Over the past few years, the dress and grooming standards for Mormon missionaries have changed a bit to accommodate some of the realities of weather, local style, etc. In keeping with that movement, the standards were just updated to allow missionaries to wear sunglasses in an effort to “provide protection from the sun.” Because the sun is evil.
Also, wide-brimmed hats and sunscreen are now permitted in the appropriate climate.
However, there are some very clear caveats to the updated rules not reported by the rest of the media:
[Unless] your sunglasses serve a medical purpose, you should not wear them when speaking with others or while indoors. Do not wear sunglasses with bright-colored rims or mirrored lenses.
So, prospective and current missionaries, you can wear sunglasses, but if you are doing contacts in the street, you have to take them off during every interaction (I guess?). Naturally, from a conversational point of view, this makes sense. People will be more likely to engage on a more personal level when they can see your eyes. From a functional perspective, this could be a tad problematic. When John Q. Public now sees missionaries in the street who promptly remove their shades, the game is on. And the missionaries now have a very obvious tell.
Not wearing sunglasses indoors is a no-brainer. Don’t be that guy.
Examples of “approved” sunglasses are below, courtesy of LDS.org.
If you don’t choose the knock-off Ray-bans or aviators, you are failing. Don’t go the faux Oakley route, folks. Just don’t.
No word in the guidelines, however, on whether one can wear sunglasses at night. So you can. So you can.