Summer is undoubtedly here, and although it has been punctuated by rain, we finally have had some sunshine – which means you can add sunglasses to your daily attire.
But if you don’t have the sunglasses you want, summer can be just that little less enjoyable. So it’s worth buying a great pair that will serve you through this summer, and many more to come.
Here’s our pick of the best. As well as a necessary accessory during a sunny day, sunglasses are a great way of finishing off a summer outfit, too – so these have been sorted not just for their ability to screen out the sun but also how they’ll make you look to everyone else, too.
1. Persol 714: £123.40
Worn by everyone from Steve McQueen to Ryan Gosling, these are stylish and timeless. They’re also built hardily and come in a wide array of different colours. Like Ray Bans, they are remarkably versatile, with the classic-looking, classy brown frames complementing most outfits. The fact that they fold up into a tiny bundle makes them very practical, too.
2. Cubitts Bingfield: £125
Based in London and drawing on traditional, hand-made techniques, Cubitts makes sunglasses that are sturdily constructed but in no way hefty. Finley crafted from acetate, all of the pairs have a slightly retro but not outdated style. We’ve gone for the Bingfield pair, but there’s a range of frames, colours and sizes available, too, in case this particular pair doesn’t suit – and all, helpfully, are priced at £125, making the choice much easier. There’s an option to add prescription lenses, too.
3. Ray-Ban New Wayfarer: £65.40
A classic – and with good reason. The Wayfarers suit most faces – so long as you get the right size – and most outfits. What’s more, you can choose from a huge range of different styles and colours, which include everything from classic black to denim frames and bright pink lenses. The black pair looks timeless while the tortoiseshell-look pair keeps much of the same style but adds an interesting twist.
4. Nike Run X2: £89.99
These nylon-framed sunglasses aren’t the most stylish on our list – they seem to take more cues from a spaceship than any classic eyewear. But that’s because they are expertly crafted for being active, helping you exercise while they stay sleek and secure on your head.
5. H&M: £6.99
H&M’s shades are perfect if you don’t want to splash out or just want to try out a look that you aren’t ready to commit to. These are eye-catching – with a bright blue lens and tortoiseshell frames made from plastic and metal – but still look conservative enough that you won’t feel like they’re too much of a statement.
6. KITE Martino: £150
Kite makes beautiful, designer-quality glasses but is a little less known than some other big sunglass makers – though that’s not at all justified. The fine detailing and construction of these handmade, acetate-framed glasses makes them well worth their fairly high price. Unisex, round and not especially large, they require the right face to wear them nicely – but if you can pull them off then that same interesting silhouette means that they’re eye-catching, while allowing you to maintain a classic cool. They come in a range of lenses and frames – everything from a classic black frame with black lenses to a transparent crystal frame with bright, bronze-mirrored lenses.
7. Oakley Breadbox: £95
Primarily known for sporty sunglasses, Oakley hasn’t strayed too far from tradition when making its fashionable leisure eyewear. It keeps some of that sporting style, with a streamlined shape and a comfy fit, but have a casual, relaxed look, meaning that you’ll get great-looking glasses that will still be able to last. The strong, lightweight and stress-resistant materials used in the frame means that they’ll still be able to last for years, like Oakley’s more sporty models.
8. Tom Ford Tf465: £220
If you prefer to make a statement with your shades, then Tom Ford provides the perfect way to do it. These glasses’ square, marble-look frames and dark lenses are unapologetically bold, giving a confident and slightly retro look to anyone who dares wear them.
9. Hugo Boss: £199
Delicate and neatly-designed – borrowing as many cues from optical glasses as sunglasses – these Hugo Boss shades are perfect for a classic, unshowy look. Combining black frames with gold detailing, they’re stylish and have a quiet confidence that makes them perfect for more formal settings.