It’s no secret that sunglasses have a long and rich history. The sunglasses of the past are very different from the shapes we are used to today. Sunglasses are an essential summer accessory, protecting our eyes from harmful UV rays.
What can we discover besides interesting designs, brands and materials that everyone can choose according to their taste?
Let’s have a look.
1. Did you know that sunglasses were originally designed to protect your eyes in winter? Winter is the time when our eyes are most exposed to ultraviolet rays. This is because sunlight reflects off ice and snow crystals. People who hunted needed glasses to avoid losing sight of their prey in the blinding light of the sun.
2. The first sunglasses were made out of wood. They had no lenses. To see what was going on around them, holes were drilled in the wood and rubber straps were put on the head.
3. In the United States, sunglasses are still a mandatory part of the summer uniform of American military and police officers. However, these sunglasses are different from the ones we use in everyday life. Military sunglasses are made of fire-resistant plastic and their lenses can reflect bullets travelling at 170km/h. Interestingly, police officers wear glasses not only to protect their eyes, but also to hide their gaze from suspects and avoid eye contact with them.
4. The prototype of the “militaria” style, popular in the 1930s and 1940s, was the American military, whose main feature was aviator sunglasses. The famous Ray-Ban brand still produces the legendary aviator model.
6. In Spain, there was a way to show others the importance of aristocracy. It was believed that the larger the frame of the glasses, the more noble the origin of the person and the more respectful they should be treated.
7. Elton John, perhaps the most famous spectacle enthusiast, had a collection of over 20,000 pairs. The glasses had to be kept in a special room where the temperature never exceeded 16°C. Today, the musician has 4,000 pairs.
8. The rarest and most expensive spectacles in the world are the Emerald model, produced by Shiels Jewellers. The lenses are made of real emeralds and the frames are made of gold and diamonds. These glasses take five years to make and start at $200,000.
9. Believe it or not, there are sunglasses that make the world around you seem flooded with sunlight. These sunglasses are recommended for use in winter or in dark rooms to compensate for the lack of sunlight and heat. Manufacturers claim that such accessories are not harmful to eye health, but on the contrary, they can help to eliminate blurred vision and depression.
10. The debate about whether eyebrows should be visible when wearing sunglasses is still ongoing. Some say it depends on the shape of the face, others argue that it is an infringement if the eyebrows are above the frame.