Men's eyeglasses trends: Hot, popular frame styles
Stylish glasses for men are the rage – even for those without prescriptions. (Shhh — we won’t tell.)
And there’s nothing shady about swapping lenses to refresh a pair you already own.
Here's a quick look at what's buzzy and trendy in men's eyeglasses styles:
Check out the latest aviator eyeglasses styles.
This classic glasses style , launched in 1936 to protect pilots’ peepers, took off when Marlon Brando’s biker donned them in 1951’s "The Wild One," then soared as a perennial via Tom Cruise’s flyboy in 1986’s "Top Gun."
Have you checked out the trailer for the "Top Gun: Maverick" sequel due to hit theaters in 2020? You no doubt noticed the aviators are front and center again.
Update: gold metal or skinny navy acetate modernize frames, as do yellow, ombré or reflective lenses.
See: J. Lo-era A-Rod, as he tries to hide in plain sight.
Perfect for: shredded jeans and scuffed leather moto-jackets.
Pass on: Brando’s rolled sleeves.
This ’70s revival resurfaced on Ryan Gosling IRL (In Real Life) and as a sleazy P.I. in 2016’s "The Nice Guys." Design inspiration? Probably über cool actor Steve McQueen.
Update: Black acetate rims and pale yellow lenses have proven to be Mission: Possible on Prince William and soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo, who adopted the stylish men’s glasses Cruise wore in last year’s "M:I Fallout."
Perfect for: round faces, like "The Aviator" star and aviator glasses fan Leonardo DiCaprio’s.
Pass on: Gosling’s not-so-nice retro attire of leisure suits, short-sleeve shirts and a porn-stache in his flick.
Check out the latest Ray-Ban Wayfarer styles.
You can’t go wrong with this late-‘50s to ‘60s retro classic worn by Cary Grant in scary "North by Northwest."
Update: black lenses with black acetate frames on Daniel Craig’s Bond in 2015’s "Spectre."
See: Clark Kent on screen and Ryan Reynolds and Brad Pitt on red carpets.
Perfect for: hiding in plain sight.
Pass on: naming your kid after a Hitchcock thriller.
Ski goggles and chemistry lab shields
Think space aliens hitting the slopes.
See: this ‘70s rebirth on designer glasses for men’s runways of Rick Owens, Prada, Dolce & Gabbana and many more.
Perfect for: anywhere other than sports or science labs. (Irony is more hip.)
Pass on: accessorizing with a white lab coat.
Squares and rectangles
These flat-top stylish glasses for men prove it’s hip to be square.
Update: vivid colors.
See: Gucci and Dries van Noten’s runways.
Perfect for: round or narrow faces.
Pass on: basic brown. Boooring.
Once “readers” for mid-life crises, these edgy, elongated and oddly-shaped futuristic frames label you as arty.
Update: anything unexpected.
See: brazenly bespectacled Jeff Goldblum.
Perfect for: nightclubs, poetry readings, Broadway and art galleries.
Pass on: hogging these. Expect to fight your significant other for joint custody.
These men's eyeglasses styles were popular in the ‘60s, ‘80s, oughts - take your pick. But trust us: They’re baaack.
See: late designer Karl Lagerfeld, whose lenses matched his supersized black frames.
Perfect for: padded shoulder blazers (also baaack).
Pass on: a ponytail as Lagerfeld’s legacy.
A round we go, with this square-jaw softener, once the geek-chic domain of eggheads, philosophers, artists and architects.
Update: Strike gold, the ore of choice for 2019 and beyond, or score with a vivid acetate frame.
See: Stanley Tucci and predecessors Beatle John Lennon, architect Philip Johnson and painter David Hockney, all men’s round eyeglasses lovers.
Perfect for: law offices and artist hangouts.
Pass on: so-over silver and stainless-steel rims.
What make these basics new again are bold hues.
Update: blown-up prints and riffs, such as camouflage.
See: Brooklyn Beckham at Cannes Film Festival.
Perfect for: getting attention.
Pass on: classic tortoise shell.
Thick frames proclaim wearers as mad creatives and add heft to reed-thin bodies.
See: ‘80s grunge guru Kurt Cobain.
Perfect for: movie sets, SXSW, Coachella and design studios.
Pass on: heavy metal. Been there, done that.
Gen-Z drives sustainable fashion, including men’s frames of biodegradable acetate or recycled and found materials.
See: anybody under 35 or who longs to be guilt-free.
Pass on: faux wood acetate. (If you do fake it, keep it quiet!)
How to pick your glasses: Style and facial fit
So which men's eyeglasses style will look best on you? The mirror or a virtual try-on tool may hold the answer. Your face shape may dictate which frames suit you best — but let your intuition guide you as well.
Also keep in mind comfort, fit and durability of your eyeglasses.
If you're torn between men's eyeglasses styles, even after looking in a mirror, ask your mate or a fashionable friend to weigh in on your choices.
In the end, though, choose the glasses — classy, snazzy, bold or hip — that make you smile.
About the writer: Fashion writer Michele Meyer admits to owning eight pairs of glasses, though her ardor for face-jewelry began long before her mother failed to coerce her into contacts. She pays for her habit writing for All About Vision, Palm Beach Illustrated, Modern Luxury, Four Seasons, CMO.com, INVISION and VCPN, among others.
Page updated August 2019