Quirky, Fashionable, Functional: The Many Faces of Sunglasses


If you ever want to delve into the world of fashion sunglasses, you need only run a search on sunglasses in the news and then sit back and glory in the results. You will find so many strange and interesting stories about sunglasses that it will blow your mind. Who knew such a functional piece of personal gear could garner so much interest among the public?

It’s interesting to note the many faces of sunglasses in the news. In other words, not all sunglasses are created equal, as Violet Vision editor Amanda Burkett explained in a piece published in mid-February. Burkett’s piece focused mainly on micro frames, or “tiny sunglasses” as she called them, but her thoughts are applicable across the entire industry.

The many faces of sunglasses are attributable to the various and sundry reasons people buy them. One person may buy a pair of sunglasses strictly for fashion while another is looking for utilitarian function. There are as many reasons as there are buyers. That’s why designers like Olympic Eyewear are always ready to go with dozens of designer brands at a variety of price points.

The Face of Quirky

So, what exactly constitutes a pair of quirky sunglasses? Definitions may vary, but a good way to explain quirky is to say it is anything out of the ordinary. For example, have you seen the sunglasses shaped like a set of Olympic rings being worn by some of the athletes in PyeongChang? They would classify as quirky.

A large percentage of the thousands of pairs of sunglasses owned by rocker Elton John would also be quirky. Some are shaped like hearts, others are large squares, and still others boast colors so bold they are more blinding than the sun. Let’s face it, there are people who buy designer sunglasses that are excruciatingly different, just to be different.

The Face of Fashionable

This face is the one most easily recognized by people who follow fashion blogs and magazines. The face of fashionable sunglasses is all about the latest trends being pushed by the most recognized names in the industry. And of course, the messengers for all these high-end brands are the many celebrities who wear them.

Give the Kardashians a just-released model and you can guarantee people will start buying it as soon as they see Kim or Khloe wearing it. Ask a star athlete to endorse your brand-new wayfarers and you can bet legions of fans will line up to get their own. It is just the way fashion works.

The Face of Function

Quirkiness and fashion are known to drive seasonal sales the same way red and green drive sales at Christmas time. But the staple of the eyewear industry is self-evident in the face of function. In other words, there will always be those consumers whose main priority for sunglasses is eye protection.

Have you seen those wear-overs that are popular among seniors? It’s not because they are either quirky or fashionable. Their popularity is due to the fact that they provide wrap-around protection that can be worn over a pair of prescription glasses. Their function is what makes them so attractive to seniors.

By contrast, the micro frames that everyone is saying will be hot for 2018 are not appealing to people who wear wrap-around sunglasses. They just do not provide any coverage on the sides.

The many faces of sunglasses will be on display when spring breaks in just a couple of weeks. It’s going to be fun to watch, so fasten your seat belts and hang on.