Children's Eye Glasses: Gender

Figure 1.--American girls by the 1950s were wearing very different styles of eye glasses than boys. This is a good example from a school photograph.

Girls have not always worn destinctove glasses, but that is now the general convention. We do not see a lot of children wearing glasses in the 19th century. Gradually as the century progresses we begin to see a few more than earlier in the century. Here we think both improved heath care and rising income levels were involved. Expanding school attendance was probably another factor. A factor to cinsider is that many girls may have taken their glasses of for a portrait. We see far more girls wearing glasses in the 20th century. The children that we do see wearing glasses are wearing essentially gender neutral styles. Wire frames seem very common. The styles worn by both boys and girls seem to be the same. A good example are the glasses worn by an unidentified American girl about 1890. The same continues to be true in the early 20th century. We are not sure when destinctive girl glasses begin to become fashionable. We think it was promarily after World War I. We certainly see destinctive girl glasses by the 1950s. We see American girls were wearing very destinctive frames. We have less information on other countries.


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Created: 8:04 PM 10/9/2008
Last updated: 8:04 PM 10/9/2008