Aviator Frames Guide: Where To Buy The Best Aviator Sunglasses & Clear Prescription Aviators Online

Aviator Frames Guide: Where To Buy The Best Aviator Sunglasses & Clear Prescription Aviators Online2018-09-05T11:51:44+00:00

Immortalised by Tom “Maverick” Cruise in Tony Scott’s 1986 classic Top Gun, Aviator glasses are one of the most popular frames available.

In the following guide, you will learn all about Aviator frames. Head directly to the best aviators to buy online using the following links:

  1. Warby Parker “York” Aviators
  2. Coastal Joseph-Marc Observation Aviators
  3. Glasses USA Ottoto Pluto Aviator Frames
  4. EyeBuy Direct Harrier Aviator Frames
  5. Zenni Optical Aviator Sunglasses

Otherwise, scroll down to read more!

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The Best Aviator Glasses Frames

Finding the right pair of glasses for you can be a frustrating task. As Aviator glasses are so common with a plethora of variations, it can be difficult to find a pair that you like and that fit you properly.

Whether you’re looking for new prescription glasses or just a pair of shades, you can use this guide to find the right glasses for you.

Each of the featured glasses below have been tested by us among at least 20 different pairs. We also include as much information as possible with regards to their size, customisation and other considerations.

Furthermore, most are available as clear glasses or sunglasses with prescription lenses.

Finally, we also cater to every budget range and will offer comments on quality and value for money.

1. Warby Parker “York” Aviator Glasses

  • Price: $145 [Buy Now]
  • Country Of Origin: USA
  • Brand: Warby Parker
  • Material: Ion-Plated Titanium
  • Measurements: 53-15-145
  • Frame Fit: Medium
  • Prescription Options: Single Vision & Progressive
  • Lenses Available: Clear / Light-Responsive
  • Free Try At Home? No

Walking the fine line between vintage and modern, the Warby Parker York aviator frames are versatile and comfortable. Made from Japanese ion-plated titanium, they’re lightweight and feel comfortable thanks to acetate temple tips.

Additionally, the Akulon-coated screws are an attention to detail that indicate the high-quality for these premium glasses.

Available in blue, copper or silver metal colours, the palette may be limited but each look fantastic. We were particularly fond of the shade of blue and thought it was perfectly wearable with most attires.

Unfortunately, these are only available with clear or light-responsive frames. Therefore, if you’re looking for sunglasses, they’re not ideal.

Finally, the Warby Parker York frames are somewhat premium compared to the other options on this list. However, at $145 they also cover the prescription lenses and consist of a far higher-end quality.

2. Coastal Joseph-Marc Observation Aviator Frames

  • Price: $95 [Buy Now]
  • Country Of Origin: USA
  • Brand: Joseph Marc
  • Material: Metal
  • Measurements: 55-16-140 [Medium]
  • Frame Fit: Small, Medium & Large
  • Prescription Options: Single Vision & Progressive
  • Lenses Available: Clear & Sunglasses
  • Free Try At Home? No

Coastal’s stylish aviators from Joseph Marc are an elegant choice for the more conservative-minded.

We were particularly keen on the Antique Gold frames, which offer a slight contrast and vintage feel. However, the Observations also come in silver or black if preferred.

Although the metal type was divulged, the glasses are lightweight yet sturdy. They’re also available in small, medium and large to fit most head sizes.

Finally, the frames are available for only $95 through Costal. However, take note that this doesn’t include the lenses so they can be quite costly in comparison.

3. Glasses USA Ottoto Pluto Aviator Frames

  • Price: From $89 [Buy Now]
  • Country Of Origin: USA
  • Brand: Ottoto
  • Material: Acetate
  • Measurements: 53-15-145
  • Frame Fit: Medium
  • Prescription Options: Single Vision, Bifocal & Progressive
  • Lenses Available: Clear & Sunglasses
  • Free Try At Home? No

We really liked these somewhat unusual frames from Glasses USA by Ottoto. A unique design inspired by the classic Aviators, the Ottoto Plato is made from acetate rather than metal.

Available solely in black, they can still be relatively modest despite their adventurous curved design. Nevertheless, there’s something quite fun about these frames that make them very geek chic.

Being made from acetate, they’re also very durable and quite comfortable on the nose bridge even without pads.

Finally, they’re available for only $90 on Glasses USA but can sometimes be found on sale for around $60. The pricing includes single, near and non-prescription lenses. However, you will need to pay more for progressive or bifocals. You can also add sunglasses lenses for only $29 extra.

4. EyeBuyDirect Harrier Aviator Frame Glasses

  • Price: From $29 [Buy Now]
  • Country Of Origin: USA
  • Brand: EyeBuyDirect
  • Material: Metal & Acetate
  • Measurements: 56-19-145
  • Frame Fit: Large
  • Prescription Options: Single Vision, Bifocal & Progressive
  • Lenses Available: Clear & Sunglasses
  • Free Try At Home? No

EyeBuy Direct’s “Harrier” aviators may be considerably cheaper, but their quality is still quite reasonable. Available in either gunmetal or gold, both feature striking tortoise acetate in brown and honey for an elegant finish.

Only available with 56mm lenses, this frame is best suited to people with larger heads. Nevertheless, it could be sported for an intentionally oversized geeky look.

Meanwhile, the metal is quite lightweight but doesn’t quite feel as sturdy as those made by Coastal and Warby Parker. Nevertheless, the price is unbeatable at only $29 on EyeBuy Direct, which includes single vision and non-prescription lenses.

Adding sunglasses lenses is easy too and there are plenty of options to choose from. Basic sunglasses cost only $4.95. Meanwhile, mirrored and polarised lenses cost $29 and $49 respectively.

5. Zenni Optical Aviator Sunglasses

  • Price: $27.95 [Buy Now]
  • Country Of Origin: USA
  • Brand: Zenni
  • Material: Metal & Acetate
  • Measurements: 54-54-148
  • Frame Fit: Large
  • Prescription Options: Single Vision, Bifocal & Progressive
  • Lenses Available: Clear & Sunglasses
  • Free Try At Home? No

Like the Ottoto frames sold through EyeBuy Direct, Zenni Optical has drawn inspiration for the classic design to create something unique. However, instead of opting for only acetate, Zenni’s interpretation features mixed materials.

Whilst the lenses are enclosed with black acetate, the brow bridge and temple arms have a dark gold metal finish. In the shade, the colour is almost bronze but shines like antique gold under the light.

Pushing the geek-chic concept to the full, the resulting style is almost steampunk and suits eccentric and fashionable styles alike. They’re also very lightweight and comfortable to wear.

Finally, at only $27.95 on Zenni, these glasses offer excellent value for money, which includes single and non-prescription lenses. Sunglasses lenses cost only and additional $4.95!

What Are Aviator Glasses?

Douglas-MacArthur-Wearing-Aviator-Sunglasses

Originally invented in 1936 by Bausch & Lomb, Aviators were designed to protect pilots from the sun’s glare when flying. This is why the lens is teardrop-shaped and its surface area is about three times that of the human eyeball.

Its introduction swiftly replaced the outdated goggles worn during the 1st World War and they became enormously popular among all military personnel.

Whilst the goggles were a source of mockery since they looked quite goofy, aviator glasses became synonymous with heroism and bravery. Many famous generals including Douglas MacArthur were renowned for their dark shades.

Soon after the war, they were highly sought after by civilians and eventually trademarked as “Ray Bans”. Most popular as sunglasses, aviators had a stint in the 1970’s and early-to-mid-1980’s wherein they were used as prescription glasses.

This fell out of fashion before the turn of the century but has since experienced a Renaissance in recent years. For instance, they’re stylishly worn by The Professor in the extremely successful Spanish series, Casa de Papel (Money Heist).

Will Aviator Frames Work For Me?

Light skinned black hipster in aviatorsFirstly, aviators are usually quite large so always take your head size into account when choosing a pair. If your head is comparatively small, you should take care and double check sizes before buying.

Additionally, they’re commonly made from metals ranging from gold to silver. Therefore, refer to our guide to choosing glasses to see which would suit your skin tone best. For instance, warmed-skin men would fare better with gold frames whilst cool-skinned men would likely suit silver metal.

Another consideration is your own style or persona. Are you someone with classic tastes or would you consider yourself to be eccentric? If you’re not sure, the guide linked above can help.

Finally, your face shape will play the largest part in whether sunglasses will suit you or not. We cover this in detail below so don’t hesitate to scroll down to see whether aviators are frames for you!

Will Aviator Frames Suit My Face Shape?

If you’re wondering whether aviator frames will suit your own morphology, you can refer to the guide below. Here, you will learn whether these particular frames will suit you and whether you need to factor in any considerations.

If you already know your face shape, just click yours below to avoiding scrolling and jump straight to it:

Furthermore, if you don’t already know it, we suggest that you refer to our full face shape guide in order to identify it.

Ideal Matches

If yours are one of the following face shapes, you can usually wear aviator frames with ease. Nevertheless, be sure to read about yours to take any considerations that we highlight into account.


Graphic of a man's diamond face shapeDiamond Face Shape

With their prominent cheekbones and angular features, diamond face shapes can benefit from the rounded shape of aviator frames. The smooth curves help soften their features but also provide extra width, which offsets their sometimes narrow forehead.

If this is your face shape and you want to learn more or check out our general advice for styling, head the the diamond face shape guide.


What is a man's oval face shape?Oval Face Shape

Being the so-called “ideal” face shape, ovals can more-or-less wear most styles. However, take care to find aviators that aren’t too wide as this could inadvertently reduce face length. Narrower frames tend to make the face appear squarer whilst wide ones will render it round.

You can read more about your characteristics and styling advice on the dedicated oval face shape page.

Bespoke Unit's graphic of a man's square face shapeSquare Face Shape

With their prominent jawline and angular features, it’s hard to imagine a more fitting frame on square faces than aviators. Exuding masculinity and military bravado, aviators would be right at home if fitted properly.

However, if you’re looking for something less imposing, head to our full guide for square shape faces.

Bespoke Unit's graphic of a man's triangle face shapeTriangle Face Shape

Like square face shapes, aviators would suit triangle face shapes very well. The reverse teardrop shape would complement their prominent jawline whilst providing bulk to their narrow cheekbones.

As you will see in the triangle face shape guide, rounder glasses work best but you can peruse all our recommended frames.

Acceptable Matches

If yours is one of the following face shapes, you can try these glasses. However, unless you’re particularly attached to this style, you may find more success elsewhere. Perhaps head to the face shape’s own guide linked below or head back to all the frames that we cover to discover what else is possible.

Graphic of a man's heart face shapeHeart Face Shape

Featuring a relatively wide forehead, heart face shapes will need to take care in selecting the right pair for them. Avoid wide lenses and opt for a narrower bridge, which should slightly reduce overall width. With their sloping and sometimes delicate chin, aviators can help widen this with their reserved teardrop shape.

If you have a heart face shape and want to see which frames and general styles we recommend, head to its dedicated guide.

Incompatible Face Shapes

The following face shapes may struggle to wear aviator frames successfully. We recommend that you either read their dedicated pages linked below or check out the other frames that we feature!

Bespoke Unit's graphic of a man's oblong face shapeOblong Face Shape

With their tall features, oblong face shapes will struggle to wear aviators without experiencing some difficulties. In being an equally tall and curved shape, aviators risk softening their features and increasing their face length even further.

Instead, refer to the other styles that we recommend in our detailed oblong face shape page.

graphic of a man's round face shapeRound Face Shape

Unfortunately, round face shapes will struggle with aviator frames. Being quite large and smooth frames, aviators will reduce the height and overall size of a round face shape. The result may make the face appear even rounder with oversized glasses.

Head to the round face shape style guide to see what frames we would recommend as an alternative.

What Next?

Happy with what you’ve discovered? If so, don’t hesitate to head to our main glasses page to learn more about glasses such as lenses and colours. Alternatively, check out some of our other related guides:

Best Aviator Glasses Guide
Reviewed by Gerry H, on .
"Perfect for both conservative and outgoing occasions. Timelessly stylish, the aviator glasses I found here look and feel great!"
Rating: 5.0 ★★★★★

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