Relive the 50s: Iconic Eyewear Styles from the Post-War Boom Era

A time of suburban dreams, fancy new cars and the introduction of the new middle class made the 1950s a prosperous time for American business and families. The post-war boom for the economy meant more money for fabrics and materials, which led to luxurious apparel and accessory options. Fine-tailored suits and voluminous skirts were matched with sophisticated and prominent eyewear for the ultimate classy, elegant look. Take a nostalgic trip down memory lane as we explore popular eyewear styles and silhouettes that wouldn't be the same without the 50s!

Dramatic Cat-Eye

In the 50s the television became a modern home appliance that most middle-class families could afford. This meant that pop culture; movies, TV shows, concerts, and more had even more of an impact on fashion in this era. This rang especially true for the reinvention of cat-eye glasses, which one could see famous actress Marilyn Monroe sporting in movies like How to Marry a Millionaire and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. There's no doubt that the influence of pop culture helped to mark a new era for women's sophistication and sensuality that could be expressed through clothing and accessories. Cat-eye frames, meant to resemble the eyes of a feline cat, became even more popular because of their ability to provide a sultry look to the wearer by accentuating the cheekbones. Searching for this style? Check out our styles Casablanca and Never Lonely for that sultry look.


Never Lonely #84109 Sunglasses

Clark Kent or Brow Line 

The pop culture effect was certainly present when a popular comic book and character became an American television series called The Adventures of Superman. White-collar suburban husbands everywhere wanted to emulate the look seen on every American's TV screen, known as the Clark Kent or brow-line glasses. These frames are characterized by thick temples and rims and are large enough to meet right at the wearer's brow line, naturally enhancing the symmetry of the wearer's face.


Known as the brow-lines' familiar cousin are the horn-rimmed frames. Originally these stylish glasses were made with real horns from animals or tortoise shells, hence the name. However, with the emergence of new technology, cheaper materials like plastic were substituted as a more affordable alternative. Check out our styles Fifties, Madison Ave, and Soho for the vintage-inspired look.

Fifties #54407 Blue-Light Readers

Classic Rounded Square

A simple description of this classic style is a frame with a broad upper rim that comes to a slight point at the corners and usually includes some type of adornment at the corners of the temples. However, no one expected this style would hold an everlasting impression on fashion and the eyewear industry as long as it has! Famous celebrities like James Dean, Bob Dylan, and Andy Warhol popularized this style during the 50s. Although originally designed for men, the iconic silhouette quickly made its way to female fashionistas and became the perfect unisex accessory. Check out our styles Grad School, Castro, and Archie for the original "cool daddy" look. 


Archie #39107 Sunglasses

In short, the 50s were a time of sophistication and subtle sultriness that called for bold eyewear silhouettes that attractively accented the face. It's a look that still remains in the mainstream today with actors like James Franco, Steve Carrell, Meryl Streep, and even Oprah sporting these classic looks on red carpets and more.  Looking for affordable vintage-inspired reading glasses and sunglasses? Look no further than A.J. Morgan Eyewear with one of the largest collections of retro eyewear at retro prices in the business!