Eco-Friendly Sunglasses

Eco-Friendly Sunglasses

It can be hard to grasp how something as small as a pair of shades could do any environmental harm. So, before we dive into the story of eco-friendly sunglasses, let’s take a step back and explore why sustainable sunglasses even need to exist.

Are sunglasses bad for the environment?

The short answer is that some are worse than others. As a climate aware Sunski fan, you probably know that producing and processing gas and oil releases greenhouse gasses, and that greenhouse gasses lead to climate change. What you might not know is that plastic is made of fossil fuels. Because of this, plastics overall account for 4-8% of yearly global oil consumption. We can all agree that producing plastic is not great. Unfortunately, most sunglasses are made of non-recycled plastic.

But how could something as small as a pair of sunglasses hurt the environment?

For one, a lot of people go through a lot of sunglasses. I’m not knocking owning multiple styles—I recognize the need to have one pair for the city, one pair for the trail, and one pair for going incognito. What I’m referring to are sunglasses that are basically made to be thrown out. You know the ones: those flimsy free sunnies that you get at events on a college campus, or the $5 Walmart pairs that end up broken after one day. How about those micro trend sunglasses that go out of style the week after you buy ‘em? All of these sunglasses are not eco-friendly, and they’re a big contributor to the plastic pollution problem.

Besides the space they take up, plastic sunnies in landfills release methane and ethylene as they break down in the heat over a long period of time. That’s a big part of why landfills account for over 15% of total methane emissions.

What are eco-friendly sunglasses?

If this is all making you feel kinda bad, not to worry. We’re way ahead of you. Sunski’s been concerned about making our sunglasses in an eco-friendly way for almost 10 years now.

Sunski's eco-friendly sunglasses, the Makani

Check out our best polarized sunglasses for women

Eco-friendly sunglasses are shades that look just as good as other sunglasses, but are produced in a way that minimizes waste and environmental damage, often through the use of recycled or sustainably sourced materials. When we came onto the sunglasses’ scene in 2012, there were no eco-friendly options on the market that also maintained a high quality standard. So, we made our own.

What are eco-friendly sunglasses made of?

Sunskis are made from other brands’ unsustainable frames that we find in the landfill.

Juuuust kidding! Our frames are made of recycled plastic, though—officially called post-industrial scrap plastic. We source scrap plastic from US landfills, and then blend it into our new frames in the US. Our unique recycled frame material refuses to sacrifice on flexibility, comfort, or durability.

Sunski's eco-friendly sunglasses, the Camina

Sadly, only around 9% of plastic is recycled globally. While that number is pretty dismal, it means we’re all the more proud to be a part of the solution.

The only thing better than recycling plastic is avoiding it altogether, which is what we do with our packaging. When you order a pair of Sunskis, they’ll arrive in a plastic free box, padded with innovative origami folds instead of glue—and all recyclable.

Are eco sunglasses good quality?

Remember those cheap-o sunglasses that probably end up in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? Those sunglasses are part of a vicious cycle of greenhouse gasses: as more and more get thrown out, more and more are produced to replace them.

So while it might sound counterintuitive from a business perspective, we really want you to keep wearing the same pair of Sunskis for as long as possible. That’s why we focus on durability, comfort, and timeless styles in our eco-friendly sunglasses.

Sunski's eco-friendly sunglasses

You can get an idea of how confident we are in our quality by checking out our lifetime warranty. Or, just take my word for it: I used to lose or break sunglasses almost monthly because I thought of my old pairs as disposable, which they were. Now, I’ve seen the light! Or maybe I haven’t “seen” it, since my Sunskis are blocking it…you get the point. I’ve had the same pair of eco-friendly Sunskis for 2 years. They’ve lasted through mountain bike rides, trail runs, and hikes galore, but if I DO scratch the lens, I can get a lens replacement. If I somehow break the frame, Sunski will try to repair it. And if the fashion scene changes, I’m good, too. Sunski’s sustainable superlight sunnies (say it 5x fast) are built to be timeless, not to chase short lived trends.

We’re on a mission to make the best sunglasses for the earth.

Even if our frames weren’t made from recycled materials, Sunski would still be the eco-friendly choice. We give 1% for the planet, are carbon neutral, and frequently donate to environmental nonprofits. It's undeniably nice to know that the gear you buy doesn't harm the outdoors.

Sunsk's eco-friendly sunglasses