The McAllister brand is inspired by a true founder of American optometry, McAllister, who 225 years ago dared to see beyond the limits. Widely considered one of America’s first practicing optometrist, he left Scotland for America in 1775 to pursue opportunity and promise. An optician-innovator, in 1799 McAllister opened a shop in Philadelphia attracting a long list of visionaries of that time who recognized exceptional craftsmanship and appreciated the unrivaled clarity of John McAllister’s custom-made lenses and the elevated functionality of his unique frames.

McAllister Frames on Model


It was John McAllister’s passion for optometry, mastery of fit and focus on individualized detailing that made his shop a destination and his discipline a legacy. A generations-long reputation for shaping the vision of influencers, so they could help shape the world.

McAllister eyewear honors its 225-year legacy of groundbreaking and distinctive eyewear with a collection that reframes what it means to be bold. Timeless classics seen through a fresh lens with a sleekness that crosses the gender divide and an aesthetic that is at its most authentic when worn. Down to every detail, McAllister honors the expertise and precision of its namesake and through exciting design continues its legacy of firsts, inspiring modern visionaries. Iconic and evolved, yet so easy on the eyes.

We embrace individuality and remain connected to our legacy while pushing forward with effortlessly cool and stylish contours shaped for a new generation of visionaries.

McAllister Frames on Model


Each frame is made from 45% Plant-Based Resin

Plant-based resin is a natural bio-based plastic, a smarter and much cleaner alternative to standard petroleum-based plastics. The material we use comes from castor bean oil, a highly resilient and renewable plant resource. It creates plastics that are strong, lightweight, and durable. The castor plant is prized for its ability to thrive in the harshest conditions; growing in arid regions of the world where little else can be successfully farmed. In these regions, castor bean cultivation creates jobs for some 700,000 farmers.

McAllister is proud to partner with the global network of suppliers trained and certified by Pragati, an educational organization aimed at reducing environmental impact and improving quality of life through creating more sustainable supply chains.

Our History

Inspired by John McAllister, a true founder of American optometry, an icon who, 225 years ago, dared to see beyond limits.


Headed for America

John McAllister leaves Glasgow, Scotland for America 


All Eyes on John

John McAllister establishes what is considered the first optical shop in America, in Philadelphia.


Silver & Gold

He begins producing his own gold and silver frames after Americans begin to rethink their dependence on imported goods after War of 1812.


Astigmatic Lenses

Astigmatic lenses came into the U.S. and McAllister and his son John, Jr. began importing cylindrical lenses for the correction of astigmatism. 


Family Business

John McAllister passes away and leaves the family business to John McAllister Jr. 


Passing Down a Legacy

John McAllister, Jr., retires leaving the company to his son William Young McAllister who renamed it William Y. McAllister & Co.


The Legacy Continues

The McAllister family business continued for five generations and developed from prolific spectacle making to optometry. Philadelphia not only ranks as the birthplace of the nation but also the focal point for the development of optometry. 


An Investment for Future Visionaries

Marchon acquired the rights to the McAllister name. 


A Legacy Reborn

The McAllister brand is reborn and introduces distinctive frames for a new generation of visionaries.