Gear Shed

Q:

Which sunglasses have lenses that won’t fog up while mountain biking?

I sweat a lot when I mountain bike, and when I wear sunglasses they usually fog up, or the lens gets covered in dripping sweat. I've tried to wear a headband, but that doesn't work. Do you have a recommendation for sunglasses with lenses that won't fog up or get covered with beads of sweat?
Todd
Jenkintown, PA

Semi Full sunglasses     Photo: courtesy, Giro

Semi Full sunglasses

A:Eh, no good solution here. You are in the northeast, where humidity is a problem. Even here in the non-humid Pacific Northwest I always fight foggy lenses when mountain-biking. The problem is, you are often biking at a slow speed, so there isn't enough air to move across the glasses to keep the dew from forming. And of course, when you are going slowly on a bike, you also are working really hard. So more sweat.

So here’s what I’d do:
1. Keep the head band. It will help keep moisture from running down your face.
2. Make sure your helmet is as airy as possible. Time to upgrade? MaybeBell's Influx ($64) would be the right one. Great ventilation. And keep in mind that road helmets and mountain helmets ARE different. Mountain helmets have better ventilation in slow-speed conditions, while road helmets are designed to better channel moving air.
3. Use the visor. It will help capture air and move it over your face.
4. Every pair of sunglasses is a big different, but look for ones that don’t have huge lenses and that don't hug your face tightly. Try theGiro Semi Full sunglasses ($90).
5. Make your own anti-fog solution. Place one ounce of clear vinegar in a bowl. Add a pint of hot water. Dip a clean cloth in that solution and wipe the lenses with it. That will help fight condensation.

The other thing to do is be sure to take the glasses off whenever you stop—even for a minute. And on slow uphills, maybe best to pocket them, too.

Hope that helps!

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