Fashion | Ray-Ban: A Long and Interesting History

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There probably isn’t a person in the world who hasn’t heard of Ray-Ban sunglasses, the brand that
set the standards for literally every company that followed. Founded in 1937, Ray-Ban has been
setting trends ever since. Yet, even though the brand is a household name in every developed
Country around the world, few people know much about the long and interesting history of this
amazingly innovative brand.

What We Do Know

The one fact that most people probably know is how Ray-Ban developed the predecessor to modern
day polarized sunglasses. Air Force pilots were beginning to fly so high that they were complaining
that the glare from the sun caused them to get severe headaches, and worse yet, altitude sickness.
An innovative type of sunglasses was introduced with a lens that was green and able to ‘ban’ the
sun’s ‘rays’ – hence Ray-Ban. Many people probably never got the connection, even knowing the
history!

The Shades of Stars

From Michael Jackson to Audrey Hepburn, celebrities are seen in Ray-Ban shades far more often
than any other brand. For trivia buffs, it’s interesting to note just how many artists have worn Ray-
Ban shades on tour and how many actors have worn them in feature films. Here are just a few of the
most notable to give a brief illustration of their popularity in the entertainment world. Of course you
will notice that these ‘tidbits’ are not in any kind of chronological order – they are just interesting facts.


  • Michael Jackson wore Aviator glasses on his Bad tour in the mid 1980’s
  • Stars as far back as Humphrey Bogart – yes Bogie himself – had photo ops in them
  • Tom Cruise featured Ray-Bans in three of his top rated films

But the list could go on and on. Celebs such as Denzel Washington, John Travolta, Tommy Lee Jones, Will Smith, Robert De Niro and John Goodman also wore Ray-Bans in movies they starred in. And this is just the short list!

Why Ray-Ban?

Although fashions rise and fall like the tides, Ray-Ban sunglasses have always been a leader in style
as well as in sales. It can’t be just the trendsetting designs or they, too, would have soon lost their
popularity.

Actually, Ray-Bans are renowned for the quality and technology they utilise that is always way ahead of the competition. What began as an innovative concept in the 1930’s has continued throughout the years and now, more than three-quarters of a century later they are once again hinting at a ‘change’ they are bringing to the table.

In their latest marketing campaign, Ray-Ban is alluding to a ‘non-secret secret’ and that ‘change is
coming.’ What that change is, is yet to be seen. From the brand’s early success when the
manufacturer was America’s Bausch & Lomb to their continued success as part of the Italian
Luxottica group, Ray-Ban sunglasses are still a force to be reckoned with. From green to yellow to
polarized lenses, Ray-Ban laid the foundation for sunglasses manufacturers around the globe. It will
be interesting to see what they have in store for 2015.


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