of face include: Jennifer Aniston

Choose a frame style that is slender, rounded or square but avoid a style that has a greater width at the top. This will tend to reflect the shape of your face rather than enhance your look.

image showing a long oblong shaped face

Long Oblong Face:

Your face is longer than it is wide with high cheek bones and a deep forehead.

Celebrities with this type of face include:

Choose wider frames and styles with a heavier top. Strong looking large square frames can often balance a narrow looking face. Avoid small subtle shapes.

If you are already wearing glasses and are happy with your style then simply choose a similar frame.

Why are Thin Lenses better for glasses?

Standard lenses are perfectly suitable for low prescriptions but for those with higher prescriptions standard lenses tend to be thicker and heavier making them unattractive and uncomfortable to wear.  For those with higher prescriptions we recommend customers choose a High Index/Thin lens.  These are lighter on the nose and more attractive, making glasses much more comfortable to wear.

As a rough guide, we recommend…

1.49 Index

  • For prescriptions with sphere values from Plano to +/- 3.00

1.56 Index

  • For prescriptions with sphere values from +/- 3.00 to +/- 3.75

1.61 Index

  • For prescriptions with sphere values around +/- 4.00

1.67 or 1.74 Index

  • For prescriptions with sphere values above +/- 4.25 it would be ideal for 1.67 or 1.74 index.

With any plus powers above +3.00, we recommend our 1.67 or 1.74 lenses because these lenses are Aspheric in design, this means the lenses are made not only thinner but flatter than a standard spherical lens, this reduces magnification of your eyes to anyone who looks at you, and of course the lenses are lighter as a result.

 

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