Different Types of Sunglasses Frames

Different Types of Sunglasses Frames

Sarah Cockburn
4 minute read

In this post we will be discussing the different types of sunglasses frames with more unusual names.

We recognize the frustration people feel when there is a style they are interested in purchasing and just have no idea what the style is called.

Here we will go through a list of sunglasses - or 'shades' that have names that are less obvious. 

different types of sunglasses frames

1) Wayfarers 

Wayfarer sunglasses are typically flat at the top and have rounded 'D' shaped lenses with slightly jutting out points to the sides. Tom Cruise has worn this style in the film 'Risky Business.' We have written an article previously about the history to Wayfarers too if you want to learn more about them. 

risky business

©Tom Cruise Risky Business IMDB

2) Aviators

Typically have a tear shaped lenses. Aviators were originally designed for pilots to help protect them from the glare of the sun whilst flying planes. Now they are just as important as a fashion accessory as they are for their usage for flying a plane.

3) Clout Sunglasses

Clout goggles have chunky frames and have been made famous by the likes of Kurt Cobain. Their strange name is not as cryptic as it sounds. 'Clout' is just another word for 'cool' and 'goggles' is an old term for eye glasses. Goggles is also a term that insinuates eye wear that fits 'snugly' across the face for protection as discussed in the Merriam Webster Dictionary.

They are not designed for protective purposes though. But they are shaped a bit like swimming goggles for example.

Read our previous article about Clout Glasses here

Kurt Cobain Clout Sunglasses 

© Picture of Kurt Cobain taken by Jesse Frohman

4) Semi Rimless

Semi rimless are exactly as they sound. They are glasses that have part of the rim missing. Rayban do a great pair of sunglasses that have a thick plastic brow rim at the top, with glasses that don't have a rim at the bottom and can be an excellent style choice.

5) Geometric

Geometric glasses are all about multiple angles. You may see glasses that are hexagon shaped. In Geometry, a hexagon is made of six sides. The word hexagon comes from a Greek word 'hex' which means six. 

Sunglasses Unique

6) Rimless

Rimless sunglasses are exactly as they sound. Completely without a rim. Round sunglasses can be sometimes rimless. They are another fashion look that can look really cool with the right outfit. 

7) Ski Glasses

Ski Glasses are made for purpose and have a shield physicality to them. They are designed to protect eyes from the sun's glare - which is even brighter as it reflects off the snow. If your eyes are not properly shielded, this can lead to photokeratitis - which is an extremely painful eye condition caused by exposure to too much UV light as explained in one of our last articles about the health advantages to wearing sunglasses.

8) Wrap Around Shades

Are sunglasses that wrap around your face snugly and are perfect for cyclists, as they shade out the blind spots, which could be potentially hazardous to the cyclist. 

9) Butterfly Shades

 Butterfly sunglasses are shaped like a butterfly almost, and the lenses are reminiscent of butterfly wings. They are characteristically a spin off the pointed cat eye. They are unsually abit more rounder. 

10) D shaped Frames

D shaped sunglasses have a soft shaped D lenses frame to them typically. Most have a soft shaped D, whilst some other ones have a more pronounced D shape to them. 

part three unique glasses

11) Cyclops Sunglasses 

Are named after the one eyed monster, as they literally are sunglasses with just one lense in a band shape. 


12) Oval Sunglasses

Oval sunglasses are self explanatory. They are simply oval shaped sunglasses. 

13) Steam Punk Goggles

These sunglasses are normally very ostentatious. They are round in shape with a nodding reference to steam punk technology. They were invented in the victorian era and are still worn to this day. we have previous written an article which explains the history of steam punk in a bit more depth.

14) Shield

Shield sunglasses have become a fashion accessory in recent years. They are not used for the ski slopes, although have a similar shape. They form part of urban fashion styles.

15) Blade

Blade style glasses are normally worn on the ice hockey pitch. Although some wear them as a fashion staple. They are shield glasses with a definitive nose bridge section.

If there any sunglasses that you would like us to identify, we would love to assist you. Just contact us via our contact form

By all means this is not a definitive guide. We will probably be updating this page to reflect any more styles we can think of. 

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