Nothing updates your style as quickly, as easily, and as radically as a new pair of sunglasses. Though the weather may still be a bit cold, it’s never too early to start thinking about which pairs of sunnies you’re going to rock this summer, because deep in your heart you know that one pair is never enough.
Was there ever a time when there have been this many great pairs of sunglasses to drool over? Will future historians look back on 2019 as the Golden Age of Sunglasses? There are so many frame designs, so many lens choices, so many materials and so many colours. Don’t be intimidated, embrace the diversity and get ready to spend some serious time before you even think about spending some serious money. Actually, you don’t have to spend serious money to get a really sharp pair of sunnies, it all depends on how important that brand name is to you.
Top picks? If we were really going to be thorough about this, you’d be looking at some kind of War and Peace type word count. You’ve read the advice, you know the drill: face shape, hair and personality are the key variables and the sunglasses you choose need to frame those three. But you know what, if you love them and you enjoy wearing them, then they will look great on you. So, don’t think of this as a roadmap to get you to a destination, it’s more like a bunch of signposts to places you might find of interest.
Cat Eye Sunglasses
There’s something endearingly quizzical about upturned frames that makes them endlessly fascinating. In their micro form, like Australian designer Poppy Lissiman’s glossy orange acetate beauties that went viral after being taken up by the likes of the Hadid sisters, Emily Ratajkowski and Adwoa Aboah, they are irredeemably sexy, but you can also go large with your cat eyes. Audrey Hepburn did it first as Holly Golightly in Breakfast at Tiffany’s wearing oversize Manhattans by Oliver Goldsmith. That Hollywood lustre has never gone away, Marilyn Monroe, Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor all wore cat eyes.
It’s such a versatile style and you can spend as much as you want on your cat eyes, if you’re happy to part with hundreds of dollars then treat yourself to a pair of Tiffany & Co’s classic cat-eye frames. If you’re not so sure then try a pair of the ASOS Metal Kitten range, cute cat eyes, in black or pink, from $16.
They tell me coral is the colour of the year. It’s certainly a sumptuous summer accessory, a colour soaked in sunlight and sand. Liberate your inner flower child with a pair of coral tinted Rosie Petite Sunglasses. The thick, bevelled lenses create a flower shaped silhouette, which is definitively distinctive and ideal for smaller faces. The vibrant coral lenses contrast with the elegant gold frames and drop shaped apertures at the temple tips allow for pairing with eyewear jewellery.
In practical terms, oversize sunglasses make a lot of sense because they provide maximum protection, although that is not of course why we wear them. We wear them because we really, really want people to notice how super cool they look, and they do. Is there such a thing as too oversize, well yes there is. Your sunglasses need to be oversize in relation to your face. Don’t overdo it or you will end up looking like a cartoon character. The frames should not be sitting on your cheeks like scaffolding and we need to see those eyebrows. Getting the nose pads right is key, otherwise you’ll be getting some unsightly marks from the weight of the frame. As for the style, well you can go large with just about any style you like, Aviator, round, square and of course cat eye.
You need an old classic in your collection
Oh yes you do. They are classic for a reason. Some designs attain their perfect form, they just can’t be improved on. I would argue that the Wayfarer and the Aviator, both made famous by Ray Ban are two such designs. You can tweak them, with greater personalisation, with engraved messages on the arms or your own custom lenses, but basically they are the same as they’ve always been. Never mind all those famous people who have worn them, it might add to their allure, but it’s not why you need a pair. You need a pair because these designs are timeless and if you love sunglasses, you have to have a pair of the classics in your collection and summertime is just the time to enjoy them.