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How To Authenticate Vintage Chanel Sunglasses
How To Authenticate Vintage Chanel Sunglasses

How To Authenticate Vintage Chanel Sunglasses

Words by Georgia Gordon

Chanel introduced sunglasses to their repertoire in the 1980’s. The recent trend revival of Y2k rimless sunglasses sees Chanel’s design as arguably the most well known style. Here is an informative guide to authenticating these iconic Chanel sunglasses:

 

THE TEMPLES

  • In the late 1980’s Chanel introduced unique coding to the inside temples of their sunglasses. Please bear in mind that some models before then may not feature this coding but can still be authentic.

  • On older models, the right temple would feature the Chanel logo and the left would read ‘MADE IN ITALY’ with a product code next to it (this was usually two sets of 5 numbers). On even older models these product codes were shorter and often 4 numbers followed by 2. This was the case until the early 90’s when the codes became longer.

  • In 1999, in order to expand on their range and quantity produced, Chanel began production with Luxottica. These sunglasses and eyeglasses would be widely available at opticians and department stores. Chanel wanted to maintain the exclusivity of boutique-only sunglasses so they changed the type of coding used on less exclusive models.

  • These non-boutique codes are much more complex and usually feature 4 or 5 different sets of numbers and letters.

  • These more widely available models would have CHANEL and MADE IN ITALY on the same temple and the product code on the other, like below. ‘CE’ was added to all sunglasses in the early 90’s in compliance with EU regulations.

  • The corner of each temple should have just one hinge (rather than two) and should be of high quality.

Chanel y2k Sunglasses with Swarovski Crystals

THE BRIDGE

  • There are several details on the bridge of your sunglasses that you can look out for, particularly in the newer, rimless models.

  • CHANEL’ should be embossed into the bridge. These letters should be evenly sized and spaced.

  • There should also be the double C logo on the metal that connects to the inner nose pads of most Chanel sunglasses with a wire frame made from the 90’s onwards.

THE LENSES

  • From 2003, Chanel began to laser a serial number onto the inside lens of the sunglasses to avoid counterfeits. This can usually be seen on the inside of the right lens. The letters and numbers should have no spaces between them, are evenly sized and spaced, and are clear to read.

  • A short time after, the company began to laser unique numbers onto the lens, Chanel also began to laser ‘© Chanel ®’ onto the top of the right lens. This is often very subtle, like the serial number, and may not always show up in photographs.

Chanel 4092-b C124/7B Sunglasses

THE CASE

  • If you are fortunate enough to have a vintage pair of Chanel sunglasses that come with their case, pay attention to the quality.

  • An authentic Chanel case will always have branding on it. Most of the cases are embossed with CHANEL across the top and have CC branded hinges.

  • There will be some form of Chanel logo on the interior, usually stitched onto the top half of the case and ‘MADE IN ITALY’ should be embossed on the bottom right half of the case.

  • Despite all of these points, bear in mind that it is still possible for an authentic pair of sunglasses to come with an unbranded case.

Chanel Vintage Sunglasses