Best Cycling Glasses: Protect Your Eyes During the Day

The best cycling glasses will do more than just protect your eyes from the sun. They can also protect your eyes from different elements and hazards like insects or grit from the road. Just like anything else that you wear while you ride your bike, the best cycling glasses should be durable, comfortable, and versatile through interchangeable or phot-chromatic lens features. Here, you will read all about the best cycling glasses available on the market.

Oakley SutroPatent nylon composite, light, and durable frame
Non-slip unobtainium nose pads
PRIZM lens design to enhance contrast and detail
May be hard to fit smaller heads or helmet
Large lens style may not be for everyone
Oakley Radar EVGreat look
Secure fit, good lenses
Interchangeable lenses
Comfortable fit
Tifosi JetLightweight
Nylon frames are tough and flexible
Shatterproof lenses
Comes with a hardshell case

Not made for wide faces
Non-polarized lenses
RockbrosLightweight despite the full-frame design
Polarized lenses
Not as durable as Oakleys or other name brands
Not scratch-resistant
Julbo RushVented lens system
Easily replaceable lenses
Photochromic lens option
Has anti-fogging
Photochromic lenses would come at an extra cost
Smith Attack MAG MTBHydro oleophobic lens coating
Easily replaceable lenses
Additional low light amber lens
Smudge-resistant lens

Oakley Radar EV Cycling Glasses: Best for Long Term and Overall

The price may be in typical Oakley territory, but you will get the highest quality with the Oakley Radar EV Cycling Glasses. That is what you would expect from a brand that is made in the US. These cycling glasses can be your favorite in just a snap as it provides different features which are great for riding.

It has a very good adaptive lense that is great for riding during the winter season. The Oakley Radar EV Cycling Glasses are lightweight, comfortable, and look great. The lens technology and style make them the most desirable offering in your eyes.

The Oakley Radar EV Cycling Glasses has an adjustable nose piece that moves the frame and lens away from your face to help vent and reduce fogging of the lens while you ride. Thanks to the great all-around fit, you don’t have to worry about it digging around your ears, nose, or temples.

It has a zero distraction feature that is also helped by the low weight, with the Oakley Radars in a standard size of 1.02 ounces. The lenses are the best part of these cycling glasses as you will have several different options available.

The cheapest lens that you can get is Oakley’s standard HDO lens which comes in different colors. It will provide you with excellent clarity and will help the world look slightly more vivid while you are riding your bike. Also, the lenses are polarised, which is great at filtering out reflective glare.

The Oakley Radar EV Cycling Glasses is available on Amazon for $169.95.

Oakley Sutro: Offers Great Features

The Oakley Sutro is named after Mt. Sutro, which is located in San Francisco. It is the top pick because they feature some of the best qualities that the Oakley brand is known for. It boasts a simply cool design that features a cylindrical lens in such a way that the frame won’t obstruct any part of your view.

It is made out of Plutonite, which is Oakley’s proprietary polycarbonate plastic, and the lenses block 100 percent of UVA, UVB, and UVC rays as well as blue light up to 400 mm as per the company. It also features lightweight Plutonite lens material that offers superior comfort, clarity, and protection against impact as well as ultraviolet radiation.

The Oakley Sutro has an enhanced color and contrast, so you can see more in detail while you ride your bike. This feature is called the Prizm Road sports lenses, and they are designed to help you see any subtle changes in the road texture and will quickly spot hazards like rocks as well as potholes. The Prizm Road sports lenses are great in medium to light conditions with a light transmission of 20 percent.

Another feature that the Oakley Sutro offers is the O Matter stress-resistant frame that is lightweight and durable for all-day comfort and protection. It provides strength and flexibility over the traditional acetate and is built to withstand any shifting or deform as time passes.

The Oakley Sutro is available in a wide range of colors that you can choose from to match your style and preferences.

Now, the downside to these cycling glasses is it has a large lens style, but they may not be suitable for everyone. Also, the long arms of the glasses may make fitting smaller heads or helmets difficult.

You can purchase the Oakley Sutro on Amazon for $178.00.

Tifosi Jet Sunglasses: The Best Value Option

Tifosi Optics has been around and made a name for itself by producing quality sunglasses at great prices. The Jet sunglasses are a great example of their ability to create something functional and stylish at an amazing price.

The frame of the Tifosi Jet Sunglasses is made with Grilamid TR-90, which is a durable and flexible homopolyamide nylon material, and it can be found in their more expensive sunglasses. These glasses will hug your face comfortably and are quite effective when it comes to blocking wind and dust while you are riding.

Also, no matter how you sweat during your bike ride, it wouldn’t slip because of its nose pad. Aside from that, the lenses of the Tifosi Jet Sunglasses are made of quality polycarbonate, which is shatterproof and can resist scratches.

Now, the lenses are not polarized, but if you are riding in places such as rivers or riding a fat bike in the snow, which has plenty of glare, you would definitely appreciate these sunglasses. However, if you plan to ride on roads, trails, or under trees, there is not much to love about the Tifosi Jet Sunglasses.

Other features that the Tifosi Jet Sunglasses offer are the lenses are interchangeable, and the light transmission is 15 percent which is also a smoke lens.

The Tifosi Jet Sunglasses is available on Amazon for $29.96. It is also available in different colors that will fit your preferences and style.

Rockbros Polarized Sunglasses: Affordable Compared to Premium Brands

There are plenty of options on the market, but they tend to get pretty expensive. Sometimes, you need to look for a bargain deal so that you can save on a couple of bucks. It is difficult enough to find a decent pair of cycling glasses under $40, much less with polarized lenses. The Rockbros Polarized Sunglasses are the best choice for you.

The frames are made out of polycarbonate thermoplastic, which is durable, flexible, and adjustable. It has an anti-slip nose pad, and rubber ear covers on the arms that will keep your glasses from slipping and where they are supposed to be.

The Rockbros Polarized Sunglasses are polarized, which is very difficult to find at this price range. Also, they are mirror-coated, and it comes in different colors, which looks cool. They also come with a hard carry case where you can place them safely if you are not using them.

It features full-frame cycling glasses, and the lenses are fixed. Now, don’t expect the Rockbros Polarized Sunglasses to be as durable as the Oakleys on this list.

You can purchase the Rockbros Polarized Sunglasses on Amazon for $25.99.

Julbo Rush Sunglasses: Great for Riders With Wide Faces

Most of the complaint that comes with high-end cycling glasses is they love them, but they are too big or too small for them. It sucks that you find the perfect pair of glasses, and it feels like a vise wrapped around your temples. Having said this, Julbo Rush Sunglasses is the perfect pair for people that have wider faces.

The frame is made to be highly adjustable, and the 3D Nose Fit allows you to adjust the pads in a different direction to secure the glasses on your face comfortably. They can adjust laterally, vertically, and length-wise and will make sure that the sunglasses won’t go anywhere when you are riding your bike.

You can choose from two lenses which are the Spectron polycarbonate or the REACTIV photochromic lenses. The Julbo Rush Sunglasses are made to easily replace the lens since you may decide to get both lenses and swap them out as you like.

It is also vented to prevent fogging and provide a wide field of view during your ride. Both of the lenses are non-polarized, so depending on your liking, it may be a good or bad thing.

Now, the downside to the Julbo Rush Sunglasses is if you want the photochromic lenses, it would cost you extra. Also, the sunglasses are pretty expensive.

The Julbo Rush Sunglasses are available on Amazon for $229.95.

Smith Attack MAG MTB Sunglasses: Best for Mountain Biking

Mountain biking already has its own unique share of challenges, especially when you are into high technical trails. It is even more critical for a mountain bike rider to be able to see clearly to prevent an ugly crash or unplanned plunge into a ditch. You would need cycling glasses that will not only shield your eyes against the sun and glare but will also enhance contrast and provide a clear view under a canopy.

It is lightweight and durable, just what you want when it comes to riding on a mountain bike trail. Unlike other sunglasses, these lenses come with an auto-lock hinge feature that will keep the arms open to make it easier to put them on. This feature can be useful when you have a muddy ride, and you need to clean them.

The frame of the Smith Attack MAG MTB Sunglasses also has an adjustable nose pad that will help it secure your face. The lenses of these sunglasses are the real catch since you can actually get two. The first pair of lenses have maximum coverage that features Smith’s ChromaPop technology, which enhances natural contrast.

The second pair of frames has a low amber lens so you can see clearly when you are riding in the thick of woods. It also uses the ChromaPop technology, and swapping out the lenses is a breeze. You switch out the lens on the trail as needed.

The only downside to the Smith Attack MAG MTB Sunglasses is the price is a bit expensive.

You can purchase these sunglasses on Amazon for $259.00 with plenty of colors that you can choose to match your style and preferences.

Different Types of Cycling Sunglasses to Choose From

When it comes to style, cycling sunglasses curve around a person’s face and are typically wider than regular sunglasses. It is important since the shape offers additional protection against dust, bugs, and wind. There are different ways how to categorize the different styles available, and the following will break down into frame types.

Full-Frame Lenses

The full-frame lenses are completely held in place by the frame. The benefit of this style is that they offer more strength and durability than the other style on this list. Also, they provide a more ‘classic’ or ‘traditional’ look. Now, one drawback with this type of lens is the frame can partially block your view when you are looking up, down, or sideways.

Semi-Rimless Lenses

Semi-rimless lenses are also known as ‘half-frame,’ and here, the frame holds the lenses along the top, but they typically don’t cover the sides or bottom. It also has a modern look which has the advantage of blocking little of your peripheral vision as well as your vision when you are looking down. The disadvantage, on the other hand, is if you drop your glasses or roll over them, there is less frame to protect the lenses.

Rimless Lenses

Rimless lenses are also known as frameless, where the frames hold the lenses at small contact points either on the sides or on the top. It also provides completely unobstructed views to the sides, up or down, and they look very modern. The downside to rimless lenses is they have less durability and protection than semi-rimless glasses.

How to Choose the Best Cycling Sunglasses for Your Needs

The best cycling glasses are more than fashionable, but they should also be functional. Their main purpose is protection from debris, bugs, rain, or the harmful UV rays of the sun. It can be easy to get lost in all the marketing jargon and the number of choices available when shopping for your new pair of cycling sunglasses. It is crucial that you know your hydrophobics from photochromics.

Know the Different Colors of Lenses for Cycling Sunglasses

There are different colors available on the market that you can choose. The best lens color will depend on your riding conditions as dark, mirrored lenses are great for bright sun, yellow, and orange tones to increase contrast in lower light conditions. On the other hand, clear lenses are great when you are riding in the dark.

Manufacturers have been working on proprietary lenses that are meant specifically for cycling. The majority of high-end glasses offer the ability to change lenses which means you will not be tied down to a single option. You can also opt for photochromic options that will darken automatically in bright light, which will keep you covered across a wide range of conditions.

There are also additional tech advancements like hydrophobic lenses that keep your vision free from any water droplets and oleophobic coatings that will reduce the risk of leaving fingerprint smudges over your new set of specs.

Polarized cycling sunglasses will reduce glare and reflection, particularly off the water. Now, they don’t offer as much in the way of benefit when cycling, and in other situations, not seeing a puddle so clearly may be a small detriment.

All About UV Protection

Aside from fashion, the field of view, and fit, the purpose of having a pair of cycling glasses is to protect your eyes from any harmful UV radiation. Sunglasses are regulated by law, and they must block UVA and UVB, and all of the sunglasses that I have mentioned above will meet the minimum required protection.

The tint of each lens will allow varying levels of visible light through, and darker lenses also don’t necessarily offer increased UV protection. If you are concerned, it is best to check the manufacturer’s specification for more details.

The Lens Size and Shape for Cycling Sunglasses

There are a number of things to look for when it comes to picking your cycling sunglasses, and one of them is the size and shape. You want to have decent coverage, and you want the lenses to keep bugs, water, and wind out of your eyes while you ride your bike. Protection from the wind is perfect for those who have contact lenses, and one-piece lenses are great for this situation.

Peripheral coverage is also important, which provides coverage from the sides and bottom of the lens. The glare can creep in and can be a bit distracting. You also want to ensure that the frames you choose are out of your field of vision as they can obscure obstacles. Frameless designs are great for these situations.

Check the Arms and Nose Bridge of the Cycling Glasses

The arms of the cycling sunglasses should be robust enough so that they can safely hold the sunglasses in place while you ride your bike in the roughest terrain. Most times, tacky rubber inserts are added to increase the friction without any discomfort.

Quality models will also have reassuringly stiff arms and hinges without any play. When you are spending quite a large sum of money on sunglasses, you need to know that they will last for years.

When it comes to the nose bridge, everyone has a different shaped face and nose, so sunglasses should have adjustable or interchangeable pieces that can offer a more personalized fit. It can be important on sunglasses that have large frames so that you can make sure the frame doesn’t impinge your view too much.

Other Features that You Should Consider

When you are looking to buy cycling sunglasses, you should consider the overall package. There are some options that include a single lens and frame, while others include multiple lens options, a microbial bag, and even a hard case.

These extra features are all of the significant value, and it means you are unlikely to need to keep spending more down the road. Also, if you are the type of person that wears glasses daily, it is best to consider getting prescription lenses.

Contact lenses and normal lenses are also viable options, but most people will have experienced days when wearing contact lenses for long periods of time and will eventually get uncomfortable.

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