We are lucky to live in a time where brands are becoming more socially responsible than ever. It wasn’t always this way, and the future looks bright for consciousness! I try and make it a priority to invest in companies that facilitate “give back” programs and work towards making global impact. It’s not just about having the coolest top or trendiest shoes. It’s about understanding the culture behind companies who make them. Recently I was in the market for new eyeglasses and decided to pop into Warby Parker. There had to be something magical behind these super stylish, hip and affordable frames which has created such the buzz around this fairly new, emerging brand. And what I discovered was that it’s true – there is something epic going on.
Did you know that for every pair of Warby Parker frames you purchase, someone in need receives a pair for free? That’s right! Warby Parker partners with non-profit organization, VisionSpring on a “Buy a Pair, Give a Pair” mission because they believe every person has the right to see! How’s that for vision? Over 500,000 pairs have been distributed worldwide. Did you also know that every pair of Warby Parker frames are $95, including the prescription (sunnies are $150)? Most high-end eyewear is distributed by a third party company with licensing rights. These companies mark up prices 2-3x despite the actual costs associated with production. In the end you are paying for a designer label, that’s it! Warby Parker is able to cut out the middle man since they are independently owned, producing original frames and offering them to consumers for a fraction of the price. Their eyewear is made on the same machines as ones that cost $500! How’s that for customer consciousness? And wait, there is more! Did you know that, “Warby Parker is one of the only carbon-neutral eye-wear brands in the world”? This means that they “actively work to reduce the environmental impact by mapping out our greenhouse gas emissions – from frame production to shipping to warehousing to office work – and purchasing carbon offsets accordingly.”
The cherry on top of all of this behind the scenes amazing-ness is that Warby Parker’s frames are super stylish too! Not only will you be investing in a company that gives back, treats their customers right and is diligent about the impact of their global footprint. You will walk away with glasses that have tons of SOUL and a helluva lot of STYLE! I feel good about spending my money knowing that a percentage of it will be used towards making positive changes in the world! I scooped up not one, but two pairs – the Owen (shown in these photos) and Baxter. But, endless choices left me trying on close to every pair (in every color!) for over an hour. Thanks to the impeccable service, I finally landed on my picks and made it to the register.
Check out Warby’s new Summer 2014 eyeglasses and sunglasses line, which have me begging to go back. I’ve got my eyes (pun intended) on the Cliff. If today’s not your day, Warby Parker is always developing new seasonal assortments which are fresh and current. Per usual, keeping things innovative with the VISION to look ahead.
photos via candy kennedy