By Victoria Garcia

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If you are an avid reader of 20/20, you have likely seen the term “ultimate accessory” used a few dozen times by our editorial team when describing eyewear. Since our inception 50 years ago, one thing that hasn’t changed is our stance that eyewear (especially sunwear!) is, without a doubt, the ultimate fashion accessory. A quick look at our extensive archives illustrates that sunwear styles and trends have seen a massive change over the past five decades. But if you look closely, you will also notice that some of these designs continue to stand the test of time, proving that some things truly never go out of style.

Let’s reminisce on some sunwear trends that started years ago but are still going strong today. Take a look at any issue of 20/20, and you will come face to face with ornate and over-exaggerated CatEyes, beautiful elongated oval shapes that were first popular in the ’60s and colorful tinted lenses for women that have all been elevated with newer technology and materials. For men, muted tones of blue, black and brown remain prevalent but with an added twist of brighter color options, renewed tortoise or technically-advanced details. Today, aviator and navigator shapes are still trending for both women and men, with unisex styles that are accentuated with dazzling jewels, mixed materials including leather, marble and carbon fiber, and exaggerated double brow bars.

Sunwear is such a vital category that for many years, 20/20 published a dedicated supplement titled SunVision. This small but mighty publication featured all things sunwear, from fashion feature pages and product spotlights to CE courses, as well as industry and market statistics. Looking back at this supplement, it’s clear that some sunwear trends and styles have disappeared into the abyss, while others have remained powerful and contemporary.

Sunglasses were originally designed to protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful rays, but they have progressively evolved into much more than that. They remain an essential staple in the fashion world, where they are used as statement-making pieces or a fun way to showcase your personality. As 20/20 celebrates its 50th anniversary, we continue to focus on sunwear every month to ensure we are covering the latest and greatest trends and styles from this coveted category. No matter what year, month or day it is, we can confidently say that sunwear will always be the ultimate accessory. ■