• The Goods

17 Sunglasses Perfect for Your Next Vacation

8 minute read

One of the most important travel accessories you should always travel with—regardless of your destination—is a good pair of shades.

Sunglasses aren’t just important to pack for that warm Caribbean escape—they’re also vital when you’re hitting the slopes. Just because you’re on vacation doesn’t mean you should take a break from protecting your eyes from sunlight.UV rays can be up to eight times more powerful in snowy conditions because of the reflective properties of snow, according to the College of Optometrics. People with light-colored eyes, like blue or green, are even more at risk of sunlight-related eye damage. And not to get too dramatic here, but eyelid cancer accounts for five to ten percent of all skin cancers. So wearing sunglasses is just as important as applying sun lotion (which you should also be doing).

But what exactly does a “good” pair mean? First of all, you’ll need sunglasses that block harmful UV-A and UV-B rays. It’s important to know that not all polarized shades have UV protection: Polarized lenses will shield your eyes from the sun’s glare, which is great, but that has nothing to do with UV protection.

Opt for sunglasses that are comfortable and appropriate for where you’re going: Make sure the frame is not too tight but instead comfortably snug. You don’t want to be running after your sunglasses in case of sudden high winds.

Of course, design is important, too. Thankfully, there are many quality options on the market that you won’t have to search long to find a pair that looks cool and protects your eyes. Investing in a classic style, like the aviator or the wayfarer, is always a good idea. Opting for a statement pair with mirrored lenses and a bold colored frame, on the other hand, is a great way to add some fun to your travel outfits.

Keep scrolling to see 17 cool shades to bring on your next trip.

Maui Jim “Seven Pools”

Courtesy of Maui Jim

Maui Jim’s lenses are not only polarized and scratch-resistant but they also enhance color and contrast. The frames are lightweight and comfortable so you can wear them for long periods of time without getting that annoying sharp pain behind your ears. This oversized style looks great on most face shapes and provides maximum coverage.

To buy: Nordstrom.com

Marc Jacobs

Courtesy of Marc Jacobs

Who said you have to compromise quality over style? This oversized pair of polarized shades oozes a cool retro vibe while making sure your eyes are protected from UV rays. Pair it with a floppy sun hat and you’re ready for your beach vacation.

To buy: Nordstrom.com

Oakley ‘Offshoot’

Courtesy of Oakley

Feeling creative? Opt for a customizable pair of shades hand-built to your preferences. You can choose between six difference lens colors and ten frame shades including satin and matte finishes. While Oakley offers a number of customizable styles, we like the Offshoot because of its classic design that you can take both to the slopes and the beach.

To buy: Amazon.com

Ray Ban Aviators

Courtesy of Nordstrom

Created in 1936 at US Army Air Corps’ request, the Aviators blocked the sun’s dangerous blue and white light to reduce headaches among pilots. Who would have thought back then that after more than 80 years, this all-American style will be a best seller around the world? If classic design is your thing, then having a pair of Aviators is a must.

To buy: Nordstrom.com

Spy Optic ‘Flynn’

Courtesy of Spy Optic

How cool is this matte pair of shades? While we haven’t checked Spy Optic’s claim that the frames are “virtually indestructible,” we have to admit they look pretty sturdy and we would love to wear them for a day on the slopes. You can also customize this style with the company’s “Happy Lenses” that have color and contrast-enhancing features.

To buy: Amazon.com

Ridgemont Sunglasses

Courtesy of Quicksilver

Looking for a statement-making pair of shades? We can guarantee these funky sunglasses will turn a lot of heads after you. The distortion-free shatter-resistant lenses offer 100% UV protection and are category 3 (4 being the highest) which means they offer a high level of sun glare reduction.

To buy: Quicksilver.com


Courtesy of Amazon

Ladies, we all know that a good pair of cat eye sunglasses is a must-have, right?! We love Polaroid’s version of this classic style, because the gradient blue lenses and brown-and-grey frames give it a modern and updated look. Oh, and of course, the polarized lenses will make sure your eyes are protected from the sun.

To buy: Amazon.com


Courtesy of Nordstrom

The oversized lenses of this American-made pair of sunglasses would look perfect on round-shaped faces. We love this particular frame color because it’s fun and reminds us of the ocean. The polarized Carl Zeiss lenses will protect your eyes so you can enjoy a long day by the pool.

To buy: Nordstrom.com

Michael Kors

Courtesy of Micheal Kors

Looking for a pair of stylish shades for your Aspen ski trip? Well, you just found it. You can always count on Michael Kors to deliver sophisticated design. These sleek rimless sunglasses proof that sometimes you don’t need an over-the-top design to make a statement and look chic.

To buy: SolsticeSunglasses.com

Sonix Ibiza

Courtesy of Nordstrom

We’re absolutely obsessed with the design of these Sonix shades—a classic cat eye silhouette with modern round red-mirrored lenses. They are the perfect statement-making accessory to add to your outfit and provide UV protection for your eyes.

To buy: Nordstrom.com

Oakley Unstoppable

Courtesy of Oakley

This semi-rimless rectangular style looks great on round and oval-shaped faces giving them a more elongated appearance. The pink lenses in combination with the polished black frames look super cute and modern. But the best thing about this pair of Oakley sunglasses is that part of the proceeds help the Young Survival Coation charity, a non-profit helping young women facing the challenges of breast cancer.

To buy: Amazon.com

Quay Australia Cherry Bomb Sunglasses

Courtesy of Quay Australia

Quay Australia’s designs are inspired by music and are for the “the nonconforming and freethinking.” In other words, if you are the type of ‘festival traveler’ who’s always on the lookout for the next cool music event around the globe, then you’re going to love this company’s designs (and affordable prices). This oversized metal pair of shades in rose pink will add a touch of retro to your ensemble.

To buy: Nordstrom.com

Illesteva ‘Leonard’ Sunglasses

Courtesy of Neiman Marcus

Illesteva is the company that took the market (and Hollywood) by storm just eight years ago. They make all of their sunglasses in Italy and France from quality materials, which ensures their durability. The founders of the brand often say that it was born from the “need for classic eyewear with a downtown New York aesthetic.” And if there’s a style that epitomizes this philosophy, it’s their best-selling ‘Leonard.”

To buy: NeimanMarcus.com

Tree Tribe

Courtesy of Amazon

Tree Tribe is an eco friendly brand that plants ten trees for every sale they make. Their signature bamboo sunnies have a UV400 protection and a scratch-resistant coating. While the Wayfarer design gives them a classic look, the frames made from real bamboo ensures that every pair is unique.

To buy: Amazon.com

Oakley Batwolf

Courtesy of Oakley

Finally hitting the road for that cross-country road trip you’ve been dreaming about? Trust us, these Oakley sunglasses are the only accessory you need. They are lightweight and stress-resistant and have an anti-glare coating that makes them perfect for driving for long periods of time. The wrap-around design will ensure maximum protection for your eyes.

To buy: Zappos.com

Bolle Highwood

Courtesy of Bolle

These sunnies were designed with winter sports in mind. The anti-fog treatment ensures you will never ever have to deal with foggy lenses and the photochromic coating makes them adapt to the light conditions and protect your eyes from harmful UV rays. And with several colors to choose from, we are are certain that you could find the right match for your personal style.

To buy: Amazon.com

Michael Kors Aviator Sunglasses

Courtesy of Solstice Sunglasses

Michael Kors’s version of this classic style comes in a variety of lens and frame colors and they all look chic. We are fans of the one in blue and teal because while the colors are fun and bold, the design keeps them looking sleek and sophisticated—perfect for the urban explorer.

To buy: SolsticeSunglasses.com

This article originally appeared on TravelandLeisure.com

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