National Sunglasses Day

National Sunglasses Day is a chance for everyone to express their individual style and put on their favorite shades. Although sunglasses are primarily used to protect the wearer’s eyes from damaging UV rays, many people choose their sunglasses according to their own personal style. And why shouldn’t they? A great pair of shades can help a person express their individual style and differentiate themselves from the crowd.

The History of National Sunglasses Day

Although we’re not sure exactly when National Sunglasses Day was founded, we do know that it was a day established by the Vision Council. Regardless of when they founded this holiday, we feel that it was a good decision on their part.

The History of Sunglasses

Unlike the holiday, it’s fairly easy to pinpoint when sunglasses were first invented. The earliest instances of people using a sunglasses-type piece of apparel for blocking out sunlight can be traced back to the Roman Empire. This is when Nero reportedly wore emeralds to block out sunlight while he watched gladiatorial matches. However, these reports are unsubstantiated.

Most likely, tinted quartz lenses may have been in use during the 12th or 13th centuries in China. These sunglasses used polished tinted quartz that helped to block out some of the sun’s rays. Inuit peoples also invented sunglasses around this same time, although those glasses didn’t have lenses but instead had small slits in walrus ivory to block much of the reflected sunlight from the snow.

During the mid-18th century, James Ayscough began to experiment with various types of tinted lenses. He believed that green-tinted and blue-tinted lenses had the power to correct certain types of eye conditions, so his experiments weren’t concerned with blocking out sunlight at this time.

Yellow-tinted and brown-tinted lenses were commonly prescribed to people with syphilis during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. That’s because syphilis sufferers often had a sensitivity to light. Eventually, sunglasses began to be used by more than just syphilis sufferers, and Hollywood movie stars began to wear them at the beginning of the 20th century.

In 1929, Sam Foster introduced the first inexpensive mass-produced sunglasses to America by selling them along the boardwalk of Atlantic City. He sold these glasses under the Foster Grant name, and they were the first official sunglasses to be sold.

How to Celebrate National Sunglasses Day

Observing National Sunglasses Day is as easy as putting on your favorite pair of sunglasses and wearing them while you’re out and about. You can also take a picture of yourself wearing your nifty shades and post it to your social media accounts using the hashtag #NationalSunglassesDay. Just be sure that when you do, you don’t cast any shade on other people’s sunglasses styles.

When is it?
This year (2024)
June 27 Thursday
Next year (2025)
June 27 Friday
Last year (2023)
June 27 Tuesday