What’s the Difference Between Glass Vs Plastic Lenses?

Having a hard time picking a lens material?

Glass Vs Plastic Lenses

Glass vs Plastic LensesLens material can be a difficult choice when purchasing glasses online, especially if you’ve never done it before. Glass vs plastic lenses, high index vs standard, polycarbonate? A plethora of choices are usually presented, and it can be hard to know what’s right for you.

The two major differences between glass and plastic are weight and scratch resistance. Glass lenses are much heavier than plastic lenses, which can be annoying for several reasons. The added weight on your nose can cause uncomfortable and unattractive pressure points as you wear the glasses all day, and it can also cause the glasses to slide down your face.

The other major difference is scratch resistance. Plastic lenses, while lighter, don’t have the scratch resistance of glass. Scratching glass lenses is a fairly difficult and unlikely thing to do unless you drop them, whereas plastic lenses are fairly easy to scratch, requiring a bit more care in handling.

If you’re trying to decide between plastic vs glass lens materials and don’t know all the differences, here’s what you need to know:

  • Plastic is much lighter than glass, making it more comfortable to wear all day and limiting the glasses’ tendency to slide down your nose.
  • Glass is much more scratch resistant than plastic, making the glasses last longer.
  • Glass lenses are also more brittle than plastic lenses. It is extremely unlikely that you will ever break or crack plastic lenses, but glass lenses are likely to crack, splinter, or shatter if dropped on a hard surface such as concrete or metal.
  • Plastic lensesare less reflective than glass lenses, making them clearer and less prone to glare.
  • Glass lenses generally have a higher index than plastic lenses, making them slightly thinner and more attractive looking.
  • Plastic lenses come in more colors and larger sizes than glass lenses, making them much more versatile. Whereas the frames you can get in glass are limited, you can get virtually any type of frame in prescription with plastic lenses.

Since the creation of the plastic lens, glass lenses are much rarer than plastic when it comes to prescription glasses. The huge reduction in weight and versatility in prescription frames has caused plastic to win out in popularity in the glass vs plastic lens material race.

If you are interested in getting prescription glasses online, hopefully this narrows your choices and gives you a good idea of the differences between glass vs plastic lenses. If you have other questions not answered here, or if you’d like to make a comment on this post, you can leave them in the comments section below. You are also more than welcome to call us if you’re shopping for prescription glasses online and have some unanswered questions. Thanks for reading, and happy shopping!

10 Responses to What’s the Difference Between Glass Vs Plastic Lenses?
  1. tim
    February 16, 2015 | 8:15 pm

    Hi I,m keen on transitions glass lenses with a chemical hardening is possible? Thank

  2. Jessica
    February 25, 2015 | 7:13 pm

    Hello, I am really not sure what you are asking…can you please specify? Thanks

  3. Destiny
    June 25, 2015 | 1:35 am

    What I want to know is if I can get my sunglass lenses changed to my prescription glasses cuz I find it difficult to find a pair of prescription glasses that I actually like and I’m tired of wearing contacts??

  4. sherry
    April 25, 2016 | 6:30 pm

    Great..it is very helpful for me..thankyou again..i love it..

  5. Nash Rich
    May 23, 2016 | 8:18 pm

    It seems like there are a lot of pros and cons to both glass and plastic lenses. I really like the perk of plastic glasses being less reflective. Had some glasses that had some glare, and I didn’t realize how much that bothered my eyes, till I got a pair that didn’t reflect. I guess everyone has their preferences.

  6. Simon
    July 21, 2016 | 2:05 am

    Strange that you didn’t mention optical quality which I would’ve thought should be the number one factor when choosing. There is a vast difference when you compare glass lens with plastic lens. You should try them both so you know.

  7. Mariam
    October 12, 2016 | 3:16 pm

    Was wondering how I could get glass lenses for my eyeglass.

    • Ryan Phillips
      October 21, 2016 | 12:28 pm

      Hi Mariam,

      You can order glass lenses from our website myeyewear2go.com We offer both frames and lenses or you can send your frame into us to have prescription lenses made.

  8. Asish palui
    June 4, 2017 | 1:25 pm

    Sir plastic Vs glass
    Who is better for eye?

    • Ryan Phillips
      June 6, 2017 | 1:07 pm

      Hello Asish,

      Glass does provide the best clarity, however, they will also be the heaviest and can cause an issue should the lenses break while on your face.

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