HOT THING: ARMY ISSUE VISORS ARE THIS SUMMER'S COOLEST SUNGLASSES

HERE'S ONE trend we can all afford: visors, or oversized glasses that allow the wearer to go cross-eyed and still enjoy protection from ultra-violet rays. It all started quietly last summer when trendier-than- thou London-based label YMC revived early Eighties aviator style visors, and they sold out straightaway. Then, for this summer, a minimalist German fashion designer, Jil Sander, together with the most influential spectacle designer of the Nineties, Alain Mikli, teamed up to create a range called Jil Sander Eyes, which - you guessed it - includes many variations on the visor. The ones pictured here are German army issue and were bought from an army surplus stall in East London for pounds 9.99, but Woolworth's and Boots have been doing a similar style of sunglasses for years, (since they were last in fashion in 1983) and have proved to be a key source of the style which are far cheaper than the designer equivalent and yet offer a comparable level of protection. In the last few (unfortunately) sun-starved weeks, visors and oversized shades like these have been spotted perched upon the heads of fashionable and cyclist types alike. Surprisingly, once one has got over their largeness, they are extremely flattering, and can even double-up as a hair-band. Indeed, four of The Independent's trend-spotters noticed them out and about in London, Brighton and Manchester. Whether they go mainstream is another question. But who cares, these shades block out more sunlight than any others we've come across, and are highly practical when coping with a World Cup-induced hangover.

Jil Sander Eyes, from pounds 100, available from branches of David Clulow, enquiries 0171-240 8284. Boots' Sportmask, pounds 20, and filled in Aviator- style sunglasses, pounds 25, available nationwide, enquiries 0845 070 8090. Bolle, enquiries 01202 824 535. Gucci, enquiries 0171-235 6707.

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