The Best Sunglasses of 2019
Wherever you find your bliss this winter, it’ll be all the better with these sunnies
Shred Stomp Noweight ($200)
That name may involve a technical impossibility, but the lack of heft does make an immediate impression, especially in a design that doesn’t seem particularly minimal. The look is sharp and streetworthy, belying the fact that the Stomp is also extremely sportworthy. We were amazed by the gray-tint polarized lenses when confronted with killer sun on singletrack. The deep-tone, high-contrast optics do a great job of deflecting glare from snow, too—not surprising, since Shred is the brainchild of Olympic alpine skier Ted Ligety.
Adidas Tempest ($133)
These women’s cat-eye shades are as cute as they are capable. The design works especially well for runners, what with the low weight, the extra security afforded by the stay-on springy frames, and plenty of sticky rubber at the temples and ears. Oversize synthetic lenses add coverage and protection from sun and wind. The flamboyant mirroring knocks back glare and creates playful contrast with the crystal-clear frames and temples.
Spy Helm 2 ($100)
After gazing through endless gray, we appreciated the warm tint. Spy’s synthetic bronze lenses enhance depth and contrast to make even the tiniest details jump out on the trail. The mellow hue isn’t bad behind the wheel or when kicking around town, making the Helm our first choice for riding, running, and whatever comes after. The clean style of the matte black frames contrast the gold lens mirroring. And the price makes these Spys even more appealing.
Oakley Flight Jacket ($223)
If you can see your way past the cyborg-apocalypse styling, this rebooted racing shield has some brilliant touches. The lens is free and frameless along the top edge, so there’s nothing to obstruct your line of sight when in head-down riding position. And the optics of the rosy-tint synthetic Prizm Road lens are wondrously high in contrast and resolution. There’s even an adjustable vent at the nosepiece to boost fog-killing airflow.
Smith Haywire ($139)
The closer you look, the more Smith’s dressy, female-friendly number impresses. In the frames, old-school tortoise combines with classy brass and sets up a nice contrast with black sculpted temples. Quality carries over to the sharp, gray-tinted synthetic lenses, which make for easy on-off around town. Though the Haywire’s more about upscale, preppy style than performance, sticky nose pads and squeeze from the springy frames keep them secure at playtime.
Dragon Alliance Baile H2O ($184)
While the world sees icy-bluish mirroring, you look out through polarized bronze-tint synthetic lenses that neutralize glare and do delicious things with depth, detail, and color. The frames float—a nice touch for surf-themed glasses, no? Even if they didn’t, we’d love them for their artful sculpting and tweaks that freshen the design. The lack of rubber cladding and some light leakage around the lenses mean these are made for chilling.