Aviator sunglasses, together with your wallet, watch, and smartphone, are an essential accessory for everyday life. Initially marketed as “anti-glare goggles” by their creator, Bausch + Lomb, they debuted in 1930 for use by the U.S. Army Air Corps (you know them as the modern Air Force), becoming available to the taxpaying public some six years later. While still heavily associated with pilots, they’ve become more of a fashion element of late, with shapes changing slightly from season to season. This spring, thanks in part to ‘Mad Men’ and Justin Timberlake’s “Suit and Tie,” expect sharp-dressed sartorialists to be rocking this retro-cool look all season long.
So, how to stand out? Our current favorites, Thom Browne’s 55s, tastefully update the teardrop shape popularized by Freddie Mercury and your favorite baseball manager with a tortoise-shell frame substituted for the typical metal casing. Yes, they’re a bit thicker than the ones Tom Cruise wore in ‘Top Gun,’ but the 55s still hug your face without hiding your features. Try them with a modern button-down and know that tandem will turn more heads than a standalone suit ever could. [$475; barneys.com]
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