Velma, Clark Kent, and Dwight Schrute. What do all of these legendary characters have in common? Aside from meaningful TV careers, yes, they all wear glasses. Glasses can be a great way to make a bold statement that people will remember, complete an outfit, or a simple way to change up your everyday look.

Glasses add dimension and color to your face whether they are reading glasses or sunglasses, and I love topping off an outfit with a good pair of shades. I use to be resistant to wearing reading / computer glasses when they were first prescribed while I was in university. Now, aside from the fact my eyes don’t bug out while I’m working, I actually enjoy wearing them and love how they can accent my look (although I’m not that guy who wears computer glasses outside of the house, just for style sake).

Recently, I’ve been a little more *fashion forward* with my frames. When I first got glasses (granted, this was the early 2000’s), I chose the stylish choice at the time, narrow, oval shape, thick-rimmed glasses. You know what, they looked pretty good for the time. Since then, I’ve had crystal (fancy word for clear) frames, red metallic rectangle frames (probably my least-favorite pair), and thicker, larger, rounder frames over the past few years (I’ve been trying to experiment more).

While I don’t have to wear glasses every day, I do understand the need for a versatile pair that works for any look if glasses are a 24/7 thing for you. And, if you, like me, just need computer or reading glasses, you get to be a bit more bold in your choices! So, how can you make a great pick and still take a bit of a fashion risk? Simple. Just follow the guide below, take a trusted friend along (one who’s style you admire), and try on all the glasses. When you pick your top three, think about which pair you’d be most comfortable wearing to a fancy occasion, while you’re rolling around the house (this is why I don’t get glasses with rhinestones), or when you’re at work or school. Then, make your decision!

Sunglasses are your opportunity to let your fashion flag shine, so make sure to have fun when picking a pair. I LOVE a good pair of sunnies, but I do tend to stick to oversized, thick black frames and lenses. Recently, I went to Warby Parker (by the way, how fun is it to go there?) and tried on the Bennett frame with violet, mirrored lenses and oh my goodness, they looked amazing. I felt totally uncomfortable in this attention-grabbing pair, but couldn’t resist the cool factor. While I was worried everyone would think I looked ridiculous. “Someone get Melissa a mirror! She’s lost it!” I got the opposite reaction. I have received several compliments on my glasses since then and am glad I made a bold choice.

To make a bold and lasting glasses choice less intimidating, it helps to understand exactly what looks good on you. What frames match your face? And what colours? After you know the answers to those questions, you can try bolder options in those categories and find glasses that look great and stand out.

Here’s a quick guide to make this easy on you:

Finding Your Face Shape

Knowing your face shape is very important to the frame selection process. It’s easy to find your face shape, and there are tons of tricks on the Internet to do it, but for me, the easiest was just using a mirror.

Look at yourself in the mirror, and trace your face with your finger on the glass (or a dry erase marker if you want to be really precise). What shape does the outline most resemble? Circle, Oval, Square, Triangle? It won’t be exact of course, but you can estimate.

Once you know your face shape, you can pick your frame more confidently. In general, you want your glasses shape to contrast your face shape; this will help balance your features. This chart gives a more in depth explanation of face shapes, and what frames go with them.

Using Your Skin Tone to Pick Color

In my *Warm or Cool* tones post, I showed you how to identify whether you are have warm toned or cool toned skin. Along with clothing and makeup, this information can also be really helpful for picking flattering colours for glasses.

If you are cool toned, you want to pick cool colored glasses. Black, silver, blue, plums and magenta, all look great on cool toned skin.

For warm skin tones, try out warm colours like khaki, copper, brown and tortoise shell, red, peach, off white, and deep blues. And, hey, black. Because it matches everything!

Trying Something New

These sunglasses were a total risk for me, certainly out of my comfort zone given my previous choice (and big time winner) Wildfox Catfarer sunglasses, which I still wear, by the way.

While the violet lens isn’t perfectly warm-toned, it still works with my skin color and I also have an oval shaped face, which means I can carry wide, dynamic frames – just like these. The mirror effect certainly calls attention, and you know what, I am proud of my bold choice!

With reading glasses, I’ve always had a bit of fun, even without the payoff (see: red frames). My most bold choice were my crystal frames. No one was wearing them at the time, but I just adored the look and I did get compliments! After moving on from those, I thought a rectangular red metallic frame would be a good choice. Those were the glasses I wore in my banking days. I don’t think, at least anytime soon, I’ll go back to red. I feel it brings out the redness in my face and was not a cute look. For my next pair, I am thinking a bold, tortoise shell cat-eye frame might be the pick. For now, I’ve got my oversized Dior glasses that I’ve had for almost 2 years now and look ever-stylish.

When I try glasses on, I spend a long time trying them on before sealing the deal. While I don’t care about the brand, I do care about the shape and how they look and feel (I hate those metal nose pinchers!) sometimes, the most subtle differences off your face make a huge difference once you sport the pair and compare one frame against the other. I have also found that taking a picture of them and looking at the two helps, that way I can see the frame in a different context. Then, make your pick and trust your gut!

If the time has come for a new pair of glasses or sunglasses and you are looking to try something new, but don’t want to end up looking ridiculous, make sure the glasses fit two requirements: do they go with your face shape? Are they the same color tone as your skin? From there, take a risk! Grab a pair of fire truck red cat eyes if you’re a warm toned girl with a circular face. Are you cool toned? Why not try dark turquoise, geometric sunglasses.

The possibilities are endless. The point is, have fun with it.