– Not a sponsored post –
Hankook Kim is a Korean eye wear designer who had a vision to create a brand that was more than just another copycat product. He understood the ever-changing Asian trends that were highly influenced by the Western world. While Kim took cues on how American companies ran their customer service he ventured to create a product that would survive off of its own uniqueness and understood the need to pay more attention to what his customers needed rather than what was being termed popular. “Here, having a small face is the biggest compliment,” Kim says. “There were no competitors for oversize glasses, which make heads look smaller.” The fact that Kim recognized these factors and understood how to meet the need of where his company was starting meant that Asian eyewear was ready for a unique twist. Gentle Monster was founded in 2011 and is a brand specializing in producing acetate and metal sunglasses and eyeglasses with a diverse array of designs and colors. To-date the company has earned over $160 million in revenue and attributes its launching success to riding the wave of K-Pop.
Whether you’re looking for something basic, minimal, or shocking you’ll find it here. Some styles are stranger than you would think, and others perhaps borrowed from a wild futuristic movie, while others might be better fit displayed in an art-gallery and some for sure were taken from a Lady Gaga music video! However, there’s something strangely charming about the brave works put out by this company. They are unapologetic, original, and most importantly, bold. Among these are some beautiful classic pieces that are as timeless as they are practical with just a tiny hint of quirkiness, just enough to get you to smile without raising your eyebrows.
The best part is, it’s for a reasonable price. We’re talking some sophisticated and high-quality sets for under $300. That’s a steal when you think of regular Chanel pairs going for $700 and up. Although $300 is a substantial amount it’s still a smart investment when you take into consideration the uniqueness and quality your purchasing.
In terms of some of the designs, I don’t think 2018 is ready for the more artsy pieces, in fact I can’t imagine anyone would wear their more eccentric eye-wear for everyday use, but what helps to balance some of the seemingly absurd and borderline laughable pieces is a whole line of more approachable and practical designs. I went for a basic classic black set called “Noir Cat”. Kind of a cat-eye feel without the exaggerated sassiness. I must say I was first impressed by the lovely casing it came in, sleek, black, flat, slim, yet sturdy, unlike the bulky over-sized glasses cases that of course can’t fit in your purse and force you to have to risk dropping them on the floor or having them scratched in your bag unprotected. The glasses itself is a glossy, sturdy acetate material, that’s weightier than regular plastic. I have a bridge on my nose, so most glasses aren’t comfortable and at first, I thought it might feel heavy, but it actually rested quite comfortably behind my ears and on the sides of my nose. Weight was evenly distributed, which is very important for me since I have sensitive temples and ears. It also has an interesting feature of blue-light cancellation which you will notice before putting them on. This tint helps to protect your eyes since blue light tends to reach deeper into the eye than other lights waves. Its cumulative effect can cause damage to the retina over time. This gives the protective abilities of this eye-wear a winning edge.
The style of this particular pair is on point, the logo is subtle but apparent, the polish is simple yet stated, and the feel is very much Audrey Hepburn with a hint of masculinity.
The only thing I didn’t like about this particular set is how the glasses arms don’t fold in perfectly leaving a bit of an uncomfortable feel when you’re holding it folded in your hands, almost like you might be “bending” the arms if you push them inwards.
Customer Service ★★★★☆
Pros / Cons
- Good quality
- Protective edge
- Good price
- Arm leaves a gap when folded