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Best of Toronto

The Best Sunglasses in Toronto

Posted by Robyn Urback / July 20, 2012

sunglasses torontoThe best sunglasses in Toronto are all about the right frames (yeah, yeah, and all that UV-protection stuff, I suppose). Many of the stores in the city that offer the top selections don't discriminate between new and old, offering vintage frames, vintage-inspired frames, and those ever-popular brand spanking new styles. In terms of a go-to neighbourhood for great shades, Kensington Market certainly tops Toronto's list especially if you're not trying to spend too much, but if you're keen on a specific destination for your sunglass shopping or don't want no-name brands or knock-offs, read on for the best places to peruse in Toronto.

Here is the list of the best shops to buy sunglasses in Toronto.

See also:

The best eyeglasses in Toronto
8 places to find vintage eyewear in Toronto

Photo by thericyip in the blogTO Flickr pool

Spectacle

Spectacle

Three locations in Toronto, and incredible styles at each one. Spectacle has earned a reputation for some of the best shades in Toronto for a decade of great IC! Berlins, Mosley Tribes, and the odd limited-edition Thierry Lasry. Spectacle even manages to pull the best of the predictable Pradas. Prices can range from a couple hundred to a couple months’ rent. More »

Opticianado

Opticianado

A relative newbie on the Toronto eyewear scene but already boasting a (well-shaded) following. Owner Jordan Paul specializes in finding unique, unused vintage frames, along with new shades by Kala, Hiero, Andy Wolf, and more. The monthly live music events are just an added bonus, and no one will blink if you wear your sunglasses at night. More »

Eyes on Church

Eyes on Church

If exclusivity is what you’re after, Eyes on Church is it. Owner Farhad Ghahremani has an impeccable eye (excuse the pun) for matching the right frames to the face, with limited stock of each style and a collection that’s impeccably on trend. Count on finding sunglasses from names such as John Richmond and Harry Lary, with most options ringing in at a few hundred dollars. More »

F as in Frank

F as in Frank

Finally, those snakeskin frames à la 1993 Will Smith can be yours. F as in Frank is all about the 80’s and 90’s when it comes to its eyewear (and everything else, mind you) with a mix of vintage-inspired and actual vintage frames. While the inventory is always changing, count on a plethora of aviators, shields, and rounds. More »

Gafas

Gafas

Beloved perhaps largely for its Kings of Past connection, Gafas has a fantastic selection of bona fide vintage frames. Find retro Persol, Zeiss, and Guy Laroches that you won’t spot anywhere else, along with new options from Tom Ford, La Loop, and more. A huge selection, and a lifetime service guarantee with each pair of shades. More »

Pink Eye Optical

Pink Eye Optical

You wouldn’t think people would actually want to buy glasses from a place called “Pink Eye,” but here we are. The shades here totally suit the neighbourhood, with frames made from reclaimed wood (Drift) and plenty of Kay Tran options. Perfect for those melancholy summer walks along Ossington, and generally in the $200 range. More »

Philistine Vintage

Philistine Vintage

These sunglasses certainly won’t break the bank, though they’re more than likely to seduce a second look. At about $15 per pair, these shades are generally vintage-inspired with a current inventory of two-toned, tortoise-shell, uber-round frames. The collection at Philistine is always changing, though the price usually stays the same. More »

Future of Frances Watson

Future of Frances Watson

Not to sound indecent, but it’s pretty clear that Toronto loves The Future of Frances Watson for its Shwood. Handcrafted in Oregan, these shades practically scream, “Yeah, I got these in Parkdale,” while offering that UVA/UVB protection all the same. Future of Frances Watson is also a good place to check out the latest and greatest in Karen Walker sunglasses. More »

Uncle Otis

Uncle Otis

Here’s one for the fellas (or, the unconfined female…whatever). Uncle Otis in Yorkville manages to keep its prices and style (somewhat) Queen West and Ossington, with an array of tortoise frames and a fair selection under $200. Its inventory includes shades such as blue Staffords and two-toned Cosleys, along with, yes, throwback Stussy Cedrics. More »

Chinatown Optical

Chinatown Optical

An eyeglass fixture in Chinatown with venerable owner Tan always there to offer a suggestion. This shop has a huge selection of sunglasses that span a somewhat wide price range, with the typical trend-driven brands such as Coach, Versace, and Christian Dior, along with others including Starck, McQueen, and Miu Miu. In short, not a good choice for the perpetually indecisive. More »

Josephson Opticians

Josephson Opticians

Josephson Opticians was here back when cat-eye frames had their first run of the trend. A Toronto business for more than seven decades under its belt, this shop has six locations throughout the GTA with a well-stocked sunglass selection in every shop. Josephson Opticians is an unapologetic purveyor luxury brands, including Lindberg, Mykita, Oliver Goldsmith, and Lunor. More »

The Accessory Bar

The Accessory Bar

Located amid all the action right by Yonge and Dundas, this is the shop to go to if you’re looking for “urban” eyewear. With a pretty good selection of sunglasses in and around $100, The Accessory Bar is well stocked with brands including Von Zipper, Ashbury, and Contego. Will go perfectly with that shiny new G-Shock. More »

Discussion

9 Comments

Dude, Where's My Fixie? / July 20, 2012 at 11:44 am
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if you dont buy your sunglasses for $5 from some tiny shop in chinatown I don't really know what to say to you.
Darkeyes / July 20, 2012 at 11:59 am
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I buy all my sunglasses from Pacific Mall - able to negotiate price, all the top designers available - so much choice you'll never not find what you're looking for.
Dave H / July 20, 2012 at 12:25 pm
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If your willing to shop online you can find good deals at Sunraycity. Bought from there and was happy with service and speed of delivery.
Sunglass Guru / July 21, 2012 at 03:41 am
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In my opinion you forgot one very key player....Modern Optical. A family run business that's been around for years. Great selection, friendly and most of all fabulous customer service.
Frame Stylist / July 21, 2012 at 01:14 pm
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You've also failed to mention Karir Eyewear which is one of the top optical boutiques in the city, featured in various Toronto magazines and newspapers. They've been around for over 30 years and have 3 different locations full of fantastic and unique European brands!
Luis Vitton replying to a comment from Darkeyes / July 21, 2012 at 05:42 pm
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It's Pacific Mall. Those are bootlegs.
Scarborough gang member / July 25, 2012 at 08:40 pm
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St. Clair flea market! 3 "real" designer shades for $20 yo!
Elle / November 3, 2012 at 09:09 pm
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The best selection is www.aeroplanevintage.com
by appointment, great prices
I feel it's missing from this list
quality assurance / April 21, 2015 at 11:27 pm
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blog and may come back in the foreseeable future. I want to encourage
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