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80s style sunglasses are very much in fashion, once again! Including Wayfarer style, mirror lens and aviator which are great for everyday fashion, and robot/cyclops and shutter lens which look fantastic at fancy dress parties and nightclubs.
The cool thing about most of these retro style shades is that they are unisex, too, although I don't think I'm brave enough to wear some of those brightly-coloured wayfarers!
So let's take a look at what we were covering our eyes with back in the 1980s.
This style was popular in the 70s and 80s and they featured heavily in TV shows and movies of the time. From Starsky and Hutch to Tom Cruise in Top Gun, they rarely seemed to lose their popularity and they are still a popular retro choice today. While the movie stars were wearing Ray-Bans, most of the general public bought cheaper replicas. However, if you're feeling flush, then nothing quite beats the feel of a pair of real Ray-Bans.
Mirror lenses were just so cool in the 80s, and I bought a cheap pair of these from a local market stall as Ray-Bans were way out of my price league. Of course, horny teenage boys loved them as you could stare at a girl's cleavage without anyone noticing!
Aviators were originally designed by Ray-Ban for pilots back in the 1930s, but quickly became available for the public to buy.
Latest Ray-Ban Aviators
It was during the 50s and 60s that Wayfarers first became popular. During the 1970s their popularity faded, but after the release of the movie The Blues Brothers in 1980 there was a slight boost in sales. However, less than 20,000 pairs were sold. Out of desperation, Ray-Ban signed a movie placement deal and Tom Cruise popularised them style once more in the movie Risky Business (1983). Hundreds of thousands of Wayfarers were sold and a further boost in sales was experienced after they were worn in the film The Breakfast Club and TV series such as Miami Vice and Moonlighting. With pop stars such as Debbie Harry, Madonna and Michael Jackson also wearing Wayfarer's, sales were in the millions by 1986.
Tom Cruise wearing Wayfarers in the eighties film Risky Business.
Robot style sunglasses (also called cyclops sunglasses) are just so 80s and match perfectly with the advent of the home computer age, robotic dancing and electronic synthesizer music. The brilliant video clip above features a robotic dancing competition from 1983 (being judged by Metal Mickey) and if you look carefully you will spot some robot style sunglasses, especially at 1:05.
These slatted sunglasses are also known as venetian blinders and can be seen in the 1982 Simple Minds video for Glittering Prize. Shutter shades were created purely as a fashion statement and don't offer any eye protection, although some now have proper UV resistant lenses with the plastic shutters over the top of the lens.
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