Today I'm going to be reviewing an online glasses retailer called SelectSpecs.
SelectSpecs is based in the United Kingdom (UK) and has been in operation for about 10 years. The company was started by three brothers and is still run by them today. It is nice to see a family-run ecommerce business, since you do not see that often.
The target customer for SelectSpecs seems to be the UK market but the company ships all over the world. On the top you can select several different currencies which includes; US Dollars, Euros, British Pounds, Japanese Yen, Australian Dollars, Canadian Dollars, Ukrainian Hryvnia, Russian Ruble, and the New Zealand Dollar. From what I can tell currently SelectSpecs is trying to make inroads to the American and Canadian market with consumers.
SelectSpecs claims to have “The World's Cheapest Glasses” with their $10 offerings. If you keep reading this SelectSpecs review you might realize this could be an accurate claim.
Website navigation on SelectSpecs is fairly straightforward and they have features that you see at most other online glasses websites. Like the ability to select color, material, lens accommodations etc. You can also find a sizing selector if you are looking for frames that match your current pair or just a specific size.
One thing I like about SelectSpecs products pages is the top left shows what type of lenses the frame accommodates and if they have spring hinges or not. I don't need frames to accommodate anything but single vision lenses but for those who are looking for bifocal or varifocal lenses this is a nice feature. They also show whether the frames are for men, women, or both sexes. There is also clear sizing information on the left. They leave out frame width though. It would be helpful if they included this info. Many competitors like EyeBuyDirect include frame width. Also when you scroll down the reviews for the glasses are posted right there. Sometimes ecommerce sites make finding the reviews on product pages difficult, requiring you to make a few clicks, but I like how on SelectSpecs you just scroll down.
SelectSpecs also provides videos of the glasses of a female and male model putting them on, folding the frames, and the turning side to side so you can how they look on someone else. This is a nice feature and something I've noticed many other online eyeglasses retailers are starting to do.
Quite frankly when I first saw the descriptions and pricing of the glasses frames on SelectSpecs in the economy line I was a bit skeptical. Like most people I thought, “Are these going to be any good?” Still I was excited at the prospect of trying some new glasses out from SelectSpecs. Looking through the options I decided to with a funky clear/translucent frame since I had been wanting to get a pair for awhile.
Wearing the clear/translucent pair of glasses I got from SelectSpecs right now, while writing this review, I can tell you I am thoroughly impressed. The material is shockingly nice considering the price and it has a great touch and feel. It's a hard rubber with a matte finish and these are solid frames. The glasses feel sturdy and durable and are much lighter than I thought they would be. Since they are rubber they do flex somewhat so hopefully they can handle being tossed around by a clumsy editor of a glasses website.
What's crazy to me is these frames cost $12.33 dollars with prescription lenses and it's $8.81 for shipping to the US. That means you can score a great pair of glasses for about $21 shipped. While these Savannah clear frames are from the SelectSpecs economy line, with prices ranging from $12-$30, they do carry higher end frames as well.
You get Free 1.56 Index Lens option when buying glasses at SelectSpecs which includes Anti-Reflection and Scratch Resistance coatings. (Most online glasses companies include Anti-Reflection and Scratch Resistance coatings for free.) If you want slightly better lenses you can opt to spend $18.50 to upgrade to 1.56 High Index lenses which are supposed to provide more durability and are 15% thinner. For this review I went with the free option.
The lens cut for my prescription seems to be spot on. I haven't had any issues with my eyes trying to adjust to the lenses. I'm quite impressed SelectSpecs can include the price of lenses with frames in the economy line. In terms of long term durability of the lenses I will have to see. The lenses already seem to attract a lot of dust and scratches I've noticed. Will they last a long time? Only time will tell but if they hold together for 1-2 years that's fine with me. In that time frame you would probably need new glasses anyway or just want order some other styles since you saved so much money. 🙂
SelectSpecs has decent customer service. I sent in question about frame sizing since I wasn't sure which frame would be best for my face. They company doesn't provide a virtual try-on tool so I gave them some measurements and they recommend a smaller frame size than what I was originally going to buy.
Response time to support tickets is typically around 1 day. All customer support staff are located in the United Kingdom. If you are in the United States and Canada expect to wait about 1 day for customer support inquiries due to the timezone difference. From the East Coast the UK is 6 hours ahead.
Shipping and Production
The order that I placed for my glasses was on December 31st, 2015.
The pair I got were shipped from Hong Kong, although originally I was told they would come from India. The glasses were shipped on January 12th and they were delivered on January 19th, 2016. From shipment to delivery that was 7 days. That is actually faster than the proposed times that SelectSpecs has on it's shipping page and what I was told. They say for US states “7-10 working days.” By working days I assume they mean “business days” which in this case was 5 days since you don't count Saturday and Sunday. They came faster than the estimated shipping time which I thought was pretty good.
So from order placement (December 31st, 2015) to delivery, it took 20 days. If you are looking for quick turn around for new eyeglasses that you need immediately, SelectSpecs is not the best option if you live in the United States or Canada. If you are looking for a great deal on stylish frames SelectSpecs is one of your most ideal options.
SelectSpecs Review – Final Thoughts
The real question in this SelectSpecs Review is, would I order from them again? The answer is yes I definitely would.
However, it would be really good to see SelectSpecs launch a virtual try-on tool. At this point the majority of SelectSpec's competition offers this and it would be helpful for customers to get an idea of what frames look like before placing an order. I assume it would probably cut down on customer support inquiries, like I had, too. Not sure why this hasn't been implemented yet. Also I'd like to them include full width of glasses frames on the product pages since this is useful glasses frame information.
While time from order date to delivery might be long for some people I thought it was ok. Competitors like ZenniOptical ship prescription glasses and sunglasses from labs in China too and I've heard that it can take up to one month or more to get frames from them. So SelectSpecs shipping isn't that bad, at least from what I experienced and what I have read online.
The glasses company has a pretty good content marketing and SEO (search engine optimization) content strategy since they run a blog with actually useful information. Unlike say Warby Parker's blog which is hipster drivel. A good example of a useful article would be this SelectSpecs post on glasses hacks. They also have a separate Fashion/Lifestyle magazine. A lot of their competition do not put as much time and effort into producing useful articles for glasses consumers and it's nice to see that SelectSpecs does.
Do you have any questions about ordering from SelectSpecs? Feel free to leave them below. If you have bought glasses through SelectSpecs have you had bad or good experiences? Did the frames and lenses meet your expectations?
Editor's Note – The glasses from SelectSpecs were provided to the author complimentary in exchange for writing this SelectSpecs Review. Opinions on this website are an accurate reflection of the author and we have clear editorial guidelines.