Now you know exactly what to ask for when shopping for sunnies. Today's fashion lesson ensures that you'll never confuse a browline and a retro square ever again! Get cool in school, girls.
IMAGE Angeline Morales
AVIATORS: Classic aviators have smoked or reflective lenses set in a slim metal frame. The distinctive shape and large lenses were designed to block the sun from all angles. Fun fact: They originally were worn by wartime fighter pilots back in the day! Some things just never go out of style.
BROWLINE: Browline sunglasses are recognizable by the thick top frame that runs across your brow (get it!?) and the extra-thin rims around the bottom half of the lens. Colonel Sanders—yes, that chicken-lovin' guy—and Malcolm X were early fans of the shape, and the retro-inspired tradition carries on today. Just look at Ray-Ban's Clubmasters!
RETRO SQUARE: Known more popularly as Wayfarers, those thick, boxy plastic frames are some of the most loved styles out there. According to design critic Stephen Bayley, the "distinctive trapezoidal frame spoke a non-verbal language that hinted at unstable dangerousness, but one nicely tempered by the sturdy arms which, according to the advertising, gave the frames a 'masculine look.'"
ROUND: John Lennon was probably the most famous purveyor of these, and its name definitely speaks for itself! This current season's reiteration comes with very thin wire rimes and in trendy metals like rose gold and matte silver.
SPORT: These are made for—you guessed it—the athletes out there. Adventure-seekers prefer this shape: thin, sleek polarized lenses tapering at the temples, made to fight glare and enhance visibility.
CAT-EYE: Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren, Audrey Hepburn—you name whichever golden age Hollywood actress you like, and she's probably worn this iconic style summering in the French Riviera. These feline frames' upswept angles are timelessly loved and forever chic!