Advantages The prices are very competitive
Disadvantages They - or they would say the Royal Mail - lost my glasses
After going nearly five years without needing to change my prescription and consequently my glasses, I started to sense that my sight was not as good as it had been. I phoned the local Specsavers and trotted off for my appointment, leaving not long after nearly £200 worse off after succumbing to the temptation of a fancy swanky pair of frame-less specs and a new pair of sunglasses. When I got home a wee bit of common sense kicked in. I don't wear my glasses all the time and I realised that if I were to sit on my specs, leave them on a table and wander off, have them fall out of my bag or any number of other daft but entirely possible scenarios should ensue, I didn't have a back up pair. Specsavers had told me my main specs could take up to 3 weeks to arrive so I figured that maybe I could get a spare pair sorted quicker than that. I bounced around the internet for a while to identify a number of so-called 'reglaze' sites and identified Direct Sight.
The principle is simple. You have a pair of old frames you love (or perhaps don't hate) and they're still in great condition and not yet utterly dated and unfashionable. Maybe your prescription has changed – like mine – or you've scratched the lenses or maybe just want lenses with anti-reflect, tinting or some such effect. If you ask the lovely people at Specsavers to reglaze them (that is to take out the old lenses and put new ones in) you can kiss goodbye to the best part of £60 to £70. Specsavers don't WANT to reglaze your specs – they want you to buy new ones, ideally to get carried away by one of their complicated offers and buy TWO. That's what they're about and they're very good at it. Bringing your old specs back to life is not their core business.
Reglaze sites will take your old glasses, put in new lenses and then send them back to you – in theory, though my experience shows that it's not always so simple. In the case of Directsight.co.uk, they would take my old specs, update the lens prescription, do the anti-reflect and anti-scratch coatings and send them back for the princely sum of just £23.75. Bargain.
Perhaps some part of me was sceptical because I didn't send my much loved 'main' glasses. I sent my previous 'spare' pair – a set of rather swanky pink Missoni frames that probably required a little more self-confidence in the face-furniture department than I'd ever really been able to muster. They weren't cheap – they'd been part of a designer range from Specsavers but I'd rarely worn them, sticking to my less 'hey, look at me' black half-framed alternatives. The Missoni frame was classified as a 'rimmed frame' – meaning that the frame goes all the way round the lens. The ones I hesitated and decided (thankfully) not to send, were semi-rimmed – with the frame going round the top of the lens and the lower part being held in place by a plastic chord. The costs for both types are the same – only entirely rimless glasses are more expensive.
Rimmed and semi-rimmed reglaze starts at £10.
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