In partnership with Prada

When Sunglasses Speak Louder Than Words

In partnership with Prada

Sunglasses can keep people out, an extra layer of protection when you’re simply not in the mood for eye contact. Celebrities use them to avoid the paparazzi; normal folks use them to avoid sun damage. They are both shield and accessory. Sunglasses can do so much to telegraph what it is we want the world to see or know about us. They can take even your most iconic of looks — I’m talking clothes and expressions — and add a little oomph.

To prove my highly scientific point, I enlisted the help of Matt Little and Leandra Medine to show their best be-sunglass-ed faces to the world. They not only agreed, they said they’d give me three of their very best expressions, too, all with a little help from Prada’s Disguise Sunglass line. And now, a quick tour through the hearts and minds of Matt, Leandra and myself as we hit the street with our best faces forward.

Leandra Medine

Leandra’s Disguise Frames are the perfect compliment for her headband, providing the correct balance of zips, zags and curves for a summer full of placing expressions upon one’s lovely visage.

“I came for tea…”

In my view, the top and headband help to drive home the initial point — that I’m here, and serious, but not at the expense of accessing a sense of lightheartedness.

“But if you ask me to stay…”

See what I mean! That heart of mine, it’s featherweight! And now the sunglasses come in, as a sort of fairy with a magic wand, waving itself over the arch of my nose, where the sunglasses sit, to drill down on what’s really important, never forgetting that without joie de vivre, we’ve got nothing to ride on!

“I’ll definitely have a drink, or start a dance party with you.”

So let’s have at it! Need I say more?

Nora Taylor

My Disguise Frames made me feel like a glamorous woman about town taking care of her business. What business you ask? That of distrust, flirtation and having a grand old time overall.

“You think I was born yesterday?”

I neither trust nor am particularly interested in what you have to say! OK, this sentiment is patently untrue in my real life, as I love most things people want to talk about, but I love looking like I’m a shrewd broad who simply can’t be bothered in my fantasy life. You can feel the withering stare from behind the glasses; in fact, I’d say they magnify it.

“Who me??”

This is me as I am. Joyous, ebullient, unafraid of something flying into my open and carefree mouth. And yes, I was channeling someone putting their hands in cement on the Hollywood walk of fame.

“It’s not me, it’s you.”

This is me giving it all I’ve got on my way out the door. I’ve already put my glasses on because I’m not looking back, pal. Not at you.

Matt Little

Matt spent the afternoon in these Disguise Frames, which are a striking, yet flattering rectangular shape. If it’s hip to be square, it’s cool to be ‘tangular. He walks us through his three looks, a true tour of a man putting his best faces forward (and occasionally to the side because, you know, angles).

“You’re too much!”

I mean, this one was easy because just getting to wear the glasses brought a smile to my face (they are so fun and a different silhouette than anything I’ve ever tried before). I felt like I was just the right amount of extra.

“Blue Steele.”

These sunglasses made me feel cool, and aside from Tyra coaching you into it, feeling cool is the quickest way to get in the mood to smize.

“Is this one OK?”

The sunglasses made me way less self-conscious than I anticipated because they offered a bit of a disguise for my normal, non-modeling face, so this expression was more about being at a loss for another expression than it was about feeling awkward.

There you have it: the life-changing power of the perfect pair of sunglasses. Helping you take what you’ve already got to the next level.

Photos by Edith Young. Illustrations by Bijou Karman. 

Nora Taylor

Nora Taylor

Nora Taylor is the Editor of Clever. She can frequently be found knocking things over in the greater New York City area.

More from Style