How to Choose the Right Frame

There are five basic face shapes: oval, round, square, triangle, and heart. In general the most attractive frames gently counterbalance your face shape and features. For example, if you have a round face, frames with angular shapes will counterbalance the roundness of your face for a more attractive look. Round frames will do the opposite -— they will exaggerate the roundness of your face (and possibly make your head look like a basketball -- sorry!).

 

  • For an Oval face

    The oval face is considered to be the ideal shape because of its balanced proportions. To keep the ovals' natural balance, look for eyeglass frames that are as wide as (or wider than) the broadest part of the face or walnut-shaped frames that are not too deep or too narrow.

    All oval face gives you the greatest freedom in selecting a frame shape -- you can wear nearly any frame style. Select a frame that is just slightly wider than the broadest part of your face Keep the size and weight of the frame proportional to your body size and weight.

  • For a Round Face

    A round face has curvilinear lines with the width and length in the same proportions and no angles. To make the face appear thinner and longer, try angular narrow frames to lengthen the face, a clear bridge that widens the eyes, and frames that are wider than they are deep - such as a rectangular shape.

    The goal is to make your face appear longer and thinner. Choose low, wide rectangles and other short geometric shapes. Frames with hinges located above eye level can help lengthen the face. A Bridge located near the top of the frame can also add length.

  • For a Square Face

    A square face has a strong jaw line and a broad forehead, plus the width and length are the same proportions. To make the square face look longer and soften the angles, try narrow frame styles, frames that have more width than depth, and narrow ovals.

    The goal is to make your face appear longer, with softer curves. Choose oval or slightly angular frame styles with curved corners. Frames with hinges located above eye level can help lengthen the face. A bridge located near the top of the frame can also add length.

  • For a Triangle-Shaped Face

    The triangular face has a narrow forehead that widens at the cheek and chin areas. To add width and emphasize the narrow upper third of the face, try frames that are heavily accented with color and detailing on the top half or cat-eye shapes.

    The goal is to add width to your forehead and make your jaw line appear softer and narrower. Choose frame styles that angle up and outward at the top corners. For women, cat-eye shapes are flattering. For men, square frames are attractive. Frames with rimless bottoms are also good for both men and women. Frames with temples and bridge located near the top of the frame are best.

  • For a Heart-Shaped Face

    This face has a very wide top third and small bottom third. To minimize the width of the top of the face, try frames that are wider at the bottom, very light colors and materials, and rimless frame styles (which have a light airy effect because the lenses are simply held in place to the temples by a few screws).

    The goal is to make your forehead look narrower and add width to your jaw line. Choose frame styles that angle outward at the bottom. Aviator and “bow tie" shapes are good choices. Rectangular styles are also good. Frames with temples and bridge located near the middle of the frame help balance facial features.