Do you even need to wear glasses with VR?

Find out if you should be wearing your glasses with your VR headset

While we recently published a guide to what Virtual Reality Headsets you can wear with Glasses, we wanted to answer the question of:

Do you even need to wear glasses with Virtual Reality?

In short? The answer depends on many different factors which we’re going to explore in this guide.

Image credit: VR Bound



You may be in luck!

Most Virtual Reality users that are Farsighted have reported that they can see more clearly while using their VR headsets.

While there is no explicit consensus on what the HTC Vives Focal distance is set to, many assume it to be between 1.4m to Infinity while the focal distance of the Rift's screen is 2 metres.

(Much to our dismay, manufacturers do not want to put out much information on this)

If you can see over those distances, then you should be able to use most mainstream VR headsets without much difficulty, but we do advise taking frequent breaks as not to strain your eyes.



You may not be as lucky as a farsighted user, but using VR without glasses is not over yet.

According to many users that frequent forums around the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, for short-sighted users it now comes down to your level of prescription.



If you have a prescription up to -1.00 many users report that they can consume VR content without losing any key details or placing undue strain on their eyes.

This is because as an example, the Rift's visual acuity is about 23/100. Users who have a prescription of -1.00 your visual acuity is 20/100



For users with a prescription of -2.00, many users reported that they were still able to use Virtual Reality headsets, however almost half the details that everyone else would see has gone.

While this doesn't make VR unplayable or any less enjoyable, it is not placing you in the most ideal of situations.



Once we start getting into prescriptions of this realm, many advise that it is not worth the loss in clarity and strain put on your eyes to try using VR without glasses. 

While an experience may be bearable, anything below a prescription level of -3.00 will not be giving you the details that you truly deserve to have an immersive experience.


Relevant guide: What Virtual Reality Headsets can I wear with Glasses


Image credit: VR Bound


Warnings and considerations

We’d like to be able to reassure you that all the information in this article is 100% scientifically accurate; however, most of the recommendations made here are based on other user’s experiences and therefore sometimes have many more factors at play.

If you ever start to feel your eyes getting tired or strained it is best to stop what you are doing and take a short break to give your eyes a chance to rest.

If your prescription is on the edge of what user reports suggest, perhaps you should consider purchasing a VR headset that works well with glasses or seeking alternative methods such as prescription lenses for an existing headset.


Next steps

If you have a possible suggestion or solution, make sure to share it with us in this article so others with similar problems can find a solution too.

Leave a comment down below or email, [email protected] 

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