What’s the average cost of prescription sunglasses?

man comparing sunglasses

Prescription sunglasses allow you to protect your eyes from the sun while keeping your vision crystal clear. But how much do prescription sunglasses cost?

According to one survey, the average cost of prescription sunglasses ranges fro $150 and $500, Why the difference of hundreds of dollars? Several factors affect the lens and frame costs of prescription sunglasses.

For example, the more customized you make your sunglasses frames or lenses, the more expensive your prescription shades will be.

Let’s take a look at some of the factors affecting the cost of prescription sunglasses:

How much are the frames?

Today's sunglasses frames come in many different styles, and prescription lenses can fit into almost any shape you can imagine.

Here are some factors that determine the cost of sunglasses frames:

BRAND: Some brand names carry more clout with consumers. Brands that have been around longer and served more customers tend to be trusted more. Luxury brands that add sunglass lines extend the aura to their sunnies. That longevity, brand loyalty and sense of luxury will cost you.

POPULARITY: Certain trendy sunglass frame styles (such as sunglasses seen on Instagram) are more in demand. Sunglasses from celebrities, such as Rihanna, create a lot of buzz. Popular, hot and designer sunglasses almost always carry a higher price tag.

SIZE: Because adult frames are larger than children’s frames, they require additional materials. More metal, plastic or other frame material adds up to a higher sunglasses price.

MATERIAL: The material of the frames also plays a role in cost. Plastic (acetate) frames are usually less expensive than metal frames, unless a certain style of plastic frames has become particularly popular. Unusual frame materials also will be more expensive.

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How much are the lenses?

Sunglass lenses can be customized as much as frames — even moreso, depending on the intensity of your prescription and your vision needs.

Some factors that can raise the cost of prescription sunglasses include:

TINT: The color of the sunglasses tint can have an impact on the price. Yellow- and orange-tinted sunglasses are typically better at blocking blue light, an added feature that can have an impact on demand and price.

LENS MATERIAL: From aspheric lenses to polarized lenses and everything in between, your sunglass lenses have so much more to offer than a shaded window to the rest of the world. Some of these lens options carry a higher price tag.

UV PROTECTION: The more you allow the sun to access your eyes, the more your eyes can be damaged by UV rays. UV protection level could play a role in the cost for your sunglasses, but you can find inexpensive pairs with UV 400 protection if you know where to look.

LENS TREATMENTS: The reason the sunglasses at your local drugstore are so inexpensive is because they aren’t built to last. Having scratch-resistant, anti-glare or polarized lens treatments added to your sunglasses will incur an additional cost.

What is the average price for a pair of prescription sunglasses?

According to a survey on CostHelper, prescription sunglasses can cost as little as $20 and as much as $700.

The true average is somewhere between $150 and $500, depending on the power of your prescription, the frames and lenses you choose, and the financial support of your vision plan.

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Can I get prescription lenses put into my sunglasses?

Not every set of frames is equipped to fit prescription sunglass lenses. If the frames you’re considering aren’t optical grade, it means they don’t have the grooves necessary to hold prescription lenses in place.

However, it’s easy to find and purchase prescription sunglasses. Stores that offer these services (online and in-person) include:

  • Ray-Ban

  • Oakley

  • LensCrafters

  • Pearle Vision

  • Costa

  • EyeBuyDirect

  • FramesDirect.com

  • Target Optical

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