It always feels like a surprise when summer rolls around, as though we were expecting it to skip a year. Slowly but surely the sun begins to come out regularly and temperatures hit more agreeable levels. A symptom of our pessimism around summer each year is that we leave our summer shopping to the last minute. Get ahead of the game and start searching for that perfect pair of sunglasses to add to your summer accessories arsenal.
There can be a lot to consider when buying sunglasses, primarily the quality of the lenses, frame and joints, but also the overall aesthetic and whether they will suit your face. Here are a few things to look out for when considering your next pair of shades, plus a selection of the best men's sunglasses to take your pick from.
What is the purpose of the sunglasses?
As a general starting point, consider why you’re buying the glasses — as well as giving you an idea on price ranges, knowing your purpose will allow you to narrow down which kinds of lenses you need. For example, if you're planning an adventurous holiday or amping up your workout, it's best to opt for high-performance eyewear with polarised lenses and ultra sturdy frames. These specifications may not be necessary, though, if your plans only extend as far as beaches, bars and restaurants. In this case, you can opt for something a touch more stylised and fun.
What is your face shape?
We know it’s hard to be critical but it will pay off when you find a pair that suits you perfectly. Take a look in the mirror or take a photo of your face looking straight ahead. The key to styling your shape is balance — aim to harden soft features and soften hard features.
Those with round faces, should opt for a pair of sunglasses with defined angles and a strong brow to lend your face sharper contours, like Oscar Deen's 1950s-inspired Nelson style. A thin bridge will work to widen your eyes while angular frames will accentuate your sharper features.
If you’re lucky enough to have an oval face, then you’ve essentially got free rein. Experiment with different shapes and sizes to see what feels best personally. From angular geometric sunglasses to vintage round shades: Take your pick. Sub Sun's '80s-inspired SUB009 glasses get our vote for this summer, thanks to their unique shape and interesting colourway options.
As with a round face, contrast square features with round frames like Meller's Kribi Tigris glasse – which just so happen to be bio-based, made from renewable raw materials – so you can feel good about your purchase. Another great option for square-shaped faces is Bold London Eyewear's handcrafted Brushfield glasses. The goal is to counterbalance your strong jawline with softer lines.
Heart-shaped faces tend to be widest at the cheeks, with narrow or pointed chins. If you have a heart-shaped face, you should look for sunglasses that will create balance between the brow area and chin, to make it appear softer without over-emphasising the forehead area. The ideal pair will extend beyond the forehead and end lower on the cheekbones.Cat eye or browline sunglasses, which are made with the upper portion of the frame thicker than the lower, will work nicely. Try Ray-Ban's iconic Clubmaster style. It's a bestseller for a reason.
What is your personal style?
Assess the rest of your wardrobe, figure out — if you don’t already know — what your basic style is and work from there. If you usually wear minimalist-style clothing, you’ll probably feel more comfortable in a pair of vintage-inspired sunglasses like these classic frames from iconic eyewear company Julius Tart while a bolder wardrobe opens the possibility for more unorthodox, contemporary shapes and colours like Oscar Deen's champagne-hued Fraser glasses.
The most important thing when buying a new pair of sunglasses is that you feel comfortable in them. The tips we’ve laid out here are basic guidelines but certainly aren’t steadfast. If you have a round face but find a pair of round rimmed sunglasses that suit you, don’t hesitate in buying them. If you are stuck though, stick to our advice and you can’t go too far wrong.
Shop all men's sunglasses at OPUMO.
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