CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Eclipse glasses are the hot items right now across the nation. Health professionals say they are the only safe way to view the eclipse next week. But, some vendors in the Charlotte area may be selling a fake version.
Robert Caison says he got duped.
Caison bought ten pairs of eclipse-safe glasses for family and friends at a kiosk in SouthPark Mall. But right away, something did not sit right.
"They didn't have a lot of the information they were supposed to," Caison said.
Still, he made the purchase. While still in the mall, he checked out the inside of his new specs.
"They didn't look very legitimate," he said.
Caison saw a web link printed on the inside. A five-minute searched launched him to a website that, strangely enough, actually described the very glasses the link was printed were indeed fakes.
"It's unfair, it's disingenuous," Caison said.
The website described fakes to have a wider, more circular edge, and boxy, less-rounded lenses.
"I said, 'If you don't give me a refund, I'm just going to tell all these people buying them that they're fake,'" Caison said.
According to Caison, that is when the manager of the kiosk got on the phone.
"He was very apologetic and offered to give me a refund, probably because they knew they were fake," Caison said.
There was another kiosk in the same mall that appeared to be selling legitimate eclipse glasses for $20 as of Friday afternoon.
Legitimate ways to prove a set of glasses are real include checking for an ISO seal on the edge, and a legitimate ISO number of 12312-2, or -2105 at the end.
It is also important to look for a name and address of the manufacturer, or buy directly from a NASA approved vendor:
- American Paper Optics
- Rainbow Symphony
- Thousand Oaks Optical
- TSE 17