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Wearing sunglasses is more than a fashion statement. It’s vital for protecting your eyes against UV radiation. The more time you spend outdoors, the more you need a pair. That’s especially true if you work or spend a lot of time doing activities outdoors, such as running. Running outside presents additional challenges, from flying dust to slipping glasses. If you exercise year-round, you’ll likely find that you need interchangeable lenses or more than one pair.
You’ll likely find a dazzling array of choices when you start shopping. Bear in mind that many pairs can serve multiple purposes. Our guide will walk through the features to consider with reviews of our top picks to make your purchase easier and more informed.
|Best Overall||7eye Cyclone Matte Black Sunglasses||
|Best Value||Bobster Foamerz 2 Sunglasses||
|Wiley X Brick Sunglasses||
|Bobster Trident Convertible Series Sunglasses||
|Wiley X WX Valor Changeable Lens Sunglasses||
|Lens color:||Nine color choices|
The 7eye Cyclone Matte Black Sunglasses is a rugged pair of sunglasses that you can use running or even while riding your bike. Because it is one of the best choices for keeping debris out of your eyes, it makes it our pick for the best overall running sunglasses on our list. You have many options to match the frame and lens colors to match your style. Plus, customers also like that the glasses are RX-ready.
These glasses have a mean look. Let’s face it, running is a tough sport. Who wouldn’t want to look intimidating while being ready to hit the streets?
|Lens material:||Polycarbonate lens and frame|
|Lens color:||Three choices|
The Bobster Foamerz 2 Sunglasses are an excellent choice for any outdoor activity. The lenses and frame are well-made and can handle the punishment they’ll likely receive. That makes them our number one choice as the best running sunglasses for the money. The lenses protect against UVA and UVB radiation. Unfortunately, they aren’t polarized.
The glasses have other features that you may or may not find valuable. For example, they float. That’s a must-have trait if you use them while fishing.
|Lens material:||Plastic frame and lens|
|Lens color:||Two choices|
|Accessories:||Cleaning cloth, case, strap, and neck lanyard|
The Wiley X Brick Sunglasses ticks off a lot of the boxes we like to see in these products. It includes a lot of accessories, which are always welcome. You have two color choices for the lens and frame. Both are made of plastic, while the lens offers excellent UV protection. Unfortunately, that’s where the enhancements stop with them not being polarized. However, they are well-made.
The glasses are vented to make them more comfortable to use while running. You’ll likely find that they don’t fog up as quickly. They also have a neoprene temple pad to keep the sweat from your eyes. They are definitely worth a look despite the higher price.
|Accessories:||Additional lenses, strap, case, and a cleaning cloth|
The Bobster Trident Convertible Series Sunglasses make it easy to match your glasses with the ambient light conditions. It includes clear, smoke, and amber interchangeable lenses to make them a versatile option. The product is made out of durable polycarbonate as well. It can handle any wear-and-tear well. The manufacturer also sweetens the deal with some added accessories like a strap, case, and cleaning cloth.
The sunglasses are affordable for what you get. If you’re hesitant about spending this amount of money, rest assured that it is well spent.
|Lens material:||Composite lens and plastic frame|
|Lens color:||Four choices|
|Accessories:||Cleaning cloth, case, strap|
The Wiley X WX Valor Changeable Lens Sunglasses has loads of durability. It’ll handle debris hitting you from the road and won’t keep falling off of your face. It makes sense that any gear you’d use outdoors means looking for something that can withstand the challenges you’d face on these fronts. If you run on trails, the OSHA-grade lenses are a desirable feature.
The design of the glasses is sleek and attractive, so you look stylish even when you’re dripping in sweat.
|Lens material:||Polycarbonate lens and memory nylon frame|
|Lens color:||Two choices|
|Accessories:||Hard case, strap, cleaning cloth|
The name of the STNGR Hi-Speed Ballistic Sunglasses says it all. These glasses can handle whatever you throw at them. They are shatter-proof to manage any flying debris and protect your eyes in the process. Many people love the adjustable nose pad, which makes it easy to match it with your activity level. The pads can also prevent slippage, making them more comfortable to use.
The lens offers 100-percent UV protection, making them an excellent choice for runners. The manufacturer even throws in several goodies to make it a worthwhile purchase.
|Lens material:||Polycarbonate lens and|
|Lens color:||Three color choices|
|Accessories:||Case, strap, cleaning cloth|
The Bobster Sport & Street — II Interchangeable Lens Sunglasses provides superior protection against debris while missing the mark on polarization. Nonetheless, the frame is ventilated and lightweight, making it an excellent choice for runners. It’ll cover your eyes from unnecessary risks. The interchangeable lens is a welcome feature to help you get the best view of the land.
We were disappointed to learn that they were non-polarized. We consider it an essential feature but something we often see with products with interchangeable lenses.
|Lens material:||Polycarbonate lens and nylon frames|
|Lens color:||Six choices|
The Bolle Python Sport Sunglasses has one of the features we appreciate in gear for outdoor sports—wrap-around frames. The manufacturer also removes the weak points that could make them vulnerable to breakage. It’s an excellent product with an attractive design that works well for its purpose. We liked the style, although some may see it as better suited to men than women.
There are some occasional quality control issues, which usually show up in the lens coatings. That’s unfortunate, given that it’s one area in which it usually succeeds.
|Lens material:||Plastic frame and lens|
|Lens color:||Six choices|
The Oakley GasCan Sunglasses lives up to the reputation of its brand name in an attractive fashion. The manufacturer has the interests of the user in mind with an outstanding iridium coating that improves visibility. The lens also can withstand a lot of abuse, making them an excellent choice for runners who use the roads. The UV protection exceeds the standards.
We liked the wrap-around design, which offers additional protection against dings. Its classic style makes it a pleasure to own and wear.
|Lens material:||Plastic lens and frame|
|Lens color:||27 choices|
|Accessories:||Cleaning cloth, case|
The Ray-Ban Wayfarer Sunglasses have the brand’s reputation going for them. It holds the torch for a classic design that fits the structure and its overall vibe. These glasses are a classic for a reason. It’s probably one of the most well-made models you’ll find.
The design is attractive but might push the limits for some individuals because it’s so big. There’s nothing subtle about these sunglasses. Sometimes, you have to let the style portray the message. These sunglasses do it in epic fashion.
The price range of the best running sunglasses varies. You’ll find cheap, plastic glasses to high-end carbon fiber glasses in the four-figure range to anything in between. The technology extends into specialized coatings that offer better UV protection and color enhancement. After all, you need to have a clear view of your environment if you’re outdoors so that you can spot hazards and obstacles. Features to consider include:
The frame material is a vital factor in the use you can expect to get out of a pair of sunglasses. It’s also a significant component of the price. Often, it’s a balance between affordability and performance. Fortunately, synthetic materials can help you meet both needs. Remember that you should wear sunglasses anytime you’re outside and not just when you’re running.
Materials you’ll likely see include:
Bear in mind that you’ll also see various lens materials, from glass to polycarbonate to plastic. The frame and lens have a direct impact on the sunglasses’ durability. That’s a critical factor, given its use.
Often, the style and size of the glasses will determine which pair you choose, regardless of any other features. It’s not a stretch that some face shapes look best in specific frames. You’re lucky if your face is oval because you can probably wear any pair you’d like and still look your best. Angled sunglasses will balance a round face. Likewise, a square-shaped face begs for frames that are less angular.
Sizes come into play with the bridge, lens width, and lens height. Keep in mind that you’ll likely see measurements in millimeters because of the small increments between sizes. We suggest getting the specs of a favorite pair of prescription glasses if you wear them. It’ll give you a leg up in choosing sunglasses that will fit properly.
Fortunately, you’ll likely find that many glasses are available in multiple sizes. You should also check the length of the arm of a pair that works for you. If you’re in uncharted waters, make sure that the manufacturer has a return-exchange policy in case they don’t fit.
We strongly urge you to consider a polarized lens with a UV coating. The former will reduce the eyestrain that bright light can cause. Without it, it’ll wash out colors and contrasts, making it more challenging to identify hazards. The UV coating provides protection against radiation that can cause cataracts, eye cancer, and other serious health conditions.
We recommend both these features for running sunglasses. They are worth any additional cost they may have. We consider them the minimal criteria for selecting a pair. After all, your time outdoors makes you more vulnerable to the harmful effects of UV exposure.
You can’t have enough cleaning cloths for your sunglasses. Some manufacturers will include a strap, lanyard, or case. We consider the last one a necessity. Think of it as an insurance policy for your running sunglasses. A hard case is best, although a non-abrasive pouch works well for protecting the lenses from scratches. We often find that this damage is the main reason we replace sunglasses as opposed to them breaking.
Based on our reviews, the 7eye Cyclone Matte Black Sunglasses scored high marks as the best overall pair for running. On the other hand, the Bobster Foamerz 2 Sunglasses are the best for your money. If you like to spend your time stacking up your miles on the road, then buying an appropriate pair of running glasses is a crucial purchase for your eye health and comfort.
Featured Image Credit: Surprising_Shots, Pixabay
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Chris has been writing since 2009 on a variety of topics. Her motto with all of her writing is “science-based writing nurtured by education and critical thinking.” Chris specializes in science topics and has a special love for health and environmental topics, and animals of all shapes and sizes.
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