5 Best Local Shops for Sunglasses

From University City to the 'burbs, here are the top spots for shades.


Hidden gem: Dreyfus Opticians in Yardley is located in a quaint old house. | Image via Dreyfus.

When it comes to shopping for sunnies, it’s all about selection. You want a range of sizes, price points and styles, and an eagle-eyed expert to help you navigate it all. Here are five local shops that do this best, whether you want a splashy designer pair, a kooky under-the-radar gem, or a coolly normcore set. May you never squint in the sun again. 

Eyesite, Rittenhouse
This tinyish Rittenhouse boutique has shelves and drawers (upon drawers) of the sorts of sunglasses people who know sunglasses will recognize. So you won’t find those ubiquitous Chanel-emblazoned sunnies here, but you will find pairs by Face à Face, Theo, Anne et Valentin, Matsuda and Factory900. And owner Gene Kogan can help you whittle down the choices to find the best frame for your face — or work with you to craft a totally custom pair. // 124 South 19th Street, 215-557-0757.

Dreyfus Opticians, Yardley
This eyewear shop is located in an old house (so don’t be alarmed when you see the opticians tinkering in a room that looks like it was once a kitchen). Owner Eli is a veritable eyeglass whisperer; he’ll fit dozens of pairs on your face, whipping varieties on and off until, finally, he steps back, appraises his work and lets you then gasp in the mirror. The frames are by some of the best names in the business — Anne et Valetin, Barton Perreira, Face & Cie, Götti — all wonderfully inconspicuous in their luxury. // 24 South Main Street, Yardley, 215-493-220.

Blink Optical, Queen Village and Rittenhouse
Go here for the splashy stuff by some of the biggest and boldest designers, including Thierry Lasry, Linda Farrow, Dior, Prada, Givenchy and Jacques Marie Mage. You’ll find the one-percenter pieces (a pair of crystal-encrusted DSquared2 frames, $1,200), the kooky statement specs (see: this $650 pair of Mickey Mouse-eared sunglasses by Jeremy Scott for Linda Farrow), but also classic Ray-Bans, round-frame Miu Mius, and sleek Tom Ford aviators. // 1824 Chestnut Street, Rittenhouse, 267-639-2140, and 415 South Street, Queen Village, 267-758-5182.

Modern Eye, Queen Village and University City
The selection here is slightly offbeat (some might describe it as ‘hipster,’ but it’s not entirely), but in the best possible way: wood frames by Carter Bond and Feb31st, colorful pairs by Rapp and Claire Goldsmith, and restored vintage pairs by RetroSpecs. Both locations stock different styles, which means double the selection, and the staff is friendly and shockingly good at finding a style to suit your face structure. // 145 South 13th Street, Midtown Village, 215-922-3300, and 3419 Walnut Street, University City, 215-386-5953.

Art In The Age, Old City
Because, let’s face it, Warby Parker is pretty much taking over the eyeglass world, and this rugged boutique has a full wall devoted to the brand (seriously, you can find every single pair the company makes here). While you can spring for WP’s at-home try-on service, it’s way more fun to stand at Art In The Age’s vast wall of frames and work your way through. (Carve out plenty of time for this and enlist a friend to help.) 116 North 3rd Street, Old City, 215-922-2600.