The Spectacled

Get to Know: VAVA Eyewear

VAVA Eyewear

VAVA Eyewear

The “post-industrial” influence has long held court on music and fashion, from the early development of Trent Reznor and Nine Inch Nails, to the perverse and rebellious looks sent down the runway by British designer, Gareth Pugh. It was only a matter of time, then, that the influence made its way to eyewear.

Launched this past May, the Portuguese-founded and Berlin-based VAVA Eyewear is taking the post-industrial look to the masses, with two distinct collections of glasses that ride the line between light and dark, soft and loud, mainstream and underground.

VAVA Eyewear

VAVA Eyewear

Handmade in Italy, the frames are produced in small quantities, preserving standards of quality and allowing for more freedom in design. The “White Label” is clean and pure, minimalist in styling with a futuristic and forward-thinking outlook. The shapes are big and bold, challenging the perception of what a pair of glasses should look like. Yet there is a quiet, romantic quality to them as well.

VAVA Eyewear

VAVA Eyewear

The “Black Label,” meantime, is dark and gritty, inspired by cities like Detroit – once symbols of innovation and prosperity which subsequently fell into collapse and decay. The look is utilitarian yet slightly unsettling. Techno music is also a guiding influence, with its feelings of revolution and movement reflected in the shiny hardware and finishes. We imagine these glasses worn by artists and rebels, seeking to reclaim their lost cities or promote a new cause.

Whereas clothing designers continue to push the boundaries of normalcy and wearability, we haven’t seen a lot of adventurous design when it comes to glasses. VAVA Eyewear hopes to change that, offering a new vision – pun intended – for cool frames, and empowering both the glasses and the wearer to make a statement.

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Three Ways to Shield Your Eyes in Style This Summer

While summer may be the perfect time to pick out a new pair of shades, we’d like to advocate for also picking out the right pair of lenses this year. With the risks of UV exposure growing each year (studies say 1 in 5 cases of cataracts are caused by harsh UV light), it’s important to consider your sunglasses not only as a statement accessory, but also as protection for your eyes.

According to the latest reports, over 90% of harsh UV may pass through clouds. Under full sunlight, UV intensity is up to 20 times higher. And, researchers say UV exposure is increased even more by surrounding reflective surfaces, like water, sand and even grass. The takeaway from this: invest in properly-tinted lenses that offer anti-reflective properties and a strong UV protection. To help you get a head start, we’ve highlighted three of our favourite frames for the season, and offering a few reminders on how to shield your eyes in style from that UV light.

1. Chloe – CL2233 C03

Chloe 2233 C03

Chloe 2233 C03

These oversized shades from Chloe are as elegant as they are sassy, with a rich burgundy colour tempered by raised polka dots that surround the Chloe logo on the temples. The lacquered acetate gives off a sultry, sophisticated look, while the exaggerated curves add a touch of fun and whimsy. Finish the look off with Xperio polarized lenses – designed to eliminate glare thanks to a specific polarizing filter that acts like a Venetian blind, absorbing the blinding polarized light, while letting through the useful vertical light.

2. Matsuda Eyewear – 2080H 

Matsuda 2808H

Matsuda 2808H

We love the slim profile of these frames from Matsuda Eyewear, handmade from Japanese acetate and metal. The matte grey tortoise colour feels modern and unique, while vintage influences are found in the engraved temples and flat nose bridge. Grey polarized lenses are a refreshing change from brown or black. Use a Crizal anti-reflective coating that eliminates glare while enhancing visual sharpness and clarity. Xperio polarized sun lenses with Crizal Sun UV, meantime, offer UV protection of E-SPF 50+. That means your eyes are more than 50 times better protected than without any lens. (E-SPF values vary from a maximum of 25 for clear lenses, to 50+ for polarized sun lenses. The higher the E-SPF, the better the UV protection).

3. Steven Alan – Monroe 20th Anniversary
Steven Alan "Monroe - 20th Anniversary"

Steven Alan “Monroe – 20th Anniversary”

Steven Alan is celebrating two decades in business by releasing his most popular frame, the “Monroe,” in a limited-edition of 300 pieces. Each frame is engraved in gold with its number in the set. Three colours are being released, including this “Blue Sky” shade, which brings to mind sunny afternoons at the beach or lounging by the pool. Stainless steel rivets update the original frames’ diamond details, while gold-plated five-barrel hinges enhance durability and longevity. While most lenses protect against sun rays coming from the front, up to 50% of UV exposure comes from sunlight being reflected on the back of your lenses. Consider switching out the lenses for the Xperio polarized sun lenses with Crizal Sun UV, which protects your eyes from UV reflected from the backside of the lens, while also offering anti-scratch and smudge-repellant properties.

Whether your style is sporty or sophisticated, a new pair of summer sunglasses is always a fun way to refresh your look. Our advice: don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone when selecting a new pair of frames. But when it comes to choosing your lenses, don’t forget that comfort – and protection – are key.

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