Wayfarer sunglasses for men have remained one of the men’s most popular and iconic sunglass styles since their introduction over 70 years ago.
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Their trapezoidal shape framed by thick, bold rims gives them an instantly recognizable and versatile look that complements a range of men’s fashion.
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A Brief History of Wayfarer Sunglasses
Ray-Ban introduced the Wayfarer model as a revolutionary new sunglass shape in 1952. Wayfarers broke from the typical thin metal frames of the past with their chunky plastic frames and angular trapezoidal lenses.
The unconventional look was popularized in the 1950s and 60s by cultural and style icons like James Dean, JFK, Bob Dylan, and Audrey Hepburn in movies like Breakfast at Tiffany’s. However, Wayfarers waned in popularity in the late 60s and 70s as oversized and aviator styles became trendy.
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Wayfarer sunglasses made a massive comeback in the early 80s thanks to prominent product placement in movies like The Blues Brothers, Risky Business and TV shows like Miami Vice. This resurrection cemented their status as a timeless and versatile sunglass style.
Why Wayfarer Sunglasses Suit Men’s Fashion So Well
There are several vital reasons why Wayfarers remain such an ideal sunglass pick for men even after decades of changing fads and trends in eyewear:
1. Their Bold, Angular Shape Looks Great on Men
The thick, angular frames have a very masculine and robust look. The trapezoidal shape and slight cat-eye tilt are flattering for most male face shapes. Wayfarers also create a striking, statement-making effect without seeming oversized.
2. Works With Both Formal and Casual Outfits
Unlike many sunglass styles that only suit particular looks, Wayfarers transition seamlessly from formal to casual wear. They work just as well paired with a sharp suit as a T-shirt and jeans. This versatility makes them an excellent all-occasion accessory.
3. Understated Cool Factor
While bold, Wayfarers still retain a simple, understated appearance thanks to their classic black, tortoiseshell, and transparent frames. This allows them to add a touch of effortless cool rather than looking overdone.
4. Complements Different Face Shapes
Oval, square, round, and triangle face shapes can all wear Wayfarer sunglasses well. The angled upper corners help balance softer jawlines, while the downward tilt lenses offset higher foreheads. They also suit wide or narrow faces.
5. Variety of Styles and Colors Available
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You can find Wayfarers today in a vast range of frame finishes and colors beyond the usual black and tortoiseshell, from glossy to matte and transparent to solid colors. This diversity makes matching them to your style effortless.
Tips for Styling Your Wayfarer Sunglasses
Follow these tips when selecting and wearing Wayfarers to get the most stylish and flattering look:
- Stick to classic frame sizes: Avoid oversized novelty frames. Look for measures in the 50-55mm lens width range for optimal proportions.
- Pick versatile frame colors: Classic black, tortoiseshell, and transparent frames get the most wear. Save bold colors for statement looks.
- Wear them formally, too: Wayfarers stylishly complement tailored suits, sports jackets, and bright casual outfits. Don’t reserve them just for everyday wear.
- Find the right lens type: Go for polarized lenses to cut glare. Consider prescription or transition lenses if you need vision correction or often move indoors and outdoors.
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- Pair with wardrobe essentials: White t-shirts, leather jackets, chinos, aviator jackets, and other classics complement the Wayfarer shape. Avoid loud prints or busy patterns.
- Consider different frame finishes: Matte finishes offer a modern twist on the iconic style. Glossy frames give it a retro touch. Explore different textures.
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Maintaining and Caring for Your Wayfarer Sunglasses
Follow these tips to help keep your Wayfarers looking stylish for many years:
- Please keep them in a protective sunglass case when not wearing.
- Use sunglass lens cleaner and a lint-free cloth to clean the lenses. Avoid using paper products or rough fabric.
- Handle the frames gently and avoid dropping them.
- Store away from direct heat and prolonged sun exposure to prevent warping.
- Take them to an eyewear shop annually to adjust and service screws/hinges.
Why Wayfarers Should Be in Every Man’s Sunglass Collection
Given their storied history, ability to complement any look, and mix of classic and contemporary styling, every man should own a pair of Wayfarers. They are an investment that, if properly cared for, will never go out of style. No sunglass wardrobe is complete without this ultimate icon of masculine eyewear. Check out the latest Ray-Ban Meta Smart Glasses here.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Wayfarer Sunglasses
What makes Wayfarers different from other sunglass styles?
The thick, angular trapezoidal frame shape and arms tilted slightly downward set Wayfarers apart from other styles. This gives them their iconic appearance.
When did Wayfarers first come out?
Wayfarers were first introduced by Ray-Ban in 1952 and gained popularity in the 1950s and 1960s.
What face shape do Wayfarers best suit?
Their angled shape flatters most face shapes, including oval, square, round, and triangle. They suit wide or narrow proportions.
Can women wear Wayfarer sunglasses, too?
Absolutely. While a more masculine style, many women also wear Wayfarers. Smaller sizes with fewer angular frames suit female faces well.
What colors do Wayfarers come in?
While black and tortoiseshell are the classics, today, you can find Wayfarers in many colors and material mixes like clear, matte blue, glossy red, striped, etc.
How do I know what Wayfarer size to buy?
Look for lens widths in the 50-55mm range. Avoid oversized novelty frames. Measure your face and try some on while looking in a mirror.
How can I tell if Wayfarers are polarized?
Polarized Wayfarers will say “Polarized” on the lens. You can also test them by looking at a reflective surface – if it eliminates glare, they are polarized.
Are Wayfarers good sunglasses for driving?
Yes, especially if you get polarized lenses. The angular frames give good coverage while driving and cut distracting glare.
Can I wear my Wayfarers at night or in low light?
We don’t recommend it. Wayfarers are intended to be worn in bright, sunny conditions. At night, they can strain your eyes and reduce visibility.
I am a professional writer, fashion blogger, and owner of the site https://laoutaris.com. As a salesperson for more than 20 years, I have experience of 10 years in the fashion industry. I consider myself a true fashionista. I am writing daily blog articles about fashion, tools and converters, and everything you need to know about the current fashion trends.
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