Sunglasses may be a small accessory but they have a big impact. They can elevate an outfit, and accentuate one’s style, but the best pair can boost one’s mood too.
Gone are the days when sunglasses served only to protect one’s eyes from direct sunlight. Today, they are a must-have accessory.
A great pair is a real character builder. It plays a large role in the character that one projects to others. A pair of classic square or rectangular frames in glossy black and dark lenses to match has that everlasting allure and timeless movie-star aesthetic.
Tabita Wangai, the owner of Eyedictive Sunglasses says the rise of eyewear demand starting in 2017 pushed her into the business.
“Before I got into the business, I sold clothes. But when I saw a shift in the eyewear market I hopped onto the trend [to cash in]. Now, both men and women accessorise their outfits with sunglasses,” points out Ms Wangai.
“I not only sell sunglasses, but also optical frames, the kind that one can install prescription lenses. We have sunglasses for burials, formal and night time events,” she says noting the general differences.
However, there is a lot of variety within the sunglasses genre with each style having subtle details which make them unique.
First, you must decide on the shape; there are cat-eye, ultra-square, Wayfarer, and rounded rectangular Jackie O–styles from which to choose. Then comes the design nuances like titanium accents, curved or straight bridges, and wide or narrow temples.
“When our clients come to the shop we usually advise them according to the shape of their faces as opposed to the colour because the latter is an individual’s choice,” Ms Wangai said.
Contrary to popular belief, she says people should not only wear sunglasses during hot seasons. “During the cold season, you find yourself rubbing your eyes so they are also best for the cold as well.”
Ms Wangai says her business attracts customers from across the age groups and her prices range from Sh800 to Sh3,500.
Here are some popular sunglass shapes along with what they might be saying about your style.
Your face is at its widest point from cheek to cheek and narrows slightly at the forehead and jawline. Your chin is typically in line with your jaw.
Go for square or rectangular frames which add definition to your face and say hello to cheekbones! For optical frames ensure the small rounded ones are the best fit.
The widest point of your face is the forehead, and your face gets narrower at the jawline. Your chin might protrude below your jawline (think of the point at the bottom of a heart). Unlike other shapes, the most flattering frame on heart-shaped faces is the round frame sunglasses with a defined jawline. Square face
Your jawline, cheeks, and forehead are all even in width, and you likely have a sharp jawline.
Go for round sunglasses, look for circular frames with soft lines to soften your features.
Your face is longer than it is wide. In other words, the length from the top of your forehead to your chin is longer than the length from ear to ear. Round sunglasses are typically wider, which balances out the length of an oval face shape.
Smaller frames can accentuate a narrow face, so oversized styles are the most flattering option to give the illusion of more width from cheekbone to cheekbone How to style and wear sunglasses
Nail the perfect sunglass shape that suits your face shape. Minimise accessories, jewellery, and colour. And let your sunglasses rule.
Be rugged, be true. Wear your sunglasses without ‘wearing them’. Hook the look. Sunglasses hooked onto outside pockets or shirt collars is a great way to accessorise your outfit and make a style statement without actually ‘wearing’ them.