The Case for Statement Glasses

Wearing a pair of statement glasses is inherently scary. Something on your face that demands attention? By choice? For most it’s an immediate “no thanks,” but hear me out: Committing to a pair of large, (literally) in-your-face glasses is a shortcut to leveling up your personal style. 

Last winter I became completely enthralled by oversized, bug-eyed glasses—something that completely defied my preference for small frames. I’m pretty picky about eyewear; I think only a select few glasses look good on my face, but with the oversized specs, I felt imbued with a newfound confidence. The boldness of my glasses forced me to reconsider my entire wardrobe. Wearing my old, schlubby clothes with chic glasses seems a mismatch, like an NFL quarterback playing on a middler school flag football team. (Now, that’s not to say that casual clothing is a no-go for statement glasses, but my collegiate Brandy Melville crop top collection wasn’t exactly hitting the mark.)

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Wendell Teodoro

Jeffrey Ufberg

I began building outfits around my new glasses, now overcome with an aura of mystery and—let’s be honest—a little bitchiness that the shades afforded me. Soon enough, I found that they tied my looks together, even on a jeans and T-shirt kind of day, and encouraged me to be a more thoughtful dresser. My statement glasses proved to me that I didn’t have to put together an elaborate outfit every day to be well-dressed, but rather, served as a centerpiece for me to build around.

Some incredibly stylish people are purveyors of statement glasses. Jenna Lyons, who has recently become Bravo’s best-dressed cast member, has taken on an anti-Housewife model with her proclivity for jeans and oversized eyewear. Lyons’s giant frames have become synonymous with her look, to the point where she’d almost be unrecognizable without them. The same can be said of Iris Apfel, whose signature round lenses have made her a fashion standout. While Apfel is by no means a minimalist, it’s her glasses that have become her calling card.