Eye Health Central

How long will my glasses last?

The Average Lifespan of a Pair of Glasses

how long glasses will last

In the world of eyewear there is one common question amongst our customers that keeps popping up… How long will my glasses last? Unfortunately, the answer to this question isn’t as straightforward as you might think but we will answer it as best as we can. There are many factors that influence the lifespan of your pair of glasses: the durability of your frames and lenses, changes in your eye prescription, the type of lens coatings you have, and how well you care for your glasses. Let’s explore all of these factors and discuss when it's time to think about buying a new pair.

Determining Factors of Your Glasses Lifespan

The Durability of Your Frames and Lenses: 

The quality of materials used in your frames and lenses will significantly impact their longevity. If you have frames that are made from robust materials like titanium, stainless steel, or high-quality plastic they tend to last longer than those made from cheaper materials. If your lenses are made from polycarbonate or Trivex they are much more resistant to scratches and cracks compared to some of the more traditional plastic or glass lenses.

Your Eye Prescription: 

Over time, your eye prescription may change, which means you will need a new pair of lenses even if your current pair is in good condition. Adults might need a new prescription every one to two years, while children and teenagers (whose eyes are still changing) will most likely need new glasses more frequently. Even if your prescription has changed, there is no need to throw out your frame if it is still in good condition, you could have your new prescription lenses fitted into your old frame.

Lens Coatings: 

There are various coatings that can extend the life of your glasses. Anti-scratch coatings can protect against minor scratches, while anti-reflective coatings can help with your visual comfort and lens transparency. UV-blocking coatings are crucial for protecting your eyes from harmful UV rays. Over time coatings on your lenses can degrade, which means that they will potentially reduce how well your vision is corrected by your glasses and the quality of your vision. When this happens, it’s time to shop for new glasses.

How Well You Take Care of Your Glasses: 

You need to both take care and maintain your glasses on a regular basis and if you do, it can substantially extend the lifespan of your glasses. Regular and proper cleaning, storing your glasses in a hard case when you’re not using them, and handling your glasses with care will prevent damage and ensure your glasses last you as long as possible.

How Long Should Glasses Last?

On average, a good-quality pair of glasses should last you between one to three years. However, as we mentioned above, this depends on various factors.

How Do You Know When You Need New Glasses?

There are several signs you should be on the lookout for, that indicate you might need new glasses. If you start experiencing frequent headaches, blurred vision, eye fatigue, or if you have to squint or strain to see clearly, and any of these symptoms last for more than two weeks, it's time for an eye exam and potentially a new pair of glasses. Also, if you notice any damage to your frames or lenses, like cracks, bent frames or peeling lens coatings, then again it is time to start shopping for new glasses.

Is It OK to Use Old Prescription Glasses?

While using old prescription glasses is not harmful in general, it could be if your prescription has significantly changed. Wearing glasses with an outdated prescription can lead to eye strain, discomfort, headaches and even a slight worsening of your vision over time due to the strain on your eyes. You should always get your eyes checked on a regular basis, making sure your prescription is up to date.

Where Can I Buy Glasses?

You can buy glasses from various different providers. Optometrist offices typically have a range of frames to choose from, and they can order your prescription lenses. Optical chains will offer you a broader selection of frames and some even have in-house labs to produce lenses quite quickly, even same day. You can also buy glasses online which in our opinion is the best way to buy them, and of course, you can do so on our very own website. Buying online through us ensures that the savings of not having a physical shop are passed on to you and the convenience of the process (where all you need to do is enter your prescription details, choose the style of glasses that you prefer and we will ship them out to you most likely the very next day, sometimes on the same day) is unrivaled. We are also constantly adding new glasses so that if you don't see something that appeals today then check back soon.


You need to understand the factors that impact the lifespan of your glasses. By doing so it will help you make informed decisions about when and where to buy your next pair. Regardless of how well-made or well-cared-for your glasses are, regular eye exams are absolutely crucial to ensure you're using the right prescription and maintaining optimal eye health. A pair of glasses might last several years, but your vision is for life. Protect it wisely. 

Author: John Dreyer Optometrist Bsc(Hons), MCOPTOM, DipCLP
Created: 7 Jul 2023, Last modified: 20 May 2024