If sunglasses have been falling a little short on your to-buy radar, you might want to think again. And no, we're not about to spout off the health benefits of protecting your retinas (though, you should!). Instead, we're here to offer a PSA that there are some pretty cool things happening in the world of shades.
A typical scenario when it comes to shopping for specs usually sees us making the the same rounds at the two for $20 Urban Outfitters counter. But, there's been a revival in sunglasses designers gravitating towards funky shapes vs. your standard aviators. From celebrity favorites to designers who have expanded their accessories collection and yes, even some under-$100 options, there's more places than ever to pick up a pair of shades you'll love enough to actually care about.
Before you start planning your summer road trip looks, these are the 11 brands you should be looking to for sunglasses no one else has.
If you're wondering where everyone on Instagram is getting those too-cool-for-school shades (you know, oversized, bug-eyes that look fresh off the Gucci runway, super-skinny black pairs straight out of The Matrix), Giant Vintage is basically It. For affordable retro frames (some vintage, some vintage-inspired), you'll be hard-pressed to not find a style (or 12) that you'll love.
At Raen, you'll find all of your favorite classic styles, but kicked up a notch — and its latest Luxury Wig collection proves just that. Raen is ideal for the shopper who knows their preferred frame shape and is looking for something that's on-trend, but also affordable.
Stacey Bendet is well-known for mixing kooky and feminine in a way that gives us "gimme" vibes. Bendet's latest endeavor is a collection of sunglasses, which launched in February, that is just as whimsical as herself and her brand. You'll even find a pair or two designed after her own signature oversized statement sunglasses.
Who doesn't love anything under-$100? All of Los Angeles brand Perverse's sunglasses fall under the affordable category, and all of its styles push the boundaries of edgy and stylish.
If you've already heard of Krewe, we wouldn't be surprised. The brand was founded in 2013 by Stirling Barrett, a New Orleans native, but in the past two years, its exploded to become a celebrity favorite (even with Beyoncé!). Its colored lens, wire-framed designs are a refreshing reminder that we don't have to take our style too seriously.
Speaking of celebrity faves, Smoke x Mirrors is another new brand with a cult influencer following. Its collection is full of geometric shapes and edgy styles that you've probably found yourself tapping "like" for on one too many fashion blogger Instagrams.
Think classic style-meets-mirrored lenses, and you get Westward Leaning. The brand's popularity has exploded since it's launch in 2012, thanks to Hollywood's obsession with it. (Olivia Palermo even jumped on board and designed a collaboration with them). Here, you'll find both your beloved square frame sunglasses, as well as double bridged aviators.