The busy girl's guide to every style of sunglasses (and what suits your face shape best!)
Let's be honest, our shades of choice do all the talking for us
Sunglasses are the ultimate go-to accessory for our tropical climes, serving a dual purpose of providing relief from the sun and upping your style factor.
With numerous designs and shapes available, shopping for the perfect pair can be overwhelming but fret not, and let this guide give you the low-down on how to fit your face with the most flattering pair.
Disclosure: If you like them all, buy them all. We’re a judgement-free zone over here! Besides having more than one pair of sunnies is normal for we Singaporeans.
Sexy, feminine and vaguely retro, cat eye sunglasses sweep upwards at the edges where the temples join the frame front. Super popular in the 1950s and 1960s (especially when styled with a beehive hairdo), this style scores major glamour points and elevates even the most casual of looks.
Best suited for: Because of the large range of angles of cat eye sunglasses, this style is almost universally flattering – you’ll just have to get out there and experiment! If you have a rounder face, look for a pair that is extra upswept with a smaller lens.
We love the flipper shades for its quirky design! Featuring a sort of 2-in-1 design where you can flip up the tinted lens to reveal clear lenses, these are great for both indoors and outdoors. The double lens lends a unique dimension to this style of sunglasses, elevating them from regular shades.
Best suited for: Flipper shades tend to be round, so you’ll want to avoid them if you have a round face! As with round lenses, these work best for triangle, diamond, heart and square shaped face.
Featuring a teardrop-shaped lens and metal frames, the aviators date back to 1936. Did you know that it was the U.S army that originally commissioned Ray-Ban to design them for pilots gearing up for World War II? They were made super popular in the 1980s with shows like Top Gun and Hawaii Five-O, and is an extremely trendy style to sport today.
Best suited for: Because of its curves, aviators work best for angular face shapes like heart, square, rectangular and diamond. If you have an oval face shaped, you can also rock this style as most glasses would fit you, but be sure to take note of proportions and pick a pair that don’t have excessively large lenses.
Commonly oversized, square sunglasses are as their name suggests, featuring a square-shaped lens that is equal at all edges. These are great for making a fashion-forward statement, or for blocking out extra rays on especially sunny days, thanks to their size.
Best suited for: Narrow and round faces with a gentler jawline. Square shaped shades look especially good on rounder faces as it helps to set off the roundness, adding a lovely contrast of angles.
Channel movie star vibes with oversized sunglasses. This is just an umbrella term for any shape of eyewear that feature a larger lens than usual, lending its wearer a mysteriously chic look (think celebrities avoiding the paparazzi). From square to round, oversized sunnies work best with simple outfits (and are perfect for hung over brunches, if you ask us).
Best suited for: All face shapes can pull off oversized sunglasses, depending on the shape of the lens. A good rule of thumb to follow is going for an angular style if you have a round face, and a rounded style for angular faces.
Think of this style as glasses with lenses shaped like the number ‘8’ lying on its side. Similar to round sunglasses, the oval style features a slightly elongated lens and commonly features a top bar. These are super stylish and very versatile!
Best suited for: Oval sunglasses work for almost any face shape, but is best avoided if you have a round face. Proportion is key when it comes to oval sunglasses, and you’ll want to ensure the lenses are too big or too small for your face!
Who needs a pocket mirror when you have a pair of reflector sunglasses? One of the trendiest styles you can find today, these sunglasses feature 100% reflective lenses, completely shielding your eyes from view. From silver to blue to orange, you can get lenses in almost any colour, and if you pick a design with thinner arms and frame, make for a great colour pop to monochromatic outfits.
Best suited for: This style of sunglasses is named for the lenses, so it can come in a various frame shapes from round to oval to cat eyed. Pick a design that best compliments your face shape, and a lens colour that compliments your skin tone (cooler hues for warmer skin and vice versa).
Whether it’s a holographic lens, unique frames or even lenses with cut outs, funky clubmaster sunglasses are basically any pair of shades that don’t fall under traditional styles like round, rectangular or cat eye. Brands like Gentle Monster and House of Holland do this style particularly well, and inject major style power to even the simplest of outfits.
Best suited for: Funky clubmasters can come in tons of shapes, so we highly recommend trying these on in person, or buying the knock-off version of more expensive brands before investing in the real thing. Otherwise, you can tons of fun styles on sites like Amazon and ASOS that won’t hurt your wallet too much.
Inspired by well, bug’s eyes, these super oversized, round sunglasses cover most of the face and usually feature a tinted, ombre lens. Celebrities like Nicole Richie were often seen wearing this style in the early 2000s, but they have proven to be a timeless design with fashion houses like Céline and Dior keeping them in their regular rotation.
Best suited for: As this style of glasses tend to be rounded, they work best for all face shapes except round, although you can find designs that are slightly more square-ish. As the lenses are super oversized, opt for thinner frames so you don’t overwhelm your face even more.
Offering ultimate protection from the sun’s rays thanks to frames that extend almost to your temples, wrap-around shades are as their name suggests, wrapping around your face for an almost sporty vibe!
Best suited for: This style works best on oval and diamond face shapes as the wrap-around lenses will compliment your cheekbones. It is especially important to try these on in store before buying, as Asian features tend to be flatter, meaning it might not sit comfortably on your cheeks and nose bridge.
First designed in the 1952 by Raymond Stegeman, an optical designer who worked for Bausch and Lomb, the classic wayfarers are shaped similarly to square sunglasses, with a classic, thick frame featuring a slight curve on the lower half. It was brought back into fashion in 2000s when style icons like Chloe Sevigny and Mary-Kate Olsen were spotted wearing them. Trendy yet classic, you’ll see them in virtually any eyewear store today!
Best suited for: Wayfarers work on almost any face shape, but you’ll want to avoid them if you have a square shaped face as the thicker frame can add the appearance of bulk to your face.
Defined by their wide, wrap-around design made from a single lens, shield sunglasses come in a variety of styles featuring thin metal frames, chunky plastic frames or even a lens that wraps all the way to the back of the ears. Fun fact: Arnold Schwarzenegger wore this style in the original 1980s Terminator movie.
Best suited for: Shield sunglasses work best for square face shapes as the gentle lines help to soften the strong lines of your face. They also work for oval face shapes, but be sure to pick a pair that aren’t too big to avoid overwhelming your features.
Used by the sporty, athletic crowd, sports sunglasses feature high SPF protection, a lightweight frame and some styles even offer spring-loaded arms to ensure they stay on your face during sports with high impact, like volleyball or mountain biking. They often feature a wrap-around style to ensure no sun rays creep in from the side and to encourage aerodynamics.
Best suited for: Sports sunglasses aren’t necessarily the most flattering on all face shapes, but these are crucial if you are engaging in outdoor activities for prolonged periods of time, especially if you are in the snow or by the sea. Water and snow reflect up to 90% of UV rays, which can be very damaging for your eyes if you don’t keep them well protected. Sometimes, function is more important than form!
Generally oversized, butterfly sunglasses are as their namesake, featuring a “winged” frame design that can vary in terms of details, such as temple width, height and even shape. We love this style as it tends to cover more your face, protecting you from UV rays.
Best suited for: This style works best for square, oval, diamond and heart shapes faces as it helps to accentuate cheekbones and balance out smaller jaws. This is also a good style if you have a larger nose as it helps draw attention away!
Break away from traditional sunglasses and opt for a pair of geometric shaped sunnies instead! This style can feature anything from trapezoid to octagonal frames (think Linda Farrow, Marc Jacobs and Le Specs) and make a cool addition to your wardrobe.
Best suited for: Again, depending on your face shape, pick the pair according to how round or angular your face is, but don’t worry too much about finding the “perfect” pair. Geometric glasses are deliberately shaped a little oddly, so focus more on the size rather than the shape.
Also known as ‘teashades’ or ‘Lennon specs’, circular-shaped sunglasses were made popular by The Beatles in the 1960s, and to this day, evoke hippie, flower-power notions. You can find round shaped glasses in a variety of styles, some featuring side-shields for a steam punk vibe or multi-coloured lenses for an artsy, hippe look.
Best suited for: Triangle, diamond, heart and square shaped faces benefit the most from rounded glasses, as the gentle curves help to offset sharper angles, drawing attention to the center of your face. Avoid this style if you have a round face.
Featuring lenses that are longer than they are tall, rectangular sunglasses come in a variety of styles from extremely angular frames to those with softer edges, and in a wide range of design. These are similar to square shaped sunglasses, but have a slightly longer width in comparison.
Best suited for:Round and oval shaped faces work the rectangular sunglasses best, as these face shapes can accommodate the angular nature of the frames. If you have a smaller face overall, then rectangular sunglasses can help to add a little length.