Cycling glasses protect your eyes from damaging UV rays, harsh glare and flying debris. Wearing cycling glasses doesn't only offer protection, they can also enhance your visual acuity (your ability to spot objects on the road or trail), colour and depth perception.
You can spot cycling glasses from standard sunglasses by their frame design. Cycling glasses sit close to the face and have a wrap-around lens profile as well as curved arms. Standard glasses have a flatter profile.
Wrap-around lenses offer enhanced peripheral vision when cycling, while a thinner, lighter and more streamlined design improves performance when road racing.
Single or double lenses?
Single lenses offer more coverage but you're often limited to just one lens tint.
Dual lens glasses are available with interchangeable lenses so you can switch to tinted versions that are suitable for your riding conditions.
What are interchangeable lenses?
Many cycling glasses come with a range of lenses in different shades. You can simply swap the lenses for the conditions you're going to be riding.
Clear – night riding & overcast skies. Great for protection against debris
Yellow – overcast and low light conditions. Offers improved clarity when light is dim
Brown / amber – variable conditions. They enhance contrast and improve depth perception
Blue / purple – low light conditions. Look great, reduce glare and enhance colour perception
Grey – low to bright conditions. A good option for daily use without distorting colours and reduce glare
Pink / red – variable conditions. Offer improved visual depth and greatest amount of contrast
Photochromic lenses tint with changes in light intensity. They're a good option for riders who cycle in unpredictable weather or mountain bikers who switch between open and shaded areas. With photochromic lenses you don't need to switch lenses all the time.
Polarized lenses are designed to reduce glare and reflection whilst also offering improved UV protection. By reducing glare you can see objects on the road ahead much easier.
It's a good idea to choose cycling glasses for the type of riding you're most likely to be doing.
Recreation / Commuting – Standard glasses
You don't need aero designed glasses at slow speeds, or wrap-around coverage. A pair of casual looking sunglasses with UV protection are enough and look stylish off the bike too.
Mountain biking – Cycling Glasses
Again you'll have a slower average speed than road cycling so you can get away with a casual style but look for those with plenty of grip on the nose bridge and arms. Variable light conditions means a photochromic lens would be a good option.
Road cycling – Cycling Glasses
Fast paced road cycling means a close fit with venting are a good choice. Interchangeable lenses that focus on improving contrast will help you navigate debris on the roads.
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