Astronauts Pete Conrad and Gordon Cooper on the deck of recovery carrier USS Lake Champlain after Gemini 5 mission.
Developed in 1958 as the "Flight Goggle 58," the Original Pilot sunglasses were produced to meet the US Military's need to provide pilots with maximum protection, performance, and comfort. The Original Pilot became an instant classic and the always cool style has become an icon of timeless design.
In fact, the Original Pilot Sunglass were the first ever sunglass to land on the moon worn by Commander Neil Armstrong and the crew of Apollo 11 in 1969. Neil's actual NASA flight flown sunglasses now reside on permanent display in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.
Neil Armstrong's original American Optical ( Image Courtesy of Smithsonian)
We've selected our favorite versions of this classic style for you - All with real glass lenses and the original bayonet style temple. Choose from gold or silver frames and brown or green glass to customize your pair.
American Optical Original Pilot
Brass, Celluloid, Mineral Glass Lens
Brass/Silver frames, Green/Brown Tint Lens
Engineered to rigid military spec and issued to millions of U.S. soldiers, sailors, marines, and airmen since 1958, these are the sunglasses that put American Optical on the map. The American Optical Original Pilot has been a favorite of U.S. military pilots for more than 50 years.
The frames are made from solid brass in either 14k gold or chrome, and the lens is made from tinted mineral glass and is scratch resistant in either Cosmetan® Brown Glass or classic Calobar® Green Glass. The lens offers 98% UVA/100% UVB protection.