Sports sunglasses – well protected in direct sunlight
Wearing sunglasses during sports not only improves your vision in sunshine, yet also protects your eyes from harmful UV rays, which can damage your retina. Suitable glasses should therefore be an essential part of a cyclist’s kit! In this buying guide, we’ll cover key features and explain everything you should pay attention to when looking for a good pair of shades.
Our range includes a large selection of sunglasses for sports and everyday life – with trendy designs, in all common colours, price ranges and sizes. Discover our choice of sports glasses by renowned brands such as OAKLEY, uvex, POC, RUDY PROJECT and many others. The glasses are available with tinted lenses, photochromic and polarized lenses.
Stay safe from harmful UV radiation
When we are outside, electromagnetic radiation in the form of ultraviolet rays (or short UV rays) hits our eyes. This radiation has a very short wavelength that is invisible to the human eye. Nevertheless, it can cause lasting damage to the retina in a short period of time. Just like our skin can suffer a sunburn, our retina can “burn” after intense exposure to sunlight. Wearing suitable shades is indispensable to protect yourself from this risk.
The UV radiation emitted by the sun is composed of UVC, UVB and UVA rays. UVC rays have a wavelength of approx. 100-280 nm and are absorbed by the Earth’s atmosphere. As opposed to this, UVB rays (approx. 280-315 nm) and UVA rays (approx. 315-380 nm) reach the Earth’s surface even on cloudy days or in the shade.
Your sports sunglasses should therefore come with a CE approval, certifying that they were checked and comply with EU guidelines for 100% UV protection (at least 380 nm).
Protection levels for sports sunglasses
Dark lenses are often not enough to protect your eyes from dangerous UV rays. Your cycling glasses are tested to the EU standard 1836 and come with a protection level that indicates how well they protect you from UV rays:
- UV protection level 0: The lenses absorb up to approx. 20% of UV rays. Suitable for overcast skies and twilight. Unsuited as sunglasses.
- UV protection level 1: The lenses absorb approx. 20 - 57% of UV rays. Suitable for overcast skies.
- UV protection level 2: The lenses absorb approx. 57 - 82% of UV rays. Suitable for brighter days in our latitudes.
- UV protection level 3: The lenses absorb approx. 82 - 92% of UV rays. Suitable for very sunny weather, your next beach holidays, in the mountains etc.
- UV protection level 4: The lenses absorb approx. 92 - 97% of UV rays. Suitable for high mountains and glaciers. Not approved for road use.
Please make sure that your sunglasses’ protection level matches your intended use. Only in this way you can protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and improve your vision during your next tour.
What is “UV 400” protection?
By now, people know that not only UV radiation with wavelengths under 380 nm is harmful to the human eye. Moreover, rays in the range of 400 nm, the so-called “blue light”, are responsible for damages and diseases of the retina. Many glasses manufacturers therefore offer high-quality sunglasses with a filter for the blue light spectrum around 400 nm, exceeding UVA protection. These models are marked as UV 400 glasses.
Spoilt for choice – what features should I look out for?
- Tinted: The standard version of shades comes with tinted lenses. These lenses have a built-in filter that minimizes the light entering your eye – to a degree that depends on the intensity of the tint.
- Photochromic: Photochromic lenses are a particular highlight for those who are outdoors during changing light conditions. Photochromic lenses come with built-in molecules that react chemically with incident light. The lens tint becomes darker with increasing sunlight and gets lighter again in overcast light conditions. Photochromic sports sunglasses are therefore the ideal choice for those who don’t want to switch lenses on their tours.
- Polarized: Polarized lenses come with a built-in polarizing filter that absorbs light. This filter minimizes reflections extremely well. The effect becomes particularly visible when looking into water, on snow or on screens as hardly any light reflections can be seen on them anymore when wearing polarized glasses. Also ideal when the sun is standing low!
- Mirrored: Mirrored lenses have a reflective coating, making them opaque from the outside. The wearer, however, enjoys unrestricted vision through a non-reflective inside. Mirrored sunglasses are not only eye-catching, yet also fight glare and reflections.
Stay flexible with interchangeable lenses
Those who frequently ride in changing light conditions can either opt for photochromic glasses, or for sports glasses with interchangeable lenses. Many manufacturers produce sports glasses that allow for swapping lenses. Depending on the light conditions, you can replace, for example, dark lenses with clear ones when clouds suddenly hide the sun. This gives you total flexibility.
There are also sets available that consist of sunglasses and several pairs of lenses. Our product description contains information on whether the lenses can be exchanged and whether extra lenses are included.
Sports sunglasses with corrective lenses
Some of the sunglasses in our range come with an included optical insert or can be combined with one. An optical insert is a great possibility for glasses wearers to use their sunglasses with corrective lenses. The insert is specially adapted to the glasses model and can be easily clipped in and out. The light plastic frame leaves space for prescription lenses that your optician can place into it. Optical inserts are usually suitable for corrective lenses up to +/-2 dioptres; a maximum of +/-4 dioptres might be possible as well. Please see your optician to have the respective lenses made.
It has become clear that high-quality sunglasses are not only necessary for better vision on sunny days, yet also to protect your eyes from UV rays efficiently. Our range includes sports glasses with sporty designs and with a large selection of lenses with different tints and filters, as well as mirrored lenses for high comfort and improved vision on the bike. Just the right thing for every cyclist!
We stock a wide range of sunglasses for sports and everyday life – with trendy designs, in all common colours, price ranges and sizes. Discover our choice of sports glasses by renowned brands such as OAKLEY, uvex, POC, RUDY PROJECT and many more. Our range includes glasses with tinted lenses, photochromic lenses and polarized lenses.