Thursday, June 1, 2017

Searching for Sunnies

Don't you just adore sunglasses? I do. I'm not sure I have the sort of face that looks good in sunglasses, but I still love them. Sunglasses and big hats like Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's.

Audrey Hepburn in a hat and sunglasses
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Or oversize sunglasses with white jeans and a simple tee shirt. Like Jackie Kennedy wore. You can go just about anywhere in the summer with white jeans, a black tank or tee, and a great pair of sunglasses.

woman in white jeans, black tee, and sunglasses holding the hand of her son
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Sunglasses are a must for me in the summer. And not just as accessories. My eyes are really sensitive. I squint and tear up very easily... sometimes disastrously... if I don't wear sunglasses on a sunny day. One summer morning many years ago when I lived in Ottawa, worked at the cosmetics counter at Simpson's, and had to walk several blocks to catch the bus to work, I forgot my sunglasses at home. I was already late, and didn't have time to go back for them, so I squinted, and held my hand over my eyes to block the sun all the way to the bus stop. I was so relieved when the bus came and I could escape into its shady interior. Several stops later, after a few quizzical looks from other passengers boarding the bus, an older lady approached me, proffering a tissue, and whispered: "You have a bit of something on your cheek, dear." I thanked her, pulled a mirror from the make-up bag in my purse, and gasped in horror when I looked. I had two giant black rivulets coursing down my cheeks. I kid you not. They were an inch wide. I swear. Damn that new mascara. Stupid me for being soooo very liberal in my application. I scrubbed away surreptitiously, red-faced, black-cheeked, mortified. And bought a new pair of sunglasses on my lunch hour. 

So now I always own at least three pairs of sunglasses. One for my purse, an old pair that stays in the car for emergencies, and a pair at home. The pair at home are really good Ray Bans which I've had for years. I wear them cycling, fishing, skiing, hiking. In fact for any activity when I'll be outside for an extended length of time. They are quite large, and slightly wrap-around so they provide really good protection for my eyes. And they're the kind that block 99% of UVA and UVB rays. The pair for my purse are usually a bit more fashion forward than my old Ray Bans. These are the glasses I wear when I'm out and about town. In and out of stores, in the car, lunching on a patio with friends... you know... normal downtown summer stuff. 

And since I accidentally left my second pair of sunglasses, the fashion forward ones, on a table in a cafe at the airport in Lima, a few weeks ago, I've been shopping for replacements. 

a collage of pictures of woman in different styles of sunglasses
So many style... I'm confused
I have three requirements for sunglasses. They have to provide decent UV protection and good coverage, I dare not risk another mascara incident. They have to look good and fit my face. And they have to fit on top of my head, and stay in place up there. 

I know that sounds weird. But I have a huge head. You'll already know that if you've been reading my blog long enough. If not, you can read in this post how the size of my head gave birth to my rather fraught relationship with turtlenecks. Not all sunglasses that fit my face will stay on top of my head. And they need to, since that's where they sit half the time. I can't keep packing them away in my purse every time I go into a store, and dig them out when I leave. That's just annoying. I don't always have a handy pocket to stash them into. And I don't want to string them on a cord around my neck. I prefer to put them up on the top of my head. And I need them to stay where they're put on top of my head, not slip down onto my forehead, or move around and smush down my hair, so that I eventually take them off and lay them down somewhere... and forget them. 

So as I said I've been shopping for a new pair. Shopping and shopping. Looking and looking. I tried on a million pairs. Or so it seems. And felt like I was going in circles.

Until I finally fetched up at The Bay, last week, determined to make a decision. I almost dished out for another expensive pair of Ray Bans. But just as I thought I had made my decision, I realized that while I liked them on my face, they didn't like it on top of my head. So I opted for my second choice. These Calvin Klein glasses below. And lucky for me they were on sale at a third of the price of the Ray Bans. So I went home with them. Happy with my choice. And really happy with the price. 

woman in black raincoat, black pants, pink sweater and oversize sunglasses   woman in black raincoat, black pants, pink sweater and oversize sunglasses

I may make light about needing to wear sunglasses to avoid embarrassing mascara incidents, but I know that wearing them is a seriously good idea. For several reasons. As a blue-eyed person, my eyes are naturally more sensitive to sunlight, so sunglasses prevent my eyes from tearing, but can also protect them from photokeratitis, or sunburn of the eye.  Sunglasses also protect us from cataracts which develop from UV exposure. Hubby had to have cataract surgery in his early fifties probably due in part to his aversion to wearing sunglasses, especially when golfing and fishing, when he is out in the sun for extended periods. And apparently sunglasses also protect us from age related macular degeneration, and pterygium or surfers' eye which is the abnormal growth of tissue from the corner of your eye inward. 

woman in black coat and pink scarf with sunglasses on her head
My new sunnies fit the top of my head perfectly... and stay where they're put.
So I'm happy with my new second pair of sunglasses. They provide good coverage, and will protect my eyes from damaging UV rays. They fit on top of my head... where they stay in place and do what they're told until I remove them....like good sunglasses should. 

woman in black raincoat, black pants, pink scarf and oversize sunglasses

And they look pretty darn cool, even if I do say so myself. I think Audrey would approve. Now if only we'd get some warm sunny weather for more than two days running, weather that would require me to wear sunglasses, I'd be ecstatic. I guess I'm no longer searching for sunnies... just searching for sun.

Audrey Hepburn is a big hat and oversized sunglasses
That pale lipstick with the black hat and dark glasses is divine, don't you think?
Hubby is away fishing this week. He took his sunglasses, even though it's been raining every day, because he learned his lesson about sun damage to his eyes. 

"And what am I doing while he's gone?" I'm sure you're asking. 

Ha. Whatever the heck I want, people. Retirement can be wonderful that way. 

This morning, since the sun is shining at least for a while, I'm going to go put on a pair of white jeans, a black tee... and my new sunglasses... and get ready for my pedicure appointment. I may be chanelling Jackie in my outfit, but I'm feeling very Holly Golightly about my new sunnies. Sigh. Wish I had a big hat like that.




What about you, my friends? Are you searching for sunnies this time of year? Do you have any special requirements for your sunglasses?









40 comments:

  1. My biggest challenge is finding a solution for sunglasses that isn't a total nuisance. I wear prescription eyeglasses that I need to see both near and far. I've had no luck wearing contacts. I've had prescription sunglasses for several years, and they are fine for driving or any time I'm outdoors for an extended period. However, they are a total pain when going in and out when shopping, etc. If I take them off when I enter a store, I can't see prices, or even sometimes the merchandise! So that means swapping my sunglasses for my regular glasses, and swapping again when I go back outside! I've tried the sunglasses that fit over my eyeglasses (dorky) and am not a fan of transition lenses that take too long to lighten indoors and give one the look of black eyes in pictures! So I recently updated my prescription sunglasses for lack of a better solution!

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    1. Barb,my friend has found perfect sunglasses that fit over her eyeglasses (and I've bought one pair,too,although I wear usually contacts)-if everything is in good size,and not heavy-they look great!
      You couldn't notice that there are two of them
      D.

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    2. What brand do you like? I wasn't impressed with the ones my eye doctor has in her office!
      Barb

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    3. When I wore bi-focals all the time, I bought clip-on sunglasses that were made to fit exactly on my glasses. They looked great, and were the same shape as my classes. And they were only about $40.00.

      I'm assuming that Barb's question is for you Dottoressa... so I won't weigh in:)

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  2. I wear prescription sunglasses as well and have just updated mine. Like you have looked at loads but in the end came to the collusion that many were of a very similar style. Hope I shall be happy with the ones I have chosen.

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    1. You are right... so many are almost the same style. It's confusing. Like choosing beige paint...so many beiges....so much alike:)

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  3. Macular degeneration runs in our family and my sister was just cautioning me to wear sunglasses at all times when I am outdoors. I think you made an excellent choice. I liked the Ray Bans but they have to stay on your head when you don't need them on your eyes. That's a given. Well done!

    Thank you for joining us for Fabulous Friday.

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    1. The site I found says that sun damage doesn't cause macular degeneration alone.. but can hasten it or make it worse.

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  4. Jackie,Audrey.....could it be better?
    I like your sunglasses and they suit you great
    I always wanted big,Jacki-like sunglasses,but my face is too small
    I've made a big mistake once with Dior (too transparent),so I buy always RayBan (and wear them for years to justify the price),mostly polarized.
    I wear them everywhere(except indoors!),I even swim in the sea with them (so,they have to survive this,too,after a couple of years in the city)
    Last year I've bought a round model-they are falling from my head all the time,but I've always wanted them and it was love on first sight . And they look soooo good!
    Dottoressa

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    1. I must admit to being much more of an Audrey fan than a Jackie fan... still her sunglasses were always divine.
      Swimming is an issue with me as well. So I either have to wear my sunglasses or a baseball cap pulled down very low over my eyes. I don't know how people can stand the glare from the water.

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  5. I always have trouble finding the right glasses. Enjoy your weekend.

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  6. I used to have a couple of inexpensive pairs of sunglasses in rotation -- one for the pool or beach, and one for the car. Once I needed prescription lenses, I upgraded to a pair of progressive lens dark glasses for the car and when I need to read in the sun, plus a pair of my old RayBan wayfarers as back-up and for the beach. When the lenses got really scratched I had the optician replace them rather than buying a new pair. Unfortunately, my eyes have gotten just bad enough that I prefer to wear the Rx sunnies exclusively and keep the glove-box pair for passengers who forget theirs!

    Maybe next year I'll treat myself to a new stylish pair of Rx sunnies. The ones I wear now are Carrera 5039's in black. But for the Audrey ones......

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    1. I have trouble reading outdoors now. My sunglasses are not prescription, and I need reading glasses. A big hat and sitting in the shade has sufficed for me if I want to read outdoors. But then again, I always sit in the shade anyway. Especially these days.

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    2. Sunglass readers are now widely available. They've been a godsend for reading outside - even on party cloudy days ! (Peepers brand is the best, in my opinion ;) )

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    3. I must remember to look for those...thanks.

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  7. My sunglasses are bifocals, so I don't have a lot of them. ha! But I do have a great pair of Oakleys that I wear when I'm going to sweat (biking, gardening, etc.) and my eyes aren't really awful, so I can just use normal lens in them. But for driving and other activities that require reading, I'm in bifocals. They are shaped a lot like yours.

    A few years back, I left on a business trip without them, and ended up in an airport Sunglass Hut buying a pair by Ralph Lauren for the shape, but have never had 'real' lens put in them, which I probably should, as they were ridiculously expensive. I just couldn't go without sunnies all week, as my eyes 'leak' just like yours.

    And like you, they need to fit on the top of my rather large head. LOL. Love your new ones!
    --Laurel

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    1. I save my really good sunglasses for my outdoor activities when I'll be more in the sun than just in and out of a store and the car. And I'd be like you... purchase a pair as quickly as possible.

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  8. I bought my perfect pair at Frances Klein in Paris, and then lost them hiking in Spain (it was one of those "sunglasses on/sunglasses off" days and they slipped out of the side pocket of my backpack). So it was off to Frances Klein again as we passed through Paris on the way home, and I bought two semi-perfect pairs, as the perfect pair was no longer available. Then I came home and husband saw a pair of Dior frames that reminded him of my perfect pair, and bought them, then he found a pair of vintage Frances Klein shades on eBay.... I'm awash in sunnies at the moment!

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    1. I've never heard of Frances Klein glasses... must check them out. Thanks.

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  9. I wear prescription glasses as my eyes are too dry for contacts these days & it's such a nuisance fiddling about swapping glasses over . So I'm not that enthusiastic about sunglasses . My latest ones are similar to those pale ones you tried , not designer or anything but I really like them . Perhaps it's fortunate that we don't have a great deal of strong sunshine here , though there's a little heat wave just now - well 20 some degrees which feels like a heatwave to us . Hope you get to take that pretty jumper off soon .
    Wendy in York

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    1. Twenty something sounds like a heat wave to me! Especially when it's 12 here. I may never get to take off my new sweater. Should have bought more then one:)

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    2. Yes, you should! Always good to have a back up ...in case one gets lost when travelling! In total honesty that's never happened to me but I always worry that it will! :)
      Rosie

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  10. I love sunglasses on other people, but I hate them on me! That's because I wear progressive lenses that are very expensive. I can't afford prescription sunglasses so I have to wear the clip on variety. Nothing very glamorous about those! Add to that the fact that I have absolutely no depth vision; never have had. For some reason that I don't understand, wearing sunglasses takes away whatever my brain has learned to do to compensate. I'm fine wearing sunglasses on absolutely level surfaces, but if I'm walking anywhere else, watch out! I'm liable to fall flat on my face! Alas, I have a family history of age related macular degeneration and my eye specialist is badgering me to wear sunglasses (for my own good, I know) so I'm trying to cooperate... at least some of the time.

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    1. That's what Hubby has always said about sunglasses...changes his depth perception and messes up his golf game because he is no longer sure of distances. I also think that progressives are difficult to walk in... I keep looking through the wrong bits of the glasses.

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    2. I don't have any difficulty walking, hiking, golfing, etc in my progressives, but I understand that many people do. I only tried golfing in sunglasses once though and it was a disaster!

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  11. Looking so pretty in the close up, Sue, and so cute in your new sunglasses, and wearing them on top your head frames your pretty face. I have light refractive cataracts so wear Solar Shields or Haven over-glasses sunglasses all year round, pretty much. Maybe they aren't stylish but they do an excellent job.

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    1. Thanks, Mary. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do, eh? I think that some of those over-glasses sunglasses look pretty cool, though.

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  12. Raybans every single time. I love mine passionately. Like you, I have a pair of glasses in the car and another cheap pair of sunglasses in the house in case of...well, not sure why. In the summer I don't feel dressed unless my Raybans are with me. And Audrey is ever the watchword. Mind you, that hat looks a bit odd. Is it fur or felt? I always thought it was black straw. Incidentally, the best thing to make a hat out of. Yet another rule for sartorial happiness. Enjoy the pedicure.

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    1. I love my Ray Bans too... but they won't stay on to of my head!

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  13. Good pick. The horizontal line of the top of your new sunglasses is very flattering to your face shape and haircut. The very round oversized ones just didn't do it for you.
    If you ever need a new sporty pair, try the Mai Jim. They are light, thin, and never slip off your face.

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    1. Thanks, Lizette. We have a great guy in our village who sells glasses, and over the years he's taught me a lot about how to fit glasses to my face. Why one pair looks good and another not. Very handy info!

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    2. Perhaps you could pass on his tips - For us folk who can't pop in to his shop ?
      Wendy in York

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    3. Good idea Wendy...I'll see if I can remember his tips. I usually only think of them when I put a pair of glasses on and they don't suit.

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  14. Hi Sue ...I've really enjoyed the last two posts particularly the last discussing linguistics! ...sorry I don't have time to comment but I'm planning to once I'm home from Italy ..While weve been travelling I've been wondering which parts you'd like to visit ...let's chat once I'm home.
    Rosie

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    1. Hope you are having a great trip Rosie. Italy won't be until next year for us... at the earliest. So I have no idea about what I want to see yet. Still planning my fall trip with Elizabeth at the moment. I'll definitely pick your brain, though about Italy when we start planning.

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  15. I'm rocking my Ralph Lauren sunnies, but any will do they're always with me holding my hair off my face, lol. Jacqui

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    1. That's what I used to do when I had longer hair. Sunglasses come in sooo handy.

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  16. Audrey would be proud, Sue-GoLightly! You look grand in all of these sunglasses, and I love that scarf by the way.

    My sunglasses are prescription, which makes them rather expensive to change out. They fit my face fine, and they do their job, but they never seem to stay up on my head! I think that is the hardest part of all. Sigh...

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    1. Thanks, DA. I find it so annoying to have to find a place to put glasses that won't stay on my head whenever I go inside a building. But sometimes putting them on my head can have issues too. Especially when I put on my reading glasses when shopping and I need to read labels...then I have two pairs on my head. And look a bit dotty:)

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All comments, ideas, commiserations, questions, complaints... are most welcome.