One good thing about the sunglasses industry is that styles don’t change nearly as much or as often as they do in the rest of the fashion business. That’s not to say designers don’t try to woo retailers season after season with new creations — because they do, but in the sunglasses world, traditional designs can oftentimes trump newer ones.
One of the biggest draws for sunglasses retailers is appealing to a customer’s desire to wear the same styles that their favorite stars do. Sunglasses have been rendered timeless by actors and actresses who have worn them in famous films and shoppers will often go out of their way to purchase a pair that evokes Hollywood class.
Let’s take a look at some of the most iconic sunglasses ever to grace the silver screen and learn why retailers absolutely need to be carrying these styles. These famous frames look great on a variety of faces and are always destined to be top-selling sunglasses.
Tom Cruise in “Top Gun”
If any one thing has catapulted the classic aviator style sunglasses straight into the stratosphere it was Tom Cruise’s role in the film “Top Gun.” These aviators not only made women around the world swoon, the look placed this particular style in the sunglasses hall of fame.
Aviators have again become popular in recent years, but the fact is they’ve never really gone out of style. Men and women around the world wear different variations on the aviator, but the look is still the same: classic and classy with more than a hint of mystery and daring.
Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”
Holly Golightly, the character played by Audrey Hepburn in “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” has been inspiring fashionistas since the film was released in 1961. Holly’s classic little black dress has only ever been overshadowed by one thing: her sunglasses.
The pair worn by Ms. Hepburn in the film was designed by Oliver Goldsmith in a wayfarer style, called “Manhattan.”The slightly oversized frames have been drawing women, and a few men, ever since.
Cary Grant in “North by Northwest”
Cary Grant wore his Tart Arnel sunglasses in the film “North by Northwest” and immediately became the man that men wanted to be and the man that women wanted to be with. The tortoiseshell frames with green lenses have seen several incarnations in the years since the film was released, but the cool factor remains.
While the origins of this style might be lost on younger consumers, these are still top selling designs that appeal to a large audience.
Dan Aykroyd and James Belushi in “The Blues Brothers”
The Ray-Ban wayfarer has been around since the 1950s, but it was a little film called “The Blues Brothers,” released in 1980 that brought this style back to its rightful place as the epitome of cool. This popularity was reinforced by Tom Cruise who also wore this style in “Risky Business” in 1983. The combination of the two films’ success was instrumental in the resurgence of the wayfarer style.
Today’s wayfarer is virtually the same and remains a top seller due, in part, to those iconic 1980s comedies.
Johnny Depp in “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas”
These days it seems as if Johnny Depp could do anything, say anything or wear anything and it would become an instant classic. The slightly strange, immediately attractive glasses that Johnny wore in “Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” are no exception.
The orange and gold Ray-Bans from the film have translated into a renewed sense of fun and a quirky style that resonates with younger eyewear shoppers. Older consumers who are familiar with Hunter S. Thompson have a different fascination with this style, but people of all ages can get behind these Ray-Bans.
Sue Lyon in “Lolita”
While the title of the film itself might elicit puzzled stares from most people under 50 years old, the sunglasses worn by the coquettish star are timeless. The cat eye style has long been popular for costumes and with those who enjoy wearing classic styles and cat eye sunglasses have recently been seen on the faces of stars like Josh Hutcherson and Lana Del Rey.
Glasses with unique frames can be wildly popular additions to any retail shop, and the use of brightly colored frames and lenses increases sunglasses’ appeal tremendously.
By playing upon customers’ love of Hollywood and desire to emulate their favorite stars, it’s easy to see why these sunglasses styles have endured over time. When marketing to your retail clients, consider a presentation on classic silver screen looks and watch your sales soar.