Zenni Optical Review: Is it the Best Place to Buy Glasses Online?

Disclaimer: When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Read More

This review isn’t about a particular product from Zenni optical, but it’s about an overall experience with the company. This answers questions about the lens quality, types of lenses, frames and other things they sell, customer service. At the end, we’ve also added a promo code which can save some amount while you make a purchase.

This is a detailed review. Going by the word count, it is around 3,400 words. If you are low on time I’d suggest you to bookmark it or save it. In case you have dedicated few minutes of your daily time to reading this article alone, just like 22% of our readers, feel free to continue. 

Why Zenni Optical?

If you’ve ever been to the optometrist you’d know how expensive prescription glasses can actually be. They generally start from the steep price of around $100 and can carry on all the way to $600 or more for a pair of designer glasses. According to CostHelper, people spend $196 for buying prescription glasses.

Add to that, the hassle of going to the optometrist, trying on endless glasses, waiting in line, and finally placing your order after a having spent the last hour at the same store. On top of that, things get even more disheartening when you have to head back to the store because your glasses broke, or you have some problems with it which were not addressed initially when you were selecting them and repeating the entire process all over again.

Zenni Optical, an online glasses company located in San-Francisco presents you with a much simpler and inexpensive way to get glasses that you want while sitting at the comfort of your own home. It is essentially an online store which uses innovative ideas to get you the perfect pair of glasses at the price of dirt.

Out of all the online retail stores selling prescription glasses, none are cheaper than Zenni Optical for the quality which they have to offer. It might as well be the revolutionary change which we need in the world of prescription glasses despite the need for further refinement. After all, nothing comes for free. If it’s cheap, you can be more than certain that something is certainly missing from the equation.

Amazing Features Starting at $6.95

In a world of $150 prescription glasses, Zenni Optical offers them for the low price of merely $6.95! Not only that, but they also provide free high-quality lenses along with the purchase of these frames which would otherwise cost you much more elsewhere.

Their standard lenses which come free with their $6.95 frames are thin lenses with an anti-scratch coating and UV protection on them. All three of these features are included with your initial order from Zenni Optical.

Furthermore, they also provide you with a glasses case and a microfiber cleaning cloth to keep your spectacles safe when you’re not using them. All this for just $6.95.

Now they do start charging extra when you wish to add more features to your pre-existing lenses. However, they aren’t all that expensive either with prices which are forever lower than any of the competition. They charge the following for different lenses:

  • 1.50 Standard Lenses: Free
  • 1.57 Mid Index Lenses: Free
  • 1.67 High Index Lenses: $34.95
  • 1.50 Standard Polarized Lenses: $32.99
  • High Index 1.61 Photo chromatic Lenses: $29.00
  • Digital Freeform 1.50 Progressive Lenses: $27.95

Not only do they have the cheapest frames and lenses on the market, they also have more variety of lenses to offer as compared to the competition. The average price of their glasses comes at around $25 while quite a few frames start at $6.95 and a few going as high as $49.

I ordered a few of them, I was surprised to find the lens quality better than the ones we get at most of the places in the local market. I live in Santa Clara, I was really impressed by the quality at that price range. The same quality of lenses costed around 3-4 times in the local market. Although, at some places you can find the same quality lenses at a similar price, but why waste time hunting for places?

What Type of Glasses Does Zenni Offer?

Zenni Optical doesn’t just stop at providing you with glasses and frames at the cheapest rates on the market. It also gives you more than 6000 different frames to choose from.

The website offers tons of choices when it comes to selecting your perfect pair of glasses. After all, glasses are an essential part of your face and more or less form your identity.

Zenni Optical gives you a diverse range of selections which can range from all shapes and sizes to almost all purposes which you can think of. Their impressive list of glasses contains:

  • Rectangle Glasses
  • Square Glasses
  • Cat eye Glasses
  • Browline Glasses
  • Round Glasses
  • Aviator Glasses
  • Metal Glasses
  • Titanium Glasses
  • Rimless Glasses
  • Half Rim Glasses
  • Sports Glasses
  • Goggles
  • Sunglasses
  • Clip-on sets

Not only that, they also provide you glasses which are best suited for Progressive lenses and Bifocal Lenses as well. Furthermore, they also use their Zenni Frame Fit technology to get a virtual fit of your desired glasses on an uploaded picture of your face.

All you need is a measure of your Pupil Distance, something they teach you to measure on the site as well! Each and every frame is crafted specifically for each customer according to their specifications. Zenni Optical really seems to take great caution when it comes to your glasses.

However, there are also flaws to this ordeal. Being a repository of economically viable alternatives to expensive prescription glasses, Zenni Optical provides you with 3D printed plastic glasses which are made in their own lab every time you order them. Meaning that while you can get a pair of glasses for a rather cheap price, you’re not going to find anything fancy like those designer glasses which you’ll find at your local optometrist’s. After all, it’s cheap for a reason.

The Zenni Frame Fit technology relies on the fact that you know your Pupil Distance in the first place. While most doctors do measure that, most of them neglect to mention that in reports, or even to the patient altogether. While they do have an infographic about how to gauge your pupil distance, it is always more accurate to simply have your optometrist do it for you. They should know what they’re doing.

Zenni Optical Shipping Time and Areas

Once Zenni Optical receives an order, it’ll take 1 to 4 days to process the order, and takes about two more weeks to ship the product to your home. Now, this is where things start to get a little messy. They do not have their own Logistics services and use commercial logistics such as FedEx, UPS, USPS, and other postal services to ship their products to anywhere on the globe, including international deliveries. Since they don’t handle the shipping, they don’t charge for it either.

All costs are borne by you and set by our friends in the postal courier service industry. Within the USA, a pair of prescription glasses which takes a fortnight to arrive generally costs around $4. If you want your spectacles to arrive sooner than that, you should be willing to cough up extra dough just for priority delivery.

When going international, things tend to get even messier. Shipping charges can easily exceed $20, which can prove to be more than the pair of glasses themselves, and also take upwards of a month to arrive.

Any other means of quicker delivery may cost you up to $100 just for that. Not to mention that you also bear the cost of Customs Duty clearance every time you order a pair. Imagine having to return the pair when you’re abroad. However, we’ll get to that soon. Some of the major countries to which Zenni Optical ships are:

  • Canada
  • Brazil
  • Mexico
  • Germany
  • Argentina
  • Spain
  • Portugal
  • England
  • China
  • Thailand
  • Japan
  • India
  • UAE
  • South Korea
  • Australia
  • Russia
  • New Zealand

And the list goes on and on.

Zenni Optical Return Policy: Do Not Return

As if Zenni Optical didn’t take exorbitantly long times to ship a pair of prescription glasses already, they have a return policy which would leave you cursing them for days to come should you choose to initiate a refund.

If there was a mistake on behalf of Zenni Optical when shipping the package, which basically refers to the shipping you the wrong pair of glasses, you’ll get the entire price of the glasses refunded along with a 50% refund on shipping.

No, you don’t get all of your money back if Zenni Optical makes a mistake. You’ll need to spend more money just to send the glasses back instead. Moreover, you’ve got only 30 days to return your pair of prescription glasses.

If you thought that was bad, then wait till you hear about what Zenni Optical does when you don’t like their glasses. If you wish to return any order which you might have placed and Zenni Optical is not at fault, you’re in for one nasty surprise.

As it turns out, not only do you have to pay for shipping the pair of prescription glasses back to the company, you’ll also get only 50% of the price of the glasses refunded. You’re not going to get all of your money back if you didn’t like the glasses. Go figure! Perhaps it’s best to make up your mind for certain about which glasses you want to purchase unless you want to spend money and not have any glasses altogether.

You can check out the complete return policy before you buy their glasses!

Customer Satisfaction: Is it good, bad, or great?

Taking into consideration all these things which Zenni Optical likes to do, one might think that it might not be the best idea to purchase a pair of glasses from there after all. However, there is nothing more sure than taking the customer’s words for it.

There are tons of people who’ve been using their prescription glasses for quite some time now with a few customers who have been using this brand for the past ten years. The reviews are more or less quite satisfactory with the occasional complains every now and then regarding the quality of the frames, even though others swear that it is quite durable.

Some of the other customers who decided that these glasses were not worth their investment and decided to return them faced a really tough time, needless to say. I would personally advice just keeping those glasses since that’s a much cheaper option, but on the other hand, it’ll be less of a loss if you’re not going to use those glasses anyway.

Apart from the occasional complains about the glasses, most reviews about Zenni Optical are quite positive and instilling of faith with the clear majority of people enjoying what they’re getting without a complain.

Even Zenni Optical is quite attentive to those complains and immediately attempts to resolve any complain which can be taken care of. The key here is to remember that you’re getting cheaper products because of a reason, and no matter how well made, it is not going to hold much over a pair of much more expensive prescription glasses. Below are a few customer reviews which represent the clear majority:

“I’ve ordered from Zenni Optical three times now. I like its price. Also, the selection of the glasses has been great although, with my first order, Zenni didn’t have so many options as they do now. It was originally just whether or not you wanted some shade when you’re ordering sunglasses. The online ordering process has been very simple too. The only thing I had difficulty with was with the option where you take a picture of yourself so that you can try the glasses on and have it come out at the right size according to the glasses. Most of the time, the glasses looked larger in the picture than what they actually came out to be. When I tried my first set of glasses, it looked like they were larger than they actually were, so when I got the glasses, I thought I have a big head.” said Randy, a Zenni optical customer , and an avid TeckFlock Reader

“I’ve ordered once from Zenni Optical and I won’t be going back the other way. Once I figured out how to measure the pupillary distance, it was easy and simple to order. The glasses came early and I love them. I got them for less than $100 which is very affordable. I had to have titanium and usually, these glasses are over $500 when I order in the store, which is ridiculous. I could’ve gotten about six pairs for what I pay for one in the store. The Zenni glasses are also durable. I would definitely continue to order from them.”- Melissa

“Zenni’s prices weren’t too bad and I had my prescription, so I wanted to try one out and I really liked them. I bought regular glasses but I accidentally got a bifocal. They told me that I have to return them but I didn’t want to go through the trouble because it wasn’t that much of a deal so next time, I would just get a regular. I enjoy and appreciate Zenni Optical’s glasses and I would recommend them.”

Dianalid, a Frequent customer of Zenni

“ got two pairs and they’re both full rim. It was pretty hard when you aren’t trying them on, so I went with styles that I knew were similar to glasses I’ve had in the past. And I’ve been using them now for three months. If there was a Zenni store or if they did something like Warby Parker where, “We’ll send you five frames, you send back and tell us which ones you want,” I would have probably tried wire frames or rimless, but I could only go with what I’ve known works. But other than that, it’s been very pleasurable, nice and easy, and the ordering process was simple, which I appreciated. My brother has ordered from Zenni Optical before as well.”

Cathy, An avid online prescription glass buyer

“My Medicaid covers my glasses but the Medicaid glasses are cheap. I didn’t really like them and I only had a choice to get another one. But every time I go to an optical, they just sell the brand ones. So I decided to get them online and I looked for non-brand prescription frames. Ordering online from Zenni was fast and easy. I did it through my phone. That was how fast and easy it was. I had my prescription and I filled everything out. I had a question about something that I had to put a number in but there was a little question mark and that helped me out. The glasses came fast too.


Receiving my package was the highlight. When I actually got to wear them, I was super amazed. My glasses are perfect and I love them. Most of my glasses are of the same style. They’re black and square-shaped. They look like Ray-Ban. I’ve had the glasses for about four months and I’ve been taking really good care of them. Usually, the cloths that come with glasses are not that helpful but the one from Zenni was really helpful. The glasses don’t have glare and I love that. I wear contacts and my contacts are extremely glaring. I will recommend Zenni Optical to a friend. They have a million styles and they’re very affordable.” – Christina

Good Alternatives to Zenni Opticals

In case you’re still doubtful about the reliability of Zenni Optical, here are a few alternative brands for you where you can get prescription glasses for cheap:

  1. Eye Buy Direct: The frames on this site actually start at a cheaper price than Zenni Optical with the starting price of $6.00. A whole dollar less! However, that’s the only thing that’s cheaper. The only lens which you get for free are the 1.50 Standard Lenses with prices skyrocketing for other lenses such as the photo chromatic lenses which cost $180. Would you be willing to save $0.95 just to spend more than double the amount of money on lenses?
  2. Coastal: Coastal is another brand which can fetch you prescription glasses for a cheap rate. Their frames start off at $19.00. However, they only offer 1.67 High Index Lenses which are priced at $65.00.
  3. Glasses USA: Glasses USA is another site which sells cheap glasses. They start at a mere $38.00 with the rest of the prices touching thrice the amount which Zenni Optical charges. What you keep in frames, you lose in lenses.
  4. 39 Dollar Glasses: 39 Dollar Glasses is quite similar to Glasses USA with the prescription glasses starting from $39.00. The site gives you heavy discounts on trending glasses. However, it only sells glasses on a discount and grossly limits the variety which you might find otherwise. The price of lenses is also thrice of what Zenni Optical charges.
  5. Frames Direct: Frames Direct charges $40.00 dollar for frames and doesn’t have all the options for lenses available at the same time. However, it still is a cheaper, more hassle free alternative to going to the optometrist if you’re not convinced of Zenni Optical.

Among all the other brands, one thing which remains common is the fact that none of them can get as cheap as Zenni Optical for the combination of both Frames and Lenses. Zenni Optical is practically the cheapest brand which there is despite the fact that it may not up to some of the extreme expectations of articles of cheaper prices.

  • Cheap frames starting from merely $6.95.
  • Cheap lenses to accompany cheap frames.
  • The standard lenses come free with UV protection and an anti-scratch coating and are also thin.
  • No hassle of visiting the Optometrist for anything.
  • Innovative approach to finding your perfect pair using the Zenni Virtual Fit.
  • Over 6000 pairs to choose from.
  • Durable prescription glasses.
  • Active customer satisfaction which actively helps wherever it can.
  • Frames are 3D printed, which may not feel the best.
  • Zenni Virtual Fit requires you to know your pupil distance.
  • No designer glasses available for the offered price range.
  • Return and refund policy can cost more than the originally ordered pair of glasses.
  • Long shipping time of 18 to 21 days.
  • Full price not refunded in the event of a cancellation.

Zenni Optical Coupons

Despite the fact that Zenni Optical already offers dirt cheap lenses, there are still even cheaper offers to avail from the site. The site uses Promotional Codes which lower the price of the product even further giving you a real bang for your buck. You can avail the first 10% discount coupon as soon as you step on to their site and register for their newsletter. The first email you get from them contains the 10% off coupon usable for the first time. There are other coupons present as well. Here are a few below:

  • 20% Off Site wide for first order: SIGNUP20
  • 20% Off on Polarized Lenses: SUMMER20
  • 20% Off Site Wide: CYBER
  • 20% Off Eye Wear: MEMORIAL20
  • 20% Off on your order on Fridays: FRIYAY

Hopefully the already cheap Zenni Optical will be even cheaper after using these codes.


Zenni Optical offers a pair of glasses for as cheap as $6.95. The lenses are at par with the best one can get and that too, at really affordable prices. However, the return and refund policy is poor at best and causes you to spend more money than the glasses originally cost you. The refund policy also doesn’t refund you with the complete amount you paid and leaves you without glasses. You also need to pay for the shipping and handling for all occasions. Customers are quite satisfied with the brand for prescription glasses and some are even loyal to the brand for quite a few years now.

In the end, Zenni Optical charges you $6.95 for a pair of glasses. You might want to keep in mind that price is related to quality at some level, and that given the quality of the lenses which you get for much cheaper than what other brands can offer, It is good deal all in all. Just make sure not to expect too highly of the pair of prescription glasses which you’re about to receive and to be sure about what you are about to order before you order it in the first place. Otherwise, you might end up racking a lot of cost for no reason at all.

Zenni Optical FAQs

Where is Zenni Optical located?

Zenni Optical is located in the San Francisco Bay area because according to Zenni, it is a good place to set up shop among forward thinking people and enterprises.

How long does Zenni Optical take to ship?

It takes anywhere between 19 to 21 days to ship an order to a customer’s home.

Who owns Zenni Optical?

It was founded in 2003 by two scientists whose names still remain undisclosed. It was called 19 Dollar Eyeglasses in 2003.

Where does Zenni Optical ship from?

They ship from its manufacturing warehouse in Shanghai, China after printing, edging, and finally reviewing the pair of glasses which you have ordered.

How long does Zenni Optical take to process an order?

It takes between two to four days to process and confirm every order before it is passed on to the manufacturing factory.

9 thoughts on “Zenni Optical Review: Is it the Best Place to Buy Glasses Online?”

  1. I made an order before 15 days and it hasn’t shipped yet. The previous order I made also took around 1 month to reach out. The quality of the glasses is much better for the price I paid. Although, I like it, had it taken less time, I’d have recommended it to all my friends. The only thing I hate about Zenni optical’s is delivery time. I’m from NYC.

    • Hello Michelle,

      Thanks for writing in. I totally get you, in fact in the review, I’ve mentioned how much I hate about their shipping time and return policy. Trust me, it’s just these two things which have reduced the ratings the company has received. Had it been better at it, there’d be no online glasses company in comparison to Zenni.

      However, As a reviewer, It’s important for me to also educate my readers about how the company gets the product made for so cheap. It actually imports them from China where it is manufactured. That’s the major reason why there’s a delay in it arriving while others are able to provide the same within a day or two.

      I’m planning to come up with an email and mail it to the company, would you be interested in sharing more details, something which you like the most and hate the most about the company? You can comment down back or get in touch with us on our email: boltqmedia@gmail.com

    • Not happy, waited long time for glasses only to find they are not the invisible bifocals my daughter order for me. My first pair 3 years ago came fast and correct. This time it took almost 2 months and has a big made in China sticker on them. So I can understand the delay and the no invisible bifocals part. Yet it doesn’t make me happy at all. It’s a loss for me.

  2. As mentioned in your review, the glasses aren’t high-quality. But they really are worth the price. I’ve saved more than $400 in 1 year.

    I wish they were able to deliver it quicker, My last order took around 25 days to arrive. Besides, one should also make sure that the sizes they send are really accurate because returning to them is costly. Although, one can sell it to someone in the local like I did a few times (which is indeed profitable in the US, NOT a business opportunity though.) because finding one could be tough.

    Besides, I’d love to order more if they improved the time taken to ship and the return policy worked well. Besides, Thanks TeckFlock for providing me a coupon code. I was able to get around 20% discount. The already cheap Zenni becomes even cheaper! 😂

    • John, Thanks for writing in. I really appreciate your time and value.

      I do understand that their product quality might not be great, but considering the price they charge for the glasses, I’d say that they are totally value-for-money. I wasn’t able to find any seller come up with such pricing in the Bay area.

      Regarding the time taken to deliver. I did mention it in the review and many people who’ve commented here also have mentioned the same thing. 25 days is a huge time, this not only affects the customer but also affects their business. I’m planning to write an email to them and ask them to come up with ways to deliver their products faster. Do let me know if there’s something you’d like me to share with them.

  3. How long does it take to ship?

    I read the review and figured out that it takes around 1-3 days for them to process the order and then they get it shipped it from China. Depending on the courier service and the country they’re shipping it might take 17-21 days.

    I’m still not sure about the time taken for it to be shipped to my exact location. Since you’re just a review site, I’d like to request you represent the shipping time in a table for a few popular countries like United States and Canada. Also, would it be possible for you to figure out some way to get them shipped quicker to a particular country?

    21 days is huge waiting that too in the 21st century where travel and shipping is much more accessible. Feels like 90s. I wish it was quick enough, 2-3 days to get my order delivered would’ve been a wonderful thing. I’d love if you could help me with more details.

    • Emilia,

      Thanks for writing in. Yes, 21 days is a huge time, it almost feels like a year. For some products I order online, I can’t even wait for even a day. Thanks for this bad habit – @AmazonPrime. However, I do realize that these guys make the spectacles after receiving measurements from you, they then ship it from China and then the courier company takes a while to proceed with the shipment. Most of the times, the product arrives within 15 days, but I’ve also heard a few consumers saying that it took more than 1.4 months, which is quite unacceptable.

      Also regarding the tracking, You can consider using the Courier tracking tool: https://couriertracking.co It’s a very neat tool which can allow you with the shipment tracking.

  4. Thanks for the wonderful review. After reading it, I decided to go shop with them. However, while shopping they ask about “PD” and I’m not sure about mine. Would you be interested in helping me measure it out? It’d do great help.

    The reason why I’m requesting this from you is, I love the way you make things easy for the readers!

  5. The review has been really helpful. Just when I was thinking of buying a pair and I came to read about the issues with the shipping time and their return policy. I think, it’s important to save money, but not at the cost of time. If you are someone who wants the pair quickly, then NEVER ever use Zenni Optical. I’m saying this because I made an order and realized later than it would take more than 30 days to reach out to me. In 2019, 30 days delivery is out-dated. The first page of Google search has all positive reviews, maybe the company just paid them.


Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.