Behind the Eyeglasses of World Leaders

NY Times photo, Francois Hollande's new (left) and previous (right) looks

NY Times photo, Francois Hollande’s new (left) and previous (right) looks

In the past, world leaders have been mocked, imitated, thought of as weak and even on the cutting-edge of style all due to their choice—or change—in eyewear. When world leaders are thrust into the public eye, a style makeover has been known to happen as was the case with Pope Francis I who wore eyeglasses when he was first introduced as the next Pope and then was pictured without his glasses as he led his first mass after his inauguration. Many leaders forgo lenses after undergoing LASIK vision correction surgery or may wear contact lenses while in the public eye, but there are just as many that are well-known for their choice of frames. Let’s take a look at what eyeglass frames the world leaders are wearing.

Bono, musician and philanthropist
Bono, the front-man of the Irish band U2 and philanthropic world leader, is most often seen wearing his signature Bulgari sunglasses while traveling the world as musician and when fighting world hunger and poverty for his various charitable endeavors. Bono’s baby blues are extremely sensitive to light and other allergens, so even though his eyewear adds to his signature look, it serves an essential protective function.

Francois Hollande, French president
It was almost a national crisis when French president Francois Hollande swapped out his clear rimless glasses for a horn-rimmed style, made by Danish company Lindberg. Although he was in good company by going with Lindberg, the company also makes the frames worn by Queen Elizabeth II, Brad Pitt and Bill Gates, French businesses felt his choice was unpatriotic.

American presidents, running mates and candidates
Every president in U.S. history has needed some form of vision correction, perhaps because the average age for occupants of that office is 55. Even if they don’t wear eyeglasses at every public appearance, behind the scenes they’ll use them for reading. Teddy Roosevelt and Calvin Coolidge wore their glasses everywhere and were one of the first free world leaders to do so. While in office President Clinton preferred Ray Ban’s tortoise shell, plastic hipster frames; President G.W. Bush wore a more classic black plastic frame; and President Obama selects glasses with a metal frame or rimless frames for his reading and sunglasses. Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin was never seen without her rimless, rectangular frames on the campaign trail and they were an essential accessory for Tina Fey and Julianne Moore when they portrayed her.

How to Use This Information
Although you may not be thrust onto the international stage and scrutinized like a world leader anytime soon, that does not diminish the importance of selecting a style of frames that makes you feel confident and fits into your lifestyle. We use our LifeFit Approach to consider your personal style, your lifestyle and your budget when helping you select the perfect frame. Please give us a call at 303-991-9600 or contact us online so we can help you get a new look!

How do you think eyeglasses impact the credibility of a world leader?