Finding the best glasses for Asian features with Yunizon Eyewear

Having Asian features has always meant choosing either fit or fashion. In this piece, Alicia explores her journey to find the best Asian eyewear.

This article is sponsored by Yunizon Eyewear. Yunizon is an independent eyewear company creating premium, handcrafted sunglasses with a unique focus on fit. Narrow, medium and wide in EVERY style.

Photo of man and woman wearing Yunizon sunglasses
Photo submitted

Why can’t I find sunglasses that fit?

I’ve faced this challenge for as long as I can remember. 

Sunglasses would either slide down my nose or sit up on my cheeks. When my frames sat too high on my cheeks, I would end up with streaky and smudgy lenses, courtesy of my long (and straight) mascara-coated lashes.

For the longest time, there wasn’t really a market for “Asian glasses” or “Asian eyewear”. Not many brands had modifications that fit Asian features. 

Our nose bridge was ‘too low’ and cheekbones ‘too too high’. A lot of my Asian friends would constantly be pushing their glasses up. 

“It is what it is,” I thought. 

A women sits at a curb and stares into the sun with black sunglasses on. In the background is the trunk of a large palm tree.
Photo submitted

Enter Yunizon Eyewear, a female-founded company disrupting the eyewear industry with glasses fit for Asian faces. 

While most brands assume a one-size-fits-all product design and others  have created ‘alternative’ or ‘Asian fit’ glasses, Yunizon Eyewear is changing the game by focusing on fit. All of their styles are gender neutral and are offered in three different widths. 

I got a pair for myself and spoke with co-founders Rebecca Lay and Kimberly Van Schoyck to discuss challenges in the eyewear industry, how Yunizon is solving the problem of glasses that don’t fit Asian features, and creating inclusive eyewear.

The discovery process

Co-founded in 2020, Yunizon Eyewear is an independent eyewear company creating premium, handcrafted sunglasses with a unique focus on fit. 

They pride themselves on focusing on the problem of finding Asian-fit glasses better than other brands, by focusing on the fit of the glasses.

Why is it so difficult to find Asian eyewear?

co-founders Kimberly Van Schoyck (left) and Rebecca Lay (right)
Co-founders Kimberly Van Schoyck (left) and Rebecca Lay (right)

Having worked in the eyewear industry for over 17 years, Van Schoyck has a technical background. She studied fit during her time at Luxottica, and while doing some research and talking to retailers like Sunglass Hut and other optical shops, she realized that there was only one fit out there.

Finding glasses for Asians can be a difficult feat, especially ones that fit well. Naturally, many of us have a low nose bridge, high cheekbones, or both.

“It became very clear to me that there was a hole in the market,” Van Schoyck said, describing how she observed many ‘Asian fit’ glasses didn’t cater to those who had more narrow faces.

Fellow Co-Founder Rebecca Lay left her traditional career path in finance to start building this eyewear empire alongside Van Schoyck. 

Her personal experiences and struggles finding glasses that fit her own Asian features led her to want to solve a real problem.

“It feels a little bit like David versus Goliath with what we’re doing,” Lay said, speaking to the difficult but rewarding process of solving real issues that they’ve seen first hand.

See more: Celebrating Asian Canadians who are making it while making a difference

A comprehensive Asian eyewear solution

I remember my first pair of Ray-Ban aviators. They were Ray-Ban Juniors because the Women’s fit was too wide for my narrow face. I settled for them anyway.

Years later, I ended up purchasing the Ray-Ban aviators in the style I wanted, knowing the fit wouldn’t be right. Since I had been eyeing them for so long, in my mind, it was worth the tradeoff. At least, that’s what I told myself.

Woman with brown hair lies down and uses black sunglasses to block out the sun.
Photo submitted

Looking back now, Yunizon’s comprehensive Asian eyewear solution is something I wish was available when I first started shopping for sunglasses.

“Because there haven’t been many choices in fit, I think people just tend to blame themselves or their facial features… rather than just blaming the design,” Van Schoyck said, describing how people seem to just put up with it without fully understanding why the glasses don’t fit.

See more: The pain of finding glasses for an Asian face

Style that fits

There is a better way. For Yunizon, balancing style and fit is a huge priority. Their motto is “Style that fits” and they are the only brand to offer three sizes for every style: narrow, medium, and wide.

Using high-quality, featherweight materials like lightweight lenses and a thinner acetate frame, Yunizon redesigned the width of the nose bridge, elongating the nosepads to have a better grip.  

Woman with black hair wears red-tinted sunglasses and stares at the camera.
Photo submitted

They also changed the angle of the frame front in reference to your face – to accommodate for people with higher cheekbones. And with the longer temples, the glasses can wrap around and have a better grip on the ear.

As I learned about Yunizon’s approach to designing eyewear and reflecting upon my own experiences, it boggles my mind how I accepted the status quo and didn’t think to question why glasses rarely fit me.

It wasn’t me, it was the industry.

Yunizon’s size and shape-inclusive offering allows us to not have to choose from a smaller selection of ‘alternative fit’ glasses.

Asians, just like any other group of people, have varying facial features. Some of us have a narrower face width, while others have a wider face width. There is no one size fits all when it comes to eyewear.

“You can pick out whatever you want and we’ll make sure it fits you,” Van Schoyck said.

Inclusivity for all

The Asian community deserves brands that put the customer’s needs front-of-mind. We shouldn’t be treated as an alternative afterthought. And brands like Yunizon are disrupting the eyewear industry by promoting individuality.

I recently tried on my first pair of Yunizon sunglasses in the style Vamp Narrow and I’m genuinely impressed. I’ve never had glasses fit perfectly straight out of the box – I’d always have to get new glasses adjusted. These sunglasses wrapped perfectly around my ear and were snug on the nose bridge – no sliding down or falling off my face!

Alicia tries on Yunizon's The Vamp Narrow sunglasses
Photo credit: Alicia Cheung

Inclusivity goes beyond just designing for unique features – that’s only one half of it. All Yunizon products are gender-neutral, allowing customers to shop freely without conforming to stereotypical gender roles.

Yunizon also ensures that the models they work with are diverse, too.

“When you come to our page, whether it’s our socials or the website, we want you to feel represented,” Lay said.

Van Schoyck and Lay are also very passionate about supporting mental health initiatives. Yunizon hopes to contribute to erasing the mental health stigma by donating a portion of profits to mental health charities National Alliance on Mental Illness and Beyond Blue.

One size has never fit all. And with summer just around the corner, you deserve to treat yourself with a new pair of stylish, high-quality, timeless, and thoughtfully-designed sunglasses. I recommend Yunizon Eyewear.

Get 15% off your Yunizon order with the code COLDTEA.

See more: Why I quit my job to create an ‘actually slim-fit’ shirt for Asian American men

Photos submitted by Yunizon Eyewear.

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