Top 10 Sustainable Sunglasses to make a social impact

 

The glaring Summer sun beats down, Spring dazzles in sharp starbursts, Autumnal softer squinting light and Winter with all the grey reflective glare; there is not a season that sunglasses are not needed. Invest in an all season staple that’s sustainable, practical and suits your lifestyle.

 
As an signifier of your individuality, sustainable sunglasses are recognisably chic and no longer a trend, but a responsible choice. Make a statement about who you are and how you want to be seen, show on your face how you choose to use your consumer voice and power for the world of the future. We need to connect our purchases with a human face.
 
Connect with the art and process of garment making. Let's make a conscious choice to know where our clothing came from. A change in attitude toward your accessories will apply a new mindful and thoughtfulness to an essential item in your wardrobe. You’re spoilt for choice with sustainable brands. Here, you find our Top 10 brands embracing sustainability and sophistication.
 
 

 

Karen Walker

 
With fans such as Lady Gaga, Gigi Hadid, LeBron James, Kylie Jenner and Rihanna, Karen Walker Eyewear has serious style power. “We’re not interested in making lots of items. Just really well designed, well made items. Less and better. We’re a niche boutique” - says Karen. 
 
This is a brand committed to social responsibility with stringent ethical values that cross all areas of the business, people and partners, ethical sourcing, protection of the environment, social compliance and transparent auditing. They have partnered with industry organisations such as Child Labor Free or United Nations ITC Ethical Fashion Initiative (EFI)/Artisan Fashion and the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange.
 
Owning a pair of Karen Walkers distinctive eyewear, you will make a statement for many years to come. Its latest collection Mischief is made from acetate plays on shape, colour and style. 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Stella McCartney

 
With a powerful mission statement declaring “We are agents of change. We challenge and push boundaries to make luxurious products in a way that is fit for the world we live in today and the future: beautiful and sustainable. No compromises”, Stella McCartney collections are always a "must" for our Shopping Lists.
 
It’s hard not to be drawn into the brand and message. Stella McCartney’s range offers luxury sustainable sunglasses, derived from citric acid, made using bio-acetate (over 50% natural source), or made using renewable and biodegradable resources.
 
The collection is classic and timeless with a distinctive Stella colour palette. Succeeding in finding the balance between a timeless forever piece and something fashion forward and of the moment, Stella McCartney sunglasses are just a great choice.
 
 
 
 
 

 

Modo

 
With standout architectural lines, form and function are fused to create the perfect balance between strength and lightness. Practical yet purist with three defined style categories, Modo offers paper thin Titanium frames, incredibly light (you don’t even feel them on your face) with Super-Thin acetate and varying titanium products.
 
Through its line "ECO", the company is involved in two social programms: "Buy a frame - Help a Child See" and "One Frame - One Tree": a tree is planted for every frame sold. ECO Biobased eyewear is made from 63% renewable non-food oil, certified by the USDA. ECO has donated and planted a tree for every frame sold. So far, ECO® has planted over 1.5 million trees!
 

 

Vintage Sunglasses.de

 
Vintage Sunglasses offers highly coveted, individual, unworn vintage glasses from top designers and are renowned for sourcing iconic styles worn by celebrities such as the Ray Ban Large Metal frames worn by Tom Cruise in the movie Top Gun, as well as the Linda Farrow frames worn by Al Pacino in Scarface. Offering personalised authentic service, a detailed website and appointment only at their showroom in Berlin, the provenance and authenticity of these glasses are a carefully researched #fashionlovestory. Vintage Sunglasses also offers exclusive retro chic frames that no one else has.
 

 

Sea2See

 
“Where others see waste we see raw material”. Sea2See transform waste into chic modern frames in classic fashionable shapes. The company takes the raw materials from a Spanish fisherman deposit plastic waste, collected and separated and then turned into reusable raw materials.
 
“Creating something beautiful out of trash. It’s pretty inspiring”  - says, Javier Bardem. Presented at the World Ocean Conference in New York by the Vice Prime Minister of Belgium, Didier Reynders, every pair of Sea2See frames purchased means 10 Euros goes directly to collect waste and plastic from beaches equalling 10Kgs of plastic waste collected. Buying Sea2See gives us a sustainable shopping high we don’t feel guilty about. “It’s a statement that anybody can wear with pride, because sunglasses will not change the world, but people that wear Sea2see will".
 

 

Sticks & Sparrow

 
A sustainable collection of eyewear that really pops with colour and style. Sticks & Sparrow Sunglasses are designed in Australia and made using two of the worlds most renewable resources: bamboo and cork. To extract the natural beauty and “raw appeal” polishes, stains and tints are used with plant based acetate fronts. This really adds “extra depth of colour and contrast”. From the beautifully shaped Amber in a gorgeous pink Crystal Crush to Coast in Ivory Tortoiseshell, Glamourous Glaze in Black Gloss and Swoop in Gold, deciding on a favourite style and colour is challenging!
 
As they say, Sticks & Sparrow are “for women with an eye for style and an environmental conscience”. Thanks to a try at home service (available only in Australia) you can order a sample box of four styles to see which pair is your favourite before you buy. 
 

 

Woodzee

 
Feeling the California dreaming, Woodzee is for active people on the go with a love for adventure and a passion for the beautiful world in which they’re exploring. “Our hope is your Woodzee sunglasses will become your travel buddy, and you’ll bring us along on your adventures”. 
 
Those goals include “educating and inspiring a connection between Style and Nature” and using the introduction of their recycling program in 2013 to kick off, it’s easy to update your favourite sunnies with a new pair by sending them back and picking something new. Skate style, cat eye, futuristic aviator in a selection of materials like bamboo, wood, laminate and acetate with several different styles of classic wood sunglasses made from recycled skateboards.
 
These are glasses for the go getter, feeling the love with their heart shaped frames. “You can expect to get wrapped up in our love of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, Joshua Tree National Park, and the Pacific Ocean”.
 
 
 
 

 

Peep

 
Peep is a vintage lovers candy store of jewel coloured delights, with all colours, shapes, styles and true classics and a focus on sustainability. Peep provides a modern vintage take on iconic brand favourites of the past. Every frame can be customised with lenses and tints of your personal preference. Frames are lovingly restored and every pair sold means a tree is planted (Trees for Cities charity).
 
Looking for something unique and vintage? You’ll find it at Peep. As they like to say “Pimp your Peepers”. A home try on service for UK and EU is offered, you can have 3 frames for 7 days to see which suit you best and a free restoration service are available with every pair. Not sure what to do with your old specs or sunnies? You can send them to Peep to be upcycled or donated.
 
“Re-purposing and sustainability is at the heart of what we do”. Peep also believes in strong ethics and modern vintage, “appealing to the woman who wants something unique and vintage”. 
 

 

Andy Wolf

 

Andy Wolf stands for unique glasses, handcrafted in Hartberg, Austria. It was founded by the three friends Andreas (Andy), Wolfgang (Wolf) and Katharina to produce classic and contemporary frames for individuals.

From design to prototyping, production and distribution, everything is handled by Andy Wolf. Only the acetate for its frames is sourced from Italy, simply because they have the finest available. This way its classic and often unconventional frames are not just pretty, but also durable and sustainable.

 

 

Grown Eyewear

 
“We want you to know that your choice has made a deep and meaningful impact on the planet” - sing Grown Eyewear philosophy. Individually unique and made from bamboo and hardwood, its frames are classic with an easy coastal lifestyle feel, made for the stylish beach goer. They use natural, organic and renewable materials sourced from ethical and sustainable forests.
 
Every pair purchased goes toward providing the gift of life to one orphaned or injured Australian animal (through giving partner WIRES). For example the nutritional requirements, of a baby ringtail possum will be funded for 16wks thanks to the pair of sunglasses you bought. Made to last, super strong and exceptionally stylish this is a brand growing followers fast.
 
 
 
 
 

+ Words: Julia Henry

Julia Henry is a sustainable fashion advocate, living on the beautiful Central Coast of NSW, Australia. She is the creator of @ccfashionpack, an instazine embracing the fashion revolution which promotes slow and sustainable fashion in a real life setting.
 

Instagram: @ccfashionpack