Friday, July 30, 2010

Crystal clear FAIL

 Well, this is one entry that won't be getting a personal photo.

As is turns out, crystal frames let through sun just fine, so no temple tan lines. BUT...if your sunwear is any good, which mine always is...than the UV protection in the lenses will also provide sunscreen for the skin around your eyes. Which is totally great for the prevention of additional "smile lines" (ahem).

The end result, however, after a day of boating fun is two lens-shaped white shapes around your eyes.

So love crystal sunglasses. Just don't expect them to provide you with the perfect tan.

Also, I'd recommend staying away from the Lolita-esque heart-shaped sunnies if you're expected to appear in public after your day in the sun.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Keep Archie, blondie. Give me the sunnies.

It’s no secret that the dark Veronica’s of this world might occasionally feel some resentment towards the fairer Betty’s in our lives. And this week’s star sightings of blond actresses Reece Witherspoon in Jason Wu and Hillary Duff in Carrera as well as quasi-actress/personality Paris Hilton in Mykita (drool!) has done nothing but up the envy factor.

I guess blonds are known for their sunworshipping, beachgoing ways.  So sunglasses and blonds do tend to go together. And, of course, there’s the medical consideration: those with blue eyes should always be in sunglasses when they’re outside so they don’t end up with macular degeneration in their golden years.

So wear sunglasses by all means, blondies, but keep your hands off of these cool styles in the future. If it's any consolation, they can keep Archie.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Getting Away Shades

Tonight I’ll be packing and joining the monstrous chain of SUV’s trekking their way to The Shore for a girls week with my mom, my sister, and my nieces (with Dad and assorted brothers and nephews thrown in for good measure). And this is one of my favorite sunglass times of the year.

Most of the time I like to think that I know pretty much all there is to know about sunglasses, from their construction to their day-to-day applications. But it’s easy to forget that everyone brings their own perspective to the table and what I think is unbearably cool is just plain unbearable to others.

One of least favorite parts of the trip is the moment that I realize everyone around me thinks a pair of sunglasses in my heavy rotation are suited for someone else. Probably someone crazy or who has just given up the game entirely.

But one of my favorite parts is sitting on our lounge chairs, looking at the bay, passing around sunglasses, and finding that one pair every woman there—from the 12 year old to the 70 year old—wants for her very own. There’s almost always a favorite and I can’t wait to see which sunglass takes the prize this year.

I’m still loving the Prada Postcard looks and thinking this is going to be a big hit!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Hello Sunnies, Goodbye Cancer

I freakin hate cancer. There I’ve said it. And I won’t take it back. I mean maybe if Hitler had died a painful death of cancer, one could say, “cancer’s terrible, but at least it took out that damn Hitler.”

But it didn’t. 

So cancer has no redeeming features whatsoever and anything that fights against cancer has my support.

In fact, it warms the cockles of my heart to be able to connect my efforts to support those who fight against the ongoing rottenness of cancer with some beautiful sunglasses that are created to raise funds and help those who are trying to find a cure as well as those whose lives have been affected by the disease.

Every year BCBGMAXAZRIA comes out with a great sunglass to raise funds for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and this year is no exception. The Dream, in black or wine with pink-thinking, inspirational messages written inside the temples, is the latest model; and approximately $25 from the sale of each pair sold from September through August will be donated to the charity, with a minimum donation of $100,000 from ClearVision Optical the frame's manufacturer.

Oakley’s no slacker either. They just hit the $5 million dollar mark in contributions to LIVESTRONG based on sales of the company’s LIVESTRONG eyewear and sunglasses, which feature some of Oakley’s iconic styles such as Flak Jacket, Radar, and Fuel Cell (shown top) in LIVESTRONG’s equally iconic yellow and black color scheme.

So get your checkbooks out and eradicate cancer with style.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Going in Style

Feeling sorry for Lindsay Lohan seems like the right thing to do. Her life is a bloody disaster. Of course, if you were reduced from A-list Hollywood actress to selling self-tanner and leggings, maybe you’d need to indulge in barroom catfights and heavy self-medication.

Regardless, celebrity justice has been served and she’ll be doing semi-hard time for the next 13 days. Which, if you think about it, is an easier sentence than that put upon hundreds of thousands of 8-year-olds sent to sleep-away camp for the first time this summer.

But I’m not here to talk about politics, or sleep-away camps for that matter. I’m here to give Ms. L a true and heartfelt shout out for her service to the sunglass community. No matter how hard times have been, she has worn some great sunglasses and reminded us how much this accessory is invaluable in times of trouble and strife.

Since this is a unbudgeted blog, I can’t post the picture of Lindsey doing the ultimate walk of shame (complete with gold glitter!), I’ve posted a picture of a Ray-Ban Clubmaster…one of the great iconic sunglasses looks. It shows that if you’re going down, you might as well go in style.

See you in August, Lindsey.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Athletic Support

It’s so nice to be fit.

Or so I’ve heard.

My friends who are charging healthfully into the prime of life seem to be very happy in their running world. And it seems like such a smart thing to do.

But then there’s novels to read and dogs to scritch, and frankly that comfy seat isn’t going to plump up its own cushions.  So I’m left with no choice but to relax my days away.

Oddly enough, however, my aging process seems to be continuing inexorably forward and my parts seem to be heading inexorably downward. It’s too soon for that to happen, I don’t have enough money to buy my retirement villas in Boca and Sedona or for some good, but subtle work.

As a result, I’ve determined it’s time to get moving. I’ve even signed up for the Susan G. Komen 5K in NYC in September. Now it’s time to prep to guarantee I’ll survive a 3.5-mile outing. Of course, this means starting from the eyes down (my hair is just going to have to deal…it is a workout after all). There are sunglasses out there just for the purpose of exercising, as it turns out.

Who knew?

While I don’t think I’ll need extra high performance looks just yet, there’s no time like the present to get started.

A retro look such as Belem from the reborn Vaurnet might get me started.

Or I can jam it into high gear with Brazen from Nike.
If you see me lying by the side of the road in full workout attire, please make sure my head is turned in a way that ensures my sunglasses don’t get scratched.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Sunglasses, Naturally

Since I’m constantly complaining about being hot, you’d think I’d do something about it. And I do: I wear cool sunglasses and try not to rise too much of a sweat between car and condo.

But, in the scheme of long-term benefits to Mother Earth, that might not do the trick. So maybe I’ll go for a crunchy granola approach to sunglasses for a while. However, I’m not really the crunchy or granola type. I’m more the mimosa and spinach/feta omelet type—with a side of bacon.

So the dirty truth is, I want to give the impression of being environmentally sensitive, but without actually sacrificing any comfort, pleasure, or style.

Fortunately there are some lovely sunglass makers who are providing organic looks that are also stylish enough for me to attend a protest march in style. (As long as there’s a cocktail hour afterward and it’s not really too, too hot.) Ok, maybe for me to wear for a walk in the park or on the beach or in a convertible to appreciate nature's glories.

Above is Gold & Wood’s Moon sunglasses: All wood…sustainable…and wildly stylish. And below, a grassy and woven organic look, from Robert Marc, echoes coconut fibers, style 632.137. 
For these, I’d go green.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Nothing a turban, wine, and sunglasses won’t fix

There are days, typically after being exposed to many fabulous people and socializing heavily, that demand privacy.

Days when you work at your kitchen table, listening to the comforting burble of vaguely southern accented telesales personalities on the Jewelry Network while catching up with the paperwork and minutia of real work and life.

Days where it’s 9:30 and you’re still in last night’s pajamas and even the dog looks at you as if to say, “Aww, Girl…that look. It’s not good.”
And those are days that you get to a point and think, “Damn, I should have put on my kooky hat/turban/scarf and most enormous, black-lensed, black-framed sunglasses and headed into nature with my adorably groomed dog.”

A dash of STELLA might have done the trick (Stella McCartney style SM 4013)…
I’ll try to remember that next time, or maybe Gabby will. Good girl. Now let’s curl up with a box of biscuits and a bottle of sauvignon blanc to watch the sodalite with lapis necklaces go by.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Where Are the Wild Things?

Now I totally understand when you are too hot to do anything even remotely creative or otherwise potentially heat generating. In fact, at lunch today all I could think about is how good it would feel to dump my chilled asparagus soup over my head.

Which I managed not to do, but I still think it would feel good.

Anyway, one of the things I usually love best in New York City is watching the sunglasses go by. Checking the scene out, I get information on trends and confirmation that I kind of understand what’s going on style-wise.

But two days in the city this week didn’t blow my mind. Oh the looks were good. Timeless and stylish. But not moving fashion forward in any way. The streets were filled with lots of simple oversized black frames for the ladies.  Oakley’s and wrap looks on the guys. Wayfarers and aviators for everyone. (Including me. Yes, I’m still loving my gray leather Tod’s aviators. It’s the first aviator I’ve tried on that didn’t give me a mean bug look and I’m absolutely reveling it.)

So my point?

Turns out I have two.

People don’t quite seem to be pulling out of the financial prudence cycle in terms of getting impulsive, sassy sunglasses.

People really should start pepping up their sunglasses again, even if they have to do some bargain shopping. Which are totally possible (like the sale at Robert Marc’s stores this week!). 

So while I’d never encourage anyone to buy sunglasses from the black market types…I’ll go off on that at some future point…I am strongly encouraging those in the fashion capitol of the U.S. to step it up with the sunglasses.

I’m warning you, New York. If you keep this up, I’m going to do a weeklong tribute to the awesome sunglasses designed in California. Or Europe. Or BOTH!

Watch it.

Here's an Italian fashion forward design and planning students in Florence highlighted X-Ide's styles with Casentino Felt. Not exactly suited for the streets, but it's definitely a new twist! (And it might help absorb sweat! Thusly solving yesterday's problems!)

Sweaty complaining.

Usually I like to post a picture of a style illustrating my point. But after  today, I simply don't have an example to illustrate my need today. A sweat absorbing sunglass.

In NYC today I actually nearly liquified due to a combination of uncomfortably high temperatures, humidity, and rain. Not pleasant.

What I could have used was the world's most sweat resistant sunglass.

Any suggestions?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Brace yourself, Agnes.

I find technology intimidating. When someone starts talking about nanos and gigas and miscellaneous scientific words, the terms come out of his or her mouth, turn into little cartoon characters, and dance away. So I'm not sure how I feel about the new 3D sunglasses out there.

They look cool, they'll come in a bunch of styles so you can have your own 3D glasses on hand at all time. Which is preferable when compared to the paper crap with blue and red plastic wrap lenses, which I guess you could keep, but mine were usually pretty beat up within 90 minutes.

And the coolest thing is that you can wear them to watch 3D movies or just as real sunglasses. Which creates all kinds of slapstick moments in my mind where the world of 3D movies come to life in my home or office. I hope they don't mind cleaning because I could use some help.

Shown here, a prototype for Marchon 3D's first offering...

Monday, July 12, 2010

Easy like Monday morning

Lazy is a very ugly word.

It implies a certain slovenly aspect that I certainly will never cop to.

But, on the other hand, my life does qualify as a series of attempts to avoid difficulties and indulge in pleasures.

Frankly, there’s no shame in that. Is there?

One way to very effectively get away with a, and still look stylish is via a cool wrap sunglass. With the right sunglass, you can pull your hair back, splash on a little lip color, and strategically slide on a big pair of sunglasses that hides a multitude of shortcomings such as lack of eye makeup or unforeseen delays in the eyebrow waxing department—hence the use of the term "shield" in describing this eyewear style. For example, "Lady, you better do something about that unibrow or at least, for the love o' Mike, shield it!"

AND…if you match the sunglasses to a cute workout outfit, you can use the “I’m just on my way to/from the gym” excuse all day long! Who knows, maybe you actually get there at some point…

Here Fergie blends a workout and photo op in Jee Vice style Egoist.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Looking Forward (to a martini)

Well dang. Had a great holiday weekend, but it left me completely discombobulated. Missed my tai chi class on Tuesday (because I thought it was Monday), went to the wrong meeting on Wednesday (because I thought it was Thursday), and today just don’t know where the heck I am.

The only sure cure for a confusing week is a pair of black sunglasses. Something dark that shouts: “I’m on the edge, and you do NOT want to get between me and my dirty martini lunch.”

This Revo style, Grand Classic, has two traits to love: matte black color and a super-shiny blue/purple mirror. Because it has a sporty look, it makes it totally ok to run and not walk to cocktail hour.
But who better to learn about protecting privacy and staying cool in chaos than an actress? 
Here, Maria Bello sports gorgeous giant black Dior style Cocotte. Now someone get Maria a refill, for crying out loud!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Can’t Touch This

On a very hot day like today (and yesterday and the day before), it seems like way too much trouble to put on a face full of makeup. Especially since said makeup will look like I’ve been rode hard and put away wet before I even make it to my desk.

But I am a certain age and possess a certain level of vanity as well as concern for my fellow man, so a completely naked face out in public just doesn’t seem right. But on the other hand, it’s also too hot to be wearing glamma glamma shades that block and potential breezes I may encounter or slide all over the place on my glistening (no, that’s not sweat!) face.

Then there’s the no-touchy factor. As my nieces and nephews could tell you, there are certain times of the year that affection feels more like aggression and the universe becomes the backseat of mom’s station wagon where my siblings and I are packed in like sweaty sardines. At that point, let’s say over 92 degrees F, that nothing potentially sweat-generating can touch my skin without endangering it’s own potential for sustained life.

What’s a girl to do? I think little and light on these days. Even though they are not super fancy, in fact BECAUSE they are not super fancy, a rimless style really works. Because there’s no heavy frame and the lenses are lightweight, you don’t have to whine that your sunglasses won’t stop touching you.

The Silhouette Titan Minimal Art sunglass is probably one of the lighter sunglasses out there and since it’s good enough for astronauts (they were the go-to sunnies for the NASA program for many years) they’re pretty much good enough for us Earth-bound suckers.

And, as it turns out, jocks have nice, light, unobtrusive sunglasses that won’t slide all over your face, too. 

Rudy Project (above) and Zerorh+ both produce sleek looks that still have style without raising a sweat.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A Twist of Leather

Some people love leather…whether they’re weekend or daily bikers, admirers of Italian craftsmanship, or into a little…ahem…rougher way in their personal lives.

Some people fear leather…they think it’s hard to maintain, don’t feel like they can pull it off, or maybe it's even just a little too 80s heavy metal.

And then there is the place where both sides can meet: sunglasses!

I’ve been sporting Tod’s leather aviator sunglasses in a pearly silvery gray this summer (white shown here) quite happily. In fact, the leather seems to have a softening influence on the aviators, which are something that can be very hard to pull off for moi—a woman with a chubby face and a Donna Reed-inspired dress sense (yes, twin set are cute, shut up!). 

These are classic and sassy. Classy. Is that where that word originated? Hmmm.

But I know that a full sunglass o’leather just isn’t for everybody. Sad but true.

Then today I got a little note about a new collection of “Twisted Leather” sunglasses from Alviero Martini 1A Classe (best know for great luggage and bags with antique-map patterns).  
They’ve got a flattering acetate front and a temple that blends metal and leather for a really luggage-y feel that provides the hipness of leather without the maintenance issues of having the material resting against your cheeks all afternoon. 

In short, they are smart as a whip. 

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Masked Spinster

So Paulo (my imaginary boyfriend) and I were in my (also imaginary) pool this weekend, and he turned to me and asked me if I wanted another blue Hawaiian. Pulling off my supa glamma enormous sunglasses to wink saucily at him in the affirmative, I noticed Paulo’s eyes widen and an extremely virile and manly giggle (chuckle? Chortle?) escaped his lips. Before he could get himself into even more trouble, he headed to the bar cart and got right to work. But still, his laughter left me with a sinking suspicion.

Using my mirrored lenses as a facial evaluator, I took a good long look. And what I saw was scary.

Oh. Craaap.

Sunglass tanlines.

Big ones.

So for the rest of this month I’m going sunglass experimental and trying rimless sunglasses and crystal sunglasses and maybe even tiny sunglasses to see if I can get my raccoon mask down to manageable size before August. Will sun actually shine through crystal sunglasses for a more even, less creepy masky tan?

My first adventure may very well be with the Prada Postcard style SPR 19M, for two reasons:
It’s still big enough for me to feel supa glamma.

AND It’s a cat-eye.

Need I say more? Well then just look for yourself.

Friday, July 2, 2010

My Imaginary Boyfriend's Sunglasses

As a spinster lady, I frequently get complaints that I don't pay enough attention to the hairier sex in matters sunglass. Well, so sorry men. I love you, but I tend to be shopping just for me and not for my imaginary boyfriend.

Ok, that's not entirely true. My imaginary boyfriend, we'll call him Paulo, has fantastic taste. A little pretty, a little preppy, a little rugged--he can chop wood for my (also imaginary) fireplace and then take me out for a night of romance. Sigh... But I digress.

If I did have someone special, he would definitely be wearing a hot update on a classic style. There's something about a man in a twisted classic that is so hot and chic and brainy. He's definitely the guy who can change your oil and then talk to you about Wordsworth. There are some really great, fresh looks for men that some hot celebs are sporting these days. Although neither the A-Team nor Sex and the City 2 are making anybody's Oscar short list, their leading men are looking hot, hot, hot...

Bradley Cooper in style Legend in grey fade with a custom blue lens by Allyn Scura

Evan Handler in l.a. Eyeworks' style El Rey

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Shameless Sunnies

Gearing up for the holiday weekend, it’s always good to consider all of your options. Yes, you want a pair of sunglasses that’s appropriately fun and sassy for a picnic or a day at the beach. But the potentially seamier side of the weekend should be considered as well.

Sometimes eating that last slice of vodka-infused watermelon or getting a bit too swept up in the romance of the fireworks displays on the 4th leads to an evening of high jinks, frolics, and goodness only knows what else. This leaves you in the unenviable (or potentially enviable) position of getting back to your car and on the road the next morning in your bbq-besmirched clothes from the day before while trying to maintain some modicum of panache.

In these situations, mimosas/bloody Marys, analgesics, and omlettes help ease the pain. But nothing helps both conceal and protect bleary and shamed eyes better than a pair of sunglasses, the less translucent the better.

If you want to get going on the down low but still maintain a chic look, basic black always does the trick. A light wrap is especially good when you’re braving a walk into the sunlight and you’ve been up since the day before. Your eyes will thank you. 

Here, Paul Smith style Quintana

For the pumas and cougars out there who are ready to answer the question: “Have you been in that young man’s basement apartment all night?” with a resounding “Hells yeah!” a pair of flashy suns may be in order. 

Here, the Tura 004 in Gold.