In the eyes of a baby chicken, all sunglasses are cheep.
In the hands of a human, though, some sunglasses are actually quite expensive. Especially the pair you inevitably lose — you know, the ones that you saved up for and rationalized by reminding yourself that you wear sunglasses every single day, even in the workplace when hungover, which means that these black plastic bad boys were technically a mere 25 cents a day if you’re also exceptionally creative at math.
When you lose that pair, the feeling is akin to chopping your foot off and then taking too long to bring it to the hospital in an ice bucket, causing the doctor to refuse surgery and respond things like, “No can do, pal. You’re officially a pirate.”
The good news is that cheap sunglasses do exist. The best news is that they don’t all “look cheap.” In fact, they look awesome. Just because a pair of tinted ‘specs are colorful, bold, patterned or shaped like Yoko Ono doesn’t mean that they’ll prohibit you from eating lunch for a month. Sunglasses may very well be our most democratic accessory besides stickers in that way.
BUT! You should look for a few key, important things when choosing your pair:
Now, you pirate! You’ll wear them now!
2) They should fill you with the same amount of pride (if not more) that you might experience via a pair that likely requires insurance or at the very least, a financial guarantor.
And not that anyone’s counting figs, but sometimes you don’t need your annoying friend to know that you didn’t purchase your sunglasses directly from the Elton John archives like you fibbed about and said you did. It’s no one’s business whether they’re cheap or cheep or not.
3) Speaking of Elton John…
(Five dollar YOLO amiright?)
4) And finally, while number one and two posit that cheap sunglasses should feel no less special than a money whopper, they should paradoxically also feel no more special.
Why? Because sometimes less is more so it has to look like more pretending it’s less in order to cost less but be more. You know?
Or if you don’t know, you’ll get this: sunglasses are not forever. They are ephemeral friends with travel lust; man do they love the backs of cabs and bottoms of oceans. But as the saying goes, if you love someone, let them go. They may never come back, but at least you can still afford a hat.
Looking for things to wear with your newly acquired sunglasses? Here are some ideas.