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Who doesn’t want to look their best?
Unfortunately, fast fashion is terrible for the environment and leaves more and more non-biodegradable plastics and chemicals in landfills.
Companies are starting to realize that sustainability doesn’t have to be excluded in the world of consumerism.
As I recently discovered with luxury bamboo sunglasses, sustainability is the new trend.
Most sunglasses I see in large retail stores are made from plastic or metal. I didn’t even think about sunglasses being made from bamboo materials until writing this article.
But here’s the thing:
Bamboo is a much more eco-friendly material than plastic. The more we replace plastic with bamboo, the better. Even if it’s just replacing a part of a frame.
As bamboo increases in popularity, so do the creative ways bamboo materials are applied in the new sustainable economy–even in fashion.
People sometimes think they have to sacrifice design or quality when shopping for eco-friendly alternatives. But that isn’t the case.
When it comes to sunglasses, there are definitely brands and companies with the environment in mind. Hello good-looking eco-friendly alternatives, goodbye cheap plastic lenses.
In fact, many ethically made bamboo sunglasses come from luxury brands.
I encourage you to consider the environmental impact of your fashion choices. Bamboo checks all the boxes as a high-quality material.
Bamboo is eco-friendly, very strong, and gives a luxurious appearance and feel. Sunglasses made of bamboo are durable and lightweight.
Plus, it’s nice to wear more natural items on your face.
Here’s a list of 8 bamboo sunglasses styles that are well-suited for a variety of budgets and needs:
Best Overall – Weekender – Red (TruWood)
This is a good unisex option that is flattering on all face shapes. It has a cute aviator build that adds flair and fun.
The frame is made of metal alloy, and its side panels are made of bamboo. The bamboo used in the side panels is from 100% real bamboo, and not printed plastic.
These sunglasses have the feeling of wood, despite bamboo actually being a grass.
These red, polarized lenses are tinted and are protective against 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Polarized lenses are clearer. Combined with UV protection, polarized lenses are especially nice when you need protection for your eyes while driving.
Truwood has a partnership with Trees for the Future and works with them to plant 10 trees per order. Supporting TruWood helps to restore biodiversity and combat climate change. The Forest Garden Program works with farmers to teach them to grow a variety of fast-growing trees, fruits, hardwoods, and vegetables to help families in Africa.
TruWood is an ethical company that gives back, so they are a good business to support. Be sure to check out their other eco-friendly products. For example, they sell some really beautiful bamboo watch faces as well as wooden Apple Watch bands.
Weekender aviator sunglasses come with a protective carrying case, which is also made of bamboo. The manufacturer’s warranty lasts for one year.
Last update on 2021-09-17 // Source: Amazon
Mini Tree shades are unisex. They’re also really customizable and are able to be made with a variety of different colored lenses: blue, grey, tea, green, and pink. Each lens color offering UV400 protection.
Because these glasses are primarily made of bamboo, they are very light. They’ll float if you happen to drop them while in the pool, and they’re water-resistant.
They come with a cleaning cloth, a microfiber pouch, a bamboo protective case, and a polarized test card.
I like that the storage case it comes with is also made of bamboo. Too often, eco-friendly products come with packaging that isn’t eco-friendly. It’s a bummer when that happens. And it’s nice that even with the protective case, these sunglasses stay an eco-friendly purchase.
Best Men’s – Sienna Wooden Sunglasses With Bamboo Case (Engleberts)
Sienna Wooden Sunglasses are luxurious, attractive, and are made with anti-reflective 9-layer, category 3 lenses.
Engleberts lenses are also UV 400 protected. They block 99-100% of the sun’s rays and they’re polarized.
And here’s the thing. These sunglasses feature stainless steel spring hinges that comfortably accommodate different head sizes.
Sienna glasses are handcrafted and individually artisan engraved.
The frame is beautiful. I love the coloring. And the bamboo case it comes with is also beautifully stained.
Each purchase comes with a bamboo case, a microfiber pouch, a cleaning cloth, sunglasses straps, and a free polarization test card for secure confidence in quality.
I really like the way these premium sunglasses look and the way they have artsy-etched designs engraved into the wooden sides.
They definitely rival designer shades. And look way more expensive than they actually are.
Best Women’s – Joyce Bamboo Sunglasses (WearPanda)
These Joyce sunglasses by Wear Panda come in 4 colors, all made of stained bamboo. They have 100% polarized lenses with FSC-certified, eco-friendly frames.
The shape of these glasses is called butterfly style.
These frames aren’t a full-on cat-eye shape as they are more rounded. They’re more of a classic style but offer a feminine feel. They turn up at the corners ever so slightly.
If you prefer a more traditional cat-eye shape, WearPanda carries a style called Valencia, also made of bamboo.
WearPanda has a business model that gives back through Optometry Giving Sight, which provides medical training and service to underserved communities. With every purchase of sunglasses, WearPanda donates an eye exam and glasses to someone in need.
All glasses by WearPanda have a lifetime warranty. So while they’re one of the more pricey options on this list, they make for a good investment.
They also have a cute panda logo engraved on the frames to verify it’s an original WearPanda design.
Best Kids’ – KIDS LIL’ KICK BAMBOO (Grown Designs)
These smaller framed glasses by Grown Designs Eyewear are crafted specifically for kids. They have UV400 protection with polarized lenses and are meant for kids ages 5-10.
The glasses are a kids’ version of adult Flagship Kickers frames. Parents and kids can match!
Kicker Bamboo hinges are spring-loaded, and the bridge is elevated.
The sunglasses come in a natural bamboo stain and have a 100-day warranty. Grown Designs also has something called DAMN Coverage, which allows you to purchase a replacement due to normal wear and tear within 180 days at 40% off. Score!
Because the majority of these sunglasses are made from lightweight bamboo, they’ll float. Which is great for kids! If your kiddos drop them in the lake, ocean, or pool, they’ll be easier to retrieve.
Free shipping to the US and Canada.
Best Polarized – Wesli Bamboo Sunglasses (WearPanda)
All 8 of the sunglasses on this list are polarized, but the Wesli Bamboo Sunglasses by WearPanda win the Best category.
If you’re interested in learning more about polarized lenses, the article Pros and Cons of Polarized Lenses by Your Sight Matters explains in depth why polarized lenses are better than regular lenses.
One big takeaway is that polarized lenses don’t automatically protect your eyes against UVA or UVB rays. Unless it’s specifically mentioned, it shouldn’t be assumed.
However, these Wesli Bamboo Sunglasses do have both polarized lenses and UVA & UVB protection! They are polarized at filter level 3, also known as the very dark tint.
The lenses themselves are made from recycled polycarbonates and the bamboo frames are waterproof due to a non-toxic process completed with applied beeswax.
They come with a bamboo case, microfiber cloth, and have a lifetime warranty with WearPanda, as well as a WearPanda logo engraved on the frame.
Best Mirrored – Bamboo Wood Sunglasses with Blue Mirror Polarized Lens (Woodies)
These Woodies sunglasses are made with a mirror lens and real bamboo arms. But, the frame is made of plastic around the lenses. So, these sunglasses aren’t a frame made of 100% bamboo. Instead, this is a product made of mixed materials.
While the entire frame is not made of bamboo, these Woodies sunglasses are still a more eco-friendly option available for this style.
The frame has double-spring hinges to provide flexibility of fit and comfort.
Each purchase includes one pair of blue mirrored bamboo sunglasses and polarized lenses, with a microfiber cloth, a carrying case, and even a wood guitar pick.
Best Cat-Eye – BARCUR Cat Eye Sunglasses
I love these BACUR sunglasses! I think their design is so cute and flattering.
I’m a sucker for a good cat-eye too. My personal favorite version of these sunglasses is with the pink-colored lens.
BARCUR Cat Eye Sunglasses come in four other lens colors too: amber, silver, gray, and green.
They look super trendy! And these are my favorite on the list, style-wise.
The frames are made of stainless steel and the side panels are made of bamboo.
The lenses offer you the 400 UV protection and are anti-reflective polarized lenses, with a polaroid mirror reflection.
BARCUR’s sunglasses are 100% handmade and eco-friendly.
Whether or not your coveted pair of sunglasses from this article is completely plastic-free, all of the sunglasses are eco-friendly versions of their plastic counterparts.
Any reduction of plastic in favor of bamboo material should be celebrated. Bamboo and mixed material products are making an important step toward eco-friendly sunglasses and sustainable fashion.
When considering sunglasses, be sure to match the UVA and UVB protection with what you’re looking for. Just because a pair of sunglasses is polarized, doesn’t mean the polarized lens can protect the wearer from UV rays unless specially noted.
If you are wearing sunglasses purely for self-expression as a fashion statement, just know that without UV protection, you won’t be protected against the sun. And that’s fine if your sunglasses are intended to be more of an accessory.
But if you’re looking for actual protection for your eyes, do be sure you’re wearing a pair of sunglasses that explicitly states 400 UVA & UVB protection. Because eye protection is important! Sight is a gift.
All the sunglasses listed in this article do just that. They all offer UVA protection. Happy shopping!