Inspiring ideas of what to do with your old glasses

18 Mar 2024

Discover our unique and effective solutions for what to do with your old pair of prescription glasses. Get some great advice and feel inspired, whether you want to make money from an old pair, recycle glasses, or donate your used eyewear to charity.

Did you know that over half of the British population have either had corrective eye surgery or wear glasses? Glasses wearers are also required to have regular eye tests at least every two years which means they have to buy new eyewear very often. Lots of people will also require prescription sunglasses along with their everyday pair. Their old eyewear then becomes redundant and due to the fact that glasses are commonly made of plastics like acetate or materials like metal, they cannot be thrown away in your recycling bin. Besides which, you don’t want them to end up in landfill. Many people end up storing their used eyewear at the back of cupboards or drawers at home, only for them to be forgotten about. We’re sure you can relate to this common issue!

The question is, what use can you get from your old glasses? Well, we’re here to help and have come up with some great solutions to inspire you.

1. Donate used eyewear to a charity shop

You can drop off your used eyewear at many charity shops. Make sure you get in contact and give your local store a brief phone call beforehand to find out whether they accept donations. As an alternative, if your local shop doesn’t take in donations, you can always find other charities which allow postal deliveries instead.

2. Sell your old pair to someone else

If your prescription is out of date, you can simply sell your eyewear online and use that money towards paying for a new pair of prescription glasses. Designer glasses are especially popular and people are always looking for ways to get their hands on them for an affordable price. Your outdated prescription can be listed on the website, but most people who purchase second-hand eyewear online will expect that they have to pay for their own lenses to be fitted.

3. Give a friend or loved one your old pair

Help a friend or relative by giving them your used pair of glasses. If they are unable to afford a new pair currently, this could be an excellent solution to help them while they put money away in the meantime.

They will still have to pay for new lenses to be fitted if they don’t have the same prescription as you, but it will save them some money on the frame itself.

4. Recycle old glasses at a local optician

Many opticians on the high street will provide a recycling box where you can donate your used eyewear. These opticians will recycle your old eyewear and give support to relevant charities and good causes. Visit your local optician to find out what your options are.

At Glasses Direct, we care very deeply about protecting the future of our planet. Recycling is not only an ideal way for you to dispose of your used eyewear responsibly, but it also takes them off your hands when you don’t need them anymore.

5. Other ways you can recycle second-hand glasses

Peep Eyewear accept glasses donations which they then upcycle or recycle. If they are not able to reuse the glasses, they donate them to Lions Club. You can also choose to make a donation directly to Lions Club. They will repurpose the frames or use them to raise money for charity projects across the UK and also abroad.

Recycline is another ideal option. This company has stopped more than 500 tonnes of used glasses from being sent to landfill. If you want to donate to Recycline yourself, visit their website to find the closest drop-off point.

6. Fix your old pair of glasses

If your glasses are damaged but you still like them enough to keep them, there is always the option to get them mended. Lots of places offer small repairs like replacing the screws or reattaching the temples. Simply research online to find them. If you’re feeling confident enough, you could even choose to fix them yourself. Order a glasses repair kit online and easily patch up your favourite pair of glasses. For tips on aftercare, visit our handy guide.

Hopefully our advice was helpful and inspiring. We are sure now that you have plenty of ideas of what to do with used glasses that are either just recently outdated or that have been lying around the house for some time. It’s up to you to decide whether to recycle or donate your used glasses, or even make money from an old pair! Either way, you can rest assured that you’ll be making a sustainable choice, or donating to a good cause which is an ideal way to dispose of your old glasses. Take a look at our ethics and sustainability policies to discover more about our initiatives.