The Best Ways To Donate Old Eyeglasses

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If your prescription has recently changed or you just got a new pair of eyeglasses, you may be wondering what to do with your old pair. Did you know that instead of throwing glasses into a junk drawer or trash can, you can donate or repurpose them?

In this article, I’ll fill you in on convenient places to donate old eyeglasses. Plus, I’ll share a few creative ways to recycle them. 

In this article, I’ll cover: 

Donating Eyeglasses

Lions Club International

The Lions Club International collects eyeglasses all over the country, refurbishes them and then redistributes them to those in need both in the United States and abroad.

The Lions Club has collection sites at some JCPenney OpticalSam’s Club Optical Center and Walmart Optical locations. (I spoke to a Walmart representative who told me that, if there’s no donation box, you can hand your glasses to any optical associate.)


OneSight is a nonprofit organization that collects eyeglasses donations and sends them to the Lions Club. According to its website, you can donate glasses to OneSight at LensCraftersTarget Optical and Pearle Vision locations.


Each Goodwill store is independently operated, but many take eyeglasses and resell them. 


ReSpectacle is a nonprofit organization that accepts used prescription eyeglasses. It posts photos of the glasses and their prescriptions online, and people can get the glasses for just a $5 shipping fee. If you’d like to donate glasses to ReSpectacle, you can find information on how to do so here.

Recycling Eyeglasses

Do you have an expensive pair of designer frames that you’d like to hang on to a little longer? It may be easy to replace the lenses in an existing pair of frames.

Some opticians, including those at BJ’s Optical, will take your existing frames and change out the lenses with a new prescription.


Crafting Eyeglasses

Are you creative or know somebody who is? There are a variety of craft ideasmagic tricks, and interesting projects out there to give new life to your old eyeglasses.

Selling Eyeglasses

Before becoming Clark-smart about how I shopped for eyeglasses, I purchased expensive designer frames. When it came time to renew my prescription, I found that it cost more to replace the lenses than to buy new glasses from Zenni or Costco. I decided to list my old glasses on eBay, and I was able to make back about 70% of what I spent on them.

While this is not a guaranteed money maker, it may help to offset the cost of new glasses.

Have you donated, recycled, or reused old eyeglasses? Let us know in our Community!

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