It’s spring, which, in the prophetic words of George Harrison, means only one thing: here comes the sun.
Or, rather, here come 11 days of relative warmth, a handful of headline-making heatwaves, a smattering of intermittent showers and a not insignificant chance of needing a jumper in July.
How to handle such meteorological mayhem? Don a dark pair of sunglasses, hunker down in your favourite armchair and wait for it all to blow over while watching a Wimbledon washout on the box.
And, just in case you’ve lost your specs from last year, we’ve peeped through a plethora of the latest pairs to find ten of the best to shield your eyes from summer uncertainty. The grumbles are up to you.
Sea2See Shark 02 Polarized (€105)
Jetting off to white sands and crystal waters this summer? No beach retreat is complete without a decent set of sunnies. Nor, sadly, the risk of disposable straws showing up in the shallows. Just ask Mr Attenborough.
Protect your peepers and the planet with these Shark specs from Sea2See: hand-made in Italy, they’re crafted entirely from waste plastic recovered from the ocean – and polarised lenses mean you can survey a slightly cleaner sea, squint-free.
Ray-Ban Wayfarer Double Bridge (£136)
Sunglasses don’t come more iconic than the legendary Wayfarers, but even legends need the occasional change – especially when they’re as regularly imitated as Ray-Ban’s fabled shades.
Just as classy as the original, this reimagined pair takes the classic Fifties shape and adds a tasteful metal bar across the bridge. It’s like when Dylan went electric, only a little less seminal.
Persol 649 (£211)
Looking to beat stains and get the best from every laundry load? You need Persil.
Looking for stylish sunglasses, first designed for Turin tram drivers and today the epitome of Fifties cool? You need Persol – specifically a pair of the Italian brand’s 649 Series shades.
Equipped with flexible hinges for total comfort and built to the iconic firm’s renowned standards, they might well last a lifetime – provided you don’t put them through the wash.
Hawfinch Bird (£140)
Remember when you broke your sunglasses at that folk festival and crafted a replacement pair from twigs and twine like a true child of the forest? These wooden sunnies are just like that, only better made and with real lenses instead of leaves.
Sustainably made from bamboo, beech and sandalwood, each pair will see your eyes safely shielded from overcast summer skies and a solar lamp given to a family in Malawi, Zambia or Uganda. So you can help bring light while hiding from it.
Oakley Crossrange Shield Snapback (£130)
Stuck in the sunny south of France until your next ski season starts? Channel slope style in the summer months with these retro specs from the outdoorsy sorts at Oakley.
Equipped with a one-piece neon lens for a wider field of view, pop the Nineties numbers on your noggin and you’ll be all set for whatever the après midi has in store – be it shopping on the Côte d'Azur or hopping on a bike and making like le Tour.
Maui Jim Mongoose (£219)
Flying all the way to Honolulu only to peer through a pair of greyed-out shades? That’s no way to treat a tropical vista.
Give your ocean view a better hue with some Maui Jim magic: its clever lenses do more than dim the day, boosting contrast and enhancing colours for an even better view.
For the sunniest scenes, try its featherweight Mongoose frame with slimline MAUIGreen lenses. Pairing classic style with neon chic, they’ll do away with washed-out waves wherever you head – whether Hawaii or Harrogate. Aloha to that.
Vuarnet District 1909 (€230)
Impersonating Bond is like playing roulette: nail it or you’ll lose it all. And no one-liner can save you when you’re fresh out of chips and elbow-deep in IOUs.
So don’t buy 007’s Vuarnet Glacier specs from Spectre. Instead, don these fetching District 1909 numbers from the same name: well-made, stylish and timeless in their own right, they’re the perfect accessory for your own Monaco mistake. Steely stare not included.
Bose Frames (£200)
A fresh pair of shades might set off your look, but strutting means nothing without some sweat beats to back it up.
Add wireless sounds to your summer ensemble with these solar-’phones from Bose: available in pair of classic styles – angular Alto or rounded Rondo – the Frames pack mini Bluetooth speakers in each arm, designed to fire sunshine streams at your ears only.
Need style advice on the fly? Paired with your smartphone, the UV-protected specs play nice with Siri and Google Assistant, with a built-in mic for easy asking. Talking to yourself? All part of the aesthetic.
MVMT Reveler (£55)
Want festival shades without the glamping price tag? MVMT’s all about making fashion affordable and its Reveler specs are just the ticket for looking fly on the campsite.
Bang on trend with translucent frames, full UV protection should see your starry eyes kept safe from blinding sun, while durability is assured by a stainless steel core. Just like the one you’ll have after three days of throwing shapes in a Somerset field.
Cubitts Calshot Fold (£125)
With baggage allowances on the meagre side of paltry, the last thing you want is a bulky pair of shades claiming vital space in your carry-on. Problem is, you can’t wear your tinted frames through departures without aping a washed-up rock wannabe.
Keep the style and save some cubic inches by stashing these metal specs in your satchel. Fitted with hidden hinges, the Calshots fold when not on your face, leaving extra space for plane snacks beside your jumbo ego.
TOMS Manu (£70)
Pick up a fresh pair of sunnies and you’ll rightly want the world to see them. Pick up this pair of sunnies and you might help the world to see.
Constructed from lightweight polycarbonate and designed to go the distance, every pair bought sees a person in need receive an eye examination and any necessary treatment – from prescription glasses to sight-saving surgery.
So while you look through chic new frames, someone else could be looking in whole new ways.