Tortoise sunglasses

Tortoiseshell patterns have been a fashion staple for decades. In sunglasses, these beautiful color combinations, which often (but not always!) focus on various shades of brown, can elevate any fabric and complement any eye color. 

Our thoughtfully designed tortoise sunglasses allow us to channel the natural beauty that inspired this iconic look in a sustainable way. We hope you enjoy exploring these frames as much as we enjoyed creating them.

Esme Sesame Tortoise


Percey Striped Sassafras
Sutton Saddle Tortoise with Polished Gold


Alvin English Oak Matte
Downing English Oak Matte
Naima Amalfi Tortoise

Tortoise sunglasses with 100% UV protection and scratch-resistant lens coatings start at $95, with free shipping and returns.

Brimmer Black Walnut
Gillian Teal Tortoise
Florian Cognac Tortoise with Brushed Ink
Fletcher Rye Tortoise

Tortoise sunglasses FAQ

Tortoiseshell sunglasses imitate the patterns found on tortoiseshells in the wild. Originally, the style used real tortoiseshells to create the classic look, but the practice was outlawed over 40 years ago. 
Nowadays, designers achieve these distinctive patterns by combining acetate chips to create a pattern. This allows for more exotic color motifs—beyond the more standard shades of brown associated with tortoise color—and removes the negative wildlife impact.
Tortoiseshell sunglass frames are often made of acetate, so cleaning them means following the same routine as cleaning sunglasses generally. 

Step one is to wash your hands, or else you risk contaminating what you’re about to clean. Next, rinse your tortoise sunglasses under lukewarm water. 

The temperature of the water does matter here. If it’s too cold, you won’t clean your sunglasses effectively, and if it’s too hot, you can damage them. Take care to rinse both lenses and the frames. 
Once your sunglasses have been rinsed, apply a drop of dishwashing liquid to each lens and gently rub the soap over the frames and lenses. (Make sure the liquid is additive and lotion free.) 
Once you’ve lathered up your sunglasses, re-rinse them under the lukewarm water. Now, all you have left to do is dry them and voila! Your nice, clean tortoise sunglasses are ready to be shown off.
There’s something to be said for a look that’s endured for over a century. Perhaps the color patterns have something to do with it. Ranging from subtle shades of brown to entrancing hues of blue and green, they can make any eye color shine. And they’re incredibly easy to work into an outfit, whether neutral or vibrantly colored. 

Or maybe it’s the patterns themselves—aesthetically pleasing geometric designs—that invoke some of the perceived wisdom and grace of the majestic creatures that started the trend. 

Whatever the reason, it appears tortoiseshell sunglasses are here to stay.