It’s a question that gets asked frequently. Why are these glasses so damned expensive?

The short answer is that no one is doing anything to prevent a near-monopolistic 100 Billion Dollar Industry from abusing its market power.

Recent statistics:
-The Vision Council, an optical industry trade group, estimates that about three-quarters of U.S. adults use vision correction. Approximately two-thirds of that number wear eyeglasses. That’s about 126 million people.
-The average cost of a pair of frames is $123, according to VSP {the leading provider of employer eye care benefits}.
-The average price of a pair of single-vision lenses is $112. Progressive, no-line lenses can run twice that amount.
-One hundred twenty-six million people spend an average of $235 for a pair of frames with single vision lenses. That’s just the adult population! We haven’t included children in these figures.

There have been some low-ball retailers offering the promise of low prices on complete pairs of prescription lenses and frames. For the most part, they are failing to deliver the quality which patients expect in terms of comfort, fit, durability, and, most importantly, the precise prescription in a high-quality lens.

  • Where can a consumer turn to avoid the potential 1000% markup?
  • Find a quality, fashionable frame to go along with a high-quality lens, while still having the options of all the extras?
  • Add Blue Light Lenses, Transitions, and Anti-Reflection coatings?

The bottom line:
The markup on glasses, from a retail perspective, bears little relation to reality. From those figures above, one would think there would be more value out there from the sheer consumer volume/demand-side alone. How many times have you or a friend walked out of an optical store after paying upwards of $600 or more for a pair of prescription glasses! According to Carmen Balber, executive director of Consumer Watchdog, “Anyone who wears glasses would agree that the costs are out of control. The fact that many people can’t function without corrective lenses should make soaring eyeglass costs part of the country’s overall healthcare debate. Consumers are potentially paying 10 to 20 times what frames and lenses actually cost.”

There are options available in both brick and mortar and online. Be careful not to sacrifice your eye health while keeping costs in mind by getting an inferior product. We are talking about you and your family’s vision and overall vision health in both the short and long term. With today’s heavy reliance on our digital devices, such as mobile phones, laptops, etc., studies show what these devices may do to both our eye and overall health. A high-quality pair of lenses is more important than ever for proper protection. Refer to the Blue Light Blog Post on the Romi Eyewear site for me detailed info.


The issues of both extraordinarily high retail markups and lower-priced options lacking insufficient and critical quality reflect a lack of meaningful competition.

That is how and why Romi Eyewear came about. We offer high-quality prescription lenses paired with quality, fashionable frames. We have frames for the entire family. Priced typically from only $98 for a complete pair of single vision glasses, with our current “Welcome20” promotion, you can get a pair starting at less than $80, including free shipping! Shop our store now, and be sure to use our virtual try-on for the perfect frames.