Peak sunglasses season is upon us and the time is ripe to be updating your collection with the best frames of seasons past and present. Whether you’re a serial sunglasses wearer à la Anna Wintour or you’re simply looking for a pair to elevate days out, spent in parks and pub gardens, there’s no shortage of stylish shades.
In addition to the usual stock of aviators and wayfarers, with their timeless appeal, a couple of additional noteworthy eyewear trends to be aware of right now is that for the oversized, overtly chic and feminine, and also that for futuristic wrap-around styles (epitomised by everyone from District Vision to Balenciaga) – both very much 1990s- and 2000s-inspired.
Whatever style you choose (classic shapes are good too) it’s not always easy picking a new pair of sunglasses, especially with the opportunity to try them on in-store being sometimes limited. Pile that on top of the breadth of choice in lens strengths, colours and polarisation (glare protection) options, and it can all become rather baffling.
As a general rule, always consider face shape. If you want to wear your glasses more than once, it would be smart to consider what actually looks good on you. Square faces, for instance, will benefit from the soft curves of rounder frames. Likewise, the angles of a triangular- or heart-shaped face will be accentuated by aviators. Rounder faces, on the other hand, might consider opting for square or rectangular styles such as wayfarers to harden their features.
Here, to guide you through the jungle of competing eyewear brands, we’ve rounded up a selection of the very best men’s sunglasses for various face shapes, all of which boast a style that transcends the beach alone. Credit cards at the ready.
With summer comes sunshine, and with sunshine comes exposure to ultraviolet (UV) rays and white-hot glare. If you’re in the market for a new pair of shades, keep eye protection and comfort — and not just style — in mind.
Finding the right sunglasses is important, as they don’t all offer the same protection. Some research suggests that high-energy ultraviolet rays from the sun can harm your vision later in life. Excessive UV exposure may damage the macula, the area in back of the eye that helps transmit pictures to the brain. The risk is greatest if your eyes are light-colored.
How to get the best protection
To best protect your eyes, Dr. Singh recommends that you:
- Choose sunglasses that block both UVA and UVB light.You don’t have to pay a premium — UV protection is available in all price ranges. “There are a bunch out there. You want to buy them from a reputable manufacturer,” Dr. Singh says. Choose the highest level UVA/UVB protection you can find. He says that it will say what level of UVA and UVB protection you would have on the sticker or printed right on the tag.
- Select amber or brown lenses if you have macular degeneration or diabetic retinopathy. These colors enhance contrast, which can help you see better. But a high UV rating is more important than lens color if you have to choose, he says.
Tips for sunglasses for driving
Direct sunlight is often too bright for comfort as we age and our pupils grow larger and more sensitive to light. For the best vision when you’re driving, Dr. Singh recommends that you:
- Look for polarized lenses. They’re best for reducing glare. This is especially important if you have had refractive eye surgery, such as LASIK.
- Select brown, grey, green or yellow lenses. They’re best for minimizing color distortion.
Kids need sunglasses too
Dr. Singh says children as young as 6 months old should wear sunglasses. The Vision Council of America reminds us that the damage from UVA and UVB radiation is cumulative over a person’s lifetime, so it’s a good idea to teach your children how important it is to wear sunglasses.
Overexposure to the sun’s rays can cause several eye diseases to form. These include cataracts and macular degeneration over a person’s lifetime.
If you already wear glasses
Prescription eyeglasses — particularly those with polycarbonate lenses — provide some built-in UV protection, says Dr. Singh. Lenses that automatically darken when you go outdoors protect against both UV rays and glare.
Optometrists can also help you choose the right sunglasses for you. Once you buy them, remember to wear them regularly, notes Dr. Singh — on your nose and not on your head.
Dr. Singh says sunglasses are one of those indispensable items that he doesn’t mind spending a little extra money on. He says a little bit of extra protection seems worthwhile in the long run.
Which brand of sunglasses is best?
The top sunglass brands are Gucci, Prada, and Versace. Each of these high fashion houses produces consistently stylish, quality eyewear for style-conscious wearers. The bold designs, luxury materials, and timeless appeal make them suitable investments.
What to look for when buying sunglasses?
Sunglasses should be practical and protect your eyes from UV rays and damage. If they look fantastic as well, that’s a bonus. As such, the first thing to look for is that they do filter out 100% of UV light. Ideally, the bigger, the better as well, because it prevents more rays from getting to your eyes and skin. Polarisation helps to cut down on glare but isn’t essential unless you spend a lot of time outdoors or on the water. Lastly, when it does come to style, you’ll want to choose a pair that suits your face shape and complements your aesthetic.
What’s the latest trend in sunglasses?
The latest sunglasses trends include small frames, white designs, retro shapes such as cat-eyes and round, and thick over-sized styles. Of course, some classics never go off-trend, such as aviators.
How do I know what brand my sunglasses are?
Most companies will have the brand name or logo engraved onto the lenses or written on the inside of the arms. If you check there, it should tell you what brand they are. In some cases, it may not have the brand name but will have the manufacturing code that you can look up online.