Cat eye eyeglasses and cat eye sunglasses were popular feminine eyewear styles of the mid 20th century, when eyewear became a fashion accessory rather than simply a medical necessity. With glasses becoming more mainstream, people threw themselves wholeheartedly into the purchase of eyewear that not only solved vision problems, but also enhanced their appearance.
Cat eye eyewear imparts a sophisticated, elegant, slightly exotic look to the wearer. Most frames feature oval lenses with the extended portion of the eyerim drawn out into an upward and outward point. Oftentimes, the “extra” eyerim at the outer corners are embellished with exotic details. Rhinestone, metal, or colored plastic temple enhancements create a sense of opulence while sculptural effects, such as raised designs, scalloped edges, and fancy bridges, add uniqueness to these frames. Among the most striking decorative innovations on cat eye frames are the “brows,” which usually incorporate different sculptural, applique, and ornamental effects on the top edges of cat-eye rims.