IT'S ALL IN THE EYES
I have to admit it, I have a few weird rules about things that have no meaning or sense. An odd list that has no theory behind it, but I use subconsciously as a guide to my life. Take for example when I was pregnant. I refused to buy ‘maternity’ clothes because (yes, yes, all in my head) I imagined I would be one of ‘those’ women that was ‘all belly’ and wouldn’t put on weight anywhere else. This concept completely backfired as I was pretty much a watermelon for 9 months and lived in my husband’s clothes. I would have felt a lot better, and more comfortable, in a pair of maternity jeans. But again for my second pregnancy, I did the same thing! I actually think it just comes down to being in denial about the realities of life.
My latest denial is the fact that I really, really need glasses to read. It’s been about 3 years since I noticed it was difficult to read a menu in a restaurant without extending my arm out to read what I wanted for lunch from 1/2 a metre away. Or when looking at my phone early in the morning made my eyes weep like I had just watched a sad romantic movie. I think the reality of my denial is that I associate needing glasses with age…old age! Which I realise is ridiculous as my son got glasses when he was 2 - clearly it is not about age! And oddly many of my style icons wear glasses but I don’t notice that they even wear them. So, as part of my work I recently got the opportunity to be in a campaign for an optical glasses company, Specsavers. So, rather than just being in the images, I decided to embrace my deteriorating eyesite and go and get an eye test. Just from the eye test and trying on options, I realised I had been struggling for so long by putting up with blurred vision, and the alternative was incredible! I could see almost like my life was in high definition again.
The optometrist asked me to pick out a frame for my new reading glasses, which I was very excited about, as I had already made a mood board in my mind of how it would transform my look. I thought it would be a fun process, like selecting a pair of shoes, or a new handbag, however I was so, so wrong. I always know what I like when I go shopping and have no issues deciding, but picking a pair of frames was one of the hardest decisions of my fashionista life. I had no idea what the rules were, what suited me, or if I wanted a statement or a classic pair - to admit it was actually very overwhelming selecting one pair! Which I have to say is very, very odd for me to be so indecisive!
So, I decided to use myself as a experiment in case any of you are also in denial about needing optical glasses OR already wear glasses and need help picking a new frame that’s right for you. You’re putting something on your face that literally changes the way people see you, so I feel it’s an important subject, and very much a part of your style.
1. Designer labels do optical! I didn’t realise the choice or selection on offer in optical frames - pretty much every designer has a range these days. And the signature of the designer really comes out in the design of the frames, so your clothing style can continue into your glasses look. I always thought glasses were expensive but they can be very affordable, even by selecting a brand name.
2. Invest in a quality frame, especially if you consider the cost per wear ratio - ummm every day! My 7 year old son goes through a new pair each month because he is very active and is just being a kid. So, if you look after your frames you can get longevity out of them.
3. How do you select a frame that compliments your features? Here are some guidelines…
Cat's eye: Characterised by a rounded shape that extends to an upward point near the temple, the cat’s eye is both elegant and glamorous. Cat’s eye glasses are best suited to those with triangular or oval faces.
Square: The square shape is best suited for round, heart and oval face shapes.
Round: The round eye shape has been seen more and more in recent years and is particularly on trend right now. This frame shape is ideal for people with square, or heart-shaped faces.
However, I think it’s about trying lots of different frames on and having someone honest with you to help you decide. When you are trying frames on, wear your hair out and pull it back so you can see how they look with different hairstyles too.
4. Buy multiple pairs! Places like Specsavers have deals like buy 2 get 1 free. Which means you can have some fun and experiment when frame shopping.
My advice would be to buy something with these categories in mind.
THE CLASSIC - A subtle frame, that isn’t overly noticeable. A pair you feel great in on good days and bad days and become your staple pair, that go with workwear or causal vibes. Think classic black, tortoiseshell or clear.
PERSONALITY - Try an interesting shape or a print that sums up you. You can wear these when you are feeling confident and want to be noticed. You can take a risk with this pair as they can really show of your inner style.
COLOUR - A big trend is to embrace colour in eyewear and this could be to complement your natural skin tone or hair colour...or match an outfit! Green coloured tortoiseshell and red tones are big this season as work well with all the warm earthy colour pallets in apparel.
5. Don’t just look at optical frames, if you see a sunglass frame you love, you can easily make them an optical option. Just ask the sales person to pop out the dark lens so you can check that they would work with a clear lens.
These days lots of people wear optical glasses without needing a prescription because it has become a fashion trend. The range on offer in optical glasses now is just as exciting as sunglasses, so it’s the perfect time to re-think those boring ones you have worn for years OR like me, own up to the fact you might need to be wearing glasses after all. I can tell this new necessity may become a style addiction for me!
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