13 Pairs of Sunglasses for Your Next Adventure
One of the most important travel accessories you should pack — regardless of your destination — is a good pair of shades.
Sunglasses aren't just important to pack for that warm Caribbean escape, they're also vital when you're hitting the slopes. UV rays can be up to eight times more powerful in snowy conditions because of the reflective properties of snow, according to the College of Optometrics. People with light-colored eyes, like blue or green, are even more at risk of sunlight-related eye damage. So, wearing a good pair of sunglasses is just as important as applying sunscreen (which you should also be doing).
But what exactly does a “good” pair mean? First of all, you'll need sunglasses that block harmful UVA and UVB rays. It’s important to know that not all polarized shades have UV protection: Polarized lenses will shield your eyes from the sun’s glare, which is great, but that has nothing to do with UV protection.
Opt for sunglasses that are comfortable and appropriate for where you're going, too: Make sure the frame is not too tight but instead comfortably snug. You don’t want to be running after your sunglasses in case of sudden high winds.
Of course, design is important, too. Thankfully, there are many quality options on the market that you won’t have to search long to find a pair that looks cool and protects your eyes. Investing in a classic style, like the aviator or the wayfarer, is always a good idea. Opting for a statement pair with mirrored lenses and a bold colored frame, on the other hand, is a great way to add some fun to your travel outfits.
Keep scrolling to see 13 cool shades to bring on your next trip.
Ray-Ban Aviator Sunglasses
Created in 1936 at US Army Air Corps’ request, the Aviators blocked the sun’s dangerous blue and white light to reduce headaches among pilots. Who would have thought back then that after more than 80 years, this all-American style will be a best seller around the world? If classic design is your thing, then having a pair of Aviators is a must.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $204
Illesteva ‘Leonard’ Sunglasses
Illesteva is a company that has the market (and Hollywood) by storm. It makes all of its sunglasses in Italy and France from quality materials, which ensures their durability. The founders of the brand often say that it was born from the “need for classic eyewear with a downtown New York aesthetic.” And if there’s a style that epitomizes this philosophy, it’s the brand's best-selling Leonard.
To buy: shopbop.com, $177
Quay Australia Women's 'Sweet Dreams' Square Sunglasses
Quay Australia’s designs are inspired by music and are for the “the nonconforming and freethinking.” In other words, if you are the traveler who’s always on the lookout for the next cool music festival around the globe, then you’re going to love this company’s designs (and affordable prices). These oversized square frames with a metal brow bar and nose bridge will be sure to add a touch of flair to any travel outfit.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $55
Ray-ban 'Erika' Classic Sunglasses
A modern take on a classic silhouette, these frames from Ray-ban are universally flattering. They feature a keyhole bridge and thin metal arms, making them lightweight and perfect for travel. Plus, these frames offer 100 percent UV protection.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $147
Warby Parker 'Tabitha' Sunglasses
These chic frames, made from stainless steel and cellulose acetate, offer a classic, vintage-inspired look. The lenses also block 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays, and feature an anti-scratch coating.
To buy: warbyparker.com, $145
Le Specs 'Hey Macarena' Polarized Sunglasses
If you prefer lighter sunglasses, look no further than this pair from Le Specs. The blonde plastic frames and brown-tinted polarized lenses offer a summer-friendly look that you'll want to take on every trip to the beach this summer.
To buy: shopbop.com, $69
Quay Australia 'Hardwire' Sunglasses
These unisex sunglasses from Quay with reflective lenses have a bold square shape that will be sure to make a statement. The polycarbonate lenses are lightweight and durable, making them a solid option for travel.
To buy: nordstrom.com, $65
Oakley Men's Latch Oval Sunglasses
These black on black frames are simple yet stylish, and will go with just about anything. However, if you're looking for something bolder, you can choose from a wide range of color combinations, all made with UV protection.
To buy: amazon.com, $146
Warby Parker Downing Sunglasses
These sunglasses offer a polished look, with their round lenses and flattering keyhole bridge. And if you're an eyeglasses wearer, you can easily add your prescription to these lenses.
To buy: warbyparker.com, $95
Persol Square Sunglasses
For shoppers who prefer square frames, these sunglasses from Persol are a sure bet. They're available in both warm- and cool-toned colorways, including this sleek grey, so you can be sure to find a pair that fits your style.
To buy: amazon.com, $137 (originally $260)
Spy Optic Men's 'Flynn' Sunglasses
How cool is this matte pair of shades? While we haven’t checked Spy Optic’s claim that the frames are “virtually indestructible,” we have to admit they look pretty sturdy and we would love to wear them for a day on the slopes. You can also customize this style with the company’s “Happy Lenses” that have color and contrast-enhancing features.
To buy: zappos.com, $150
Tree Tribe Sunglasses
Tree Tribe is an eco-friendly brand that plants ten trees for every sale they make. Their signature bamboo sunnies have a UV400 protection and a scratch-resistant coating. While the Wayfarer design gives them a classic look, the frames made from real bamboo ensures that every pair is unique.
To buy: amazon.com, $50
SeaSpecs 'Black Jet' Sunglasses
Kiteboarding, surfing, jetskiing, windsurfing, or whatever your preferred water sport is — these sunglasses will make sure your eyes stay protected while you’re riding the waves. The frames are ventilated for clarity and the non-removable strap is easily adjustable with one hand.
To buy: amazon.com, $33
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