For many of us, the most important aspect of choosing eyeglass frames is how they look on our face. You could try on every pair of eyeglasses in the store to find out how each one looks, but narrowing down your choices in advance can save you a lot of time and aggravation. You simply need to determine your face shape and understand which eyeglass frame styles would look best on you.
You should consider three main points when choosing an eyeglass frame for your face shape:
- Eyewear should repeat your personal best feature (such as a blue frame to match blue eyes).
- The frame shape should contrast with your face shape.
- The frame size should be in scale with your face size.
Also, while most faces are a combination of shapes and angles, there are seven basic face shapes: round, oval, oblong, base-down triangle or heart, base-up triangle, diamond and square.
Here is a further description of these face shapes and which types of frames work best for each, according to The Vision Council. A good optician can help you use these guidelines to choose your new eyeglasses.
An oval face is considered to be the ideal shape because of its balanced proportions. To keep the oval’s natural balance, look for eyeglass frames that are as wide as (or wider than) the broadest part of the face, or walnut-shaped frames that are not too deep or too narrow.
This face has a very wide top third and small bottom third. To minimize the width of the top of the face, try frames that are wider at the bottom, very light colors and materials and rimless frame styles (which have a light, airy effect because the lenses are simply held in place by a few screws, with no surrounding frame material).
An oblong face is longer than it is wide and has a long straight cheek line and sometimes a longish nose. To make an oblong face appear shorter and more balanced, try frames that have more depth than width, decorative or contrasting temples that add width to the face, or a low bridge to shorten the nose.
A square face has a strong jaw line and a broad forehead, plus the width and length are in the same proportions. To make a square face look longer and to soften the angles, try narrow frame styles, frames that have more width than depth, and narrow ovals.
Diamond-shaped faces are narrow at the eye line and jawline, and have broad cheekbones that may be high and dramatic. This is the rarest face shape. To highlight the eyes and soften the cheekbones, try frames that have detailing or distinctive brow lines, or try rimless frames or oval and cat-eye shapes.
A round face has curved lines with the width and length in the same proportions and no angles. To make a round face appear thinner and longer, try angular narrow eyeglass frames to lengthen the face, a clear bridge that widens the eyes, and frames that are wider than they are deep, such as a rectangular shape.
Base-Down Triangle (Heart)
A base-down triangular face has a narrow forehead and widens at the cheek and chin areas. To add width and emphasize the narrow upper third of the face, try frames that are heavily accented with color and detailing on the top half or try cat-eye shapes.