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My apologies for the dangling pseudo-preposition, but sometimes we do what we must for the sake of a headline.

One of the most common questions I get is something akin to, "But how do you know that the glasses will look good on your face?" My short answer is, "you don't," but that is slowly changing.

I've written a bit on my process for finding frames that would look good on my face in past posts, but generally, the numbers stamped on the inside of the temples (or on the bridge) of your current eyeglasses are numbers that can certainly help you make a decision that won't make you look like a complete doofus. You chose your current frames for a reason, and sometimes it's better to stick with something that works than to take a chance.

This isn't as big of an issue when one considers the cost of the eyeglasses at the online retailers. I like to take a risk every now and then and have done so with my eyeglasses orders. I'll order one pair that I know will look good and something else -- cheap -- that is a bit iffy but appealing for one reason or another.

There is another option, that I tried for the first time a few weeks ago. Try on your frames -- virtually. These all work in roughly the same way:

  1. upload a photo
  2. tell the system where the centers of your eyes are
  3. pick a frame
  4. see what it looks like superimposed over your photo
It's not fool-proof and the concept is much easier than the execution.

This isn't brand new technology, but it's getting better as can be seen at

SpecsOnTheNet is an English eyeglasses firm with an excellent website (I'd give it 4 out of 5 stars if I was in to that sort of thing) -- including their "Virtual Modelling System" (VMS), which is really, quite nice. You can find it by clicking HERE.

This is the best of the batch, and if you try only one, this should be that one.

Their prices are quite good, if not a bit confusing (only certain areas of the site update the prices to USD when you click on Old Glory in the top right corner) -- something I hope they'll upgrade soon as we've got a pretty big market over on this side of the pond.

There is a link near the top of their home page to a quick 35 second video demo -- Take a look.

 also has a fitting feature. Theirs is service-marked "FrameFinder Virtual Try-On" and it's decent, if not entirely confidence-building.

Resizing the frames on my face leads me to think I might not actually get what I think I am getting as I'm quite certain there aren't an infinite number of frame sizes for each style (see the third FramesDirect image for a particularly head-shaking example).

They are on version 8 of the software, if you look at the footer on the page, but it certainly doesn't have the feel of v8. I'd take these looks with more than a grain of salt. It certainly doesn't feel like looking in a mirror.

The "Jerry Falwell"

The "WTF" has its clumsily-named "E Try It On" feature which works pretty well to get you moving in the right direction towards frames that fit your face and personality. This website is packed with great info, and their try-on system is pretty good too. Their prices aren't necessarily for the real "deal-minded", but if you are looking for a replacement frame, you will save here over a B&M shop.

Overall, I'd rate them in the following order:
  1. SpecsOnTheNet (and bonus points for the excellent value they offer)

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