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How to Choose the Perfect Motorcycle Sunglasses

July 18, 2019 8 min read

How to Choose the Perfect Motorcycle Sunglasses

The roads can be treacherous, the sun can be blazing and the wind can be blustery but one piece of equipment you cannot afford to miss is your motorcycle sunglasses. Your motorcycle sunglasses are a vital component of your riding gear. Choosing the perfect ones will have you enjoying your ride no matter how strong the elements are.  

 It’s one of those breezy and cloudless afternoons and you are cruising on the freeway with your speed machine. Oblivious to any dangers or cares. Then suddenly, a tiny insect heads to your eyes causing so much pain. If you are like most people, once attacked in the eyes, your instinctive reaction is to let go of any control. This could cause a fatal crash, from arguably a very minor incident. But it is not all uncommon. Many pro riders have encountered this kind of events during their rides and crashed when they couldn’t see properly. All these boils down to not having proper motorcycling sunglasses.

Sunglasses are vital equipment for protecting your eyes against the glaring sun, fog, dust, wind and even small insects. They are designed to offer comfort, clarity and safety, but not all meet these requirements. If you are not careful, you could be using the wrong sunglasses without knowledge. It is my humble duty to inform you about the best motorcycle sunglasses and what to consider when choosing the perfect eyewear for you.  

Choosing the best motorcycle sunglasses for bike riding

Almost all motorcyclists wear sunglasses or other forms of eye protection when riding a motorbike. These can serve many purposes such as improving contrast, dulling the bright sun, or generally offering protection to the eyes. But there are more than a few other things you need to keep in mind when choosing your biker sunglasses. It is not enough to pick just any sunglasses from your favorite online shop. You need to consider how it will fit with your headgear or helmet. This combination is crucial to your overall safety system for your riding exploits. The first question you need to answer: Is your helmet full-faced or open-faced?

In this guide, we are breaking down the various aspects that differentiate motorcycle sunglasses and how you can find the perfect eyewear for your riding needs.

Do the sunglasses allow airflow?

Wind can be a huge impediment to your riding experience. Whether you are going for a longer ride or a short ride, you will need the right sunglasses to keep away the wind from swirling near your eyes. Ideally, the sunglasses that you choose should have a lens that prevents gusts of wind from directly getting into contact with your eyes. Wind blowing directly to your eyes can cause your eyes to dry up or even blow away the sunglasses if they do not have a proper grip. Your sunglasses are designed to offer protection from wind when riding at high speeds while allowing the right amount of airflow. The right amount of air circulation will minimize fogging and prevent perspiration near the eyes.

Luckily for you, there is a galaxy of motorcycle sunglasses to choose from including the vintage round sunglasses that offer comfort and protection with a touch of style. Another popular one is the daisy sunglasses. We highly recommend choosing sunglasses that come with a foam eyecup to protect you from the swirling wind at high speeds. Many manufacturers are coming up with state-of-the-art ways of providing more comfort and functionality by featuring a venting system in their sunglasses. These vents, usually at the top, allow air to flow through the top vents and exit at the bottom or at the sides. But avid riders will agree that too much airflow will dry out the eyes while little air circulation will cause them to suffocate. To maximize comfort, your piece of eyewear should not touch on the extremes of both conditions lest you will not enjoy your adrenaline-charged adventures.

While you may get excited about getting new motorcycle glasses, you need to be careful not to fall for the knock-offs. And there are lots of them out there.

So what’s the trick to spotting the knock-offs? One sure-fire sign is about their pricing. They are enticingly cheap and usually-priced between $15-$40 bucks. Besides, it is hard to find any credible information about those brands online.

In this day and age, consumer protection against substandard goods is paramount. Unfortunately, some online vendors are only after the quick buck and will import cheap frames abroad and try to pass them off as legit. Looks can be deceiving so it is vital that you do your homework before deciding to get a new pair of motorcycle sunglasses.

When it comes to sunglasses, there is no one-size-fits-all and different brands will be suited for more intense bike riding than others. For instance, if you are a speed junkie on the road, you might want to choose sunglasses with a frame that wraps around your head and the temples. If you make the mistake of choosing a smaller frame, the wind will flow straight into your eyes from the sides making your ride unpleasant. Usually, the small frame sunglasses work better at keeping the bugs from flying directly into your eyes but are terrible for wind protection. You will also have to cope with dust and other debris in this case. We recommend the smaller frames for slow riders.

How strong is the frame build? Is it able to withstand the harsh impact? What about the lens? Is it unbreakable? Typically, frame construction made out of injection-molded plastic or blended nylon will provide more durability and be able to withstand a nasty spill. No matter how hard debris hits the frame, it will remain sturdy and protect your eyes.

Choosing the right lenses

Choosing the right frame is only half the battle. You will need excellent quality lenses that provide performance and protection. Motorcyclists often have to contend with a large number of bad lenses out there. Honestly, only a few lenses pass the test. You should be very careful when choosing your lenses. The right lens will not only improve your vision but also protect your eyes from harmful UV rays from the sun. Flying projectiles will also be kept at bay.

Consider also the type of material used in the construction of your lens. All motorcycle sunglasses should be made from a shatter-proof material such as polycarbonate. Whether you are looking for prescription sunglasses, there are a dozen options to consider and many more factors to consider. So what should you look for when choosing your motorcycle sunglasses lenses?

  • Impact resistance- your lenses should be shatter-proof and able to withstand considerable external force. In most cases, glass or plastic lenses shatter easily when hit. Instead, consider going for lenses made out of trivex or polycarbonate which are both sturdy enough to avoid breaking under pressure. One sure way to know that your lenses are tough enough is to look for ANSI certification.
  • Polarized lenses-shiny surfaces and glare can cause a lot of struggle when you are cruising down the road on your motorbike. In fact, too much exposure to light and glare can be blinding and unsafe when you are riding. That’s why you need some form of protection to counter the sun’s glare or reflection from shiny surfaces. Polarized lenses provide an efficient way of eliminating glare while providing a clear view of the road and surroundings. Unlike lens coatings which can peel off or become ineffective, polarization is an inbuilt construction of the lens where crystals are sandwiched in the lens to prevent scattered light from reaching your eyes. There are many sources of reflections and glare including direct sunlight, windshields, wet roads and buildings. Even though polarized lenses can help absorb glare and reflections, it makes it harder for you to see through LED signs or LED instrumentations on your bike. In other cases, your vision can be distorted if worn together with a full-faced helmet. They are also more expensive than regular lenses. Overall, we highly recommend polarized lenses for the clarity and ability to minimize glare. If you are avid motorbike rider, then this should be one of your considerations.
  • Photochromic/Transition Lenses-these type of lenses are suitable for both night and day use. They are becoming very popular among motorcycle riders who want to reduce the hassle of having multiple sunglasses for night riding and day riding. Prescription lens wearers will especially find transition lenses to be a lifesaver. Normally, photochromic lenses darken when you get outdoors especially when exposed to sunlight. They are good at preventing ultraviolet light from reaching your eyes. In the absence of light exposure, they return to a clear state. In short, these lenses save you the inconvenience of having to change sunglasses all the time by providing you with one that adapts to the light conditions. The most notable downside of transition lenses is that the lens material made out of the more durable polycarbonate material may not get as dark compared to the cheaper alternative of breakable photochromic lenses made from glass or CR-39 plastic. If you are riding in bright environments, then photochromic lenses could be your answer. But if you are expressly looking for dark sunglasses, then you might want to consider other options other than transition lenses sunglasses.
  • Color of your lenses-lens color helps to maximize contrast and enhance clarity. Depending on lighting conditions outside, you can choose lens variants that come in grey, copper, yellow and dark shades. Copper-colored lenses are ideal for sharpening red and greens while providing the best contrast. Grey lenses are suitable if you want to maintain the true color of objects while minimizing glare. Light rust and yellow lenses are perfect for the sundown and dawn when the lighting conditions are not very good. Even on rainy days, these can help you see clearly through the fog. If you are riding in the night, you might want to use clear lenses. Anything else will reduce the little light that comes from your motorcycle’s headlight and make it hard to ride. Generally, when choosing the color of your lens, consider the lighting conditions as well as the contrast and image-sharpening properties of the lens.
  • Lens coating-there are a variety of lens coating to deal with various conditions and lighting requirements. It is vital to consider the coating applied to your lens and how this will improve your experience. For example,
  • Anti-fog coating- is designed to help minimize fogging while riding in the chilly atmosphere. If you are always riding in the cold weather, or tend to sweat frequently around your eyes, these lenses come in handy. However, it is advisable to not rely solely on anti-fog coating and instead opt for sunglasses with proper ventilation.
  • Anti-reflective coating- AR coating helps reduce the effects of glare from the reflective surface of oncoming headlights. They are commonly used in lenses to make them appear dark.
  • Oleophobic coating- am sure you dislike seeing smudges from fingerprints on your lenses. I personally hate to see smudges on my lenses more than anything else. Well, Oleophobic coating helps prevent smudges from forming on your lens or even dust and oil are kept away for good.  
  • Hydrophobic coating- do you love riding in the rain? To rekindle your young spirit or simply defy the elements, hydrophobic coating repels water and make your lenses crisp and clear. So you will never have to worry about riding in the rain again.

So, which is the perfect motorcycle sunglasses for you?

It’s no secret, you want to look cool and voguish while spotting your sunglasses no matter what the weather dictates. We perfectly understand your needs and that’s why we strive to provide you with industry-leading sunglasses for your ride. The designs range and the sunglasses options are virtually endless. We want you to feel more confident when you hit the road while guaranteeing you safety and protection. Does that sound cool enough? Head over to our extensive sunglasses catalog and treat yourself to the best piece of eyewear. There is always something for you!


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