Tom Cruise’s Risky Business Sunglasses are When Wayfarers Came Back

The Tom Cruise effect.

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It’s hard to believe right now given how popular the brand is, but there was a time in the 70s and early 80s when Ray-Ban was struggling. Online publisher ApetoGentleman describes how during this time, over-the-top styles from high-fashion brands like Saint Laurent and Dior were popular, leaving Ray-Ban’s more timeless sunglasses behind.

In an attempt to turn the company’s fortunes around, Ray-Ban signed deals with movie production companies that would see them shades features in the top films of the time. One of the biggest successes of this campaign was Risky Business.

Risky Business Tom Cruise Sunglasses

Tom Cruise Risky Business Sunglasses
Warner Bros

In Risky Business, Tom Cruise wore black Ray-Ban Original Wayfarers. The oversized dark shades were a brilliant physical embodiment of the character’s confident yet rebellious nature and they shot the style of glasses to new levels of popularity. Four years after the movie was released the company was selling 1.5 million pairs of the shades every year.

At The Boardwalk, we are huge fans of the glasses. In fact, they were this writer’s first pair of proper sunglasses and one I go back to again and again. Ray-Ban Wayfarers have a classic design that still manages to appear modern and edgy, and has inspired many alternative frames. They are also a very solid pair of glasses.

Risky Business wasn’t Tom Cruises’ only flirtation with Ray-Bans. In Top Gun the star wore a pair of the brand’s aviators and had an equally, if not larger, affect on sales of the glasses. With a new Top Gun movie soon to be released, we just have to wait and see if he can repeat the trick for a third time.

If you’re ready to say “what the fuck” and make a move by grabbing yourself a pair of Ray-Ban Original Wayfarers, you can do so by clicking here to head to the Ray-Ban website or, here to check them out on Amazon.

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Duncan Elder

Duncan is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Boardwalk. He's a menswear writer who has spent the last 15 years developing his own sense of style, which lies at the cross-section of mid-noughties indie and Uniqlo-inspired minimalism.

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