Small Business Spotlight: 9026-Eyes, Malibu’s Very Best Optical Shop

Please click over to my IG to understand the miracle happening in this pic

One day last January, during school dropoff, a car pulled up next to me, and a man’s head poked out. “You’re the one with the Tom Fords,” he said. This was an odd thing to hear from a person you’ve never met.

“You need to give them to me,” he said.

This was odder.

But, as it turned out, Steve (along with his wife, Jen) is the owner of 9026-EYES, a gorgeous sunglasses shop in Malibu in which I’d done quite a bit of window-shopping already. Steve informed me that not only had the lenses in my beloved Tom Fords flipped entirely upside-down (you can tell, apparently, by the gradient)…but that he and Jen had a) noticed this, and b) had several discussions between them about “That blonde girl at dropoff who really needs help with her sunglass situation.”

How much do you love a couple who has intense conversations about Tom Ford gradient problems?! (I LOVE THEM.)

And I love their shop – it’s unlike any I’ve ever been in, and carries almost exclusively brands I’ve either never heard of or have only heard about from obscure high-end Instagram accounts. If you are looking for Ray-Bans, in other words, this is not your spot. So in the spirit of shopping small – and because Mother’s Day isn’t all that far away (ok, a little, but it’s my favorite holiday so we are going to start anticipating it right. now.), I thought I’d interview Jen about all things spectacular and sunglass-y. (Scroll to the bottom for her five current favorite pairs, and call (310) 456-9991 to order.)

How would you describe your shop?

Our shop is a small, locally owned luxury boutique. We only carry beautiful, independent eyewear brands and have relationships with each of our vendors – so our customer service from them is excellent and we can pass these perks on to our clients!

Tell me your feelings about Sunglass Hut. Go on: Don’t be shy.
Sunglass Hut is a totally different ball of wax. They’re owned by one company, and that company owns most of the eyewear brands that anybody has ever heard of: Ray-Ban, Chanel, Prada, Burberry, and so on. This company also owns Sunglass Hut, LensCrafters, Walmart Optical, and Target Optical.
So it’s like the Facebook of eyewear. (…Ick.) What kinds of brands do you carry?
Chrome Hearts, Shamballa, Paradis, Salt, State, Matsuda, Bevel, Blake Kuwahara, and Massada.
I have heard of exactly two of those. (Oh, three – I bought my gorgeous State glasses from you, but I hadn’t heard of them before that.) That excites me. What sunglasses trends are you seeing for 2021?
What I’m seeing is smaller frames that sit lower on the face. Round is always fashion forward, and I love the “frame within a frame” concept we see with Blake Kuwahara’s styles.

Salt Optics "Joe"


Blake Kuwuhara Cody


Salt Optics "Dibergi"


Chrome Hearts "Oralgami"


Bevel Garry 20

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