Arnette Glasses Review: How I Changed My Look With These Affordable Designer Italian Eyeglasses

Three years ago, on a cold morning in February, I woke up on a Saturday in my drafty apartment in New York City’s East Village. I grabbed for my eyeglasses on the nightstand, just as I do each morning. This time, however, the glasses slipped through my hand and took a thud on the floor. Despite surviving dozens, if not hundreds, of similar falls, this particular fall was right on the joint of the hinge, causing it to loosen and break off.

It was a long-time coming. Those eyeglasses lasted about three years, increasingly loose and falling off my face in awkward situations (IE: bending over in the office to grab something). I noticed that the prescription itself was weakening over the last few months, so I threw on clothes and headed to a neighborhood optometry center for a walk-in appointment.

Pictured: Arnette glasses via

Except this time, after the vision test, I made a terrible decision. Instead of just getting my updated eyeglass prescription and heading to a discount store, I lingered around, trying on new frames to see what I like. I received a promotion a few months prior and envisioned a new look for myself. This is a dangerously lavish proposition in a New York City eyewear center filled with luxury designer names.

When I picked out a pair I loved – translucent cobalt blue, with thick frames – I was hit with sticker shock: Close to $450. Ridiculous, I thought to myself. But I couldn’t part ways with how they looked, even for the price. Like a damn fool, I ended up paying over $700 for the new specs, even with insurance.

Just the cost of curating a look, I said to myself to justify the cost in my head.

Wrong. I was just a an idiot.

I loved the way they looked – stylish and contemporary, earning me compliments at meetings and out with friends – but I felt like a sucker. It was a proverbial mid-life crises: Like the man who walks a car dealership lot with a fistful of cash to buy a practical family sedan and drives off in a sports car.

Pictured: Arnette glasses via

I put off shopping for glasses much like I put off trips to the dentist and getting my oil changed. As someone who wears eyeglasses 24/7 to see clearly every day, I have a certain look I like to maintain with my glasses – I know it’s very bad, in the long run, to have a pair of spectacles falling off my face. But, I also despise the chore of shopping for glasses. The retail experience at most chain prescription eyewear stores is horrible: With a fresh prescription in hand, a sales person from behind a counter strokes your ego with compliments on what looks sharp (…usually the more expensive designer brands) while you look in the mirror. All the while, you’re unsure of of the true hit to the wallet.

From now until January 29, 2019: 10% off all Arnette brand optical glasses and sunglasses + free shipping via

Discount code: Arnette

Notable Arnette glasses styles via





Eventually, those expensive glasses lost their luster (…the hinges actually rusted out from too many hikes in the rain) and it was time to curate a new aesthetic for my face again. But this time, I wised up.

After checking out a couple stores to settle on a look, I discovered a brand on called Arnette. Designed by “a gang of individuals who keep our eyes open to life”, Arnette glasses are fashion forward and functional, yet featherlight and constructed of high-quality materials. Their mantra is “Born in 1992”, with a sleek design ethos that leans into the loose, professional Dot Com vibe of the ’90s – You know, back when the Internet was just at the cusp of a 52k dial-up explosion.

Pictured: Arnette glasses via

The price point for Arnette glasses frames, all under $130, was right in my sweet spot. As a big fan of all things tortoise shell when it comes to eyewear, I was gravitated towards the Arnette Hang Fives. These handsome spectacle come in a style called “Havana Black” and the frames only cost $89. With single vision lenses, the total only comes out to $124 – an absolute deal compared to my previous glasses shopping blunder.

In addition to an easy shopping experience on, my Arnette glasses have a youthful energy I haven’t been able to find in styles from other legacy eyewear brands (..even the expensive designer brands). Maybe it’s the glasses, maybe it’s my general aura, but they definitely get complimented all the time in public. They’re also noticeably lighter than my old glasses – A welcome change my face thanks me for when I take my Arnette glasses off at night.

When it comes to glasses, just trust me: You can upgrade your look in a big way without an obnoxious hit to the wallet.

I just wish I discovered that a while ago.

From now until January 29, 2019: 10% off all Arnette brand optical glasses and sunglasses + free shipping via

Discount code: Arnette


The BroBible team writes about gear that we think you want. Occasionally, we write about items that are a part of one of our affiliate partnerships and we will get a percentage of the revenue from sales.


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