Classic tortoise shell frames are back! Well, maybe they never actually left… Tortoise shell is the one look in eyeglass frames that has been around since the beginning.
Tortoise shell is one of the original materials from which eyeglass frames were made.
Why was it called tortoise shell?
Until the early seventies, tortoise shell was really made from tortoise shells! A process was used to treat the actual shell of a hawksbill turtle. They’d hunt for the shells and then process them for use in eyeglasses and other accessories. This is how most of the mid-century eyeglass looks—like the horn-rimmed eyeglass look—were created.
Today, tortoise shell is made from colored plastics and acetate. Can you tell the difference? Not really. The blends of brown and amber speckles still look gorgeous in an eyeglass frame. The best news is that you can capture that 1950s vintage look without endangering any animal species.
The NEW Classic Tortoise shell
Some of the newer tortoise shell frames combine a contrasting color—like bright turquoise or pink–on the inside for a fresh pop of style. Others have straight vintage appeal. From cat-eye shapes and over-sized round frames, to classic-looking square frames, tortoiseshell is one of the most versatile looks out there today.
Though it’s never fully gone out of style, tortoiseshell is definitely “in.” Some are saying that tortoiseshell is the new black! That’s how hip it’s going to be this season. If you’ve grown weary of the black eyeglass ‘geek chic’ look, move on to the next hipster trend: tortoise shell.
I personally prefer the medium shade of tortoise shell – a combination of coffee brown hues, amber and honey tones. Blonde or light tortoise shell looks gorgeous on warmer skin tones. Dark tortoise is a hot look, as well!
If you decide on a tortoise shell frame, know you still have a lot of color options. The variety of shades and nuances to the patterns in today’s tortoise shell eyeglass frames is extraordinary!
Have you tried classic tortoise shell yet? Don’t miss out on this trend. Come to Optique and try a pair of tortoise shell frames that you would love.
Hope to see you here soon.
Sofia Leybin, owner of Optique