THE MYTH BEHIND DESIGNER EYEWEAR
We occasionally have a patient ask if we carry Burberry or Prada frames. We don't and let us explain why!
A patient said to me the other day, "You don't carry any Luxottica frames, right?"
I have been practicing since 2010 and can count on one hand how many times someone has asked me this. She is a rare, very well-informed patient.
What is Luxottica?
Luxottica has gotten some negative press over the past several years for giving the illusion of choice in eyeglass frames when really they manufacture 27 different frame lines. They make Chanel, Prada, Giorgio Armani, Burberry, Versace, Dolce & Gabbana, Miu Miu, Donna Karan, Oakley, Stella McCartney, and Tory Burch to name a few.
But they also own the largest optical retail chain, LensCrafters, along with Pearle Vision, Target Optical, and Sunglass Hut.
And, they own the second largest vision plan, EyeMed.
In 2018, they merged with Essilor, the largest ophthalmic lens manufacturer which makes Varilux, Transitions, Crizal, Eyezen, Kodak, Nikon etc.
What does this all mean?
It means Luxottica is a Goliath that dictates pricing and reimbursements to optometrists, drives patients into the stores they own to buy frames and lenses they make and use insurance they control.
It's a huge footprint in the eyecare world.
It's hard to not use some Luxottica products, for example we do accept EyeMed (we would drown if we didn't) but we made the decision to not carry Luxottica frames and instead support independent frame lines. We believe in small businesses supporting small businesses.