Optics


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Our 2021 Winter Buyer’s Guide tester Mike Steere picked the Switchfoot as the best pair of shades for driving: “In the sun, the polarized synthetic lenses offer incredible depth, detail, and glare reduction,” he wrote. “You won’t look so bad, either, in these big shades that harken…

We like the Cascade for bike commuting. Its large lenses “provide ample coverage to keep debris out of your eyes, but still look good with a button down,” wrote our tester Jakob Schiller. “We also appreciate that Zeal makes the frames with a plant-based material instead of…

Pups don’t need sunglasses, but certain dogs “could benefit from dog goggles, or Doggles, because of the decreased UV exposure,” contributor Jade Kolker explained in 2014. “They’ve become a regular fixture on family adventures when my dog sticks his head out the window on the way to…

A simple mechanism makes Julbo's Aerospace goggles effective and easy to use

The Ombraz Leggero forgoes sidearms for an innovative nylon strap, which is both good and bad

Fast tint shifts, seamless lens changes, and better antifog technology mean you can focus on your line

Shades for charging hard and aprèsing harder

Whether you're hunting, bird-watching, or visiting a national park, the six-ounce Kestrel Glassing Systems Monopod will drastically improve your experience

There are those that help you see and those that help you be seen. Here's the difference—and how to buy the ones you need.

Shades that’ll protect your eyes and turn heads

Cool capability returns with the best shades for winter

Two newcomers shake things up, while a couple of old hands succeed with clever tech

The new Maven S.2 isn't much heavier than a pair of binoculars so you can take more magnification into the backcountry

Croakies uses miniature nylon climbing rope for this burly retainer. PVC rings slide onto your sunglasses’ arms, and the whole thing weighs just nine grams, so you barely know it’s there, even as it’s keeping your shades from hitting the deck.

Is the Vault overbuilt? Maybe. But if you really want to protect your shades, this semirigid case pairs a crush-resistant exterior with a soft liner to ensure that both lenses and frames remain intact. The mesh pocket in the lid can hold a cloth or a retainer, but it also…

Running rapids or tackling bumpy singletrack? You want a tight fit on your shades. The Orbiter’s stainless-steel wire has a lock-down cinch system, so you can snug them to the back of your head for security.

Fingerprints and dirt stains are annoying. This nonabrasive microfiber cloth lifts oil and other crud off your lenses, so you can rock your specs without smears.

It’s not fancy, but this polyester-cotton pouch will keep lenses from getting scratched and smudged when you drop them in a pocket in your backpack. And we don’t mind the flashy floral hibiscus print one bit.

The biodegradable spray in this kit is a simple combo of water and mild soap. Make a habit out of giving your lenses a spritz after a hard day on the trail, then wipe them clean with the included microfiber cloth. The ritual will go a long way toward maintaining…

Huckberry found the formula for stylish, quality glasses that don’t qualify as a splurge

Suncloud manages to bring quality ingredients (a flexible and durable Grilamid frame, polarized polycarbonate lenses) to an inexpensive set of shades that performs well on the go. We dig the sporty rimless look and full coverage. And Megol pads at the nose and temples help the Contender stay put.

These new glasses from Smith come with two pairs of interchangeable ChromaPop lenses—one for low light, one for full sun—and a magnetic frame that unlocks to make swapping easy. They’re light, and the middle-of-the-road coverage doesn’t make the Caravan look huge on your face.

Forget classic frames. Spy goes futuristic with its Tron 2, which is oversize and has a massive field of view for near goggle-level protection. The shades offer 100 percent UV protection and are made from super durable yet flexible Grilamid.

The polarized lenses in these sunnies change tint based on light conditions, getting darker in bright rays and lighter when you’re under tree cover, making them ideal for trail running in the woods. The adjustable temples and curved frame give you full coverage and a snug fit in a package…

There’s nothing crazy about the Swank, just a retro frame with shatterproof and scratch-resistant lenses that offer complete UV protection while the hydrophilic rubber nose pads keep everything in place. It’s hard to find more capability at this price point.

Zeal took the same Automatic Lens technology it uses in its goggles and brought it to the Big Timber: the tint of the lenses adjusts to the available light. The frames are also made from plant-based Z-Resin (instead of petroleum-based plastic), and Proflex rubber on the temples and nose affords…

And the Maven B3's are the highest-quality optics you can easily carry

Wherever you find your bliss this winter, it’ll be all the better with these sunnies

New lens designs are improving the view even on low-contrast days

Want to serve the tastiest meat ever at your next dinner party? This is the (significant) investment it will take to make that happen.

At prices that won't break the bank

Five superb glare cutters, each under $50

Whether you're into race shields or lifestyle frames, there's something here you'll love

Can Spy's new electrochromic tint-changing lens unseat the Smith—my favorite goggles ever—from its throne?

The prescription goggles are the best solution for those who simply can't go without their specs on the slopes

The decorated skier talks productivity and good habits as he prepares to defend his gold medal in Pyeongchang and enters his 12th year running his eyewear company

Essentials to get you hunting—or just make being outside more enjoyable

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