What to do with your old glasses: Tips for donating or recycling

Glasses are not only a necessity for clear vision, but they also play a vital role in maintaining good eye health. It’s important to understand the importance of the right glasses, but also what to do with our old glasses once we no longer need them.

The importance of buying new glasses that fit right


Wearing the right glasses is essential to maintaining good vision and eye health. Regular eye exams and prescription updates are essential to ensure your glasses provide the correct vision correction. Investing in quality eyewear is beneficial in the long run as it contributes to the overall health of your eyes.


Do eyeglass prescriptions expire?


Yes! The prescription for the lenses in your frame usually expires one to two years from the date you receive your prescription.


Your eyes may change so subtly that you don’t notice, but enough that you need a new prescription. If you wear glasses that don’t fully correct your vision, you may experience:


  • eyestrain
  • blurry vision
  • Headache
  • Increased risk of accidents

To keep your vision clear, we recommend making an annual appointment with your eye doctor to check your eye health and address potential vision changes.


If your prescription remains the same, you can continue to use your reading sun glasses as long as they are not scratched and still fit correctly after adjustment. If your prescription changes and you buy new glasses, consider donating or upcycling your old glasses so they avoid ending up in landfill and maybe help someone else.


Options for disposing of old glasses


When it comes to old glasses, there are several ways to manage them responsibly. Improper disposal of old eyeglasses can have a negative impact on the environment, so it’s important to explore responsible disposal methods.


1.Upgrade cycle


Glasses can also be turned into accessories to expand their uses. You can remove the lenses and turn them into a necklace pendant, coat brooch or keychain. The temples can be removed and turned into statement earrings, especially tortoiseshell or ombre temples. There are many tutorials on Pinterest on how to turn glasses into jewelry.


  1. Put in new lenses


If your prescription has changed but you want to keep your favorite frames, reglazing is the perfect answer. Reglazing is a simple process of replacing the lenses of your existing frames. This is an excellent option for those with old or damaged lenses, even if you want to upgrade to a better quality lens design. This is usually cheaper because you avoid the cost of buying a new pair of glasses.


  1. Make crafts with old glasses


If your glasses are broken or you want to reuse them at home, there are many crafts you can make with old glasses. Get creative with old picture frames and let your inner artist shine.

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Old glasses can be the perfect addition to many looks, whether you choose to dress up as Harry Potter or Wilma from Scooby-Doo, glasses come in handy for many bespectacled characters.

  1. Keep for later use


Keep a backup – Even if the prescription is different, it’s a good idea to keep an extra pair of glasses on hand in case you need them, as a short-term solution until you put on your regular glasses.


  1. Donate or recycle old glasses


Donating old eyeglasses can make a big difference in the lives of those in need. There are many organizations and programs that collect used glasses and distribute them to individuals who cannot afford vision correction. Recycling old eyeglasses is another eco-friendly option that helps reduce waste and promote sustainability. Additionally, exploring sustainable eyewear options can further contribute to environmental efforts.


What happens when you donate your old glasses?

Once donated glasses are received at the donation center, staff or volunteers sort them into usable and unusable categories and determine the prescriptions for the available glasses. Available shoes are given a good cleaning and new packaging so they can be distributed to new owners.


Glasses that are too damaged to be reused still serve a useful purpose: they can be recycled. Workers separate hardware, plastics and lenses and recycle them separately. Any funds raised from recycling will be used to support the charity’s work.




All in all, for the sake of your vision and glasses for blue light, it’s important to prioritize purchasing new eyeglasses that fit well. Responsible disposal of old glasses, such as donation or recycling, provides an opportunity to make a positive impact. By taking action and making informed choices, individuals can contribute to a sustainable and responsible approach to eyewear management.


Eyeglass wearers and environmentally conscious people can make a difference by understanding the importance of proper eyewear and being mindful of responsible options for disposing of your old glasses. With these factors in mind, together we can contribute to a positive impact on eye health and the environment.


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