Beyond swimsuits, sandals, and summer dresses, there’s one crucial accessory for warm weather: a stylish pair of sunnies. Like a tree topper or cherry, the best sunglasses for women finish an outfit with flair while more practically providing sun protection on bright days. Finding the right new pair of sunglasses for you, however, can be a tricky task. Let’s dive deep into the best sunglasses for different face shapes, explain polarized sunglasses, and break down the best sunglasses you can shop now—all under $100.
What is your face shape?
When it comes to face shapes, yours likely falls into one of these types: round, oval, heart, square, triangle, or diamond. You can determine yours by considering your forehead, cheekbones, and jaw, and where they’re widest and narrowest. Most brands and retailers, such as Warby Parker, Nordstrom, and EyeBuyDirect have breakdowns and quizzes to help you determine your face shape.
What are the best sunglasses for your face shape?
The best sunglasses for round faces add angles to the softness of your shape—so look out for rectangle, square, geometric, cat-eye, browline, and D-shaped glasses. Oval faces (widest at the cheekbones with slight narrowing at the forehead and jaw) and rectangular faces (a similar shape with more square or angular jaw), on the other hand, can pretty much wear any frame that’s on the wider side to add balance to your face length.
True to their name, square face shapes are fairly evenly balanced in cheek, forehead, and jaw width and are often more angular. You may want to balance out the strength of this shape with round, oval, and oversized glasses.
Like hearts, those with heart-shaped faces are wider on the top and pointier on the bottom, so opt for sunglasses that are wider than your forehead and are perhaps rounded or curved on the bottom for softness. Round, oval, aviator and some cat-eye sunglasses work well for you.
If you have a triangular face shape (broad jawline with a narrower forehead), look for wider frames that balance out your broad jawline and perhaps have fun detailing, including rectangle, D-shaped, browline, and cat-eye shapes. Those with diamond face shapes (wider across cheekbones, narrower in your forehead and jaw) are complemented by rounder, more even frames. Some options include cat-eye, browline, round, and oval.
Ultimately, the best sunglasses for your face are the ones you feel good wearing (and there’s often overlap in styles). Many retailers offer at-home try-on sunglasses or have generous return policies, so don’t be afraid of trying a few pairs to find your favorites.
What are polarized sunglasses?
Polarized sunglasses (aka anti-glare sunglasses) have a special chemical in the lenses that cut down on glare reflected from roads, cars, snow, water, and more, allowing for less eyestrain and distraction. This is especially helpful if you’re looking for driving, beach, or running sunglasses. “Polarized lenses will give you the best quality vision by filtering out a lot of bright lights that can be annoying for your vision,” Tina Douroudian, a doctor of optometry in Sterling, Virginia, previously told SELF.