Evidence Based

Fake Glasses (Non-Prescription Glasses)

What Are Fake Glasses (Non-Prescription Glasses)?

Semi-Rimless Frames - Vision Center 1

Fake glasses are non-prescription glasses. They work as a fashion statement to give a fresh, funky, or hip appearance.

Throughout the years, many famous stars have worn fake glasses to improve their look. In movies, fake glasses are often worn by actors and actresses to achieve a certain style.

The fake glasses trend traces its origins to Taiwan and Japan. It has been popular since at least 2010. 


Non-Prescription vs. Prescription Glasses

If you’re over 40, reading glasses can be a necessity. Reading glasses can also serve as a fashion statement. 

The Advantages of Non-Prescription Glasses

Many people select non-prescription glasses for the following reasons:

  • They are inexpensive
  • They are widely available in a selection of styles and shapes
  • They can be easily replaced as fashion changes 

Off-the-rack non-prescription glasses are popular for people who need reading glasses. These non-prescription reading glasses consist of two magnifying lenses mounted into an eyeglasses frame.


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Like prescription glasses, these frames offer varying degrees of magnification or refraction. This usually ranges from +1.00 to +3.50 diopters. These non-prescription fake glasses may work for some people who require the same refraction in both eyes or can see in just one eye.

However, most people are better off investing in a professional eye exam instead, especially if they require reading glasses.

Non-prescription glasses have their advantages. But by wearing them, they can cause people to delay or even avoid undergoing regular eye exams.

The Disadvantages of Non-Prescription Glasses

Even if you’re a good candidate for non-prescription glasses, professional advice is recommended. While some states ban the sale of eye lenses with refraction over +3.50 diopters, it’s possible to purchase them online. But it isn’t recommended to buy higher values without medical advice. 

If you require a different correction for each eye or have astigmatism, prescription lenses are more suitable. The latter refers to irregularities in the lens or cornea of your eye.

Over-the-counter eyeglasses offer the same prescription in both lenses, even though most people have one eye stronger than the other. 

Eyeglasses bought through an eye doctor, on the other hand, are customized to suit the prescription your eyes need. Fake glasses with magnifying lenses also cannot correct nearsightedness or astigmatism. In such cases, bifocal or progressive eyeglasses are a more suitable choice.

Why Is Fake Eyewear Trending?

The fake eyeglasses trend reached the United States and shortly after it hit the sports scene in 2012. This was when sports stars like Lebron James and Russell Westbrook began wearing thick-rimmed non-prescription eyeglasses. The fake eyeglasses worn by these stars add to a ‘nerdy-chic’ look supported by backpacks, cardigans, and plaid socks.

Since 2012, teens, “tweens,” college students, and adults have kept up with the trend.

Are Fake Eyeglasses Harmful?

Fake eyeglasses with non-magnifying glass, plastic, or nothing at all won’t harm your vision.

However, non-prescription glasses with magnifying lenses may have quality issues. Polycarbonate and other materials used to produce prescription lenses are usually defect-free or close to it. 

Over-the-counter fake glasses with magnifying lenses may have small bubbles or imperfections in the lenses. While you may not notice these markings, they can affect your eyesight. 

Imperfections can make it more difficult to see. 

Popular Types of Fake Glasses Frames

Plastic Frames - Vision Center

Fake eyeglasses are popular, and there are various types of fake glasses frames available. There are plenty of different styles, shapes, and looks available from gold aviators to cat-eye frames to tortoiseshell hipster eyeglasses.

These fake eyeglasses are available in various sizes to suit different face shapes.

Here are some of the most popular types of fake glasses frames, all available without a prescription.

  • Cat eye glasses
  • Retro style glasses
  • Geek or nerd glasses
  • Rimless glasses
  • Unisex glasses
  • Vintage round glasses
  • Rhinestone-studded glasses
  • Horn rimmed glasses
  • Rose gold glasses

Costs of Fake Glasses & Where To Buy Them

If you want to experiment with fake eyeglasses, there are plenty of places to buy them. Depending on the retailer, prices differ vastly. Some options are as cheap as $5 or less, and some can cost up to $500 or more.

For affordable fake glasses, discount stores like Walmart and Dollar Tree often have best sellers available. Amazon is another good option for a range of styles. Higher-end retailers like FramesDirect.com allow consumers to choose their frames and try them on using a webcam.

Bargain outlet stores like EyeBuyDirect, among others, often sell a broad range of options with special offers.

For high-quality options, designer brands like Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs have a range of fake eyeglasses. For handcrafted styles, browsing Etsy is a good idea.

When ordering fake eyeglasses online, many retailers offer the option to select ‘non-prescription lenses’ during the checkout part of the shopping process.


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