Your browser version is outdated. We recommend that you update your browser to the latest version.
Created: Mar 20, 2015.

Ray-Ban New Wayfarer vs Original Wayfarer

In this New Wayfarer vs Original Wayfarer review we introduce and compare the two most popular Wayfarers of all time. New Wayfarer – also known as Ray-Ban RB2132. Classic Original Wayfarer – identified by model name Ray-Ban RB2140. They have similar style but strictly speaking, they differ in some respects.

Ray-Ban Wayfarer sunglasses have been produced by Ray-Ban already in seven decades and probably never goes out of style. They are cited as the best-selling design sunglasses along with other fashion icon Ray-Ban Aviators. Most Wayfarer styles are unisex, so they are suitable for men and women.

At first, we offer you handful size guide with all the relevant information about Ray-Ban Wayfarer frames in terms of lens, temple and bridge sizes. Then we go through the differences between New and Original Wayfarer. In the final part of this review we present details about Wayfarers lens selection, frame patterns, color options and all the necessary to help you decide which sunglasses will suit best for your face.

Ray-Ban Wayfarer Sizes

New and Classic Original Wayfarers comes with two sizes. Check detailed specifications from below:

New Wayfarer Sizes

Ray-Ban New Wayfarer TortoiseRay-Ban New Wayfarer Tortoise

Ray-Ban New Wayfarer Tortoise Frame Brown Lenses »
Lens Width: Medium: 52 mm Large: 55 mm
Lens Height: Medium: 38 mm Large: 40 mm
Temple: Medium: 145 mm Large: 145 mm
Bridge: Medium: 18 mm Large: 18 mm

Original Wayfarer Sizes

Ray-Ban Original Wayfarer BlackRay-Ban Original Wayfarer Black

Ray-Ban RB2140 Original Wayfarer Black Frames »
Lens Width: Medium: 50 mm Large: 54 mm
Lens Height: Medium: 41 mm Large: 46 mm
Temple: Medium: 150 mm Large: 150 mm
Bridge: Medium: 22 mm Large: 18 mm

It's good to keep on mind the measurements represented here are for top selling classic models. You may find Ray-Ban Wayfarers which carry the same product code like some special editions that might have lens height as short as 30 mm or perhaps temple size only 140 mm.

Special editions size range variety is great for people who have narrow nose, and still would like to wear over-sized shades. With a little effort can find large (54 mm) Original Wayfarer frames with a bridge size as small as 15 mm which will fit nicely for slender nose structure.

Original and New Wayfarer sizes are usually expressed in brief form. Here's two most common examples:

  1. 52-18-145mm = lens width - bridge width - temple size
  2. 902/57-5418 = frame color (or pattern) code / lens type code - lens width - bridge width

Main Differences Between New & Original Wayfarer

When New Wayfarers made the scene in 2001 they were deliberately designed smaller and less angular than Original Wayfarer style that became temporarily unpopular in 1990's. Even using same kind of iconic rectangular frame shape as the classic model, new modern style offer smaller frame and lenses with slightly “softer” design. Albeit lens width is one or two millimeter broader the difference comes with lens height which can be up to more than 7 mm shorter as Original Wayfarer's comparable.

New Wayfarer vs Original Wayfarer lens measurementsNew Wayfarer vs Original Wayfarer lens measurements

The figure above shows the difference clearly even though it represent medium size goggles which lens height split is only 3 mm and the image size is reduced from the actual size to fit in the column of this page. As you can see Original Wayfarer frame design is more distinctive and a bit bulky.

Original Wayfarer vs New Wayfarer tilt comparisonOriginal Wayfarer vs New Wayfarer tilt comparisonAnother prominent differential between new and original style is that Original Wayfarers frames are slightly tilted towards your face and also taking into account the fact its lenses are higher than New Wayfarer model lenses, makes people with high cheekbones or long eye lashes feel uncomfortable wearing them. Particularly when smiling the sunglasses may “hit” you or just sit improperly on your face.

Second image confirms that RB2140 (lower frame in pic) have evidently some vertical angle.

Last major significant divergence is that original model is somewhat heavier. As being larger and usually made from same plastic it's obvious, of course. It was said in the past Original Wayfarer frames were overly tilted and its plastic was so sturdy that no one could not place them on top of head without that they fell back down.

With New Wayfarer it’s not a problem and hardly with original style either, nowadays. New manufacturing technologies enable Ray-Ban to make lightweight but still amazingly durable frames.

New Wayfarer vs Original Wayfarer - Frame and Lens Comparison

Ray-Ban Wayfarer Frames

Color options for frames are nearly the same with both Wayfarer styles. Main colors for frames are black, blue, brown, gray, red and yellow but the most interesting ones are sorbet pastels like pink and aqua. Despite the wide range of different colors the most popular is still traditional black. Noteworthy is that most colors are also available in Matte texture.

Most established patterns are undeniably Havana and Tortoise. Even though main patterns are same for RB2132 & RB2140, some variety can be found. Ray-Ban introduced renewed Original Wayfarer model in 2007 with expanded color patterns like Checks and Camouflage - fits perfectly for men. Various Demi Gloss frames seem to engage attention from many female celebrities at the current fashion season.

Top 3 most popular Ray-Ban Wayfarer frame colors/patterns:

  1. Black
  2. Tortoise
  3. Brown

Frame material is usually plastic. Most often acetate but some New Wayfarer models are made from nylon. Few models use composite.

Best-selling Ray-Ban Wayfarer Frame Color Is Black

New Wayfarer - Non-Polarized, BlackNew Wayfarer - Non-Polarized, BlackClick for Amazon Price!

Ray-Ban Wayfarer Lenses

Lens options are almost the same with RB2132 & RB2140 models. For both Ray-Ban offers numerous color and lens tech combinations. Lenses are usually made of glass or crystal, sometimes of plastic depending on the model. We recommend G-15 XLT lenses if you prefer soft and natural vision. G-15 XLT also utilizes Ray-Ban’s new technology to make lenses extremely light yet keeping optical quality at its peak.

If your eyes are sensitive or you work under harsh sunlight it will be wise to cut maximum amount of glare and haze and thus pick Polarized lenses for your Wayfarers. Polarized lenses offer you great comfort and visibility as well reduce the eye strain. Be aware of the fact some people have reported polarized lenses reduce visibility of images produced by LCD's.

Sunglasses with mirrored lenses are one alternative to polarized lenses. They reflect light away efficiently and you may see LCD's more clearly but your companions will feel uncomfortable for not getting any eye contact on you.

Color range for lenses is extremely wide. Gray, green and brown lenses are the most popular picks because they minimize the color distortion and make you feel more comfortable behind the wheel. Black and blue lens sunglasses are also very common.

If you don’t be afraid to try something not so traditional, go wild and have a bash with gold, silver or even pink lenses. Keep in mind that yellow and pink tinted lenses may weaken your ability to distinguish traffic lights.

Final Tips

Five key points to consider when choosing between New Wayfarer & Original Wayfarer:

  1. Do you seek large frames? Is your head size and/or face shape suitable to carry big shades? If answer for both questions is Yes - go for Originals. If you're wondering about your face structure, check our helpful face shape guide.
  2. Are you looking for traditional "Ray-Ban look"? If you are - you may want to pick classic Polarized Original Wayfarers.
  3. Are you after modern sunglasses that most probably will be in fashion for long time after purchase? Get New Wayfarers!
  4. Looking for best selling pair of sunglasses at the moment, which most famous celebrities use on regular bases? Pick New Wayfarers.
  5. If you're uncertain about the convenience of large frames or perhaps the tilt doubts you - New Wayfarers are safer opt.

NOTE: If you prefer Original Wayfarer design over New style but you know that the tilt will be a problem for you - Folding Wayfarers will be a perfect choice for you.

Whichever is your choice, remember that with Ray-Bans you can't go wrong!