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Audrey Hepburn’s Sunglasses: Some Classics Are Forever

Vanessa Teng

Written By:

Vanessa Teng

Updated: 19 May 2024 •  
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Award-winning actress, style icon, and humanitarian – Audrey Hepburn is a name that needs no introduction.
She played many world-famous characters in movies that remain classics even today. And aside from her amazing talent and humanitarian efforts, Audrey Hepburn was also loved for her timeless style.
She started many trends that remain popular even today, and cat eye glasses have to be our favorite!

Who Was Audrey Hepburn?

Talk about a total icon!
Audrey Hepburn was one of the most successful and talented actresses in the world. As a screen legend, she played in many classic films, including Roman Holiday, War and Peace, My Fair Lady, and of course, Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
She was also (and still is) considered one of the most beautiful women of all time, if not the most beautiful. However, Audrey Hepburn famously said that true beauty is not about one’s appearance, instead, “true beauty in a woman is reflected in her soul. It’s the caring that she lovingly gives, the passion that she shows, and the beauty of a woman only grows with passing years.”
She certainly lived by this, as she was also dedicated to humanitarian efforts. Her kindness made her even more beautiful – both on the inside and out.

Audrey Hepburn’s Captivating Style On & Off the Silver Screen

Audrey Hepburn graced every place she visited with an air of elegance, and her stylish looks were characterized by sophistication. It was this refined taste that quickly drew the attention of the public.
We all know and love the little black dress from Breakfast at Tiffany’s and her more glamorous looks at awards events.
Audrey Hepburn in her famous little black dress

The famous little black dress from Breakfast at Tiffany’s that’s still elegant and in style today. (Credit: CNN).

However, even when she was off the set, her style still shone with a timeless quality that’s effortlessly chic.
Her personal style has a simplicity and elegance that’s just as stylish today as it was back when she wore them. Clean lines, neutral colors, and minimal accessories gave her outfits a sophisticated touch that’s never boring.
Audrey Hepburn didn’t get dressed up to the nines often, in fact, her most worn pieces were cigarette trousers, black tops, and ballet flats. It’s this simplicity that made her style dazzle with a flair that’s forever in style.
Audrey Hepburn speaking on a phone wearing a striped top and black slack

A striped top and slacks all in black – Audrey’s everyday style is simple yet always in style. (Credit: Who What Wear).

“Elegance is the only beauty that never fades,” Audrey Hepburn once famously said.

Audrey Hepburn’s Most Famous Sunglasses – The Cat Eye

Audrey Hepburn wearing a pair of sunglasses for breakfast at tiffany

Audrey Hepburn in the iconic cat eye sunglasses in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. (Credit: The Cut).

In 1961, Audrey Hepburn brought to life perhaps one of the most iconic characters in the history of movies, Holly Golightly from Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
In the same year, she also started the trend for the equally iconic sunglasses that she wore in the movie – cat-eye sunglasses.
Cat-eye glasses feature a frame that turns up at the edges on the sides, creating a shape that looks like a cat’s eyes. This style was invented by Altina Schinasi Miranda in the 20s as a feminine option for women in the spectacle industry dominated by masculine frames, but it wasn’t until Audrey Hepburn wore it in Breakfast at Tiffany’s in the 60s that it became one of the most sought-after styles for the ladies. Even Audrey herself preferred this style when she was off duty!

Who Made Those Sunglasses?

Those famous cat eye sunglasses from Breakfast at Tiffany’s were the Manhattan shades from the brand Oliver Goldsmith. The Manhattan shades are in a dark tortoise shell color, and they feature an oversized frame.
These shades were used as a recurrent motif for Holly Golightly in the film, and they represented her hiding most aspects of her life. The sunglasses, with the frame that covered half of her face, effectively hid her facial expressions and emotions. When she was removing the sunglasses, it signified that she was opening up and letting others into her life.
This eyewear brand was established in 1926, and it reached its peak in fame in the 50s and 60s, when the brand was the go-to for many superstars, including Grace Kelly, Michael Caine, Peter Sellers, and of course, Audrey Hepburn.
Audrey Hepburn also wore Oliver Goldsmith glasses in her other works, like the white sunglasses in How to Steal a Million and black sunglasses in Charade. And guess what? They’re all cat eye sunglasses!
Audrey Hepburn wearing a pair of oversized sunglasses in How to Steal a Million

Audrey Hepburn sporting another pair of cat eye sunglasses in How to Steal a Million. (Credit: Catwalk Yourself).


Who Else Looks Good in Cat Eye Glasses?

Almost everyone! Because of the unique shape, cat eye glasses and sunglasses look great on all face shapes. This was one of the reasons why it became such a style craze back then. Cat eye frames suit almost everyone, but they complement those with oval or round faces best.
If you have a square or diamond shaped face, don’t worry, cat eye glasses can also help soften and flatter the angles of your face, creating a gentler outline.
In terms of the style, cat eye glasses are feminine, fun, and filled with retro vibes that will turn heads. If you want eye-catching accessories, they’re the glasses to go for.

How to Style Cat Eye Glasses in Modern Times

In terms of styling, you can totally look chic and contemporary by rocking the cat eye shape in either your sunglasses, or your everyday prescription glasses.
They’re great when you want to add a bit of feminine touch to your looks, and if you’re into vintage styles, they’re the perfect accessories to complete your outfit.
The color can make a big difference. Go for a pair in translucent pink for a subtle dash of femme chic, or stand out in glasses with shiny metal details.
mouqy joyful cat eye frame

Mouqy’s Joyful frames offer a feminine and playful cat eye.

The shape of your cat eye glasses plays an important role in the styling process too. If you want to go all out with retro vibes, then pick a bold frame that’s extra upturned at the edges. If you just want to freshen up your looks with just a tad of glamor, there are subtle cat eye frames available as well, like frames that are only slightly upswept or clear cat eye frames.
In terms of what to wear with them, cat eye frames generally pair well with business casual looks, like a shirt with trousers. They soften the shape angles in pieces with a more masculine cut and add a touch of feminine charm. They are also a match made in heaven with pretty dresses, and they’ll add a touch of glamor to any casual everyday outfit.
If you still don’t know what to wear with cat eye glasses, well, you can’t go wrong by recreating some of Audrey’s looks. You probably have all the pieces you need already!

Check Out Our Collection of Cat Eye Glasses

Want to glam up your everyday look? Take a look at Mouqy’s Cat Eye Collection! From retro-chic tortoise shell, to contemporary dusty pink, we’ve got them all, and you’ll steal the show wherever you go in them.

Vanessa Teng

Written by:

Vanessa Teng

Vanessa Teng is a freelance fashion copywriter who's living her dream digital nomad lifestyle. You can find her exploring, taking pictures, and crashing exchange students' parties around the world.