Trendsetters come and go but a select few go on to become fashion icons, inspiring millions of people to replicate their style for many years to come. From Old Hollywood, we know these icons as Audrey Hepburn, Marilyn Monroe, and of course, James Dean. The epitome of cool, Dean was known for his acting chops, his good looks, and his great style.
Accessories typically aren’t in a man’s essential wardrobe, but many still want to have the same sex appeal that Dean had, much of it having to do with his fashion choices. The designer glasses he wore are iconic and have lead to hundreds of great frames inspired by his own. The originals, seen in this photo, are from Tart Optical. Known as “Arnel,” these frames helped Dean project an effortlessly handsome look. Not that he needed much help!
The design can be found in numerous famous lines, in iterations like the above Ray Ban Wayfarer glasses. This style is just about as close you can get to the Tart Arnel, with the same silhouette that features rectangular lenses, flared corners, a dark-colored frame, and two silver accents on each side. This is the optical version of Ray Ban’s most popular style, for those who want to keep their retro style in or out of the sun.
A similar, and even simpler, style is a pair of Beausoleil 277 eyeglasses. A bit smaller than the Ray Bans, this frame is thin all around, accented by the brand’s logo design on each temple in silver.
For the vintage-inspired piece with a modern twist, Studio FB W01 eyeglasses are the perfect choice. They have the James Dean silhouette with an earthier finish, made with a blend of wood and acetate that gives the frame a matte, organic look. Featuring the rectangular lenses with flared rims, the W01 also boasts a keyhole bridge that is evocative of the trends of earlier days.
Whether for his films or his fashion, James Dean will always be an icon to us. Who are your eyewear style icons?