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Can I wear sunglasses in winter?

Can I wear sunglasses in winter?

Photographed: Illesteva Leonard sunglasses (£165); Marks & Spencer leather gloves (£25); GANT lambswool scarf (£40)


There are a few summer staples that just don’t work in cold weather. Shorts should be stowed away once the leaves start falling, to make space in your wardrobe for warmer trousers. Ditto for flimsy fabrics – linen helped your skin breathe in sunner, but in winter, it’s as effective at stopping wind as a football net.

A lot of guys think that the same holds true for their sunglasses. But this misunderstands precisely what they’re protecting you from. “Even when it’s cold, it can still be really sunny in winter,” says Thread stylist Luke McDonald. “And because the sun’s lower in the sky, you spend more time with it at eye level. That means more UV damage, which can cause cataracts or even cancers. Plus, you spend the whole day squinting.” Look better – literally – with Luke's tips for finding the perfect pair of winter sunglasses.

Make sure they’re big enough

“You need frames that cover your entire eye, to protect from the low sun as well as any glare from windows or – on really cold days – snow. They’ll also keep out wind and grit, which means you won’t spend the day with red, streaming eyes.”

Choose darker frames

“A neon pair you bought at the beach aren't just bad for your eyes – odds are they don’t have decent UV protection – but also jar with the darker colours you’ll wear when the days get shorter. Instead think brown, black or tortoiseshell, with smoked rather than mirrored lenses.”

Have a slimline case

“When the weather shifts, you should lose the shades – fashion should still be functional. Because the elements are less predictable in winter, that means you want a case that fits in a pocket, to protect your frames when it gets cloudy. And make it less likely you’ll leave them in the pub.”