Ways to Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle Glasses

Happy Earth Day! This Earth Day we wanted to bring attention to the impact that eyewear can have on the environment when thrown away. According to MONC Eyewear, it is estimated that eyeglasses produce 100,000 tons of plastic waste every year around the world. With that in mind, we thought it would be a good idea to show you how you can reduce the waste of your eyeglasses through reusing and recycling. 

Search Online For a Recycling Center

One way you can recycle your eyeglasses is finding a recycling center close to you. One resource that can be helpful is Earth911.com. This website allows you to search what you want to recycle alongside your zip code to see all of the places you can recycle that item near you. This is a great resource to make sure you’re not only able to recycle your eyeglasses, but also that it’s convenient for you. 

plastic bottles on a table
Finding a recycling location can help reduce the waste your glasses produce.

Lions Club International

Another great way you can reuse those glasses that are no longer serving you, is to donate them to Lions Club International. Through their program Lions Recycle for Sight, they collect unwanted and used eyewear and donate them to developing nations in need of corrective glasses. According to Lions Club International’s website, millions of low and middle income families lack the access to basic eye care and eyewear. With their program, they are able to repurpose usable lenses and frames to donate to these families in need. In 2009, they donated over 700,000 pairs of eyeglasses to those who needed them. 

New Eyes for the Needy

Similar to Lions Club International, New Eyes for the Needy is a non-profit organization that collects old or unwanted eyewear and donates it to those in need. According to their website, their mission is to “provide the transformative tool of eyeglasses to children and adults facing financial difficulties”. New Eyes for the Needy collects old and unwanted eyewear as well as accepts donations to provide brand new eyewear to these individuals. 

Third World Eye Care Society Canada

This is another option for glasses donation that benefits those in developing countries who do not have access to eye care or eyewear options. This society’s mission is to not only provide eyewear to those in need but also provide them with the proper eye exams and care that would be expected in the US. We often don’t think about how those in need can’t afford things as simple as eyeglasses but this program ensures that these people will obtain eyeglasses and primary eye care. 

man in white shirt with glasses on
Donating your eyeglasses is a great way to keep those frames out of a landfill.

Make Art

Now, this one seems a little silly, but there are actually a few ways you can turn your old eyeglasses into a masterpiece. There’s tutorials on how to turn your eyeglass lenses and frames into anything from brooches to business card holders. If you're hanging on to those eyeglasses for some sentimental reason, then why not repurpose them into something cute and practical where you can still keep them around and look at them every day. 

Replace your lenses

Unfortunately, not every lens can be saved from the landfill, as some are just beyond repair or reuse. However, one way you can keep the entirety of your glasses out of the landfill is to simply replace your lenses. Rather than throwing away your whole pair of sunglasses in the trash, it would be more environmentally friendly to replace the lenses in them. At Fuse Lenses, we provide high quality replacement lenses so you can revive your favorite pair of shades, while still keeping it Earth-conscious. We have a wide variety of brands and styles, including prescription, so you can always make sure your glasses look fresh and you’re keeping them out of the trash. 

woman changing lenses
Changing your lenses can help reduce the amount of waste that ends up in a landfill.

Overall, it is important on Earth Day that we reflect on what we can do to improve the impact we have on the Earth every day. You probably didn’t think that throwing away old eyeglasses could make such a huge difference on the Earth. But, whether you're recycling, donating or even making some creative art, it is important that we follow the three R’s when it comes to our old eyeglasses and just about anything else we use. Remember to always keep “reduce, reuse, recycle” in mind when you’re about to throw those glasses in the garbage.

This Earth Day, Fuse Lenses is matching donations for every donation made from April 22nd to April 25th. To find out all the organizations we're donating to, go to: https://www.fuselenses.com/pages/donations

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