The Toni & Guy brand is well known in the world of hairdressing, but its offshoot online optician business is probably less familiar to consumers. I certainly didn’t realise the company also sold glasses through a separate site, but was pleasantly surprised by the selection on offer and the overall service. Toni & Guy Opticians offers a vast array of designer prescription glasses and sunglasses from brands including Prada, Dior and Alexander McQueen at lower prices than can be found on the high street.
I was fairly sure of the glasses I wanted but after finding the frames I had in mind, I then had a bit of a search to make sure I had made the right choice. The search function works well and it’s easy to look by brand, but I would also have liked to search by style so I could see similar glasses. Instead though there was a great tool to help determine what type of frames are most suitable by hair colour, hairstyle, face shape, lifestyle, make-up and complexion, which is fun to use and shows celebrities with similar attributes and a selection of suitable glasses.
As Toni & Guy Opticians is online only, it recommends that consumers “visit a high street retailer in order to try the frame for size and are sure that you are happy” prior to making a purchase and making a “saving”. This is a little sneaky, but it does make sense. Toni & Guy Opticians does accept refunds though and asks customers to email and explain what the problem is. They will then be issued with a returns number and return instructions. Prescription lenses and postage costs are non-refundable and the frames must be returned within seven days. If frames have been fitted with free prescription lenses then a £10 glazing fee will also be deducted.
The customer service pages are easy to follow and thorough. The FAQ section is broken down into sections, but it is also easy to contact the company directly as the phone number is listed at the top of the web page at all times – not always a common feature. In the ‘Contact’ section a number of email addresses and the postal address are also provided.
On placing my order (on 7 November) I received immediate confirmation via email detailing the items I selected and confirming my postal address. Shortly afterwards I received a second email updating my order status, which basically said my order had been received and was now ‘in processing’ so a little redundant after the previous one a minute earlier. The next email I received was on 13 November to confirm that that my order had been shipped.
Delivery for all order UK deliveries is free and is done via Royal Mail’s first class signed-for delivery service. The company does post worldwide though with the price depending on destination, and there is free worldwide delivery for all orders over £250. The website states that orders usually take between five to ten days to arrive, but to allow up to 28 days as “some models may be out of stock”. My order arrived seven days (five working days) after I placed my order and the morning after I received the shipping confirmation email.
The bottom line
I have never had to purchase glasses before so I was a little wary about doing so online for the first time as I wasn’t able to try they them on to make sure they a) fit and b) were the right prescription. The service was great though and less complicated than some other online optician sites. I had my prescription so could easily fill out the details needed which were requested in an easy to follow format (see image gallery). Additional free extras like anti-reflection coating were optional too, plus the prescription itself was free. In all, I paid less than half the price I would have for the same frames and lenses if I had purchased them from a high street retailer so the saving was great. The actual product when it arrived was in perfect condition and fitted well as I followed all the steps provided.