How To Pick Eyeglasses That Are Too Cool for Hipsters

Everything you ever wanted to know (and more) about hipster, geek glasses that won’t make you look basic! 

Everybody has an opinion on wearing hipster glasses. Or a love-hate relationship with them. But do you know how they started being so popular and how the style evolved over the years into the nowadays shapes and trends?

This complete guide will answer all the questions you have, from why to how to wear hipster glasses without looking… basic or inauthentic.

how to pick hipster eyeglasses

What is a hipster?

You’ve heard the term so many times that you might wonder what does a hipster mean?

Hipster describes a person who is keen on the latest trends – in fashion, music, and lifestyle. However, it’s very important to hipsters that these trends are not culturally mainstream because as soon as everybody interested in them, they are no longer cool.

hipster picture couple

Hipster Couple

It’s a search for uniqueness – a need and desire to be individual and original. Hipsters want to express their personality through cultural trends that they identify and relate with.

The hipster lives outside social conventions and rejects the idea that he must comply to conformity in order to blend in.

How to be a hipster?

Hipsters have a great interest in fashion and culture. The hipster style often implies laissez-faire looks and a not caring attitude towards what people think.

The first rule of being a hipster is to be natural in your style and dress as you feel.  You can also accessorize with hipster eyeglasses, scarfs, earrings, and bracelets.

If you’re a man, to get the hipster look you might want to consider growing a beard or at least a mustache.

best hipster glasses

The Charleston – See them here!

Also, try to listen to non-mainstream music – the genre is not important as long as the artists are underrated and somewhat unknown.

Hang around in know hipster neighborhoods and cafes to observe other hipster’s style and make new friends. This could be the beginning of a new chapter in your life!

A big part of any hipster’s look is their eyewear style. Most hipsters wear stylish eyeglasses with or without prescription lenses. They are called hipster eyeglasses and are an essential part of the outfit.

What are hipster glasses?

Hipster glasses aren’t usually on the safe side of fashion. They are the kind of glasses that make you stand out.

They feature unique designs and shapes, unlike the ones you usually see at your local eyewear store. They are progressive in an unconventional way and stand for creativity.

Even though they sound a bit adventurous, you should know there are plenty of shapes and colors for anybody to be able to pull off a pair! Keep reading to find your own.

Geek Chic Glasses by Vint and York from Dave Brick on Vimeo.

When did hipster glasses become popular?

The hipster frame had humble beginnings: it was designed as a simple square shaped style, very known as the wayfarers.

This shape quickly became popular with many celebrities adopting the new look, which skyrocketed the trend into a raging cultural phenomenon.

It was an iconic look for Buddy Holly and Bob Dylan, and very often seen on Marilyn Monroe or Grace Kelly in their movie roles or day to day lives.

Buddy Holly hipster oversized glasses

Photo: Buddy Holly wearing oversized hipster glasses

The widespread trend of wearing glasses was so strong that people even started wearing them without prescription lenses. It was a style statement, as opposed to a necessity.

This quickly sparked an eyewear revolution that embraced the thick frames as a hit urban trend! It was, and it still is, a fresh way to mark your identity.

Today, hipster glasses evolved with revamped classic styles that are made out of great light-weight materials and come with new details and shapes.

square geek eyeglasses

Photo: Antonio wearing Dapper, oversized square hipster glasses – Get yours here!


Are hipster glasses still cool?

If you’re wondering if they’re over or still are cool, the trend isn’t even close to being over. Over the past decade, hipster glasses evolved and dominated the urban fashion scene.


Clarence Vintage Inspired Eyeglasses in Cognac Tortoise – Get yours here!

In fact, they are often worn by celebrity icons in movies, sports or music: Tina Fey, Ryan Gosling, Justin Timberlake, Lebron James, Donald Glover, Kendall Jenner are just a few big names who often rock the hipster look with these funky-framed glasses.

As for the rest of us, just take a look at the amount of Tumblr posts and Pinterest Boards dedicated to hipster glasses. They are living proof these glasses are here to stay!


What are hipster glasses called?

The hipster term was actually coined during the jazz age, a period that fuels Vint & York’s designs when “hip” was an adjective to describe aficion.

Nowadays, if you want to pick a pair, but have no idea how to describe what are those hipster glasses called, you should stop worrying. There isn’t a proper name for hipster glasses, but you can easily identify them by style as many are known for their elements or shape.

As a play on our origin, Vint&York frames are always named after vintage slang.

With quirky throwback names like COPA (which means pleasant in vintage slang), Molly (a gangster’s girl) or Cat’s Meow (vintage slang for something stylish), you’ll be guaranteed to get a reaction when somebody asks where you got your glasses and what they’re called.


cool hipster geek glasses

Photo: cool hipster glasses from Vint&York

You can easily say you’re wearing a hipster design, IF your glasses:

  • Are vintage inspired
  • Have a keyhole bridge
  • Are oversized or thick
  • Come in a unique color or tortoise shell pattern
  • Are cat eye shaped, round or feature an interesting browline design


What Style & Shape are Hipster Glasses?

If you’re not sure yet on how to spot an authentic hipster pair of glasses, or how they look like, we’re here to help.

The truth is hipster glasses come in all shapes and sizes, mostly oversized. They are designed to make faces look more interesting and really stand out.

The typical hipster styles are nerdy/geeky glasses, cat eye, round, vintage, horn-rimmed/tortoise shell. Sometimes even non-prescription. Yes, that’s right: fake glasses. Another controversial topic that people have a love-hate relationship!

Yes, that’s right: fake glasses. Another controversial topic that people have a love-hate relationship with!

Even though most people wear them just for style, a big part uses them for correction.

If you decide them with or without a corrective function, you have to admit: they’re a symbol of grown-up sophistication!

hipster glasses

One of the most recognizable styles that’s really iconic is  the black, square large frames. They are simply one of the best rated hipster glasses style to wear. And if you ask us, one of the coolest!

These eyeglasses are very laid back and hip, and will give you that “effortless cool”, smart, urban look. They are really the everyday type of glasses you’ll fall in love with over and over again.


What other glasses shapes are hipster-like?

The Cat Eye Glasses


Thelma Cat-Eye Glasses – See more color options here!

Now more relevant than ever, this shape of glasses will provide the perfect finish for your office outfit and will be able to take you anywhere, from meetings to art galleries.

zelda cat eyeglasses

Photo: Zelda, Cat-Eye Glasses, a feminine vintage tribute with an old-school vibe  – Get yours here!

The Clubmaster Browline

Browline glasses are the easiest way to achieve a geek chic look. Known also as clubmasters, they mimic how eyebrows frame the face. With their snazzy shape and hip vibe, you can express your flair and individuality with your head held high.

browline square hipster eyeglasses

Great for urban wear with an artsy, carefree vibe. Astor eyeglasses – Get yours here!

The Flat Brow

Another type of browline is the flat brow.

Seen usually on the “Urban Hipster”, these hipster browline glasses offer a fresh urban look. With their defined shape, they accentuate the eyes while also looking brilliantly fashionable.

Ultimately, these flat top hipster glasses are perfect for life in the big city.

flat brow square geek eyeglasses

Photo: Sheik eyeglasses – Get yours here!

The Round “John Lenon” metal frame

Round frames are great for those who want a professional edge. As a trendsetter who enjoys being different, the round-framed geek glasses will help complete your outfit. The round frames deliver that geek look we all love, with a cool chic twist.

round metal hipster frames

Big Timer eyeglasses – Get yours here!

The vintage flair of these distinguished metal frames gives an intellectual look to the wearer. If you’re well-cultured and bright, these types of frames may be a good fit for your personality.

The Keyhole Bridge

The keyhole bridge is almost always present on hipster glasses.


Watson Round Keyhole Glasses – Get yours here!

For those who enjoy being different and expressive, the keyhole bridge offers a unique subtle shape.

The Oversized Thick Frame

Oversized frames pay tribute to vintage eyewear and make a bold statement.

The large size embraces a more bohemian approach to style, which makes the face look more interesting and stand out. It’s really all about being unique and sharing a part of your style. In most cases, the hipster glasses have lenses, but there are versions that do not have them— the choice is really up to anyone.

With their large size and boldness, these frames create a cool hipster look, especially when worn with cool urban attire.

thick frame oversized hipster eyeglasses

Picture: Great Escape, thick rounded frames with slow faded ombre effect. They feature a classic 1920s style, which is ideal for those who want an old-school look – Get yours here!

It doesn’t matter if you identify yourself as an artsy hipster or a trendy professional. For the free-spirits of the world, hipster frames are a true fashion calling. They make you stand out from the crowd and offer a boost of color and confidence.

Eyeglasses really have some magic of their own.

They can make you look more intelligent, sophisticated and why not, hipsterish.


Will hipster glasses suit you?

If you’re new to these types of glasses, you’re probably wondering if hipster glasses will suit you and look good with your personal style.

Here are a couple of simple steps on how to choose the best  pair for your face shape. (Most of the basic principles for choosing normal glasses apply. Read more in this guide on how to choose eyeglasses).

Hipster Glasses for Round Face

If your face is round and want to balance that while adding more definition to your features, avoid round and rimless frames.

thick hipster frames for round face

Ritzy eyeglasses – Get yours here!

Instead, go for loud frames, with angular designs, like Ritzy, that are more expressive and give you a more flattering effect.

Geek glasses for Square Face

If you have a square face, you should choose round or oval frames to balance your features. Go for a rounder frame that’s not very angular. These large framed glasses can take you everywhere from office meetings to art galleries.

round geek glasses for square face

Swanky eyeglasses – Get yours here!

Hipster glasses for Oval Face

People with oval faces can rock any style, but geometric-shaped frames usually look best.

P.S. Luckily, Vint & York has a virtual try-on glasses program that allows you to upload a photo and visually try on ..well, everything!


Where can I buy hipster glasses in NY?

If you’re wondering where to buy hipster glasses in NYC, try Vint & York, a brand that makes premium quality specs.

Hipster Eyeglasses for Men and Women


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