Firmoo is an online optical store that ship worldwide. They have a reasonable number of frames to chose from and they are relatively inexpensive as glasses go. They have a first pair free program so if you're completely new to online glasses shopping, as I was, you can order a pair and only pay the shipping costs. The free glasses come with 1.50 index single vision lenses as standard.
The process of browsing and measuring up for buying glasses online made me realise there was an element of truth about what I'd been told at Specsavers. Glasses that are too wide across my face do not sit or look right and as each of glasses thumbnails also gave the recommended pupillary distance range, it was far easier to narrow my options. I found the virtual trying on tool useful too. Although it's not a perfect guide, as you will see for the #CP6061 frames, it definitely gave me a clearer idea of which shape to go for.
From the options I was given, I chose the frames #CP6061 ($46/£31.74) and #CP6096 ($39/£26.91). I've always wanted to have a pair of glasses with quite chunky frames but I've never found a shape that I was happy with. This seemed like the ideal opportunity to experiment with something a bit different.
The process of browsing and selecting the glasses was easy, as was inputting my prescription details. As with buying at an opticians, you are given a range of lens options including varying lens thickness and coatings, tints etc. at extra cost. What I did find tricky was measuring pupillary distance or PD. It isn't given as standard on your prescription in the UK and I wouldn't be surprised to find that opticians are reluctant to give you that information. I found a youtube video which I made my husband watch and asked him to measure for me. I did get an unfortunate case of the giggles whilst he was measuring which I'm certain professionals don't ever have to put up with!
The glasses arrived very quickly. Each pair comes in a fairly basic but sturdy case complete with cloth, and there was also a little pouch included with tools for adjustments. I immediately tried both pairs on when they arrived. I really like the shape of #CP6096 and would love a pair like this in lighter coloured frame, possibly tortoiseshell, as I think the black is a little too much on me. The depth of the #CP6061 is greater than I was anticipating from the virtual tool and I have likened myself to Mike Read in this pair! The shape also accentuates the natural wonkiness in my features. This is something I've come across with other frames in the past.
#CP6061 - AKA The 'Mike Read' Specs
Moving away from the frames, I have had some issues with the lenses. For reference, I am shortsighted and I do have to wear glasses all the time. When I put these glasses on, the lenses are absolutely fine for things that are near distance (so I'm generally fine around the house) but the perspective in the far distance is off and also when I look at the ground. I have a suspicion that this problem is a minor error in my PD which I've already mentioned was not measured by an optician. The PD measurements are in mm, and go up in increments of 0.5mm, so you can see how someone that is not professionally trained could easily make such an error.
For me, this has been a really interesting experience. I think if you're a confident about your prescription and PD, this could be a inexpensive way of experimenting with frame shapes or buying a second fun pair. It has given me useful ideas about frame shapes and potential colours but I'm not sure I would go the online route again because of my error with the lenses. I think the first pair free program is certainly an inexpensive way of seeing if online glasses shopping would work for you too.
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. I received the glasses free of charge in exchange for an honest review of glasses and online shopping process. I have not included affiliate links.