See More with the Best Sunglasses for Cycling of 2019
Cycling sunglasses are an essential part of any rider's gear. The perfect set of frames and lenses can make your ride more enjoyable and elevate your performance on the bike. And let's be real, having the coolest frames out there can make you look fast even if you aren't breaking records. With designs changing year after year and even more frames to choose from, it can be a difficult process. Join Sunglass Rob and pro mountain biker Stephane Roch as they break down the top picks of 2019 to help you make your decision.
Table of Contents
1. What to Look for in Cycling Sunglasses
1.1. Frame Technology
1.2. Lens Technology
2. The Best Cycling Sunglasses of 2019
2.6. Rudy Project
3. The Best Cycling Sunglasses of 2018
There are many things to take into consideration when choosing a pair of cycling sunglasses, but for this list we've shortened it to two key components: frame technology and lens technology. You can check out our cycling sunglasses buyer's guide for more information on what to look out for when you're shopping for your next pair.
First off, having the right fit with grip where you need it will keep the frames optically aligned and allow you to wear them for extended periods at a time. Also, a sunglass with maximum coverage ensures that you stay protected from the elements and make the most of your field of vision.
Choosing the right frame is only half of the decision-making process, however. Without the right lenses, you could have a sunglass that will fit right but won't maximize your on-bike experience. High-contrast lenses (such as a rose or light copper tint) will help you to pick up on every little detail on the road so you can have a safer and more enjoyable riding experience, but the type of weather you ride in will be more of a factor in your lens choice. Check out our list of sunglasses below to see some prime examples of lens design meant to improve your cycling experience.
Kicking off this list is the Oakley Flak 2.0 XL, a tried and true frame and considered to be one of the best cycling sunglasses on the market. In fact, they're so good they're making this list two years in a row. A few key updates are included on this model that improve it from the already great Flak Jacket XLJ—Oakley's O-Matter frame material gives it a super lightweight and comfortable feel, and the Three-Point Fit system relieves pressure points caused by most frames by evening out the fit across the nose bridge and temples. The Oakley Flak 2.0 XL has the same frame dimensions as the original but features extended lens coverage and cutouts around your cheeks to avoid cheek-to-lens contact. Get yourself a pair of the Oakley Flak 2.0 XL to see why they are a favorite frame of many cyclists.
Comfort, coverage, and durability make the Oakley Jawbreaker another choice for this list two years running. The vented shield lens gives you an expansive view and protection without fogging up. And if you do break a sweat, you don't have to worry about the frames slipping with Unobtanium grip on the nose pads and temples. Oakley's patented O-Matter frame construction gives the Jawbreaker a lightweight feel without compromising durability. The Jawbreaker has been around for years, yet remains a top contender in both this year's and last year's selections for the top cycling sunglasses.
Oakley Radar EV Path
The EV in the name stands for "extended view," which is exactly what you get with the Oakley Radar EV Path. By raising the brow line, these classic cycling sunglasses stay out of your field of vision, plus the semi-rimless design and improved ventilation system keep them from fogging up even on the most intense rides. Can't decide whether you love these more in PRIZM Road or Road Black? Get them both thanks to interchangeable lens technology!
The SMITH Tempo Max lets you perform at max potential. Featuring a slightly taller lens than the Tempo, the Tempo Max has full coverage and interchangeable ChromaPop lenses to give you the best versatility in any condition. Filter out light, enhance color, and leave your competition in the dust.
SMITH Attack Max
The SMITH Attack Max comes with two sets of lenses, one dark and one light to give you optimal versatility for changing conditions. SMITH's MAG interchangeable lens technology works with magnets that help the temple arms snap into place—no more fiddling with breakable plastic clasps. The Attack Max takes full advantage of its larger lens coverage and includes a two-position nose pad and Megol temples for a secure fit.
Note: This frame is not Rx-able.
An updated version of the S2, the S3 takes it up another notch by combining the best of the S2 and the Speedcraft. It's lightweight despite its large size and the slightly taller shield rests comfortably over your face. Hydrophobic and oleophobic lens coatings also ensure you won't lose time wiping sweat out of your eyes. With the choices of an Ultra HD, HiPER, or photochromic lens, you'll get the most coverage, the most options, and the most contrast with the S3.
Note: This frame is not Rx-able.
A favorite of world champion cyclist Peter Sagan and a winner of our 2018 REXY Awards, the Speedcraft catapulted 100% onto the cycling scene. The classic 100% cylindrical lens makes for a wider view in the riding position. Ultra-grip rubber on the temple tips and nose pads provide comfort on those longer rides, and air scoops built into the lower lens reduce moisture and keep your face cool. If Peter Sagan wears it, you know it's built for performance.
Note: This frame is not Rx-able.
Last of our 100% picks is the Speedcoupe, cycling sunglasses designed to elevate your performance to its maximum potential. These shades have a semi-rimless design and temple grips to ensure they stay in place even during your most intense rides. There are also integrated air scoops to prevent fogging and increase airflow to your face. These cycling sunglasses will truly let you unlock 100% of your potential. Need replacement lenses? Check them out here.
The Nike Skylon Ace XV has a sleek wrap frame but loses no quality thanks to Nike's Max Optics technology that delivers precise visual information at any angle. The slim temples with rubber grip make these a snug fit under a helmet, plus the adjustable and ventilated nose bridge will keep these sunglasses perfectly centered as you pedal your hardest.
Nike Show X2
A versatile frame that can be used in many sports, the Nike Show X2 features a semi-rimless wrap design with a comfortable and secure fit. The nylon frame is durable and flexible with adjustable temples and nose pads for a guaranteed fit. The nose pads are also ventilated for when you really break that sweat—cross the finish line in style with the Nike Show X2. Available with Rx insert.
Another feature from last year is the Tifosi Synapse. It is one of the best-valued frames on this list because of all the features you get without breaking the bank. Almost seems too good to be true? It's not! The TR-90 frame construction makes these sunglasses highly durable and extremely lightweight. If you are using them in extreme situations, the hydrophilic rubber on the temples and nose pads will hold them snug against your face. Adjustable nose pads and temples accommodate a wide range of head shapes and facial features, so you know these will fit you.
The Rudy Project Horus offers superior customization between its 360° adjustable temples and interchangeable lenses to adjust to any lighting condition. The Grilamid frame combined with an Ergo3Max nose pad gives these cycling sunglasses both comfort and durability—get a cutting-edge style with unparalleled fit to achieve your best performance. Just need replacement bezels? Find them here.
Best Cycling Sunglasses of 2018
We brought in cycling superstar and UCLA athlete of the year, Evan Christianson, to sit down with our very own Sunglass Rob to discuss the best cycling sunglasses of 2018. Check out the video and information below to find out which frames made it on the list!
Many cycling sunglasses have similar features but they are all unique in fit and performance capabilities. When it comes to cycling glasses, there are certain features to look for. We briefly recap on what those are below but we also have a more in-depth cycling sunglasses buyer's guide if you would like to know more about what features you should keep an eye out for!
Kicking things off is the 100% S2, cycling sunglasses with a futuristic frame design. This frame is made for everyday sports performance—a full cylindrical shield provides you an unobstructed view and enhanced peripheral sight, while the laser-etched edging gives the S2 a full frame appearance but is actually rimless on the bottom of the lens. The lens itself is protected with HYDROILO to repel oil and water. Ultra-grip keeps the frames from moving around on your face and makes for a comfortable fit.
The Speedcraft catapulted 100% onto the cycling scene. It is a favorite of world-champion cyclist Peter Sagan, which has really helped to put it on the map. The classic 100% cylindrical lens makes for a more wider view in the riding position. Ultra-grip rubber on the temple tips and nose pad provide comfort on those longer rides. Lower air scoops are built into the lens to reduce moisture and keep your face cool. If Peter Sagan wears it, you know it's built for performance.
Oakley Flak 2.0 XL in Matte Grey Smoke with PRIZM Road Lenses
The Oakley Flak 2.0 XL is a tried and true frame and considered one of the best cycling sunglasses on the market. A few key updates are included on this model that improve it from the already great Flak Jacket XLJ. Oakley's O-Matter frame material gives it a super lightweight and comfortable feel. The three-point fit system relieves pressure points caused by most frames by evening out the fit across the nose bridge and temples. The Oakley Flak 2.0 XL has the same frame dimensions as the original but features extended lens coverage and cutouts around your cheeks to avoid cheek-to-lens contact. Get yourself a pair of these Oakley Flak 2.0 XL to see why they are a favorite frame of many cyclists.
The Oakley Crossrange is a pair of sunglasses great for both casual wear and cycling. The frame's large coverage means it still blocks out a good percentage of wind, while having all the same features of Oakley sports frames such as the lightweight O-Matter frame and PRIZM lenses to let you see well regardless of light conditions. If you're looking for sunglasses you can wear on the road and while chilling at a cafe, these are the frames for you.
Oakley Radar EV Pitch in Polished White with PRIZM Road Lenses
The "EV" stands for "extended view," which is exactly what you get with these frames. The Oakley Radar EV Pitch is a go-to pick for many cyclists because of the coverage provided by the extended brow line. When you are in the drops or in an aero position you will still be able to see out of the top of the lens rather than having to look over it. Ventilation gaps along the top of the lens keep you cool and prevents fogging. Oakley Unobtanium on the nose bridge and temple gets stickier and tackier the more you sweat, keeping the frames perfectly in place even on your most grueling rides. Try these in PRIZM Road to further enhance your cycling experience!
Comfort, coverage, and durability make the Oakley Jawbreaker an obvious choice for this list. The vented shield lens gives you an expansive view and protection without fogging up. And if you do break a sweat, you don't have to worry about the frames slipping with Unobtanium grip on the nose pads and temples. Oakley's patented O-Matter frame construction give it a lightweight feel without compromising durability. The Jawbreaker has been around for years, yet remains a top contender in this year's selection for the top cycling sunglasses.
The Smith Attack Max bring in a feature that not many of the other sunglasses in this guide provide. This model comes with two sets of lenses—a dark and light lens so you can have optimal versatility for changing conditions. Smith MAG interchangeable technology works with magnets that help the temple arms snap into place. The Attack Max takes full advantage of the larger lens coverage and includes a two-position nose piece and Megol temples for a secure fit.
The Bolle 6th Sense is all about fit compatibility. Does your nose have a hard time fitting the mold of most frames? Not an issue with the 6th Sense thanks to its adjustable nose pads. The angle and shape of the pad is ultra-adjustable, making for a truly customized fit. Thermogrip on the nose pads and temple tips have moisture-absorbing properties so the frames stay aligned. All of those features plus a vented lens and extended brow make the 6th Sense a very worthy contender in our top cycling list.
Note: This product is no longer available.
The Rudy Project Rydon is another pair of cycling sunglasses that stand out due to their fit compatibility. A flexible fit is achieved through the fully adjustable nose pad and temples. Although these frames are super lightweight, grilamid frame construction ensures their durability. A quick and easy interchangeable lens system gives you the option to swap lenses on the go, increasing its versatility. The Rydon delivers the performance you would expect from a top-rated cycling frame.
The Tifosi Synapse is one of the best-valued frames on this list because of the packed features you get without breaking the bank. It almost seems too good to be true, but it's not. Let's start with the TR-90 frame construction which makes it highly durable and extremely lightweight. And if you are using them in extreme situations, the hydrophilic rubber on the temples and nosepad will hold them snug against your face. Adjustable nose and ear pieces accommodate a wider range of head shapes and facial features, so you know these will fit you.
Prescription Cycling Sunglasses at SportRx!
Need prescription cycling sunglasses? Done. When you shop with us, you’ll find video guides and tooltips throughout the build process as you customize the perfect pair. An answer to all your questions is at your fingertips, and if you want to chat with an expert, Contact Us. We’ll put you in touch with one of our friendly in-house opticians who can help you build your cycling sunglasses.
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