Anime characters with glasses tend to fall to three categories: they can be smart, they can be nerdy, or they can be stylishly cool. Not all of them are conventional geeks or geniuses!
Like hair and attire, glasses are often an extension of a character's personality. Glasses can portray innocence, shyness, arrogance, or even malice (especially when they reflect light glares). Some characters are even more beautiful with glasses on.
There are so many great bespectacled anime characters who are likable, lovable, or just plain awesome. Here are our picks for the best anime characters who wear glasses and why they're great!
12. Kusuo Saiki (The Disastrous Life of Saiki K)
Kusuo Saiki is one cool introvert. He has a stoic presence that's necessary given that he needs to blend in at high school to hide his psychic powers of psychokinesis and teleportation.
Even so, he sports an appearance that stands out. He wears distinct green-tinted glasses that prevent him from petrifying people, plus two metal antennas of different lengths that limit his powers.
Kusuo's daily life revolves around dodging trouble or concealing his powers from others. He sometimes lashes out if someone crosses him, but most of the time he's able to get along with others (especially the carefree Riki and fanatical Shun).
11. Sōsuke Aizen (Bleach)
Sometimes, anime characters who wear glasses are hiding something sinister behind their lenses. One such example? Sōsuke Aizen.
Aizen first appeared as the amiable, intellectual, and honorable Captain in the Gotei 13 of Soul Society. But he took a turn when he betrayed Ichigo and conquered Hueco Mundo.
His betrayal is fully represented when he removes his square glasses and sweeps his hair aside. But the scariest part is that his mild-mannered intellect remained when executing his sinister plans.
10. Yukio Okumura (Blue Exorcist)
Yukio Okumura meets almost every geeky stereotype, from his thin-framed glasses to his uptight posture.
He's pretty much the complete opposite of his twin brother Rin Okumura, who's stronger and more aggressive. Meanwhile, Yukio is bookish, organized, and stern about the ways of the Exorcist.
Though seen as a prodigy, Yukio has a bitterness towards Rin and his association with Satan, which explains his tendency to criticize his brother. But for Yukio, that's how he shows that he cares for Rin—so that he won't be consumed by his demonic nature.
9. Kamina (Gurren Lagann)
Of all the show-offs in anime, Kamina is up there as one of the most flamboyant and obnoxious. The swordsman often introduces himself as "The Mighty Kamina" and utters his catchphrase, "Just who the hell do you think I am?!"
His tough stature screams "show-off," complete with his well-built body, protective sarashi, glowing cape, and red sunglasses.
Of course, that unabashed brawn fails to hide his dimwitted nature and perverted antics, as Yoko frequently points out.
Regardless, Kamina has countless cool moments with his personal gunmen, all in honor to his father.
8. Shiroe (Log Horizon)
The world of the fictionaly Elder Tale MMORPG is a reality that its gamers would have never gone through in real life. Only the brave—like Shiroe and his Half-Alv Enchanter-Scribe avatar—can hope to master and overcome the world's threats.
Outside of his avatar, Shiroe is actually Kei Shirogane, an engineering graduate student who invests most of his time in the Debauchery Tea Party as a strategist who dissects the toughest levels in Elder Tale.
While his ingenious personality comes in handy as it extends to the game, Shiroe is more seen as a conniving figure (and is even referred to as "Machiavelli in glasses" by others).
7. Sakamoto (Haven't You Heard? I'm Sakamoto!)
Sakamoto is the definition of cool. Seen as the most popular guy at his school, Sakamoto lives his life with big strides.
His calm and kind personality makes him an ideal role model for all, complemented by his sleek, suave glasses. One of his most memorable acts of kindness is when he helps the bullied Yoshinobu.
Yet while he's well-liked by the girls, he sometimes stirs jealousy and resentment in male classmates, and he isn't immune to trouble or the pranks that his classmates play on him. Even so, he always emerges as humble and collected, which is admirable.
6. Homura Akemi (Puella Magi Madoka Magica)
Believe it or not, the cold-hearted Homura Akemi once wore glasses. In Timeline 3, Homura is an introverted girl who limits herself from attracting too much attention.
At first, she's sweet and compassionate, who cares about nothing except to show kindness to others. But that all changes once she embraces her life as a full-pledged Magical Girl.
The friendship between Homura and Madoka is complicated, to say the least, and Homura's glasses and braids are reminders of the strong friendship they once had.
Sadly, as their journey progresses, Homura has to shed part of herself to save her, turning her into the Homura we know now.
5. Hange Zoë (Attack on Titan)
One quick glance at Hange Zoë makes it clear that this Survey Corps officer fits into the scientist character archetype. She's smarter than most, but also quirky in her weird ways.
She's done all kinds of important work: inventing devices, researching Titans, exploring the lands beyond the walls, recruiting cadets, and even commanding the Fourth Squad. Furthermore, she's able to handle those duties without breaking a sweat.
At first, Hange was furious at the existence of the Titans. But upon deeper research with Ilse Langnar's notebook, the enthused scientist found sympathy with the giant monsters and shifted her inventions towards ones that were less lethal but just as effective.
4. Fuu Hououji (Magic Knight Rayearth)
Each Magic Knight complements the team dynamic and their overall mission in Magic Knight Rayearth.
Fuu Hououji serves as the brains of the group, but her personality goes further than just her glasses. She's gentle and kind, but always honest about her feelings. She's also really good at archery.
She's a calculated and logical person, especially when it comes to battle tactics. Fuu thinks deeply about possible outcomes, which are sometimes to her detriment because of her doubts.
And the more she embraces her role as the wind Magic Knight, the braver Fuu she becomes—and we love her for it.
3. Conan Edogawa (Case Closed)
Whenever crime stumbles across his way, Conan Edogawa is quick to jump on the case.
Before, Conan was the renowned detective Shinichi Kudo. Now, he needs to hide from his nemesis, the Black Organization—and in order to do that, he shrinks himself into a child, becoming the Conan we all know, complete with his glasses.
Shinichi retains his intellect when he becomes Conan, making him seen by others as a prodigy kid. But there's little room for error as he must uncover all kinds of crimes while protecting his friends (especially Ran) without blowing his cover. Not easy!
2. Maes Hughes (Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood)
The world surrounding Edward Elric is one that's usually dangerous, but not when Maes Hughes is around!
A well-decorated officer from Central City, Maes is one of the most reliable allies to both Edward Elric and Roy Mustang. He's an undeniable family man, frequently bragging about his daughter Elicia and showering praises towards his wife Gracia.
He's also obsessively hospitable, often pushing others to accept his altruistic gestures. No malice awaits under his sharp glasses and built presence. He's simply a wholesome family man and dedicated officer, which makes his arc truly remarkable.
1. Uryū Ishida (Bleach)
To finish off this list of anime characters with glasses, we're going with one of the all-time favorites: Uryū Ishida.
Uryū serves as the perfect foil for Ichigo: calm, cool, reserved, and serious. But he never takes "no" when it comes to outwitting his foes or even Ichigo. His backstory provides him serious weight, especially as he moves from being a fierce enemy to a reliable ally.
His sleek glasses only add to Uryū's coolness factor, along with his energy-laced weaponry and his skills as a Soul Reaper.
But instead of sitting firmly in the "mysterious cool guy" trope, Uryū is balanced by other factors, like his enjoyment of sewing and miso.
Throughout his entire character arc, Uryū proves to be one of the greatest anime characters who wears glasses.