A Man's Guide to Buying Sunglasses

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For many men, sunglasses are an essential part of spending time outdoors. While many men wear sunglasses only during the summer months, the ultraviolet rays from the sun can be strong during any time of the year. Sunglasses come in a number of styles, a testament to their ubiquity as a fashion statement around the world. However, sunglasses are more than just a fashion statement; they are designed to protect eyes not only from the harsh glare of the sun but also from cancer-causing ultraviolet rays. Sunglasses protect the eyes from dust particles and anything else that can damage the eyeballs.

When buying men's sunglasses, these factors, as well as the style factors, should be taken into consideration before a final decision can be made. It is therefore important for a man to understand what kinds of styles are available as well as how lenses work and what options are available. Armed with this information, any man can find the right sunglasses for himself, whether it be in a brick-and-mortar eyeglass shop or online via a website such as eBay.

Understand Face Shapes

One of the first steps towards finding an ideal pair of sunglasses is to determine what kind of facial shape the wearer has. Each person's face is shaped uniquely, but most faces fit within a range of shapes. Sunglasses that are not designed for a certain face shape may look awkward or odd on the wearer.

Face Shape


Ideal Sunglass Shapes


Large, strong jaw

Sharp angles


Broad forehead; pointy chin

Lenses with a wider lower edge; rounded top edge


Oval shape

Any shape; thick frames


Curvy face; small features

Rectangular frames; narrow frames

The ideal approach when matching sunglasses to a face shape is to look for contrast. A face with lots of roundness can benefit from straight lines, and vice versa.

Sunglass Styles

Like clothing, sunglasses are constantly changing. New styles and frames are introduced on a regular basis. There are, however, some styles that have remained popular for years, even decades. When buying sunglasses, it is important to be aware of the broad styles that most glasses fit into and then to look at the current trends regarding those frame styles.

Aviator Sunglasses

Aviator sunglasses are arguably the reason why sunglasses became popular in the 20th century. Pilots who needed to have their eyes shaded from the sun's glare were issued sunglasses with wide frames in order to cover a large part of the field of vision. After the second World War, these sunglasses became popular with civilians and remain one of the most popular styles.

Sport Sunglasses

Sport sunglasses come in a number of shapes. However, they are united by the fact that they are meant to be used during intense physical activity. There are several subcategories within the realm of sport sunglasses, such as those meant for water sports, like kayaking, water polo, and rafting. These sunglasses are meant to be water-resistant and are usually designed to float or stay attached to the wearer's head at all times. Men's sunglasses are also available for use in other sports such as rock climbing, and they are designed to better withstand impact.

Driving Sunglasses

Driving sunglasses are meant to protect eyes during long periods on the road when glare and the reflection of flight can cause eye damage. For this reason, driving sunglasses are usually made with high-contrast lenses. These lenses are meant to increase the sharpness of an image and reduce glare. This is usually achieved with a special coating on the lenses.

Sunglass Frames

Like regular glasses for improving vision, sunglass frames are usually made from different materials. The materials used can have an effect on price, durability, and appearance.

Plastic Frames

For the most part, frames are made from plastic, which is durable, lightweight, and relatively inexpensive. Plastic is also flexible and can withstand being taken off again and again without any problems. Plastic can, however, become very flexible in extreme temperatures, which may mean that frames can become bent. A quality variation on plastic frames is nylon frames, which are similarly lightweight, strong, and can be flexible as needed. Nylon frames tend to be more expensive but are more reliable than plastic frames.

Metal Frames

Metal frames are very strong and are used in many designer sunglasses for men. However, metal frames can break if they are bent or twisted improperly. These frames should not become too flexible with heat, although they may be hot to the touch at high temperatures.

Sunglass Lenses

Frames are the stylish half of a pair of sunglasses; the lenses are the practical half. Lenses are made with a variety of materials and come in a variety of colours. While colours may also be a style factor, each colour also offers certain practical benefits.

Lens Materials

Plastic lenses are more common and less expensive. They can reflect UV light just as well as glass, but they are more easily scratched. These scratches cannot be repaired, so new lenses are required. Glass lenses are another option and offer more clarity than plastic lenses. They are heavy, however, which may be a factor to consider. Polycarbonate lenses are more expensive and stronger. These lenses are tough and can even resist shattering if dropped. They are also much harder to scratch than plastic or glass. They are, however, not as clear as glass lenses.

Lens Colours

The colours that lenses come in are very important. For the most part, sunglass lenses are black, which is ideal in terms of cutting light. Black lenses also avoid the problems that come from distorting colours. However, it can be harder to see contrast with black or grey lenses compared to other colours.

Lens Colour


Brown and Green

Minor contrast enhancement; minimal colour distortion


Increased contrast; heavy colour distortion

Orange and Yellow

High contrast; high depth perception

All colours of lenses can offer the same UV protection. If this is the most important factor in buying sunglasses, any colour should do the trick.

Lens Features

Along with the ability to dim light and protect eyes from UV rays, some lenses incorporate other features. An example is polarised lenses, which reduce the amount of light that bounces off reflective surfaces. That makes these lenses ideal for watersports or even skiing. Mirrored lenses are a fashion statement but also filter light better than other lenses. It is important to know ahead of time what kind of lenses are needed when buying a pair of sunglasses, so that one can purchase the right type of lenses for one's use.

Photochromic Lenses

Photochromic lenses become darker as they are exposed to more light. These types of sunglasses are usually a part of regular eyeglasses, and they save the owner from having to wear two pairs of glasses. Non-prescription versions are available for those who do not have eye problems and simply want to wear sunglasses indoors or in low light situations.

How to Buy Men's Sunglasses on eBay

You can find sunglasses on eBay in an astonishingly wide variety. Choose from different sunglasses made by a number of designers. You can also purchase used sunglasses if you are looking to save money. Finding the right pair of sunglasses is easy using the search bar found on every eBay web page or through eBay Deals on eyewear. Search terms can be as simple as 'men's sunglasses', or they can include references to designer or purpose. Note that new items are added all the time, so a search repeated some days later may turn up new choices.

Evaluate Each Product Carefully

Every item sold on eBay is accompanied by a product description that contains details about an item's history. The product description is particularly helpful when buying used sunglasses. If you have questions not answered by the description, then contacting the seller directly is recommended.


Sunglasses are such an ubiquitous part of summer or life in tropical climates, that many people keep them handy. For men, it is important to determine what kind of sunglasses should be the ideal fit before making a purchase. This can begin by evaluating one's face in order to determine the frame shape to use. Then, it is a question of evaluating frames and lenses in terms of the materials they are made from and the features they have. Materials that are less expensive are usually more fragile and prone to breaking. This makes it important to determine if the longevity of a pair of sunglasses is more important than the overall price. Taking all of these factors into consideration can make it easier for a man to find the right pair of sunglasses for himself.

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