Motorcycle sunglasses affect a rider’s safety and comfort. While this is the case, many riders opt to wear glasses that match their riding attire, rather than their riding environment. This isn’t very surprising since it’s virtually impossible to find any type of objective, truly helpful information about choosing motorcycle sunglasses.
The goal of the information here is to remedy this problem. There is a wide array of motorcycle sunglasses options out there and choosing the right one can help improve the riding experience while providing a superior level of protection. The key is to get the right glasses.
American Legend Rider provides avid and novice riders with access to several styles and designs, offering a smart option for virtually any riding style. Learn more about the options available and how to choose the one that best suits a rider’s needs here.
While the options are varied, there are certain things to consider when shopping for motorcycle sunglasses.
Longer motorcycle rides and even short rides at higher speeds require a rider to wear glasses that prevent the wind from swirling around behind the lens and causing the eyes to dry out or blowing the glasses off of the rider’s face.
If an individual is typically riding in between stoplights, it’s a good idea to purchase eyewear that allows for more circulation around the eye area to minimize fogging, as well as perspiration near the eyes.
It’s a good idea to look for motorcycle sunglasses that have features to help provide the benefits mentioned above. Some appealing features include foam eyecups that protect the eyes from swirling winds, and sunglasses featuring a venting system.
While these features are beneficial, keep in mind, if too much air circulates behind the glasses, the eyes may begin to feel dry. If there’s not enough circulation, it can suffocate the eyes. Both conditions may reduce the total amount of time a rider can remain on their bike and comfortable.
Keep in mind, most knock-off brand of motorcycle eyeglasses aren’t designed for balanced airflow. This can create uncomfortable conditions for all types of riders. Be careful about wearing any sunglasses that aren’t designed specifically for higher speeds.
Select a frame that properly wraps around the side of the wearer’s eyes. A small frame is going to direct the bubble of air that’s created by the lens directly into the eye. While this can help reduce the likelihood of bigger bugs flying into the eye, it doesn’t provide much protection from dust or wind.
Also, look for a frame that can withstand a harsh impact. Sunglasses with an unbreakable lens don’t have much value if the frame could break with ease.
There are several solid lens choices available for motorcycle riders, along with some choices that don’t work well for riding. The importance of choosing the proper lens is something that can’t be overstated. Choosing the proper lens can help to reduce eyestrain, increase a rider’s reaction time, and improve contrast.
The most important job of the lens is to protect the eyes from harmful light, along with airborne hazards. All types of motorcycle sunglasses (non-prescription options) will or should use (at a minimum) the polycarbonate lens material, as this is a shatter-proof option. When choosing a lens material for a pair of motorcycle sunglasses, there are several options to choose from.
Some of the most important factors to keep in mind when selecting a lens include the material if they are polarized if they are photochromic, and the color of the lens. Regardless of what option is selected, there are always going to be pros and cons to keep in mind. Keep reading about each of those considerations here.
Choosing polarized lenses provide an effective way to reduce glare while getting a crisp and clear view of the road. Keep in mind, polarization isn’t a lens coating. Instead, it’s a series of crystals that have been sandwiched at the interior of the lens, blocking the scattered light from reaching the eye.
Some of the most common causes of glare and reflection include direct sunlight, buildings, wet roads, and windshields.
Some of the most compelling reasons to avoid polarized lenses for motorcycle sunglasses is because it makes the older LED instrumentation on a bike more difficult to see and the rider’s vision may be distorted slightly if these lenses are worn beneath full-faced helmets. Additionally, polarized lenses are typically more expensive than other options. However, for a rider that does not use the older LED instrumentation or a helmet with a full-face, polarized lenses are highly recommended.
Polarized lenses are good for the eyes. That’s why so many eye doctors prescribe the use of these after a person has undergone eye surgery. They can effectively keep light out of a person’s eye. The majority of people who try out the polarized lens along with a tinted lens almost always like the polarized option better.
More commonly called a transition lens, photochromic lenses have grown in popularity for those who want to pair their motorcycle glasses for use during the day and at night. This is especially the case for individuals who need to wear prescription lenses.
One of the main downsides to the photochromic lenses is that the polycarbonate material the lens is made of doesn’t get as dark as the more fragile photochromic lenses, such as CR-39 plastic or glass. For riders who have a sensitivity to bright light, or those who want a darker sunglass option, this may not provide the darkness that’s needed to ride comfortably.
The lens color is extremely important. In fact, it’s almost as important as the polarization when trying to find a sunglass option that maximizes contrast and clarity. For the majority of riders, copper shades provide them with the highest level of contrast. Also, copper is always going to sharpen colors, such as greens and reds.
If a rider wants to maintain true color, then grey lenses are best. For low light driving conditions, such as on raining days, or riding at dawn or dusk light rust or yellowish lens color can help to reduce glare while improving overall contrast.
However, if the only source of light for the rider is their headlight, a slight tint on the glasses is not going to improve contrast. Instead, it is going to reduce the small amount of light that’s emitted by the headlight.
The lens material choices that a rider should look for include SR-91, which is a form of polarized Trivex, Trivex, or polycarbonate. Any of the other materials commonly used for sunglasses is going to shatter if it is struck by a bug or a rock when traveling at highway speeds. If a person opts to wear traditional street sunglasses while on their bike, it is really only a matter of time before an accident occurs.
When selecting a frame for the motorcycle sunglasses being purchased, there are several add-ons and factors to keep in mind.
The Coverage.The main factor to keep in mind with the frame is the coverage along with the type of helmet being worn. For riders with an open face helmet, the sunglasses selected should provide plenty of coverage. This is going to provide protection from the wind, along with any other type of particle that may find its way into the eye.
Durability.Remember, motorcycle sunglasses should be more than just a fashion statement or a cool accessory. It’s important to purchase a pair that is durable and tough.
Helmet Fit.Be sure to think about how the sunglasses are going to fit under the helmet and that both of the products are compatible to wear together.
Temples.In most cases, straight back temples are going to work best under a motorcycle helmet. These are also much easier to put on and remove compared to hooked temples.
There are some companies that provide interchangeable temples. This is a convenience feature that allows a rider to go from hanging out to riding with ease. However, these sunglasses tend to be less durable with more use, and there’s a higher likelihood that one of the components is going to break.
Straps.The straps allow a rider to personalize the fit and help to keep the motorcycle sunglasses where they need to be. Keep in mind though, the use of straps isn’t as popular as it as in the past.
Foam.If the sunglasses are designed with foam, there are two factors to look at. Is it removable? If so, short and hot rides are idea, but the face foam that may come off can turn a fun ride into a real ordeal. Also, there’s no way to wear this type of sunglasses out without looking somewhat awkward.
It’s also important to consider if the foam is replaceable. When someone rides, they are bound to get hot and sweaty. The foam on sunglasses is eventually going to get dirty and gross. Try to find sunglasses that offer foam that can be removed and replaced.
While this isn’t the most important factor, it is one that most riders are going to think about when trying to choose a pair of motorcycle sunglasses. Today, it’s possible to find a wide array of sunglasses styles, including everything from classic and modern, to retro and vintage.
In most cases, the style selected is a matter of preference; however, when choosing a style, be sure to put the durability and protective factors first, as this is what is really important when trying to choose the right motorcycle sunglasses. By doing this, a rider can feel confident that if something is kicked up in their face, or if the light is glaring, their eyes will be protected and it will be possible to see clearly.
Today, motorcycle sunglasses are offered in a wide array of option and styles. Each option and feature have a purpose and it’s important to learn about the value of these features to ensure the proper glasses are purchased for a person’s riding style.
While motorcycle glasses need to be durable and protective for the eyes, it doesn’t mean they can’t look cool too. Most manufacturers have taken note of the fact that riders want stylish options that are also going to stand up to the hazardous conditions on the road and delivered great options that provide every rider with something they enjoy wearing.