best sport sunglasses for men

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5 items in this article1 item on sale!Photo: Julbo

The world of sunglasses is almost as diverse as the people who wear them. Sunny summertime is probably the season you most frequently reach for a pair, with whatever styles you wear often being picked solely based on aesthetics, since you’re wearing them practically every time you step outside. But everyone knows sunglasses are a year-round accessory, and although trendy shapes and lens colors serve their purpose when you’re grabbing your morning latte at Ground Support or sitting out in Central Park, they can actually get in the way if you’re wearing them during more physical outdoor pursuits.

Like their more fashionable cousins, the best sunglasses for active wear protect your eyes from sun damage, cut glare to keep your vision sharp (very important for any sporting activity), and generally make you more comfortable, whether you’re kayaking through open water, hiking above the timberline, or skiing down a powder-white slope. But, unlike their more fashionable cousins, active-wear sunglasses should not have nose pads like those on wire-framed aviators or other sleek shades (an accidental tumble on a run or hike could lead to a serious eye injury), nor should frames be so oversize that they partially block your field of vision, so undersized that they don’t fully protect your eyes from the sun, or have lenses tinted so dark that they make it harder to see clearly.

Over the past dozen or so years, I’ve worn almost a dozen different pairs of sunglasses for hikes, climbs, paddling trips, trail runs, and other outdoor activities. Below are the five styles I swear by, all of which I wear often — and some of which could even pass as stylish.

For canoeing, kayaking, or rowing

Sunski Topeka

Sunski Topeka$68

I live about a mile from a bay that opens onto the Long Island Sound, and it’s a great place for kayaking and canoeing, both activities I enjoy regularly in all seasons. And, no matter the season, I need a good pair of sunglasses to cut the glare of the sun reflecting off the water. I used to wear a pair of Ray-Ban aviators when paddling, and while I loved the coverage the large lenses provided, ultimately the nose pads were just too uncomfortable — especially once the sweat and sunblock started to run. So I replaced those with Sunskis, and although I used to wear its rounder Dipsea style on the water, I’ve moved to the Topeka, which has a slightly wider lens, blocking that much more sun. Plus, no matter how much water (or sweat from my brow) splashes on it, its lenses rarely streak. It also doesn’t have nose pads like my old aviators, and is generally a solid pair — after my many trips out on the salt water, neither the lenses nor durable plastic frames show signs of corrosion.

All Sunski sunglasses are polarized, meaning they filter out horizontally oriented light waves to reduce glare. As a result, they offer excellent visibility and eye protection even on the brightest of days. Most Sunski glasses also look nice, too, which is just an added bonus. The only consistent complaint I have about Sunski sunglasses is that they make it difficult to read screens, which is rarely an issue while paddling, but can be problematic when I check my GPS while driving to a new spot to get into the water.

For high-altitude hiking

Roka Oslo

Roka Oslo$205

Hiking at higher altitudes means more potential for sun damage, as the thinner air scatters less light. That’s why you need sunblock when mountaineering in all seasons, and it’s why UV protection is especially important when choosing the best sunglasses for hiking. The Roka Oslo sunglasses block 100 percent of the sun’s UV light, a claim few others can make (even most polarized lenses don’t block 100 percent of UV light). A pair also weighs less than an ounce, so it adds almost nothing to your gear’s weight — a big plus on any distance hike or high alpine ascent (and, for the record, they function just as well on lower altitude hikes, too).

Oslos have hydrophobic lenses that stay clear even as you sweat or as the rains set in, and come with three different nose pads that sit flush against your nose (instead of perching on it like those of wire-rimmed glasses), ensuring you get a nice, snug fit that’ll keep them in place during sweaty or rainy treks. They’re not cheap, but I think these are worth it for all their technical design elements, especially the grip — because if your sunglasses slip off your face as you head up a vertical pitch on El Capitan, you’re not going to climb back down for them. Also, for performance sunglasses, the Oslos are actually pretty stylish; you could easily wear them every day, no matter the altitude.

For biking

Oakley Radar EV Path Sunglasses

Oakley Radar EV Path Sunglasses$205 now 20% off$164

I have never been a fan of Oakley sunglasses for their style (though this pair’s wraparound shape does seem like a distant elder cousin to some newer fashion shades). But I’ve always sworn by the brand in terms of performance. You can rely on all Oakley sunglasses to stay in place (even when moving fast), stay clear (even when you’re body is hot and sweaty), and block glare and UV light. But what makes the EV Path shades particularly ideal for cycling is their shape, which creates a good windbreak and keeps the breeze out of your eyes even when you’re careening downhill at full speed, and their large, single-piece lens, which preserves almost your entire field of view (both very helpful things when you need to keep your eyes on the road, or mountain trail, ahead of you). And because the UV-blocking lens is actually not polarized, your clarity of view is perfect whether you’re looking straight ahead or checking a screen. Plus, when worn beneath a helmet, the straight arms on these sunglasses are much more comfortable than the kinds that go behind your ears found on many other sunglasses

For running

Oakley Jawbreaker Sunglasses

Oakley Jawbreaker Sunglasses$226 now 20% off$181

Truth be told, unless I’m going for a longer run on a particularly sunny day, I prefer not to wear sunglasses. But when I do wear them, I’ll put on another pair of Oakleys — specifically, the oddly named but overall excellent Jawbreaker Shield sunglasses. They make ideal running sunnies for several reasons: First, they stay snugly in place even as you bounce up and down along the street or trail. Second, they have multiple vents cut between the lens and frame that let in air, keep your face cooler, and reduce fogging (a big reason why I don’t always wear sunglasses when running). The EV Path sunglasses I wear for biking have a few vents, too, but the ones on this pair are slightly bigger, letting more air in — which is fine when running, as you’re never moving that fast, but less fine when biking, when you are speeding along and want minimum wind in the eyes. Third, the lenses block 100 percent of UV light but are not polarized, so you can more easily spot slick patches of ice, water, or other gunk, and read a screen when you glance down to change songs or reject a call because this is your me time. Lastly, like the EV Paths, these glasses’ large, wraparound lens gives you almost unobstructed vision, so you can see the way ahead and also keep an eye out for cars, bikes, or other runners.

For skiing or mountain climbing

Julbo Explorer 2.0 Sunglasses

Julbo Explorer 2.0 Sunglasses$150

If you’re not wearing a decent pair of ski goggles when out on the slopes, you’d better be wearing a fine pair of sunglasses, because snow blindness is no laughing matter. I’ve never been blinded, but I have had to shield my eyes while crossing snowfields and glaciers, and it’s never a good feeling when you can’t fully make out the crevasse right ahead of you. Thankfully, the Julbo Explorer 2.0 sunglasses are a very fine pair indeed. Designed specifically for mountaineering, climbing, and skiing, they offer superlative protection against harsh high-altitude sun. And because they come with removable side shields that clip onto the frames by your temples, this blocks sunlight that would otherwise seep in from the sides of the frame.

Just as conditions out on the slopes can change fast, so, too, can these sunglasses quickly adapt. Their photochromic lenses (which you may know as “transition lenses”) adjust to block out more or less light as needed, so the same shades will serve you just as well when the sun slashes through the trees at sunrise, bounces off the snow at midday, hides behind some afternoon clouds that roll in, and slashes back through the trees at sunset. Like some other pairs on this list, these are not inexpensive, but if you’re spending the money to go skiing (or climbing or cycling or hiking), I always think it’s a good idea to invest in gear that you won’t have to think twice about once in action — if for nothing else because it allows you to focus on the (sometimes dangerous) task at hand. And you can’t put a price on safety

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The 10 Best Men’s Running Sunglasses for a Glare-Free Run

Cristina Montemayor

By Cristina MontemayorMarch 8, 2021SHARE

With spring nearly sprung, now is the perfect time to dust off those sneakers and start running outside again. When temperatures start to rise, a reliable pair of polarized sunglasses is as important as wearing sunblock on your outdoor runs.

That’s why the best running sunglasses for men offer year-round protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Designed to make your peepers comfortable and relaxed while you jog, proper eyewear does more than just keep you from squinting.

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A solid pair of running shades stays in place, keeps the wind out of your eyes, and feels comfortable while you hit the road. Unlike regular sunglasses that fog up and slip down your sweaty nose, these shades are designed to literally go the extra mile — and represent some of the best fitness gear for runners.

The result is a noticeable boost in your overall athletic performance – whether you’re an ultra-marathoner or a casual jogger. For shades that are bound to become your new running buddies, we’ve made a selection of the best sunglasses for runners. Keep the glare off your eyes and go the distance by making these running sunglasses part of your essential gear. Don’t forget to invest in the best running shoes for men.

Best Overall: Headland by Sunski

Headland by Sunski

If you’re looking for running sunglasses that check all the boxes, you’ve found your match with Sunski’s Headland sunglasses These flattering shades feel great and look even better on all face shapes. Made from recycled plastic, the frame is superlight and flexible. The lens delivers polarized UV protection while offering great visibility and just the right amount of light transmission.


Most Durable: ForceFlex FF500

ForceFlex FF500

Virtually unbreakable, the ForceFlex FF500 is the most durable pair of running sunglasses out there. No matter how much you use and abuse these babies, you can be sure that they won’t scratch, crack, or otherwise get damaged. Aloong with a flexible and long-lasting frame, the lens in these glasses offers complete UVA/UVB protection and comfortable visibility.


Best Budget: The OG by goodr

The OG by goodr

Ideal for beginning runners who have a lot of new gear to buy, goodr’s OGs are the best budget running sunglasses. At an affordable price, these budget-friendly sunglasses feel great on your eyes while you jog. You’ll love their efficient grip coating that keeps the nose piece from slipping or bouncing while giving you a snug and lightweight feel. As for sun protection, you can be sure that their UV400 polarized lens keeps UVA and UVB rays away from your eyes.


Most Stylish: Nike EV1027-063

Nike EV1027-063
You’re a committed runner who wants to look like an elite runner. From mile one, the stylish design of the Nike EV1027-063 Hyper Force gives you the style you’re looking for. With the superior eye protection of Nike sunglasses for running, these shades feature a slick white frame with orange detailing that looks high-end and determined. Your eyes will love the one-piece lens with superior coverage and clarity at all times of day.
Best for Long Distances: Oakley Flak Jacket Xlj
Oakley Flak Jacket Xlj
Distance runs have nothing on you when you’re wearing the Oakley Flak Jacket Xlj sunglasses. Say good-bye to that annoying fog that causes you to stop and clean your lenses every few steps. These are the shades you need to keep your focus and zen every stride of the way. With their snug fit and 100% UV protection, these shades give you all the clarity you need to train for that marathon you’ve always wanted to conquer.

Best for Small Faces: Tifosi Jet Sunglasses
Tifosi Jet Sunglasses
Guys with slim faces will find their perfect fit with the Tifosi Jet Sunglasses. While you get your miles in, these lightweight and seamless shades are sure to stay on and keep your eyes protected from UV rays. And for a custom fit, their hydrophilic rubber nose piece conforms to your face to give you an even better grip the more you sweat.
Best for Large Faces: Oakley Crossrange XL Shield
Oakley Crossrange XL Shield
Runners with a wide face can enjoy full protection from the sun’s rays with the Oakley Crossrange XL Shield. With a wider bridge and a lens height that fits right, these lenses were designed for you. Forget about those pressure points that make regular sunglasses feel tight and fit awkward. These comfortable shades aren’t just the right size, they also feature earsocks and nosepads that stay on no matter how much you sweat.
Most Versatile: Ray-Ban New Wayfarer
Ray-Ban New Wayfarer
For shades that you can also wear on your rest days, look no further than the Ray-Ban New Wayfarer. With an updated classic style, these are the trusty sunglasses you can live in. They’re fashionable and comfortable while you run or lounge. Choose the size that works for you and enjoy polarized UV protection with durability and style.
Best for Trail Running: Oakley Men’s Oo9313 Evzero Path
Oakley Men’s Oo9313 Evzero Path
Any experienced runner knows that trail running is its own beast. With sunglasses that enhance color and contrast, the Oakley Men’s Oo9313 Evzero Path adapt to different amounts of sunlight and to let you see all the details around you. They’re a comfortable pair of transition lenses that offer durability and functionality.
Best Interchangeable Lenses: Native Eyewear Catamount Polarized Sunglasses
Native Eyewear Catamount Polarized Sunglasses
With different lens colors that offer a variety of light filters, the Native Eyewear Catamount Polarized Sunglasses enhance your depth perception to help you see better on all running terrains. With these sunglasses, you can reduce eye fatigue and accommodate to different light conditions. While the frames don’t include the extra lenses, they give you the option to exchange them and make sure you have the right lens for all your different activities.
Why Do Runners Wear Sunglasses?
Runners wear sunglasses for comfort, fashion, and eye health. Running shades reduce glare, keep small particles out of your eyes and help you have better visibility while outdoors. A pair of running sunglasses that offer clarity and UV protection are key to your success as a runner.

Do I Need Polarized Sunglasses for Running?
Polarized lenses keep reflecting light out of your eyes, making it easier for you tosee under bright conditions. While some running sunglasses are not polarized and still offer protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays, polarized lenses make your eyes more comfortable than non-polarized lenses. If your eyes are sensitive to light, a pair of polarized sunglasses can help diminish the intensity of sunlight while allowing you to see with better sharpness and clarity.

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