Ultimate Buying Guide for the Ray Ban Wayfarer

Here in this article, you will learn more about the original Ray Ban Wayfarer as well as the new one. This iconic design hit the market in 1956 and sells to this day. With the Ray Ban Wayfarer and New Wayfarer, you have so many options to choose from. You can choose so many colors for the lenses and the frame. You can even personalize your own Ray Ban if you wish.

When we talk about the Wayfarer there are the classic options which have the model number RB 2140 and the new Wayfarer which has the model number RB2132. You should try out both options. After you had each of them on your nose you will tend more to one of them. That is always the case.

After reading this article you will know exactly what options you have and what is the right option for you. So let us go a bit deeper into the topic.

Original Wayfarer (RB2140) vs New Way Farer (RB2132)

First when you look at the new wayfarer (RB2132) as well as the original frame they look pretty similar. But by looking closely at them from different angles the differences become clear to you. The original wayfarer (RB2140) has a very tilted middle part when it sits on your nose. By looking from the side at both you can see it. This is the main point why people tend to buy the new wayfarer more. But of course, some people prefer this iconic heavily tilted design.

The materials from which the New Wayfarer is made differ from the original Wayfarer. The New Wayfarer is made of propionate. However, the breaking strength is higher than the cellulose acetate. It is also very resistant to aging and temperature fluctuations.

This means that the original wayfarer is more likely to show changes (after several years) on the surface of the material. This refers to dull spots and discoloration. With aggressive sweat, the cellulose acetate of the original wayfarer suffers faster and can form white deposits at the contact points of the skin.

So the durability in terms of the frame is slightly better with the new wayfarer. For the lenses, the durability is the same. Both of the variants used described use real glass lenses. This makes them extremely resistant to scratches.

However, from an optician’s point of view, the workmanship of the original wayfarer is better. The hinges are more processed and very strongly anchored in the material by riveting. On the other hand, the hinges of the New wayfarer are simpler and the hinges are not riveted but only embedded in the material. These are therefore fake rivets on the new wayfarer. Nevertheless, the glasses are very durable.

Let us talk about the different sizes. The original Wayfarer comes in two sizes.

  • 50/22
  • 54/18

The first numbers describe the width of the lens while the latter describes the width of the bridge between both lenses. The new wayfarer only comes in one size which is the standard 55/18.

The two aforementioned New wayfarer models are recognized as classics and have a very high recognition factor. There are also Asian fit versions available that have an additional F in the model name. However, there were many more models, but they are not all necessarily recognized as Wayfarer sunglasses. Here below you can see a listing.

  • Wayfarer Shield RB3384: this design has almost no rim and on the nose bridge there is the outline of a metallic square.
  • Folding Wayfarer RB4105: this more functional design is also only slightly different from the original, it can be stored more compactly.
  • Rounded Wayfarer RB4141: this Wayfarer has a much rounder lens shape and a wider curve in the upper outer corner, so it has a slight cat-eye shape.
  • Wayfarer Square RB 2151: captivates with a more enlightened look, which it gets from the slightly more rigid appearance.
  • Wayfarer II RB2185: This Wayfarer has the shape of the original one and has a two-tone color.
  • Wayfarer Blaze RB 4440: The design of the Wayfarer blaze is more similar to the classic Wayfarer. However, the shape is a little more extreme due to a more dominant upper part.

Material Options

Besides the classic materials acetate and propionate, for example, gold is also processed in the Ray Ban Wayfarer. An example of this is the RB 2157K 901/M6, which has elements on the outside of the temples 18-karat white gold, in which the Ray Ban logo is engraved. However, these variants always run under their own model numbers and are only available in small numbers.

In addition to the materials already mentioned, Ray Ban also does not have the specially developed Liteforce material. The Wayfarer variants made of this material also have their own model numbers and differ from the classic variants.


All variants of the Wayfarer from the Liteforce material have their own model number. The original Wayfarer shape has the model number RB4195 while the New Wayfarer shape has the model number RB 4207. The material is also called PK001 and is very temperature resistant. The extremely lightweight thermoplastic polymer is also used for aviation and surgical equipment. This allows thinner frame thicknesses to be achieved.

Both variants are not only modified from the material of the frame but are also supplied with plastic lenses. These are also very light, but of course, are nowhere near as resistant to scratches as the two conventional model variants.

different colors

Personalize your Ray Ban Wayfarer

When you visit the website from Ray Ban you can personalize your own Wayfarer. You can choose from a variety of colors when it comes to lenses. Lenses with a mirror a gradient or polarized lenses everything is available. When it comes to the colors of the frame the options are more limited.

For example what I am missing here when I ran a configuration of a personalized Ray Ban wayfarer was the color white for the frame. And personally, I do not like the font when you choose to print your name on the temple. (You can see the example of the font in the picture below)

The picture shows an individualized original Wayfarer (RB 2132) with a light Havana front and the temples with the normal havana option. In this case, the finish is glossy. On the temple tip, you can see the font of the print which says, Michael.

But besides my minor critique, it is great to individualize your sunglasses. Visit the official store here to get your own individualized Wayfarer. If you are looking for a “New Wayfarer” the options when it comes to colors are bigger.

Ray Ban Wayfarer as Normal Glasses

You can also use the Ray Ban Wayfarer as glasses with clear lenses. Both the Original Wayfarer and the New Wayfarer work great if you want to get your prescription built-in.

However, with the variants of the RB 2140 & 2132 the sunglasses lenses must be removed. For this reason, the Wayfarer variants are also available with their own model number, which is directly intended for the incorporation of spectacle strengths.

The new wayfarer for normal lenses is then the RX5184. The original Wayfarer for clear lenses then has the model number RX 5121.

The Ray Ban Folding Wayfarer

The folding wayfarer from Ray Ban is very similar in design to the original wayfarer. Despite the similarities there are some slight differences which look a bit more modern compared to the original wayfarer. The front is less tilted and that makes a hell of a difference design wise. Of course you can fold the folding wayfarer but for most people the selling point was less about folding it and the multiple hinges but more of the design which gives the sunglasses a bit more modern touch.

The image shows an Original Wayfarer in white and a Wayfarer folding in orange.

In the picture above I am wearing the Wayfarer folding and the original one for comparison. As you can see the tilt is far more extreme with the original one. It is also more durable because compared to the orginal way farer the folding model is made out of nylon.

Sizes Table for Ray Ban Wayfarers

Lens width/Bridge
Original Wayfarer RB214050-22; 54-18
New Wayfarer RB213252-18
Wayfarer Shield RB3384135
Folding Wayfarer RB410550-22
Rounded Wayfarer RB414151-21
Wayfarer Square RB 215152-18
Wayfarer II RB218555-18
Wayfarer Blaze RB444052-20

Limited Editions

There are a bunch of different limited editions available when it comes to the Ray Ban wayfarers. Some of them are very limited and hard to get. In most cases, the limited editions are made in badges out of 200-400 pieces. Some of them only feature special design elements like the Ray Ban Studio X edition while others have entirely different materials on them like the horn edition. Obviously, this leads to different prices between 280 and up to 3000$. Here is a list of limited editions from Ray Ban.

  • Scuderia Ferrari limited Edition
  • Gold Edition
  • @collection
  • Made out of horn
  • Monaco limited edition
  • Ray Ban Studion X edition

Availability of Replacement Lenses

The availability of replacement lenses for the Ray Ban Wayfarer is very good. You can get your lenses in the tint you like to have. When you are about to buy replacement lenses visit a local dealer and the opticians there will show you the various options. Maybe it is time for an upgrade to polarized or photochromic (they are called evolve) lenses.

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