Gucci Unveils Bamboo Sunglasses Made of Biodegradable “Liquid Wood”

Looks like Gucci’s foray into sustainable eyewear was more than a passing fancy. Less than a year after it debuted a line of bio-based frames synthesized from castor seeds, the Italian luxury house is poised to introduce the first-ever sunglasses made with “liquid wood.” The material, whichBenetton currently uses for its hangers, combines wood fibers from sustainably managed forests, lignin from the paper-manufacturing process, and natural wax. Unlike petroleum-based plastic, it’s also biodegradable.


Together with Safilo, which manufactures and distributes eyeglasses for a raft of internationally renowned brands, Gucci has created a prototype with a semi-matte black frame and gray ombré glass lenses. Recycled metal makes up both the hinges and bamboo-inspired accents.

Gucci will also be introducing a foldable eyeglass case to reduce the weight and number of shipments.

Its frames aren’t the only thing getting overhauled, however. Gucci plans to introduce a foldable eyeglass case that minimizes stock space and both the weight and number of shipments. The new packaging, which Gucci estimates will reduce its transport-related carbon emissions by 60 percent, will include a pre-addressed envelope so customers can send it off for recycling.

“Since 1921, Gucci has been about quality, but nowadays quality goes hand in hand with sustainability,” Rossella Ravagli, Gucci’s corporate social responsibility manager, toldCopenhagen Fashion Summit attendees earlier this month. “We can absolutely say in Gucci today that CSR is a strategic aspect of our global strategy.”

Tommy Hilfiger Adds Eyewear to Philanthropic “Millennium Promise” Line

Tom Cruise should ditch his Ray-Bans for sunnies that do more than keep out the glare. After all,his missus is the international brand ambassador for Tommy Hilfiger’s “The Promise Collection,” a range of clothing and accessories that supports efforts to halve extreme poverty by 2015. Together with eyewear manufacturer Safilo, the brand is releasing a limited selection of sunglasses with the same bold, African-inspired motifs. And like the original Promise line, all proceeds from the sale of the eyewear will benefit the Millennium Villages Project, an initiative that provides the means and resources to create self-sufficient—and self-sustaining—communities.


Hilfiger has been involved with Millennium Promise, the Delaware-based nonprofit that runs the Millennium Villages Project, since 2009. The organization is driven by the belief that this generation can put an to end extreme poverty, hunger, and preventable disease.

Funds raised from the eyewear collection have been earmarked for the people of Ruhiira in Uganda.

Funds raised from the eyewear collection have been earmarked for the people of Ruhiira in Uganda, where children and adults, particularly those who require improved sight for work or school, will be able to receive free eye check-ups and corrective lenses.

Each of the two classic styles boasts a colorful woodblock pattern along its arms and frames in a subtle havana brown or a deep cobalt blue. The Promise Collection logo, shaped like the African continent, also appears on the left lens. “The Collection reinterprets some of our favorite all-American design pieces with African patterns and prints,” Hilfiger says. “[It] is inspired by Africa: the local colors and textures–the blues, greens, yellows and reds of the native dress, the landscapes and the sky.”


Bask in those rays in style with Juicy Couture’s new “Choose Green” collection. Available in three distinctive styles, each bamboo-accented pair is made from 55 percent renewable plant-based plastic.


Warby Parker is an eyewear company that wants you to do more than just watch. In addition to its “buy a pair, give a pair” credo, the company has partnered with Invisible Children to design a pair of sunglasses that frame the issue of child soldiers in East Africa—literally!


Kayu, or “wood” in Malay, is the product of designer Jamie Lim’s dedication to craftsmanship, ecology, and ethics. Besides making its shades from bamboo, Kayu also earmarks $20 dollars from each purchase to fund one sight-restoring surgery in the developing world through Unite for Sight.


Get your retro fix with Proof’s Wayfarer-inspired sunnies, which are so fly the company had to dub them “The Birds.” But these locally crafted shades (above in ebony) aren’t just a jet-setter’s essential. A portion from each sale also goes to support eye clinics in India.


MODO has been taking its eyewear to greener heights, so what better style than the aviator to herald this new direction? This classic sun-blocker comprises recycled stainless steel and repurposed plastic—just the power shades you need to command attention wherever you roam.

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