21 October 2010

A Penny For Your Logo

I hate this decal


Alcohol used to work but not anymore


I heard about a penny


Softly in an up and down motion


It works


They look better

There's still a logo -- Where it belongs

I remember going to Six Flags when I was a kid and the old man leaving a sign on our car, "NO STICKERS" or something to that effect. The Summer between the army and college, I worked as a security guard at Marine Land and twice a day stuck blue porpoise stickers on people's bumpers. I could count the number of "NO STICKER" signs that Summer on one hand.

I'm contradicted when it comes to logos. I love Duck Head khakis and Lacoste shirts (never together mind you). But that annoying Ray Ban sticker irks me and I'm not sure why. Maybe because they had no where else to put it. Or, maybe when I look someone in the face I don't wanna see "Ray Ban" looming between their forehead and cheek. Who knows.

This must be my 20th pair of Aviators. Years ago I used a little alcohol on a Q tip to take the decal off. Doesn't work anymore. The boys at Ask Andy suggested the soft edge of a penny. Gotta love it. Unless of course you like the Ray Ban logo in which case there's one on the temple. And it's just about the right size.

46 comments:

longwing said...

Wish they'd get rid of the temple logo on the Wayfarers which is a little harder to remove. Not as good as it was .....

longwing said...

Logos are so accepted these days that my kids found it a bit eccentric that I remove them from my raybans. When my usual explanations were lost on them I finally said that it was so I could tell mine from theirs.

Ryan Cecil said...

Hi Tintin,

Been reading blog only since this summer. Hey I can make a contribution today.

Another blog called <a href="http://www.overcomingbias.com/2010/07/signaling-conspiracies.html>Overcoming Bias</a> had a post about this. Strikes true. According to a study he references,

"Rather than rely on obvious logos, expensive products use more discreet markers, such as distinctive design or detailing. High-end consumers prefer markers of status that are not decipherable by the mainstream. These signal group identity only to others with the connoisseurship to recognize their insider standing."

This is like the way we look down on people who wear giant ugly logos on their shirts. It's really true! They are trying to tell everyone, "look at me, I can afford this brand, look at me!" I think it's kind of in poor taste for Ray Ban to put the logo on the front, because people like me (and you) aren't comfortable shouting that kind of information.

Corve DaCosta said...

it does look better-i don't like marks on my shades at all

tintin said...

Wing- I usually lose sunglasses so it's amazing I still have a pr of Wayfarers after 10 years. The logo on the temple is almost gone. And as I get older everything I do is considered eccentric.

Ryan- Thanks for the heads up on the blog. Your link didn't work but I found the post you reference. There's an even better comment regarding Paul Fussell (a hero of mine) seen here:

http://www.overcomingbias.com/2010/07/signaling-conspiracies.html

Corve- Thanks. I'm waiting for the wave of Ray Ban decal fans.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, sometime in the '80s after The Blues Brothers and Risky Business, Ray Ban woke up and decided it was a brand like everyone else, and it needed to trade on its newly found pop culture image. So on went the logo. I suppose it keeps the zillions of drug store knock-offs at bay. I scraped it off my Baloramas with a pocket knife years ago. It just seemed just too girly to me. My aviator uncle's WWII-issue Ray Bans had long ago been stolen, as had a piece of my heart.

When I worked as a parking attendant at Marineland (Summers of '73 and '74) we were instructed to NEVER put dolphin stickers on car bumpers. It would be cause for dismissal. You could get a sticker for 5 cents at the stand using the honor system. But that didn't stop some men, always men, usually quite old and cranky, from leaping from their cars to yell at us in advance of their perceived notion that we would covertly ruin the image of their '71 Chryslers with a free Florida souveinir. They probably ran into trouble at the other bigger attractions in Orlando.

But things (management) must have changed radically by the time you got there: a vain attempt to save a sinking ship in a sea - almost literally - of larger, jacked up marine life and pirate themes down the way, off Route 40 and I-4. And that's not to mention the near-demise of our beloved Space Coast...

-DB

La Maison Fou said...

Tintin;

I most certainly agree with you on this one. I have never been comfortable as a platform for branding....

There are some types of items you cannot wear without the prominent logo; those... well, are mainstream pronounced and have made their existence on branding. That in keeping with the thought, if the product itself is set apart from any other there really is not much of a need to overkill the branding with more labels.
I think most first takes could or would id the product.
I applaud you for taking the logo off, and thanks for the tip!

Sounds like a great topic for a what not to wear episode. I think there is something to be said of a quality item, a test of time and iron wearing if of course, taken care of and maintained properly.
Off with the logo!!

L.

OldSchool said...

Well done, sir!

Main Line Sportsman said...

I concur. While I have been a devoted wearer of Ray-Bans since high school...(I posted on them earlier)...I do not need to have my face made into an advertisment for them.
Great tip for using the penny to eradicate same.

Hallock said...

I could be incorrect, but I thought the reason logos came to prominence is because a company can't patent a design like, say, a polo or a style of aviators.

So since a company can't 'own' aviators they felt a need to distinguish themselves, adding logos in the same fashion that Lacoste added them to polos.

Not that it necessarily looks the best, but I can understand why they do it.

Joe said...

I asked this question in the Bean boot post, but maybe it's better to ask in this post specifically about removing logos:

I love the LL Bean duck boots but would prefer to remove the logo that's on the back of the boot.

Has anyone done this successfully?

Hallock said...

I thought the reason companies began to adorn their products with logos is because they could not patent a particular style of clothing, e.g., the polo or aviator.

To distinguish their products, since Ray-Ban can't 'own' aviator anymore than Randolph Engineering, they began affixing logos in the same manner Lacoste has done.

Not to justify its look, but I can understand the desire for a company to do it.

tintin said...

Joe- I meant to bring up your question in this post but forgot. I looked at my boots and I'm guessing you could - but it would make a mess.

Besides, the old logo has a soul the new boot logo lacks. We're back into that territory of logos having subtle, if not hidden, messages.

Joe said...

Tintin:

Thanks, I appreciate you taking the time to check your boots!

longwing said...

One more thing to pop off about: As the temps decline I'm reminded that my Ray-ban cases, soft and compliant in summer, become stiff and ornery in winter. Not sure why this buggs me so much, it just does. Wish they'd make the cases out of something less variable with termperature.

Patsy said...

My husband has logo-less Ray Ban aviators. I wonder if they came that way or if it wore off - he got them in 1978.

I personally like the logo, I like the retro font. It says continuity.

The logo fell off one of my Bean boots years ago, so I think they may only be glued on?

Anonymous said...

I was walking through the Atlanta airport yesterday looking at all of the items with logos. It occurred to me that people now feel they must let you know the brand of purse, shoes, jacket, etc of everything they own, rather than purchases being made on the merits/quality of the item. To some degree I don't need for everyone to know I am wearing Ray Ban's, I know they are Ray Ban and that is enough for me. I have worn them for 30 years and I buy them because I like the look, fit and feel. Of course I am sure this might be somewhat hypocritical as I wear my Polo polo shirt, but again, I like the shirt player or not. But I will admit it was the polo player was why I bought it the first time in 1981.

NDDC said...

Thanks for the tip. I just took the AO off my sunglasses and they look exactly like the ones I got for free for being a Helo Control Officer on my cruiser 17 years ago (as opposed to these which I bought for not much more from Duluth Trading company).

Luke said...

Just did the same with a penny on my polarized Wayfarers and it looks 100% better. Cleaner, simpler...looks great except for the darn logos on the outside of the temples...you think one logo at most would be enough...

T said...

This has probably been stated before in this string, but most "legacy" brands (and please forgive me for using that term) festoon their products with product stamps or logos to help prevent people from mistakenly buying knock-offs, and to make it harder for counterfeiters from producing a reasonable facsimile. If you look under the bridge of your Aviators you'll see a mark, as well as underneath the nose pads, in addition the aforementioned "RB" etched into the lens.

I'm looking at my Randolph Aviators, and it's the same thing with these. The point I'm trying to make is that the original manufacturer can't reasonably claim that it's just a way to protect themselves from the production of replicas of their products: you are paying for the privilege of advertising their products for them. You can probably thank Vision Street Wear and the 80's advent of the huge logo for this particular flavor of lifestyle branding bullshit.

If the marketing people at Ray-Ban could figure out a way to make that logo cover the entire lens without obscuring your vision, they'd do it in a NY minute. Case in point: huge pony Ralph Lauren. Ugh.

Silk Regimental said...

Love Ray Bans and this is a great post! I JUST lost my aviators!

Somewhat along these lines -- I do all I can to remove the car dealer's ad from the back of my car whenever I buy one. This last time, I did it while I was taking delivery. :)

Brooks said...

I just bought a pair of Wayfarers and I can't stand that damn logo on the lens. This post couldn't have come at a better time. Thanks for the tip!

ADG said...

Stiff and onerey in the winter...Longwing is showing off!

Nelle Somerville said...

You are seriously cool as a fan. I never paid much attention but it looks SO much better sans sticker.

Anonymous said...

Great idea...I always avoided buying these b/c of the logo. Any advice on how not to lose your sunglasses?...if it's not strapped on or if I don't have a backpack (no man purses, pls) with me, there's a 50% chance they'll be a gift for a lucky stranger....Nelson M

TRAWETS NILTGEOV said...

On my 10th pair of "shooters" but I'm too scared to try this technique. I hate the logo, and hate scratches on my shooters more.

Marineland.... Just got back from St. Augustine. Kinda like I remember. But the Winn Dixie sells Schlitz and NASCAR beach towels. Ooh la la. Caught a lot of blues and a deadly buzz.

Jake Fourthreeone said...

I did the same thing to my Rayban's. I got a pair on eBay which had the WW2 style bar across the top. Couldn't stand the logo, so I used a penny to get that off.

nick said...

Reading this caused me physical pain. Why would you ever remove one of the most iconic logos?

Anonymous said...

Mr. Clean Magic Eraser: guaranteed to remove the logo without running the risk of scratching the lens with a penny. That said, dunno why you guys even bother with this.

Anonymous said...

Penny as tool: Copper or Zinc?

aliencam said...

I haven't tried it on sunglasses before, but a sugar cube works wonders on other things with logos.

Anonymous said...

Now if you can just tell me how to get the little Golden Fleece tag off Brooks Brothers "346" shirts without dismantling them, I'll be in heaven. I love the fleece on the inside of the garment where it belongs.

Some Assembly Required said...

Anyone have a suggestion for what to do about the embossed logos on the temples of my RB 5165 prescription frames? I'm considering black paint...

http://www.bestbuyeyeglasses.com/ray-ban-rx-5165-wayfarer/292268.html

Easy and Elegant Life said...

Or you can have your "progressive lenses" (read: "trifocals") put into 'em. But the colour just isn't the same; somehow the optometrist can't do that green... Ah well, they've been with me since the late '80's. ...

Anonymous said...

my new Ted Baker glasses had 'Ted Baker London' on the lense and it had been worrying me. I love nice things but not one for 'Logo a Gogo'. And i dont do free advertising!
used the penny, but it left some marks. maybe i was too hasty. anyway i got rid of the logo for good!

tintin said...

Anon- Ted who?

Robin N. said...

It works with european money too !
Just took off the logo from my 80's clubmasters ...

Any idea on how to take off embroided logos from shirts ?

don said...

I have a vintage pair of clubmasters (JFK era) and the logo is different compared to today's ray bans. I don't want to remove it in case I decide to sell them, but if I bought a new pair today I'd be reaching for that penny

Anonymous said...

The Ray Bans to have are the Shooter Frame style ones--the ones the company stopped making some years ago because....well they were the best looking, strongest frames they made...and wants to make frames that are HARDER to break?
G. Fox

Badaow said...

Thank you! I used the penny technique on a pair of polarized Wayfairers and also some mirrored Aviators. Worked like a charm.

To those of you who don't understand the need to remove the logo, I both feel sorry for you and envy you a little bit (the distracting and blatant advertising staring out from the lenses drives me crazy).

Anonymous said...

worked for me on a pair of gunmetal / green polarized RB 3362 ("cockpit") aviators

tintin said...

Anon- I hear that in all female flight crews they don't call it the cockpit anymore.

Andrew Kinnear said...

Gritted my teeth and grasped the penny..... and now have a pair of logoless Wayfarers and some Aviators. Top tip. No scratches whatsoever for those that are worried. Am considering using a Dremel to take the temple logos off of the Wayfarers but am not sure if they retain the rivets for the arm/hinge. I might practice on a broken pair first.

Taylor Hermes said...

This works.

JayJay said...

Just a quick question; were there B&L Ray Bans without this white logo? When were these made? I was offered a pair without the white logo but has all the other features (BL embossed on both lenses, etc). I bought two fake pairs previously and I want the third time to be 'a charm' so to speak!
Thanks in advance.
Regards.

tintin said...

I have CRS but I think they were logo-less up til the early '90s. Maybe? I do know they was no logo in the 70s and 80s and as was mentioned here, the 1st logo was just a decal easily removed with rubbing alcohol.