Searches for this retro sunglasses shape are up 2,400 per cent

Rectangular sunglasses are a trend most of us associate with the 80s, when modern sci-fi shapes and sharp lines were most definitely in. In the decades since, we’ve seen the rise of aviator, cat-eye and circular shapes, but long, thin styles have stayed firmly in the past – until now.

rectangle sunglasses
Rectangle sunglasses are officially back. Image: Getty Images

Yes, boxy frames are well and truly back in favour with the fashion-forward and shopping app is reporting an incredible 2400 per cent search increase in the style this summer.

rectangle sunglasses
Street style edits are full of angular frames. Image: Getty Images

The retro look has come full circle and been spotted perching on the noses of models such as Kendall Jenner and the Hadid sisters, as well as being seen on the coolest catwalks at fashion week.

But before you start thinking you need to go full Matrix to tap into the trend, don’t panic: it can work in a number of ways, and doesn’t have to be taken to the extreme to look good.

rectangle sunglasses
Bella Hadid’s take on the trend. Image: Getty Images

Meryl Streep, for example, is a fan of rectangular lenses, but opts for slightly thicker, softer lines and styles that are more wearable.

rectangle sunglasses
Meryl opts for a slight oval shape to soften the look. Image: Getty Images

Plus, you don’t have to invest a lot to take the look for a test-run – the high-street is awash with suitable styles starting from as little as £6.

rectangle sunglasses
Contrasting frames and chic tailoring. Image: Getty Images

Take a look at our guide to see which style is best for you:

Bold and sci-fi

The original and bravest way to wear rectangular sunglasses, these often come without a lens for the most Matrix-inspired old school look. If these are not for you, stick to something with a lens, but keep the shape ultra-thin and long. As they are perhaps the boldest choice, these must be pulled off with total confidence. It’s important to wear them, and not to let them wear you. Narrow faces may struggle with this ultra long shape, which is best suited to round faces that suit a sharper, more definitive line.

Monki Rectangle Sunglasses in Black, £10, ASOS

Winona Slim Rectangle Glasses, £8, Topshop

Gucci Square-Frame Acetate Sunglasses, £235, Net-A-Porter 

Black RB8319CH Rectangle Sunglasses, £254, Rayban, House of Fraser

Finesse sunglasses, £19, Quay Australia

Circular, softer edges

Slightly easier to pull off and less committal in nature, these still boast the thin width and long shape we associate rectangles with, but have slightly rounded edges that boost their wearability stakes and open them up to suit more face shapes. Although these can work for most, they will look particularly good on heart-shaped or square faces, who need a slightly softer line.

Angular Oval Sunglasses, £8, Topshop

Le Specs Outta Love Oval-Frame Tortoiseshell Acetate Sunglasses, £40, Net-A-Porter

Narrow Acetate Sunglasses, £55, Arket

Le Specs Unreal! Rectangle-Frame Sunglasses, £55, Selfridges

Acetate Frame Sunglasses, £7.99, Mango

Thicker lframes

Sticking to the long lens length, but with a slightly wider shape, these are more of a hybrid square/rectangle shape that actually suit most face shapes but particularly complement oval shapes. Small faces with delicate features may find this shape a little overpowering, but it’s worth giving them a go if you prefer a larger pair of sunglasses in general.

Renee Rectangular Sunglasses, £6, Accessorize

Wave Slim Glasses, £18, Weekday


Chunky Shades, £10, Monki

Ashley Hell Raiser Glasses, £148, Ace & Tate

Need more tips on how to shop for sunglasses to suit your face shape? Read our definitive guide.