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Best sunglasses for less than $100? - Page 2

post #16 of 22
Thread Starter 
Dollar Store will do fine. I developed advertising for a sunglass maker in the mid Nineties, and was briefed by an overly frank optics engineer. Basically, ANY glass, polycarbonate,  or CR-39 acrylic lens with a light transmission in the 10-14% range gives you the same level of UV A and UV B protection. In fact, clear glass lenses aren't much worse-- that's why you can't get a suntan driving around with your car windows closed-- because glass blocks UV very effectively. So it all comes down to fashion. The Dollar Store sunglasses protect just as well. That said, I wear RayBan Wayfarers-- because they look good on me.
I might be a victim of marketing hype, but I can assure you that I've had $10 sunglasses and I've had $270 Maui Jims and my eyes notice a huge difference. Again, we are talking tropical sun, blinding sandy beaches, etc. things that really put shades to a test. The thing about my Maui Jims is that my eyes feel at ease. No strain, just a natural feeling. $10 sunglasses tend to give me headaches.
post #17 of 22
The Dollar Store sunglasses protect just as well.
Not hardly. Ask any optometrist.
post #18 of 22
If you are talking about good UV filtering lens, those aren't expensive to produce at all. But Maui Jim Lens are polarised as well, and therein lies the difference.
post #19 of 22
Proof, please? Five minutes of websurfing turns up a New Zealand consumer-testing report (below) that says that virtually all of the cheap sunglasses they tested provide at least 95% UV protection. Hmm, that's what I said. Or you can check any of the websites for the high-buck sunglasses, which will all cite conformity to the hallowed UV400 standard, indicating sunglasses that filter 100% of UV to 400 nanometer wavelengths. At lunch today I checked Rite Aid and the A&P, and could not find a pair of sunglasses at any price that were NOT marked UV400 and/or 100% UV protection. Same with my local Dollar Store. In fact, the biggest factor in UV transmission, according to, is positioning on the face: "sunglasses worn one-third of an inch down the nose admit ten times the light that might be admitted if the sunglasses were worn in proper position." Maybe we should spend less on sunglasses and more on tethers. I freely admit that there are issues related to frame strength that matter, and subtle details of detail perception that might be important to a rescue pilot. But in response to the above question about UV protection, the fact is that all modern sunglasses are provably equally effective. sunglasstest
post #20 of 22
I'm probably in the minority here but I treat my sunglasses as disposable items as I always break/loose them.
post #21 of 22
"I think replicas are really going to skimp on the eye protection. In fact, they may be worse on your eyes because they will block out some visible light so your pupil expands to compensate, but you then absorbs more UV rays. I keep a $200 pair of Zeiss aviators in the car whenever I'm driving. I must admit, I do often lose my shades so I don't usually take them with me." Not the replicas I gave links to.
post #22 of 22
for the first time this year I bought 4 pairs of $10 glasses. they lasted me a year before they all were broken or lost. I found them comfortable and none gave me headaches. but they weren't very sturdy. I figure a pair of $150 glasses last me 2 years before I lose them, so that is just about twice as much as the cheap ones. I need to buy some more now, and I am not sure to go with a set of cheap ones again, or one good pair.
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