Wearing glasses introduces another variable into the VR headset purchasing process. Some people aren’t able to see as well when they have glasses in the headset. Others find that the fit is too tight or loose with their headset on.
Some headsets have different spacing than others, and you cannot get an idea of which might be best for you just by reading about them.
Do I Need to Wear My Glasses in VR?
You need to wear glasses with a VR headset because it won’t offer the same vision correction as your glasses. In short, things won’t look clear. However, wearing your glasses won’t keep you from enjoying virtual reality. It’s just vital to get the right headset to make things comfortable for you.
Can You Use a VR Headset With Glasses?
You can wear a VR headset with glasses and have the same experience as a non-glasses wearer. However, it may make specific headsets more comfortable than others, depending on the size of your glasses.
It’s extra important to check out the fit and comfort of the VR headset before you purchase it if you plan to wear it with glasses.
That being said, many people find it more convenient to switch to lenses. If that’s an option for you, it might be more comfortable than wearing glasses.
Best VR Headset with Glasses
There is no one best VR headset for people with glasses. It all depends on the size and shape of your head, the type of head strap you’re using, and the kind of glasses you wear.
Remember that aftermarket head straps and spacers are also available if you have your heart set on a particular VR headset and it doesn’t come with the right accessories for your glasses.
HTC Vive Cosmos Elite- Best High-End Roomy VR Headset for Media
- 2880×1700 LCD Screen
- 90 Hz Refresh Rate
- Integrated Microphone
The HTC Vive Cosmos Elite says in its documentation that you can wear prescription glasses with it. They recommend moving up the lenses to make it roomier to accommodate them. They also remind you to make sure that the glasses aren’t scratching the lenses of the VR screen and vice versa.
It’s a high-end headset that requires a lot of setup, and it’s great for a large area when you’re watching media or gaming. It also has a flip-up design instead of an enclosed one which means it’s easier to switch to ordinary reality, especially for glasses wearers who have to be more careful when removing their headset. However, it also means that you need to be sure your glasses are secure on your face.
One issue with this set is that some users have reported difficulties getting the screen to appear clear when wearing glasses. Many have recommended switching to lenses when using this, while others have said they’ve gotten it to work.
Sony Playstation VR – Best for Console Gaming
- 1080p OLED Screen
- 90-120 Hz Refresh Rate
- Integrated Microphone
The Playstation VR headset is roomy and large with a solid strap to keep it comfortable and well-situated on your head. If you’re looking for a great VR experience with console games, consider this one. Sony does recommend telescoping the lens on the VR headset to get the correct fit with your glasses.
The Playstation VR also has a Halo design that gives you much more space than other styles. That’s especially good for those with large frames.
The main downside to purchasing the Playstation VR headset right now is that the second generation has been announced, but won’t be available until likely 2022. If you aren’t in a rush and prefer console gaming, it might be better to wait a year and grab the newest version of this headset.
It’s currently only available new in bundles. For example, you can buy it in a bundle with the Iron Man or with Skyrim.
Oculus Quest 2 – Best for Those with Small Frames
- 1920×1832 LED Screen
- Up to 120 Hz Refresh Rate
- Integrated Microphone
The Oculus Quest 2 includes an insert for those who are using it with glasses. To install it, you have to remove the facial interface foam from the headset, place the spacer in, and then reinstall the foam. It’s an easy way to make the set more comfortable for glasses wearers.
They recommend putting it on from the front to the back if you wear glasses. To remove it, pull it forward before taking it off. However, the space inside the Oculus Quest 2 headset is relatively small for many users.
The company that makes Oculus recommended using it with glasses that are 142 mm or less wide and 50 mm or less high to accommodate this size. Check your glasses before deciding to purchase this. Some users have had luck with aftermarket head straps to make it larger and more accommodating.
HTC Vive Pro 2 – Best for High-Movement VR
- 2448×2448 LCD Screen
- 120 Hz Refresh Rate
- Integrated Microphone
If you’re looking for a VR headset that will both accommodate your glasses and give you the freedom to move, check out the Vive. It’s a very active headset because of the way it works. You have a pretty ample space to walk around in — which means that your glasses need to be snug in the headset itself so that they aren’t moving when you are.
Luckily, most users with glasses report having a good experience with the HTC Vive Pro 2. It can accommodate glasses up to 152 mm wide by 60 mm in height. Not only is that reasonably sizeable, but it means you have a lot of room to adjust the headset into place even with the included head strap.
Remember that the Vive is a little smaller on the inside than the Playstation VR headset. It might not be as comfortable for people with slightly larger heads.
Valve Index — Best for VR Afficianados
- 1440×1600 LCD Screen
- Up to 144 Hz Refresh Rate
- Integrated Microphone
Users with the Valve Index have mixed reviews about how well it works with glasses. If you don’t use games where you’re in motion often, it might work fine. If you use games with a lot of movement, it’s essential to use some kind of protection on the lenses and adjust the fit so that they don’t make any contact.
Other than that issue, the Valve Index has a lot of room for glasses and, like most headsets, has a dial you can use to adjust the lenses so that you can see better. Overall, many users feel that it’s a great headset to use with glasses.
One issue with the Index is that it has a very high price point for all the pieces needed for it to function. This can make it a bit of a stretch if you aren’t sure it will work with your glasses.
Pansonite VR Headset – Best to Use With a Phone
- No Screen
- Dependent on Your Phone
- No Microphone
If you’re looking for something a little more low-tech to enjoy media, consider a Pansonite VR Headset. You slip your phone into it, strap it on, and enjoy your media in games in a low-tech VR environment. They claim to be appropriate for glasses wearers.
One of the features that help make them glasses-friendly is an adjustable IPD that can move the screen toward or away from your face. Doing so can help make room for your glasses or help keep them more secure. Keep in mind that it’s your phone you’re getting close to — you don’t want to make direct contact with it with your glasses.
Since the screen is the phone and not part of the headset, you mustn’t do too much motion with this one. It might not be the right one for you if you’re looking for games with a lot of action because contact with your glasses could damage them or your phone.
How to Wear Glasses with a VR Headset
If the VR headset you buy includes a spacer for your glasses, use that when you put on the headset. You shouldn’t play without it unless it makes it so uncomfortable that you cannot do it. It will help keep your glasses secure and safe while you play.
The spacer also plays another important role: it makes sure your glasses don’t get scratched by the VR headset. It’s easy to damage your glasses in a split second without realizing it, and using the spacer is a small price to pay to avoid ordering a new pair. Just pop it into the headset before you put it on. You won’t have to install it every time.
Tips for Playing VR with Glasses
- One of the best things you can do is measure your glasses and then compare that to the size of the different VR headsets. You want one that is snug so that your glasses don’t bounce or slide off your face when you move quickly. If possible, it’s even better to go out and try a set on before you purchase if you can find somewhere that’s doing demonstrations.
- I’ve been able to try out different VR headsets at Best Buy and Microcenter. However, you can also check with friends or local gaming bars or shops to find other places where you can use or rent VR to try them out.
- If your spacer isn’t comfortable or your glasses are particularly large, look for a third-party spacer that is made for your VR headset. An aftermarket spacer might help make it fit your face with your glasses even if the original headset isn’t made for large glasses.
- Consider purchasing lens protectors for the VR screen. Some users also 3D print their lens protectors. This will help keep the VR screen from being scratched.
- Make sure your lenses are clean before you put on the VR headset. Smudged glasses might impact the view you have of the content you’re viewing and give you a worse experience.
- Some users have difficulties with their glasses pressing against the bridge of their nose and causing pain. If you notice that after a while, you can try to wear a different pair, switch to lenses, or adjust the headset’s fit to see if it helps make it more comfortable.
- Moving your glasses forward on your face a bit from the temple tips can help make them more comfortable under the headset as well.
- If your frames are pressed firmly against the foam padding, that doesn’t mean there’s a need to worry. Often, it can add support. However, check closely to make sure it’s not bending the frame.
- Prescription lens inserts can be purchased if your glasses are too large or uncomfortable. You leave them in the VR headset and only use them for that activity.
- Try the VR headset without your glasses if you don’t have a severe prescription. Sometimes people with a prescription that is less severe than -1.00 can use them without it.
would it be easier to include an adjustable focal length, IE if a person who doesn’t wear glasses has a focal length of say 100 units and someone who’s shortsighted would have a focal length of less than 100, and someone who’s long-sighted would have a focal length of over 100, so by including a dial or an option of adjusting the focal length it’ll solve the problem of wearing glases
That’s a great idea!