Electric Swingarm S Featured Gear Reviews Goggles Jonathan Ellsworth Julbo Shield Lifestyle Luke Koppa Ray Ban Metal Round Sam Shaheen Smith Guide's Choice Smith Lowdown 2 Spy Helm 2 Spy Pismo sunglasses SunGod Classics2 SunGod Renegades Sunski Chalet Travel

Sunglasses Roundup — Summer 2018 | Blister Gear Review

Sunglasses Roundup — Summer 2018 | Blister Gear Review

Sunglasses. You employ them. And when you like doing stuff outdoors, you employ them on a regular basis. However there are a zillion choices on the market, so we’ve gathered collectively a number of of our favorites for every little thing from an off-the-cuff day within the metropolis to critical ski touring missions.

We’ve grouped them into three classes:

  • Efficiency
  • Informal
  • All-Rounders (i.e., types that don’t look bizarre being worn round city, but in addition work for biking, operating, mountaineering, and so on.).

For every pair, right here’s what we’ve listed:

  • The body and lenses we examined
  • The model’s said dimensions (lens width, bridge width, and arm size)
  • Our measured lens peak & weight
  • MSRP for the totally different choices obtainable

Then we cowl the small print of every pair, and describe which of them may work greatest for you, given what you’re in search of. So let’s get began.

Replace eight.19.18: We’ve simply added a number of new types to the roundup, together with a number of ladies’s and unisex choices, which you’ll be able to take a look at under. And if you’d like an opportunity to win some sun shades, you must take a look at this week’s Giveaway, the place you possibly can enter to win any pair of Smith sun shades you need.

PERFORMANCE

Julbo Defend
Body:

  • 1st pair: Blue / Blue / Yellow
  • 2nd pair: Blue / Blue Orange

Lens:

  • 1st pair: Reactiv Photochromic Zebra
  • 2nd pair: Reactiv Photochromic Cameleon (polarized)

Said Dimensions: 59-17-130 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 43 mm
Measured Weight:

  • with out detachable shields: 1st pair: 27 g; 2nd pair: 30 g
  • with detachable shields: 1st pair: 30 g; 2nd pair: 33 g

MSRP:

  • 1st pair: $199
  • 2nd pair: $219
Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Julbo Defend

Jonathan: In the event you’re on the lookout for probably the most safety of any sunglass on this roundup, the Julbo Defend is the winner. The body comes with detachable aspect “shields” which might be, actually, fairly straightforward to snap on or take off. They usually present extra aspect protection on extraordinarily windy, sunny, and / or dusty days whenever you want it, when you can simply pop them off so that you’re not caught wanting like a mountaineering dork once you’re simply heading into city.

The 2 lenses I used with the Defend are each photochromic, they usually include a score of Class 2-Four. (For reference, the Smith Information’s Selection is listed as a class three.)

In very low mild, I might give the sting to the Zebra lens over the polarized Cameleon lens. Conversely, in extraordinarily brilliant mild, the polarized Cameleon is the higher name. However that’s on the acute finish of issues, and within the center, I’d say the Cameleon is a little more impartial, whereas the Zebra lens has a extra yellow / brighter tint.

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Julbo Defend — w/o shields (left) and w/ shields (proper)

Truthfully, I’ve appreciated ski touring in each of them, and haven’t developed an enormous choice for the polarized Cameleon lens on snow. Chances are you’ll really feel in a different way, and my very own opinion may change if I used to be extra involved with viewing fish, ft, or oncoming sharks underwater.

All in all, I feel these are well-executed sun shades and lenses, and I can vouch for them — even when you aren’t positive that you simply’ll find yourself utilizing the detachable shields all that always.

Pit Viper Unique Sunglasses
Body: Customized White / Inexperienced / Gold
Lens: Smoke
Measured Width: 140 mm
Measured Arm Size: 124 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 52 mm
Measured Weight: 38 g
MSRP: $59-79 non-polarized; $89 polarized

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

Pit Viper Unique Sunglasses — “The 1993”

Luke: Pit Viper was began when co-founders Chuck Mumford and Chris Garcin turned fed up with costly efficiency sun shades not holding as much as the actions they have been designed for. In order that they determined to take issues into their very own arms and create a military-inspired design that was sturdy and will deal with actions like snowboarding and biking, after which added numerous flash, type, and angle.

The result’s a pair of shades that may definitely seize individuals’s consideration. With an enormous, one-piece lens that gives loads of protection, Pit Viper’s distinctive emblem slapped on the higher corners, and quite a lot of eye-catching colorways and lens choices, Pit Viper’s unique sun shades are the closest you will get to sporting a celebration in your face. Additionally they embrace a rubber nostril pad and adjustable arms, making them considered one of, if not probably the most safe choices right here.

Pit Viper in all probability has probably the most obnoxious (and funniest) advertising copy on the market, however the backside line right here is that Pit Vipers are sturdy, supply sufficient protection and safety for critical exercise, and convey with them an angle that screams “fun.” And whereas we’re putting them within the “Performance” class, we all know loads of people who put on them as their on a regular basis shades.

ALL-ROUNDERS

Smith Lowdown 2
Body: Squall
Lens: ChromaPop Solar Black
Said Dimensions: 55-16-145 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 43
Measured Weight: 27 g
MSRP: $139 ($169 for polarized variations)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Smith Lowdown 2

Luke: This yr Smith made an replace to considered one of their long-standing frames, the Lowdown, and the updates make it a strong choice for each lively and informal use. They tweaked the general silhouette barely, and added grippy Megol nostril pads. Smith additionally says they made the facefront a bit flatter, and I’d say that’s noticeable. On my giant head, the within of the lenses on the Lowdown 2 do find yourself rubbing towards my eyebrows / brow. I’m positive different individuals might haven’t any situation with the flatter facefront, simply don’t anticipate the Lowdown 2 to really feel just like the Electrical Swingarm S or Ray Ban Wayfarer, which each function rather more of an angled facefront.

When it comes to optics, the ChromaPop Solar Black lenses that I examined have been excellent when it got here to readability and distinction. Most black lenses I’ve used make issues look fairly uninteresting, however the ChromaPop Solar Black lenses appeared to spice up distinction whereas nonetheless offering loads of aid from even the brightest mild.

The Lowdown 2 is certainly one of my favourite glasses right here for lively use — these Megol nostril pads do an awesome job of retaining these on my face, even when snowboarding or operating. The Lowdown 2 additionally feels fairly mild, and I just like the reaffirming “snap” of the auto-locking hinges. In the event you’re in search of a wayfarer-style pair of sun shades that may sustain throughout loads of actions, the Lowdown 2 is a superb choice.

Smith Information’s Selection
Body: Matte Black
Lens: ChromaPop / Polarized Grey Inexperienced
Said Dimensions: 62-16-120 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 41 mm
Measured Weight: 30 g
MSRP: $179 (choices with different lenses vary from $179-$249)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Smith Information’s Selection

Jonathan: One of many worst issues about breaking my neck final summer time whereas backcountry snowboarding was that my favourite pairs of sun shades, the Smith Discussion board, obtained destroyed in my backpack as I used to be tomahawking down a rock band. A damaged neck can heal, however looking for a pair of sun shades that be just right for you — that may be an actual drag. (Which is why I continued to only use the damaged Boards for some time, even if the lenses stored falling out of the damaged frames. And bending right down to put them again in when you will have a damaged neck kinda sucks.) Anyway…

After a bunch of digging round and analysis, I’ve truly been pleasantly stunned by the Discussion board’s replacements that I’ve tried, together with the Information’s Selection by Smith. That is my first expertise with a Smith “ChromaPop” lens, and I just like the Polarized Grey Inexperienced lens fairly a bit — I’ve discovered the lenses to be versatile sufficient to put on on nuclear-bright ski excursions, overcast bike rides, and even just-after-sunset runs (the place, admittedly, I wasn’t fearful about having to shortly dodge timber or rocks at excessive speeds). When you want a extra devoted lens for the brightest days on snow or on the water, you then may need to go for the ChromaProp Solar Black lenses that Luke discusses above — they’ve a VLT score of 10%, whereas the polarized Grey Inexperienced lens I’m utilizing right here have a VLT score of 15%. However personally, I like the flexibility of those lenses.

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Jonathan Ellsworth within the Smith Information’s Selection.

And when it comes to tint, I’d name these polarized Grey Inexperienced lenses fairly impartial, which I like. (I used to be a bit apprehensive that ChromaPop lenses would make me view the world as if I used to be tripping acid. These don’t. I imply, that could possibly be cool, however it’s not likely what I’m on the lookout for when snowboarding, biking, or operating.)

Lastly, whereas I hate to talk unwell of my previous Smith Discussion board sun shades, I’ve to say that these Information’s Selection glasses transfer round much less when operating, biking, and so forth. They’re spring-hinged arms hold the glasses comfortable on my face, with out ever feeling too tight.

Electrical Swingarm S
Body: Matte Tort
Lens: OHM Polar Bronze
Measured Dimensions: 52-18-139 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 42 mm
Measured Weight: 27 g
MSRP: $150 ($100 for non-polarized, $200 for OHM+ polarized)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Electrical Swingarm S

Luke: The Swingarm S is my best choice right here for operating and snowboarding. It encompasses a grippy materials on the nostril that extends farther than that on the Lowdown 2, and I feel this helps the Swingarm S really feel a bit extra secure whereas shifting round.

The Swingarm S has double-locking hinges that really feel very strong, and the body simply feels good and sturdy general. The OHM Polar Bronze lens I examined is on par with another polarized brown lens I’ve used. And like these different brown lenses, it makes greens actually pop whereas nonetheless offering sufficient shade for any quantity of solar I’ve encountered.

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Luke Koppa within the Electrical Swingarm S

In relation to general aesthetics, the Swingarm S has a reasonably rounded facefront, it’s angled ahead considerably greater than the Lowdown 2, and it has a reasonably basic, rectangular silhouette that’s a bit smaller than the SunGod Renegades and Smith Lowdown 2. For each lively and informal use, the Swingarm S is my go-to.

Spy Helm 2
Body: Matte Black
Lens: Completely satisfied Grey Inexperienced Polar
Said Dimensions: 57-19-145 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 40 mm
Measured Weight: 30 g
MSRP: $150 ($100 for non-polarized)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Spy Helm 2

Luke: Spy simply launched the second version of their Helm body, and the brand new Helm 2 stands proud from a lot of the different choices right here as a consequence of its distinctive blocky / rectangular look. The Helm 2 doesn’t have the distinctive flat prime of the Lowdown 2 or Renegade, and I actually like how the Helm 2 matches my massive, square-shaped head.

With regards to tossing these on whereas out for a run, hike, or ski, the Helm 2 has some execs and cons. On one hand, it does have silicone grip pads on the very finish of the arms which do assist maintain the arms in place above my ears. Nevertheless, it lacks any nostril pads, and I’ve discovered that the arm pads merely aren’t robust sufficient to maintain the Helm 2 up on my nostril whereas operating or climbing (although this might differ based mostly in your head form). The Helm 2 can also be pretty heavy in comparison with the opposite choices right here, in order that in all probability has one thing to do with its tendency to slip down on my face.

However general, the Helm 2 is a well-built body that I’ve began to seize increasingly more for informal use or mellower actions like fishing or beer-drinking (although I assume how mellow that final one is will depend on how a lot beer you drink…).

Lastly, Spy’s Joyful Grey Inexperienced Polar lens that I used appeared fairly just like the Smith ChromaPop Solar Black when it comes to offering extra distinction than most different grey / inexperienced lenses I’ve used whereas not likely distorting any colours.

SunGod Renegades
Body: Matte Black
Lens: Polarised 4KO Smoke
Said Measurements: 57-18-138 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 43 mm
Measured Weight: 26 g
MSRP: $95 ($65 for non-polarized)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

SunGod Renegades

Luke: That is my prime suggestion for those who are in search of an oblong body that they don’t should child / be tremendous mild with. The Renegades really feel tremendous mild on my face, and the body could be very versatile so I don’t have to fret about shoving them in my pocket or pack. They don’t have any grippy materials on the body, so the Renegades do have a tendency to slide down my face whereas out climbing, however not any greater than the Helm 2.

And along with every little thing talked about above, all of SunGod’s sun shades are customizable. For the Renegades, you possibly can decide the body shade, lens tint, and the colour of the little SunGod icons on the aspect.

The one small draw back I’ve observed with the Renegades is that the Polarised 4KO Smoke lens I used doesn’t present fairly as a lot distinction because the Spy Completely satisfied Grey Inexperienced Polar or Smith ChromaPop Solar Black lenses, however the distinction isn’t drastic. Plus the SunGod glasses are available at a lower cost than most of the different choices right here, making them an excellent worth.

POC Know
Body: Uranium Black
Lens: Gray polarized 11.eight
Said Measurements: 53-19-135 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 47 mm
Measured Weight: 26 g
MSRP: $220 ($150 non-polarized)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

POC Know

Kristin: For those who’re in search of an all-around pair of sun shades, the POC Know must be in your radar. The rounded frames have simply sufficient protection to get rid of daylight and airflow from seeping into the edges, whereas the small rubber grips on the keyhole bridge and ends of the arms have stored the sun shades in place whereas operating, biking, or simply sitting on the deck watching the sundown. As somebody with a really small nostril bridge and medium-sized head, the Know supplies a superb match.

And in contrast to some sun shades with rubber grips, the Know doesn’t pull on my hair when placing them on or taking them off. With a matte end and light-weight versatile body, these sun shades are straightforward to seize and easily throw in a bag with out worry of getting scratched or damaged.

SunGod Classics2
Body: Matte Tortoise
Lens: Polarised 4KO Brown
Said Measurements: 56-18-135 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 44 mm
Measured Weight: 26.5 g
MSRP: $95

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

SunGod Classics2

Sam: Identical to Luke’s expertise the SunGod Renegades, the Classics2 body feels mild on my face and the body is tremendous versatile. I’ve been very completely satisfied throwing them in my pocket or in a pack with out worrying about breaking them. The Classics2 form is harking back to a wayfarer, and for my smaller face they’re undoubtedly borderline too huge, however they do supply good protection.

The Polarized 4KO Brown lenses don’t supply fairly the identical degree of distinction because the Pleased lenses on the Spy Pismo, however the SunGod brown lenses work a bit higher in decrease mild conditions (although I nonetheless would select a lighter lens for a totally overcast day). The SunGod Classics2 looks like an excellent choice for somebody who appreciates basic styling however wants their shades to face up to the trials of a superb journey.

Spy Haight 2
Body: Mushy Matte Black / Torte Fade
Lens: Glad Grey Inexperienced
Said Measurements: 56-19-145 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 43 mm
Measured Weight: 31.5 g
MSRP: $95 ($145 for polarized variations)

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

Spy Haight 2

Luke: The Haight 2 is a reasonably large, daring wayfarer-style form that matches my somewhat giant head very nicely. It’s pretty just like the Smith Lowdown 2 when it comes to protection, however the Haight 2 is a little more angular general, has a extra rounded facefront, and isn’t as flat throughout the highest.

We reviewed the Haight 2 within the “Soft Matte Black / Torte Fade” body, and aside from that includes a reasonably candy pale black / tortoise colorway, the “soft matte” materials is a bit grippier than most of the different frames on this roundup. The Haight 2 doesn’t function any extra-grippy nostril pads, nevertheless it stays put higher than a lot of the non-rubberized choices right here, regardless of the Haight 2 being pretty heavy.

Like the opposite Spy frames we examined, the Haight 2 feels very properly constructed whereas coming in at an inexpensive worth, particularly contemplating that each one variations of the Haight 2 function Spy’s “Happy Lens,” which provides a little bit of distinction in comparison with cheaper choices.

I feel the Haight 2 is a superb choice for individuals with bigger heads who need a modestly-priced pair of sun shades that gives excellent optics and that may deal with delicate exercise.

Sungod Sierras
Body: Matte black
Lens: Polarized 4KO Rose
Said Measurements: 53-19-139 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 44 mm
Measured Weight: 23.2 g
MSRP: $95

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

SunGod Sierras

Sam: The Sierras are a brand new body from SunGod that, aside from the styling, remind us numerous two different fashions from SunGod, the Classics2 and Renegades. The Sierras are light-weight, versatile, and appear to fall proper in the midst of the technical / informal spectrum.

The Sierras have a classy spherical form and slim temple items, with an understated body that’s as flashy or subdued because the lens and body shade you select — and there are a variety of choices to select from). The pair we’ve reviewed has a matte black body and polarized rose lenses. The polarized 4KO rose lenses have a 13% VLT, and have been fairly versatile when it comes to the quantity of sunshine they let via. Plus, the rose lens tint provides life a little bit of a ‘living in a music video’ really feel.

I might advocate the Sierras to folks that have a medium to medium/giant face and extra angular options who want a cheap, sturdy body for all-around use.

CASUAL

Spy Pismo
Body: Matte Black
Lens: Pleased Grey Inexperienced Polar
Said Measurements: 50-20-145 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 41 mm
Measured Weight: 25.6 g
MSRP: $170

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Spy Pismo

Sam: The Spy Pismo is a superbly constructed pair of shades. The mixture of flat black plastic and gloss black metallic particulars praise the spherical form and delicate particulars. With a keyhole bridge and a weight that’s a bit heavier than others on the listing, the Pismo is among the most informal frames on this record. However it’s also some of the trendy — these sun shades look good and are a bit extra at residence at a BBQ than deep within the backcountry.

The Pleased Grey Inexperienced Polarized lenses supply a few of the greatest distinction of the polarized lenses we examined, however these lenses carry out greatest in full sunshine. When it will get cloudy, the lens blocks a bit an excessive amount of mild.

Sunski Chalet
Body: Grey (recycled plastic)
Lens: Sky (polarized)
Said Measurements: 49-11-139 mm
Measured Dimensions: 49-21-138 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 41 mm
Measured Weight: 20.eight g
MSRP: $68

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Sunski Chalet

Sam: If the Sunski Chalet had a human character, it will be get together animal. Each time I put these sun shades on, I need to crack a beer and leap in a lake (often on the similar time). The delicate 70’s styling will convey out your internal scorching dogger turned seashore bum — brief shorts and majestic mustaches. This body is simply plain enjoyable (and it is available in at an incredible worth).

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Sam Shaheen in the Sunski Chalet.

The Sky lens’ optics are corresponding to one of the best on this roundup, however the Sky lens isn’t very darkish, so it really works properly when it’s a bit cloudy or throughout sundown at a rooftop bar. The Chalet is certainly the smallest body on this roundup, so if in case you have a medium or giant face, look elsewhere. However when you have a smaller face and wish to get together, then take a look at the Chalet.

Ray-Ban Spherical Metallic
Body: Gunmetal
Lens: Inexperienced Basic G-15
Said Measurements: 50-21-145 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 45 mm
Measured Weight: 29.zero g
MSRP: $153

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup - Summer 2018

Ray Ban Spherical Metallic

Sam: The Spherical Metallic is definitely the odd man out on our record. It’s clearly probably the most informal body right here, however that doesn’t imply it may possibly’t hold on the path. If you need a body that may really feel at residence trackside at The Preakness and nonetheless deal with the occasional mellow hike, take a look at the Spherical Metallic.

Although it’s the second heaviest body on the record, the Spherical Metallic stays surprisingly regular on my face. Simply keep in mind to retailer it within the case it is available in when it’s not in your face — it isn’t as sturdy because the plastic frames on this record. The Inexperienced Basic G-15 lenses are versatile and basic, although not polarized.

Persol PO3204S
Body: Terra di Siena
Lens: Mild blue
Said Measurements: 51-21-145 mm (Giant: 54-21-145)
Measured Lens Peak: 43 mm
Measured Weight: 34.1 g
MSRP: $310

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

Persol PO3204S

Sam: The Persol PO3240S definitely falls on the informal aspect of the sun shades spectrum. It’s spherical form and keyhole bridge function basic Persol styling and design touches to make a pair of shades that may actually solely be described a method — stylish.

These shades aren’t the lightest — the lenses are crystal glass — which give wonderful readability, however are heavy — they usually don’t have probably the most safe match that yow will discover, so they’re undoubtedly for informal use solely. However truthfully, would you actually need to take a $310 pair of sun shades on a hike to start with?

Ray-Ban RB3602M (Scuderia Ferrari Assortment)
Body: Gray; Gunmetal
Lens: Gray gradient
Said Measurements: 51-21-140 mm
Measured Lens Peak: 46 mm
Measured Weight: 35.5 g
MSRP: $268

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

Ray-Ban RB3602M (Scuderia Ferrari Assortment)

Sam: Do you personal a Ferrari? What?? You don’t??? Properly these shades could be the subsequent neatest thing. Designed at the side of Ferrari, these sun shades function Ferrari yellow (or purple) nostril and ear items together with a superbly constructed double-layer metallic body.

These sun shades are made for racing automobiles, and although I haven’t had them out on the monitor, I’m virtually sure they might make me quicker merely by way of a lift in pure confidence. They’ve a gradient lens to assist with seeing the gauges (helpful each at 20 mph and 200 mph) and a safer match than both of the Persol frames in our roundup. However don’t be confused, that is undoubtedly an off-the-cuff body. It feels fairly heavy, and can pair higher with a swimming pool than a backpack.

Persol PO3186S
Body: Black
Lens: Inexperienced Polar
Said Measurements: 53-21-145 mm (Small: 51-21-145)
Measured Lens Peak: 44 mm
Measured Weight: 35.eight g
MSRP: $400

Blister's Sunglasses Roundup — 2018

Persol PO3186S

Sam: This combined metallic / acetate body is one other nice (however costly) informal choice. Some of the square-shaped informal frames within the check, this body combines a basic sunglass silhouette with trendier touches, like a flat lens.

Each Persol frames we’re reviewing right here really feel extremely properly made. The hinges are substantial and have wonderful spring-loaded motion, the lenses are crisp and clear, and the general end high quality is superb. And that premium high quality comes at a premium worth. However for those who spend a number of time in sun shades and need a number of the highest high quality informal frames available on the market, you shouldn’t overlook Persol.