For Spring 2018, sunglasses weren’t just UV- and people-protecting accessories; instead, designers included them in their runway shows as essential statement-making elements to their collections. And just like the frequent catwalk appearances of newly birthed supermodel Kaia Gerber, they were hard to ignore. Frames were either enormous or teeny-tiny, and spectacles came coated in a range of colors. The standard aviator and Wayfarer shapes were thrown out the window, and cat-eye and sport styles were ushered in and given new high-fashion interpretations; some were super-thin and had extra-snug ’90s fits, while others possessed a dad-like sensibility and some were glorified mini-art projects glued to the upper-half of the face.
Designers began throwing shade in New York, with the likes of Adam Selman showing street style-approved retro cat-eyes alongside his sartorial interpretation of all-American classics. Similarly, Prabal Gurung included a cat-eye-shaped optic in his playful spring range, but the designer added a blue tint to the upturned lenses and shrunk the vintage style so that they barely covered the model’s eyelashes — seems like he took some cues from the Insta-influencing set who spent summer in itty-bitty bits of eyewear. And then there was Rihanna, whose Fenty Puma line reinvigorated functional eyewear in the form of sporty, full-coverage lenses. Leave it to Rih to promote eye protection in style.