Fifties shades of retro: Dig out your old sunglasses! As A-list celebs step out in cat-eyes, how the old school frames are back in fashion

Early Hollywood stars established sunglasses as the essential accessoryThe-style conscious can steal a 'look' from any decade and any star they choose Celebrities and High Street stores are sporting a bewildering array of shades

By Nancy Newman For The Mail On Sunday

Published: 18:25 EST, 19 August 2017 | Updated: 19:33 EST, 19 August 2017

It was the early Hollywood stars of the 1920s who first established sunglasses as the essential accessory, shading their eyes to preserve their anonymity on the sunny streets of LA – or hiding the bloodshot evidence of their famously louche lifestyles.

Sunglasses have been intertwined with glamour ever since, and every decade has had a signature style to define the era: think of Jackie Kennedy's oversized black pebbles worn either on the nose or on the top of the head or Beatle John Lennon's reclaiming of the round NHS-issue specs so hated by generations of British schoolchildren.

But those simple days of sunglasses certainty are so over.

In tune with the current trend for ransacking the past for 'new' ideas, the-style conscious can steal a 'look' from any decade and any star they choose – from Twiggy to Dame Edna Everage and way beyond.

Celebrities and High Street stores alike are sporting a bewildering assortment of shades that have one thing in common: they are all retro twists on classic 20th Century designs.

It seems that when it comes to fashion for the face, in authentic Hollywood style, it's back to the future...

Fifties... Cool for cat's eyes  

The cat-eye is an iconic shape worn by the silver screen idols of the 50s. Rita Hayworth wore a pair in London as she filmed Fire Down Below in 1957.

Now, the style is copied by British actress Sophie Turner, star of Game Of Thrones.

Singer Camilla Kerslake and actresses Joan Collins and Elisabeth Moss have all been spotted in the retro style.

The cat-eye is an iconic shape worn by the silver screen idols of the 50s. Now, the style is copied by British actress Sophie Turner, star of Game Of ThronesThe cat-eye is an iconic shape worn by the silver screen idols of the 50s. Now, the style is copied by British actress Sophie Turner, star of Game Of Thrones

The cat-eye is an iconic shape worn by the silver screen idols of the 50s. Now, the style is copied by British actress Sophie Turner, star of Game Of Thrones

Rita HayworthRita HayworthCamilla KerslakeCamilla Kerslake

Rita Hayworth (left) wore a pair in London as she filmed Fire Down Below in 1957. Pictured, singer Camilla Kerslake

Joan CollinsJoan CollinsElisabeth MossElisabeth Moss

Actresses Joan Collins (left) and Elisabeth Moss (right) have all been spotted in the retro style

Sixties... They're a white spectacle

Golden Age Hollywood actress and style icon Audrey Hepburn wore white rounded shades in the 1966 comedy How To Steal A Million.

The revived fashion accessory was seen recently on American pop star Katy Perry at the Manchester tribute concert in May.

British actress Naomi Watts is also a fan, as are Umbrella singer Rihanna and supermodel Claudia Schiffer.

Audrey HepburnAudrey HepburnKaty PerryKaty Perry

Golden Age Hollywood actress and style icon Audrey Hepburn (left) wore white rounded shades in the 1966 comedy How To Steal A Million. The revived fashion accessory was seen recently on American pop star Katy Perry (right)

Seventies... Let’s go round again

The round-frame style was a fashion trademark of Beatle John Lennon and are still often referred to as ‘John Lennon glasses’.

Socialite Poppy Delevingne was seen reviving the trend earlier this year in California, while they are a wardrobe staple for supermodel Kate Moss and property heiress India Rose James.

Emma McQuiston wife of the heir of Longleat has also been seen in the round.

Beatle John LennonBeatle John LennonPoppy DelevingnePoppy Delevingne

The round-frame style was a fashion trademark of Beatle John Lennon (left) and are still often referred to as ‘John Lennon glasses’. Socialite Poppy Delevingne (right) was seen reviving the trend earlier this year in California

Kate MossKate MossIndia Rose JamesIndia Rose James

They are a wardrobe staple for supermodel Kate Moss (left) and property heiress India Rose James (right)

Emma McQuiston wife of the heir of Longleat has also been seen in the roundEmma McQuiston wife of the heir of Longleat has also been seen in the round

Emma McQuiston wife of the heir of Longleat has also been seen in the round

Eighties... Aviators for high flyers

Aviators were invented in 1936 for pilots but were popularised in mainstream fashion in the decades after. 

The now-iconic style took on cult status after Tom Cruise’s 1986 role in Top Gun.

Supermodel Cara Delevingne styled a pair of the famous frames on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival this year, while other fans of the fashion include Heidi Klum and former One Direction star Liam Payne.

Tom Cruise’s 1986 role in Top GunTom Cruise’s 1986 role in Top GunCara DelevingneCara Delevingne

Aviators were invented in 1936 for pilots but were popularised in mainstream fashion in the decades after. The now-iconic style took on cult status after Tom Cruise’s 1986 role in Top Gun (left). Supermodel Cara Delevingne (right) styled a pair of the famous frames on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival this year

Heidi KlumHeidi KlumLiam PayneLiam Payne

Other fans of the fashion include Heidi Klum (left) and former One Direction star Liam Payne (right)

Nineties... An eye for colour

In 1990, American actress Bo Derek wears the colourful shades that characterised the decade.

Similar styles have been seen on supermodel Gigi Hadid, Sherlock star Martin Freeman and 13-year-old British actress, Millie Bobby Brown.

Bo DerekBo DerekGigi HadidGigi Hadid

In 1990, American actress Bo Derek (left) wears the colourful shades that characterised the decade. Similar styles have been seen on supermodel Gigi Hadid (right)

Martin FreemanMartin FreemanMillie Bobby BrownMillie Bobby Brown

Sherlock star Martin Freeman (left) and 13-year-old British actress, Millie Bobby Brown (right)

Noughties... A giant frame-up

In a nod to style icon Jackie Kennedy Onassis, actress Kate Beckinsale models the oversized style of the moment at a charity event in Los Angeles.

Kendall Jenner walked the nostalgic frames down the catwalks of Milan earlier this year. 

Lily Rose Depp, Martine McCutcheon and Victoria Beckham often opt for the style while out and about.

Kate BeckinsaleKate BeckinsaleKendall JennerKendall Jenner

In a nod to style icon Jackie Kennedy Onassis, actress Kate Beckinsale (left) models the oversized style of the moment at a charity event in Los Angeles. Kendall Jenner (right) walked the nostalgic frames down the catwalks of Milan earlier this year

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