Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

Why Your Favorite Celebrity is Wearing Privé Revaux Sunglasses

Image used with permission by copyright holder

For someone who’s not a starf—er, David Schottenstein sure likes to talk about celebrities. In the first minutes of his call with The Manual, the 37-year-old founder of sunglass company Privé Revaux says that just that day, that morning, at a time when most people are having their first cup of coffee, actress Hailee Steinfeld (True Grit, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse) called him to discuss a future line of signature eyewear. She went into the granular, the shapes of the frames, he says. “To have partners like that, [who] are really passionate, that really care, in a space that I really enjoy, it’s unique. It’s not something that you’re looking to really run away from.”

Schottenstein, from his home in Miami, wears a striped polo and a tangle of multicolored bracelets, which he does not explain as he casually reach to rub the back of his close-cropped dark hair. He’s comfortable, but one would not describe him as casual. Every detail seems precise. From his conversation, one might initially assume he’s obsessed with celebrity, as often as he mentions it. But even this is intentional, as his eyewear company was founded with and is continually buoyed by Hollywood A-listers, and because of that, their names — and they themselves — are as familiar to him as your work colleagues over a Zoom meeting are to you.

“Celebrities,” he says, “are giving the consumer reason to believe.”

Even at his young age, Schottenstein has been often described as a serial entrepreneur. It began with his luxury menswear line Astor and Black, which reportedly netted him an eight-figure payout upon its sale in 2011. His streak continued with a number of companies in various industries, from one that makes business invoicing software, to another that elevates the humble collar stay, and even a short-term pool rental app a la AirBnb, for which he’s still involved and will hit his one-year anniversary in July 2021. He’s even ventured into venture capital, investing in well-known brands like Onewheel and Mizzen+Main .

Image used with permission by copyright holder

But Privé Revaux is distinct, and not just because of Schottenstein’s own enjoyment. Founded by himself, the man with the plan’s know-how, he partnered with a handful of actors and actresses, including Steinfeld, Jeremy Piven, and Ashley Benson. Blueprints began in late 2016, with an official launch in 2017, and the company has essentially risen on the backs of those same celebrities, who told their friends, who told their friends, ad infinitum. All celebrities wear sunglasses, but few have been so instrumental from the start of a sunglass brand.

Jamie Foxx, a style icon in his own right, was not only part of that original crew but regularly appears in Privé Revaux’s promotional materials. Foxx gifts liberally, so when he sent a box to his good friend DJ Khaled, the music producer raved about them to his 20-some million followers. This pattern is so common as to be cliche, and a quick search shows musician Demi Lovato, actress Rebel Wilson, and influencer Olivia Culpo all sporting the brand in the press — and therefore, to you — within the last month.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

“It’s no trick,” Schottenstein says. “The key is if you actually make high quality product, and it’s fantastic, [celebrities] will wear them.”

When speaking with Schottenstein, I’m careful to not use the word “cheap,” because “cheap” carries connotations with quality. But divorcing the word from shoddy craftsmanship and materials, Privé Revaux sunglasses are cheap. Like, laughably cheap, especially when compared to the sunglasses that celebrities normally wear. Since his social media effusion for the brand, DJ Khaled has released a capsule with luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana, and his frames, which have often appeared on his Instagram over the last months, retail for $350. Privé Revaux, at its peak, costs $50, with many frames coming in at $30.

“DJ Khaled does not know what the price of [Privé Revaux] sunglasses is, right?” Schottenstein says. Same goes for Floyd “Money” Mayweather, who was photographed wearing the company’s frames at his weigh-in for the recent Logan Paul exhibition fight. “[Mayweather is] certainly not worried about the cost of the sunglasses. He just loved them.”

The question, then, is what price actually indicates. After all, if DJ Khaled will wear Privé Revaux un-compensated and then, in the next breath, hype a pair seven times the cost, for which he was well compensated, which company makes the better product? The emperor has no luxury clothes.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

The truth is in a blend of a product’s perception and its immutable qualities. Privé Revaux’s sunglasses are perceived as quality because celebrities wear them, and celebrities wear them because they’re high quality. “The celebrities are actually choosing to wear the product,” Schottenstein says, rather than being paid to wear them. It’s circular but not redundant.

Of course, some celebrities do receive compensation through partnerships where they release their own capsules, as Skateboarder and future Olympian Nyjah Huston recently did.

“They’re getting to do something they love doing: design. And they get to put a product out their fans can afford and connect with,” Schottenstein says. “You [normally] see celebrities wearing stuff that’s not affordable, and this is obviously a different story.”

Huston, in conversation with The Manual, emphasized the eyeglasses‘ prices as a strength. “We don’t want to be wearing something that we’re so stressed about messing up,” he said.

Image used with permission by copyright holder

For better or worse (and time has shown that it’s been nothing but better), Privé Revaux has hitched its fortunes to the brightest celebrities, and its estimation has risen despite its lesser price. “If you’re not relevant, you’re irrelevant,” Schottenstein says. “We’re trying to stay neck-to-neck with the Ray-Bans of the world. We’re not trying to play in a lower-end space.”

A week before the brand’s launch in 2017, Schottenstein faced a sudden crisis: His projected company’s name, Privé, could not be copyrighted. Too general, he was told. In that mad rush that accompanies turning on the lights of a million-dollar investment, an anonymous person told him that Revaux translated as “retreat” in his mother’s native French. Privé, or “Private,” may not have be good enough to delineate a brand, but Private Retreat made sense, especially since celebrities had used shades as a defense mechanism from paparazzi flashbulbs for decades. Problem solved; on to the next.

“Subsequently, I found out ‘Revaux’ means nothing,” Schottenstein says, laughing. But there is his four-year-old company in sum: To celebrities, its means quality, and to the everyman, the two words have come to mean celebrity. “[The name] doesn’t actually mean anything,” he says, “but it means something to consumers.”

Read more: Best Clothing Brands for Men

Editors' Recommendations

Jon Gugala
Features Writer
Jon Gugala is a freelance writer and photographer based in Nashville, Tenn. A former gear editor for Outside Magazine, his…
Veja introduces all new V-90, a throwback Veja sneaker with a familiar aesthetic
Veja brings modern sustainability to '90s-era aesthetics, and we love it
V-90 sneakers on marble floor

In the ever-evolving landscape of men's luxury footwear, Veja has introduced their latest creation: the V-90 sneaker. This elegant amalgamation of throwback aesthetics and modern comfort is a unisex sneaker that caters to those who seek a harmonious blend of fashion, sustainability, and innovation.

Inspired by the design ethos of the '90s, the V-90 pays homage to an era marked by bold styles and expressive individuality. This throwback aesthetic, carefully interwoven with modern flair, makes the V-90 a versatile choice that seamlessly transitions from casual outings to more upscale settings.
Sourcing excellence and organic traced leather
At the heart of the V-90's allure is its commitment to ethical sourcing and the use of premium materials. Veja's approach to leather sourcing is exemplified by the inclusion of O.T. leather (Organic Traced leather) in the V-90 sneaker. Sourced exclusively from 100% certified organic farms in Uruguay, not only is it free from the harmful effects of pesticides and chemicals, but it also emerges as a testament to Veja's dedication to a greener and cleaner fashion industry.  O.T. leather goes through a mechanical beating process that makes it bendable. (The leather in the V-90 sneaker was also tanned in Brazil, and uses fewer dyes than conventional leather.)

Read more
Chelsea boots are the official men’s footwear this fall – how to style your look
Why men's Chelsea boots are having a moment in the fall
brown dress chelseas pushing pedal

In the long list of must-haves men need for their closet, one of the most important to pick up is Chelsea boots. From wearing them with suits to wearing them with jeans and flannels, these will be some of the most valuable shoes in your closet, especially in the fall. Men's Chelsea boots are versatile and necessary, and these are the ones that will work with everything you already have in your collection, simply taking the place of some of your favorite shoes and extending the life of each.

A brief history of Chelsea boots
Chelsea boots get their name from the fashionable Chelsea district of London. Chelsea was the epicenter of fashion and music during the 1960s. It was here that fashion designers resurrected a style of ankle boot first worn by Queen Victoria in the 1840s. Shoemaker Joseph Sparks Hall adapted a traditional English riding boot for everyday use by the Queen. To make them more comfortable, he lowered the shaft to ankle height, and to make them easier to get on and off, he added elastic gussets on each side. The style became popular during the late 1800s but disappeared during WWI.

Read more
The new Tudor black Pelagos FXD watch has a throwback ’60s design inspired by the U.S. Navy
This new dive watch has a retro feel
Tudor’s Black Pelagos FXD

Rolex may have spent the last century as the biggest name in the watch game, but founder Hans Wilsdorf recognized in the mid-1920s that his beloved timepieces were out of reach for the everyman. His solution was to create a new brand of affordable luxury watches, bringing the same beautiful aesthetics and Swiss construction; Tudor was born in 1946.

While Tudor watches bring with them the same quality design and reliability as their older brother, they developed their own distinct identity by capturing the attention and the loyalty of explorers and military organizations the world over. In 2012, the brand developed a line as a throwback to its diving history. Pelagos watches became one of its most popular lines. Its newest iteration, the FXD, comes with a black face and nods to the brand's naval history.

Read more