Fashion trends are famously fleeting, but when it comes to sunglasses and eyeglasses, styles tend to have a bit more staying power.
“Every season there are some things that become more popular,” explains Rozita Taeidi of West Vancouver’s Look Optical. “For example, oversized glasses might become rounder one season, they might become bolder one season, but it doesn’t change too drastically.”
Celebrating its 20th anniversary, Look Optical was opened by Rozita’s father, Mike Taeidi, in 1996 at Marine Drive and 15th Street in Ambleside. Mike and his wife are neighbourhood residents and licensed opticians and work at the family-run business with Rozita, who handles the administrative side of things.
“I’m a fashion consultant as well,” Mike notes, explaining that people have preferred styles and favourite designers, but also want sunglasses and eyeglasses that suit their face and complexion. For example, someone with a round face might choose narrow frames to create the appearance of wider eyes and a longer face.
Fortunately, most popular styles, like the classic aviator, come in a host of colours and sizes so people can still replicate their favourite celebrity look, with minor variations to suit the individual.
Below, Rozita shares some of the eyewear trends she’s noticing for 2016.
Made in the shade
Oversized sunglasses have been popular for a few years, but recently they’ve taken on a cat-eye shape, creating a look that blends a retro vibe with modern art and global pop culture, Rozita says.
“Because they’re oversized, they provide a lot of coverage, and they’re also really stylish because it’s the cat frame.”
Meanwhile, gradient-tint lenses are also in vogue. These lenses might be dark brown or dark grey at the brow and transition to a lighter shade toward the cheekbone.
“These are really cool because they offer an alternative to classic one-colour tones,” Rozita says. “They’re fun, but they’re not overbearing.”
For men, aviator sunglasses, with their signature teardrop-shaped lenses, have been popular for a while and remain in high demand.
“The nice thing about aviators is that they work with almost all faces and they come in so many colours,” Rozita says, noting the unisex style is also popular with women. This spring and summer, designer brands like Ray-Ban, Gucci and Prada have released aviators with darker lenses and reflective lenses.
Semi-rimless optical frames feature a frame at the top of the lens, but not the bottom. This subtle style is popular with women this year, Rozita says.
“They have a minimalistic look, they’re really thin, they’re lightweight,” she says, noting that titanium frames with spring hinges are incredibly flexible and strong.
“They just look very clean, effortless. It’s more like a natural, simple look – it’s great for work.”
In plastic frames, there’s a trend toward lighter, more playful tones like tortoiseshell and caramel, providing an alternative to classic black.
One unisex brand that’s especially popular with men is the Canadian-designed Spectacle Eyeworks, which has come out with a collection of genuine wood frames.
“They’re very sturdy frames and they’re light,” Rozita says.
The two-tone colour effect is also big in eyeglasses this year, particularly with plastic-rimmed frames.
“It creates this really nice subtle contrast and the combination isn’t overbearing,” Rozita says, explaining these frames appear to be one colour from the front, but reveal a second colour when viewed in profile.