UNITED STATES—The term “hipster” evokes different images for different people. Some picture men with moustaches, others picture women in plaid skirts. Some consider it a pejorative, others want the sobriquet. This makes sense, considering there is no specific hipster culture or fashion. The idea of the hipster is someone who prefers to be different from the mainstream, with their own sense of style and preferences.

However, there is one item that hipsters around the world seem to love: glasses. Bad eyesight is not somehow a common trait among hipsters, but you no longer need a prescription to wear glasses. Take a look at these glasses frames for women and you’ll be able to point out the hipster styles immediately. A hipster with 20/20 vision would buy the frames with clear lenses or completely empty.

Why are glasses so ubiquitous in hipster fashion? There are a few potential reasons.

The Intellectual Connection

Hipsters tend to see the modern mainstream as superficial. They have a kind of intellectual snobbery that prioritizes books over TV and complex musical styles over bubblegum pop. There is no doubt that glasses can make people look smarter, or at least like they read more books or know how to day trade.

Are people who wear glasses really smarter? There is real evidence to support this idea. But regardless of whether or not it is true, it appears this way to many. It also makes people think someone reads more, even though reading does not actually lead to bad eyesight.


Another reason hipsters like to wear glasses is that it gives them a distinctive look. Hipster glasses tend to be bold and stand out, making people take notice of a person immediately. In the same way that a twirled moustache cannot be missed, glasses with thick, dark rims are impossible to ignore.

As glasses designs improve and evolve, there are more and more options that hipsters can wear if they want to stand out. Glasses provide a whole new dimension of fashion, by bringing it to the face. This is similar to how piercings are distinctive for some people.

From Head To Toe

Hipster fashion is also very holistic, in that it extends an outfit from head to toe. Hipster outfits are often very consistent in color or theme. It starts with the shoes and ends with the hat. Glasses really complete the look.

The right pair of glasses can serve as a reference point for the outfit as a whole, especially if they have a very distinctive shape and a bold color.


Sunglasses provide further opportunity for hipster fashion, as they are an item just about everyone needs. You are going to be squinting in the sun without them, so why not use them as a fashion statement?

With pairs of both sunglasses and regular glasses, there are a lot of options to accessorize your face, giving you a bold and distinctive look. Sunglasses also have a “cool” factor about them, which sets them apart from regular glasses.

Hipster fashion really is all about the glasses, whether or not a prescription is necessary.