All about Moscot Eyewear

All about Moscot Eyewear

We love a family business success story, especially one with such enduringly tasteful products.

Moscot might not be the most widely-known eyewear brand in mainstream terms (when compared to giants like Ray-Ban), but it should be. 

With some of the most iconic frame styles favoured by celebrities (namely, Johnny Depp's beloved Lemtosh), Moscot is a stalwart of classic aesthetics for discerning specs wearers. 

In this blog, we're exploring the fascinating history behind the brand, the celebrity followers, and the best Moscot glasses and sunglasses for men and women. 

A history: where and when did Moscot Eyewear begin?

Cast your mind back to 1899. Hyman Moscot (pictured below) has just reached Ellis Island from Eastern Europe. He sets foot on Manhattan Island and begins selling eyeglasses from a cart he pushes up Orchard Street on the Lower East Side. 

Hyman Moscot

Hyman's venture really paid off, as by 1915 he'd opened the very first Moscot brick-and-mortar store on the Lower East Side's Rivington Street. Hyman's son, Sol, came on board (at only 15!) to learn the ropes.

In 1936, the Moscot store moved to a new spot at 118 Orchard Street at the corner of Delancey Street where it would remain until 2013 when it moved just across the street to number 108.

Sol's son Joel took over the running of Moscot Eyewear in 1951 and would eventually teach his own sons the ropes. Joel's other son, Dr. Harvey Moscot (an optometrist, pictured below with his son, Zack) took on the role as head of eyecare and is now the CEO.

Harvey's son Zack stepped into the role of Chief Design Officer in 2015 and is the fifth generation Moscot in the business.

Zack and Harvey Moscot

Fair to say, the Moscot's are proud of the brand and have dedicated themselves to upholding the local neighbourhood feel despite global expansion. 

Most iconic Moscot frames and styles 

Moscot Eyewear has two core collections, 'Moscot Originals' and 'Moscot Spirit'. The Original collection allows you to really tap into old-school vintage style as the frames are lifted from the Moscot classics from the 1930s-1980s.

The Spirit Collection takes a more modern approach and doesn't have roots in the OG Moscot designs. However, the Spirit range is exactly the same when it comes to quality, materials, craftsmanship, colour options, and that Moscot high-end appeal. 

So, the burning question...what's the top Moscot style? 

It's got to be the Lemtosh (from the Original archives), no competition. The Moscot Lemtosh was worn by Johnny Depp in the 2004 thriller 'Secret Window', making it a widely recognised and sought after style indeed. There are so many Lemtosh colours, for example, the rich Emerald green full acetate pair pictured below. 

Moscot Lemtosh Emerald Green

It's important to note, however, that the Lemtosh is Johnny's personal favourite in his 'real' life. The actor has been snapped in both optical and sun Lemtosh styles in various frame colours and lens tints. Check out the classic tortoise pair below. 

Moscot Lemtosh Tortoiseshell

The Lemtosh has a rounded shape that sits quite low on the cheek yet narrow on the face, with thick frames that really make a statement. Of course, you can get the Lemtosh style as sunglasses with either regular or tinted lenses to add a little extra pop of hue to your look. For example, see the clear frame Lemtosh sunnies with blue lenses below.

Moscot Lemtosh sunglasses tinted lenses

The Lemtosh comes in about 26 colours and 4 sizes, yes, these guys are thorough! There's the classic tortoise in matte or shiny, a range of transparent tones (clear, pink, green and more), and a few stunning two-toned options. We love the Black Crystal style (pictured below) for something classic but with a surprising twist. 

Moscot Lemtosh Black Crystal

Another timeless style from the 'Original' collection is the Bupkes frame. These have an intellectual vibe and are similar to the iconic Panto style with rounded frames that are narrower at the bottom and wider at the top.

We love that the Bupkes frames are a mix of metal and acetate so you get the best of both worlds. If you're not into the thick, heavy acetate frame look but you want something with a distinct style, these are perfect.

The black/gold Bupkes frames (pictured below) give a little luxe gleam while the grey/silver option works for people who suit cool tones and find black a little too harsh. 

Moscot Bupkes Gold/Black 

Moscot materials, production, and features 

Moscot has a real old-school energy (in the best way possible), thanks to its long family history and classic New York City planting. We think they would agree, as the Moscot team are dedicated to the original design expertise and craftsmanship through all steps of the production process.

All glasses are designed on site in New York City, as well as prototypes to test shape, fit, and functionality. Then, the frames are handmade in China in a factory the Moscot team have partnered with for over 50 years. The lenses, however, are all created in the Moscot laboratories in New York City. 

Moscot Upper West Side store


Most Moscot frames are made from high-quality acetate made in Italy. As well as Japan, Italy houses some of the best acetate makers in the world. While it looks a whole lot like plastic, acetate is actually semi-natural and made using cellulose sourced from wood and plants. The cellulose is then spun with acetic acid to create fibers before being pressed into acetate sheets. This is far superior to plastic as it doesn't contain petroleum, it's more durable, more flexible, and hypo-allergenic. 

One thing to be aware of is that if you have a nickel allergy, you should steer clear of the metal frames and opt for an acetate style. This is a little disappointing as it suggests the titanium frames are titanium alloy as opposed to nickel-free titanium. 

Superior parts 

It's the little things that matter! Moscot prides themselves on using the best quality parts to make their frames durable and functional. For example, they use three different types of metal hinges: 3 barrel, 5 barrel, and 7 barrel. This is an important aspect as flimsier brands can result in temple arms coming loose or even falling off. 

Another crucial part of a great pair of specs is the nose pads. A low-quality or ill-fitted pair of nose pads can cause dents, nose pain, or even headaches. There's no danger of this with Moscot, as they use the best acetate, silicone, bone, and titanium for their nose pads. Plus, you can get the pads adjusted to suit your specific nose bridge for optimum comfort. 

Versatile sizing and colours 

One thing that sets Moscot apart is the range of sizes they offer to cater for different face shapes and sizes. Some styles only have one or two sizes, but the more popular frames such as Lemtosh have four. The size options are generally: 44 (narrow), 46 (average), 49 (wide) and 52 (extra wide). 

As well as sizing, they offer a pretty generous array of colours, some styles having as many as 28. Most styles offer the classics: tortoiseshell, black, clear, nude, and grey or charcoal. 

Custom lens tints 

Moscot clearly appreciates colour, choice, and customisability as evident by their super cool feature, their custom lens tints. There are 20 dip-dyed shades (all handmade) that you can choose from and have them popped into any frame you choose.  This is a great way to change up your look without shelling out for a whole new pair of glasses or sunnies. You can simply take your existing Moscot frames into the store and have regular lenses swapped out with a pair of tints. 

Check out the tint on the pair below (the shade Aqua Sunrise). 

Moscot Clipzen Tinted Lens

Yes, those are indeed clip-on sunglasses attached to a Moscot classic optical frame. That brings us to our next favourite feature...the Cliptosh and Clipzen clip-on sunglasses.

These handy little shades clip onto your glasses seamlessly, giving you instant sunnies! You can go for the classic blue-light blocking shades or pick a custom tint as shown above. These are ideal for people who don't want to wear contact lenses but still want to enjoy the practicality and aesthetic of sunglasses. 

Lens types 

The fun part is chatting about all the amazing frames and colours and aesthetics available, but we mustn't forget the other key factor...the lenses. Moscot offers three different lens types: standard, advanced, and premier.

Standard: these are simple plastic frames ideal for very occasional wear. 

Advanced: these plastic lenses are coated with anti-reflection technology for crisper vision. This helps to get rid of that distracting "halo" effect from approaching headlights when driving after dark. 

Premier: now, these are the lenses you should pick if your glasses remain on your face for most of the day. Instead of plastic, they're made of polycarbonate which is both lighter and more durable than plastic. These also have anti-reflective treatment. Oh, and they come with a 1-year warranty to protect against scratches, bonus! 

But what about progressives? Of course, Moscot offers a high-quality progressive lens in both Advanced and Premier tiers, both made with impact-resistant polycarbonate. 

When it's time to choose your lenses, you also have the options of: 

  • Transitional lenses (so you can ease from opticals to sunglasses as you pass from light to shade) for A$200 extra.
  • Blue light filter (to help protect eyes against blue light from digital screens) for A$115 extra.
  • High index lenses. People who have strong prescriptions are advised to opt for high index lenses as they are far thinner and more lightweight than regular strong lenses. However, they are an extra A$410.

You can also get non-prescription lenses just for the look, or magnified lenses for the purpose of reading, both for A$85 extra. 

Celebrities who wore/wear Moscot frames

Aside from Johnny Depp and his Lemtosh collection, there are many stars who have been snapped wearing Moscot frames. Here are a few of the notables:

  • Justin Theroux wore Moscot frames in 'Mulholland Drive'.

Justin Theroux Mulholland Drive

  • Paul Rudd has been seen wearing the Lemtosh opticals, the Arthur sunglasses, and the Zetz sunglasses.

Paul Rudd Moscot

  • Even the one and only Paul McCartney wears Lemtosh sunnies with custom tints!

Paul McCartney Lemtosh

  • Theo James of 'White Lotus' fame was snapped in the Lemtosh and the Miltzen frames (complete with custom tints).

Theo James wearing Moscot glasses

  • Other notable wearers from the past and present include Andy Warhol, Jeff Goldblum (though he's mostly a Jacques Marie Mage man!), and Cristiano Ronaldo (pictured below). 

Moscot Cristiano Ronaldo

Best Moscot eyewear for men and women 

Moscot frames are made for men and women, it just depends on your face shape and what will flatter your features the most. Due to the different size options offered for most styles, you can pick the perfect pair no matter your gender. 

Moscot knows how important it is to find a frame that flatters your face shape, so they've  got a face shape guide to help. Rather than focusing on gender-specific frames, go for what flatters your face shape and colouring, and most importantly, what makes you feel great.

We've already covered the beloved Lemtosh, so here are the other top styles in the running for best Moscot glasses frames for men and women. 

Let's start with optical frames first. 

Best Moscot Optical Frames 

If you're looking for something for everyday that won't overpower your look but will complement any style choice, go for something like the Miltzen from the Original series.

These are similar in shape to the Lemtosh but the Miltzen are rounder, a little narrower, and sit lower on the cheek. They come in 3 sizes and 16 shades so there's something for every skin tone and preference. See the Miltzen in the shade Blonde below. 

Moscot Miltzen Blonde

For people wanting something out of the norm, with those little design features that take it from fine to fire, we love the Lazer Frames (pictured below). 

These sleek metal specs are based on the shape and aesthetic of glacier glasses worn during expeditions in extreme cold conditions. Never fear, these aren't for outdoorsy folk, they're definitely an urban frame with strong fashion focus.

Moscot lazer

The double sweat bar in contrast black tone stands out against the high-shine gold frame (with textured rib!) and draws the eye to the face subtly but surely. 

For something really impactful and outside of the box, check out the Shonda style (pictured below). These have a heavy browline style in a thick tortoiseshell acetate along the top, and a slim gold metal frame along the bottom and sides. These would be great on most face shapes but especially those with heart-shaped faces. 

Moscot Shonda Frames

Best Moscot Sunglasses 

The great thing about Moscot is that you can essentially turn any pair of frames, including opticals, into sunglasses using progressive lenses. However, these are the best Moscot sunglasses in their collection. It's hard to pick as there are so many to choose from, but we did our best! 

The Mobble sunglasses (pictured below) are a classic rectangular shape with rounded bottoms and a slightly wider browline. They are a similar vibe to the Moscot but they're more angular. These are a great everyday go-to pair for men and women.

Moscot Mobble

For something with a little more of a dapper, vintage feel, try the Yukel frames in a choice of two shades of tortoiseshell. As Moscot points out, these have a very Malcolm X feel about them thanks to the shape, the acetate topline, and metal bottom rim. 

Moscot Yukel sunglasses

And finally, for a more stylised aesthetic, take a peek at the Zolman frames with perfectly round lenses and a narrow fit. Funnily enough, these modern-looking sunglasses were actually the chosen frame style of Sol Moscot himself! 

Moscot Zolman sunglasses

We love the family feel of the Moscot brand and the fact that they've managed to keep their New York City roots. They've covered all bases when it comes to styles, colours, sizes, customisable features, and lens options. 

What's your favourite Moscot style?



Back to blog