Brief History of Sunglasses in Fashion –
By the 1930’s, basking in the sun had become such a norm, that the wearing of sunglasses naturally became a real fashion accessory. We explore the history of sunglasses through the 20th century.
The classic tortoise shell framed and tinted sunglasses of the 1930’s were worn by many female Hollywood stars.
The tinted lens tortoise framed eye-wear has helped define a specific look that the 1930’s is now specifically remembered for. It is the decade that discovered sunglasses as a fashion accessory.
Bausch & Lomb introduced the brand name ‘Ray Ban‘ to launch anti-glare ‘aviator’ sunglasses.These became particularly popular on the ski-slopes and with mountaineers.. Research had shown that many pilots suffered from headaches due to sun glare.
These “Ray-Ban Aviators“, with their chic wire frame sunglasses with green glass lenses, replaced the traditional circular celluloid frames with more modernist shapes, and were worn by everyone from Hollywood stars like Carole Lombard to General “I will return!” Douglas McArthur.
Back in 1929 the inventor Edwin Land patented Polaroid and went on to patent various uses for his polarizing technology, including sunglasses, but it wasn’t until 1938 when Edwin Land teamed up with American Optical to create the Polaroid Corporation , that the first polarized sunglasses were produced.
Sunglasses have pretty much remained as as a fashion accessory ever since, with each decade providing its own iconic styles, popularized by famous actors and singers.
Hollywood Costume designers like Edith Head, herself a big aficionado of wearing shades, was one of the first to encourage Hollywood stars to sport sunglasses in the 1930’s. She always grabbed opportunities to adorn her stars with a pair of shades, like good friend Gloria Swanso. Here’s just a few selected iconic images of stars wearing sunglasses from some great movies.
Iconic Sunglasses worn by Musical Artists
That’s all !