by John Russel Jones

“Let me put on my sunglasses here so I can see what I’m doing.”

—George Clinton from “Mothership Connection (Star Child)” by Parliament

Break out those shades, because today is National Sunglasses Day.  The Vision Council, the trade association for the optical industry, celebrates and highlights the importance of wearing ultraviolet (UV)-protective eyewear all year long. The “holiday” is observed annually on June 27th and serves as a reminder that sunglasses and other UV-protective eyewear are key to long-term eye health. (And here we just thought they looked cool.) The observance was founded by The Vision Council nearly a decade ago as part of its mission to promote better vision for better lives.

The Knocks model Ray-Ban Aviators and Wayfarers at last week’s Sun-Day Summer Solstice party.

“Sunglasses are an undeniable summer closet staple, but they are so much more than just a fashion statement,” said Ashley Mills, CEO of The Vision Council. “Sunglasses help protect our eyes from damaging UV rays, ensuring that we can take part in the outdoor activities we love. Whether it’s riding a bike on a sunny day, walking through the park, or reading at the beach, sunglasses keep our eyes safe and help us live our best lives, even on the brightest days.”

Torus Eyewear is a new made in Italy brand from legendary eyewear designer Sheila Vance. retailing for around $600.00.

This year, The Vision Council marks the occasion by encouraging people around the globe to take to social media and share a sunglass selfie with the official hashtag, #SolarFlair and tagging @TheVisionCouncil on Facebook and Instagram and @OpticalIndustry on Twitter.

The Waterfront Sun is from Spanish eyewear brand Etnia Barcelona, $405.

Raising awareness about the importance of UV-protective eyewear is essential, as UVA and UVB rays can result in short-and long-term damage to eye health and vision. In fact, exposure to harmful UV rays can result in life-altering conditions like photokeratitis, cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, and basal cell carcinoma. Similarly, research shows that as little as 100 seconds of direct sun exposure can result in permanent retinal damage.

Duo Bill Barton’s and Patty Perreria’s hand-built Barton-Perreria collection retails for around $500.

In addition to the Solar Flair campaign, The Vision Council marked the occasion with a sunglass-centric research report, Focused inSights 2023: Sunglasses Snapshot. The report found a vast majority of adults (82 percent) say fit and comfort are most important when picking sunglasses, and seven in ten adults said sunglasses play a crucial role in their sun protection routine.

The Izzy is a modern take on classic, oversized square frames from, ($225)

The Vision Council also celebrated the occasion by providing Pick Your Perfect Pair, a guide for selecting sunglasses; offering a toolkit of promotional materials, featuring ready-made graphics and suggested content; and hosting a celebratory event for industry media and leaders highlighting new products from several eyewear brands including Carrera Eyewear, evil eye, Marchon, Marcolin, Maui Jim, MODO Eyewear, RANDOLPH, and Ray-Ban.

TOP IMAGE: Porsche Design Iconic Machined Sunglasses In reference to the Porsche 911, the Iconic Machined eyewear is limited to only 911 units. Retail price $1,200,