The scorching sun is burning your face, and you can hardly see where you are going. You know you have to keep moving because you need to accomplish your objective for the day. You try wearing your hat, but the heat is just too much. Now you wish you hadn’t left your sunglasses behind.
It’s too late to go back, so you tap yourself on the back and step on the trail amidst the burning heat. You have sworn that the first thing you will do when you come across an outdoor store is to acquire the best hiking sunglasses to help you through the rest of the journey.
When it comes to hiking, trekking, racing, or any other outdoor activities, sunglasses are a must have. When on the outdoors, you’ll want to protect your eyes from any harmful objects, especially the sun’s UV radiation.
Just like you have to protect your skin using sunscreen and UPF apparel, it’s important to protect your eyes to enhance your vision. If you are hiking in the mountains, you will need a good pair since, in the alpine conditions, the UV rays are usually more powerful.
That’s why we have come up with an article reviewing not only the best hiking sunglasses, but also analyzing in detail the features that you need to consider before buying. We hope that by the end of the article, you’ll be able to buy the right pair for you.
Our Top Picks
|Product Name||Best Use||Size||Specific Features||Price|
|Duduma TR90||Racing, skiing, running, cycling, climbing, trekking, driving, hiking.||5.5 x 5.5 x 1.6 in||Lightweight design, 100% UV protection polaroid lens, scratch-resistance polycarbonate||Check price on Amazon|
|J+S Active Plus||Hiking, fishing, driving, rock climbing, tramping, biking.||6.6 x 3.1 x 2.4 in||Scratch resistant, 100% UV protection, polycarbonate lens.||Check price on Amazon|
|Julbo Sherpa||Walking, trekking, hiking, biking.||6.9 x 3.3 x 1.7 in||Leather covers, lightweight traditional glacier glass, removable side shields, pre-curved flexible temples.||Check price on Amazon|
|L·V·X·ING LVX548||Cycling, driving, trekking, hiking, surfing, snowboarding, tennis, golf, baseball.||2.7 x 5.3 x 7.8 in||100% UV protection, anti-scratch, anti-impact, shatterproof, polarized.||Check price on Amazon|
|Barricade BP4V6||Trekking, walking, hiking, cycling, driving.||6.8 x 3.5 x 2.4 in||Composite lens, polarized fit-over, 61mm lens width, flexible plastic frame.||Check price on Amazon|
|Menton Ezil||Hiking, golf, cycling, running, fishing.||7 x 3.1 x 0.5 in||Anti-reflective lens, 100% UV protection, polarized lens.||Check price on Amazon|
|Ribvos 801 Polarized||Driving, cycling, hiking, walking, trekking, racing, fishing.||3.1 x 4.7 x 7.9 in||5 Interchangeable lenses, shatterproof PC material, 100% UV protection.||Check price on Amazon|
|Torege TR200||Driving, cycling, hiking, walking, trekking, racing, fishing.||2.2 x 5.2 x 7.5 in||5 Interchangeable lenses, polarized lens, durable and unbreakable frames and lens, polycarbonate lens.||Check price on Amazon|
|Nitrogen NT 020||Driving, hiking, walking, fishing.||6 x 2.1 x 1.5 in||Lens width: 69 millimeters, 100% UV protection, polarized, plastic frame and lens.||Check price on Amazon|
|Duduma DU645||Driving, cycling, skiing, hiking, walking, trekking, racing, fishing.||5.5 x 5.5 x 1.6 in||Bendable frames, HD polarized lens, ultralight, unique design.||Check price on Amazon|
Features to Consider Before Buying
Before you go and purchase a pair of hiking sunglasses, you must take a good look at the different features. If you’ve never had a good pair of sunglasses before, it’ll be a new world for you.
That’s why we came up with a brief but on point description of each of the main features to consider before buying. Read them carefully, let the information sink in, and after you’ll be ready to make an informed acquisition.
Visible Light Transmission
This aspect refers to the amount of light reaching your eyes via the lenses. Measured as a percentage, Visible Light Transmission (VLT) is affected by the thickness and color of the lenses, the coating used on them, and the kind of material they are made of.
Here are the basic guidelines for selecting sunglasses based on the Visible Light Transmission ratio:
- 80 – 90+% VLT – Clear lenses for dim and dark nights;
- 40 +% VLT – Suitable for overcast and situations of low light;
- 20 – 40% VLT – An all-purpose option;
- 0 – 19% VLT – Suitable for bright, sunny conditions.
Lens Colors Or Tints
The color of the lens affects the amount of visible light reaching the eyes and how well you see objects and contrasts.
- Dark colors (green/brown/gray) – These are suitable for most outdoor activities and your everyday use. Darker shades are designed to minimize eyestrain and cut through the glare in moderate-to-bright conditions. Green and gray lenses will not distort colors, while brown could some cause minor distortions.
- Light colors (gold/yellow/rose/vermillion/amber) – These colors do well in moderate-to-low-level conditions of lighting. They are excellent for snowboarding, skiing, and other activities in the snow. These colors offer excellent depth perception, improve contrasts in flat-light, tricky conditions, enhance object visibility, and make the surroundings appear brighter.
Most expensive sunglasses are fitted with different layers of coatings. These may include an anti-scratch coating to enhance durability, a hydrophobic coating for water repulsion, and an anti-fog coating for high-energy activities and high humid conditions.
Flash or mirrored coatings refer to reflective films that are applied to the outside surfaces if the lenses. These coatings minimize glare by reflecting a substantial amount of light hitting the surface of the lens. Mirrored coatings make objects to appear darker than they are. Therefore, a lighter tint is often used to reduce this effect.
The type of materials utilized for the sunglasses will affect their weight, clarity, durability, and cost. The most common materials are:
- Glass – This material provides superior optical clarity as well as superior scratch resistance. Nonetheless, glass is heavier compared to other materials and is quite expensive. Apart from that, the glass will “spider” when impacted.
- Polyurethane – This material offers superior impact resistance in addition to excellent optical clarity. Polyurethane is lightweight, flexible, but also expensive.
- Polycarbonate – This material has a great impact-resistance and offers excellent optical clarity. Polycarbonate is lightweight, affordable, and low-bulk. However, this material provides less scratch resistance.
- Acrylic – This is an alternative to polycarbonate since it’s relatively affordable. Acrylic is suited for occasional or casual applications. It is less durable and quite clear compared to glass or polycarbonate with same image distortion.
Picking a frame is as significant as choosing the lenses since this component contributes to the comfort, safety, and durability of your sunglasses. Materials used for framing are listed below.
- Metal – This material is easy to adjust to the face and is less obstructive to the field of vision. Metal is less durable and more expensive compared to the rest, and it’s not suitable for high-impact activities. You should also remember that metal can get too hot when left in a closed-up vehicle. Specific metals include aluminum, titanium, and stainless steel.
- Nylon – This material is lightweight, inexpensive, and more durable as opposed to metal. Some frames made of nylon are highly resistant to impact and can be used for various outdoor activities. However, these kinds of frames are not adjustable unless fitted with the internal adjustable wire core.
- Castro-based polymer – This is a light, durable, and non-petroleum material obtained from castor plants.
- Acetate – This material is sometimes referred to as “handmade.” These kinds of plastic variations are common with the high-style glasses. It’s possible to get more color varieties, but the acetates are less flexible and forgiving. Sunglasses made from this material are not intended for use in extreme activities.
Best Products on Today’s Market
After taking a look at the main features, it’s time to take a look at the best-reviewed hiking sunglasses. The models in this list are all great, but different in the details. One might be ideal for you, whilst another one might not be what you need.
That’s why you need to review them carefully and then decide what exactly you are looking for and choose the right pair.
Price: $20 – $45
Dimensions: 5.5 x 5.5 x 1.6 inches
Specific features: Lightweight design, 100% UV protection polaroid lens, scratch-resistance polycarbonate
Best use: Racing, skiing, running, cycling, climbing, trekking, driving, hiking.
Description: The Duduma TR90 Sunglasses are stylish, super light, and durable. The lightweight design of the Duduma is ideal for use in various activities including driving, cycling, hiking, skiing, trekking, or other outdoor activities you would like to take part in.
This product features polycarbonate frames and lens which are resistant to scratches and impact. The Duduma comes with a lifetime breakage warranty on lens and frames. In case there are breakages on these parts, you can contact the seller without hesitation to have the problem solved.
Duduma provides lifetime after sale services for all its products. In addition to that, all Duduma customers can enjoy a 230-day Money Back Guarantee for the product. It’s possible to return and get your money back if you are not fully satisfied with the product.
To avoid damage, do not clean these sunglasses with clothing or paper towels, and also avoid household soaps and detergents. While some mild soaps can’t damage the lenses, strong soaps can slowly disintegrate coatings on the lens.
- Comes with a lifetime breakage warranty on both the frame and the lens, proving it’s durability
- The fit of this sunglasses is very good, which makes them ideal for more active sports such as running
- Plastic grip tips at the end of the frame are bad quality
- Lenses might be too clear for some users
Related: The Ambidextrous Reflective Bands are a good item to purchase alongside any pair of sunglasses. You can wear them during a run, or even during a hike, to make sure that cars, cyclists or other vehicles spot you from far away.
Price: $14 – $35
Dimension: 6.6 x 3.1 x 2.4 inches
Specific features: Scratch resistant, 100% UV protection, polycarbonate lens
Best use: Hiking, fishing, driving, rock climbing, tramping, biking.
Description: The J+S Active Plus Sunglasses are ideal for all your outdoor applications. The lenses have a 400UV rating, meaning that the sunglasses can block over 99% of both UVB and UVA harmful radiation. The UV radiation is present in sunlight, and its wavelength is between 400 nm and 100 nm.
Glasses that are rated UV400 can protect your eyes against the long-term ultraviolet damage and keep your eyes healthy throughout. These sunglasses also feature polycarbonate lenses that are lightweight, tough, scratch resistant, and with high optical clarity.
These products offer distortion free vision and are up to ten times more resistant to impact compared to glass or plastic lenses, make them ideal for all outdoor activities. Initially developed in the seventies for aerospace applications, the J+S are now designed for children as well as safety applications.
The J+S sunglasses are designed with a molded frame, as well as anti-slip legs, to provide extra grip behind your ears. They are suitable or active outdoor activities such as riding, mountain biking, cycling, walking, driving, hiking, rock climbing, among others.
Since it’s already gift packaged, the J+S is a practical gift idea for the active friend or family member.
- Lenses are scratch resistant
- They come with a very good molded frame making them a great fit for everyone
- The yellow lenses even work well at night
Related: The Mind and Body Experts Running Belt is commonly bought alongside hiking sunglasses, as it will enable the users to store their phones, wallets or other important items in a comfortable bag, where they can reach out for at any moment.
Price: $40 – $70
Dimension: 6.9 x 3.3 x 1.7 inches
Specific features: Leather covers, lightweight traditional glacier glass, removable side shields, pre-curved flexible temples
Best use: Walking, trekking, hiking, biking
Description: The Julbo Sherpa Sunglasses are versatile sunglasses that can be worn during different outdoor expeditions. For those who are quite sensitive to light, the Julbo Sherpa will block out enough light, making it possible for you to see clearly in during bright days.
Although there the product appears fragile, let not its appearance fool you. These sunglasses can withstand impact even when they happen to fall on concrete. The removable side shields are an excellent addition to the product as they prevent excessive sunlight from getting to your eyes.
The Julbo also features pre-curved flexible temples that easily curves around the ears and are quite difficult to break despite their flimsy feel. You may think the temples are quite annoying due to their shape buy you’ll hardly feel their presence once they are worn.
As a matter of fact, some users prefer or eventually enjoy these temples as they ensure that the sunglasses will fit better and stay in place.
- The leather side shields will literally prevent any light to coming into your eyes
- The curved flexible temples ensure a very good and solid fit
- The side shields are breathable, but some find them very uncomfortable
Related: The BUFF UV Multifunctional Headwear is a favorite for many, as it can be worn in many ways. It was made for both men and women to protect either their heads or hair from the sun. It’s comfortable, and breathable, ideal for long hikes or days under the sun.
Price: Approx. $25
Dimensions: 2.7 x 5.3 x 7.8 inches
Specific features: 100% UV protection, anti-scratch, anti-impact, shatterproof, polarized
Best use: Cycling, driving, trekking, hiking, surfing, snowboarding, tennis, golf, baseball
Description: The L·V·X·ING LVX548 Sunglasses are fitted with polarized lenses to eliminate and minimize eye fatigue. Lenses ensure an excellent clarity of vision as well as remarkable color contrast.
These lenses are coated with different coating layers including anti-impact, anti-scratch, UV protection layer, shatterproof layer and polarized layer.
The sunglasses also feature TR90 frames that are flexible, lightweight, durable, and guarantee a comfortable experience even after being used for a long period. Probably the coolest feature that theses sunglasses have, are the five different lenses they come with. So, in a way you are buying five different sunglasses.
The lenses are really easy to change with one another, as the frame of the sunglasses has a very easy to use put and remove the system. The different lenses will also adjust to different activities, for example, it includes a yellow lens for night vision, or clearer lenses to use during the early mornings.
- Five changeable lenses to use the sunglasses in many different occasions
- Durable and really good quality
- After changing the lenses too many times, they can get scratched here and there
Related: The Sunday Afternoon River Guide Hat is a great add-on for these sunglasses. This hat will protect your head, neck and face from the sun, ideal for hikes or walks, or fishing trips.
Price: $9 – $15
Dimensions: 6.8 x 3.5 x 2.4 inches
Specific features: Composite lens, polarized fit-over, 61mm lens width, flexible plastic frame
Best use: Trekking, walking, hiking, cycling, driving
Description: The Barricade BP4V6 Sunglasses are suitable for men who love to explore the outdoors. Although deemed stylistic for both the casual outdoorsmen and the fashionistas alike, this rectangular look isn’t everyone’s favorite. The flexible plastic frame offers durability that is second to none.
With the 61mm Prescription Glasses, you can alter your view with the brown, green, yellow, and black lenses. Although they do work perfectly for the outdoors, their incredibly affordable price has made these sunglasses become a best seller for drivers, and by drivers we mean anyone that drives a car.
As they are not as stylish, and frankly, for some they are even too big, they will just use them everyday whilst driving.
These sunglasses will get the job done. They will protect your eyes while you are on the road, and they are strong enough to stay in the car, where you might not treat them as carefully as you do treat other pairs of sunglasses, and not break easily. Overall, this is a pretty solid pair of sunglasses that offer great value for a very good price.
- Very affordable price
- Very flexible frame that doesn’t break easily
- The lenses are polarized and the right tone to protect from the sun
- A bit too big for some reviewers
- Not ideal for anything else other than driving or everyday use
Related: The Aeris Memory Foam Seat Cushion is a good idea to get with these sunglasses, since they are mostly good for driving. People tend to buy them together and that way they protect their eyes whilst driving, as well as feeling more comfortable.
Price: $15 – $25
Dimensions: 7 x 3.1 x 0.5 inches
Specific features: Anti-reflective lens, 100% UV protection, polarized lens
Best use: Hiking, golf, cycling, running, fishing
Description: The Menton Ezil Sunglasses for Men have a 400UV protection rating, blocking over 99% of the UVA and the UVB radiation. In addition to that, the sunglasses feature Al-Mg Alloy that is praised for its combination of strength and lightness; you can hardly feel the frames, yet they are unbreakable.
The frames are fitted with spring metal hinge for a more comfortable fit. The lens offers 100% protection against UV radiation. These particular sunglasses have probably one of the best UV protection features in the market.
They might not be the classiest or most fashionable sunglasses, as well as not being the best fit for running or more active sports, but they certainly get the job done when it comes to protecting your eyes.
They are commonly used by golfers, that spend all they long under the sun, as they protect the eyesight, and have a really comfortable frame that can be barely noticed.
- Excellent UV Protection
- Lightweight and comfortable frame
- Quality of the lens materials is not the best
- Styling isn’t very good
Related: The Optilix Eyeglasses Case Set will fit any sunglasses. Not only does it keep them safe, but it comes with a cleaning spray that’s very good for the lenses.
Price: $19 – $50
Dimensions: 3.1 x 4.7 x 7.9 inches
Specific features: 5 Interchangeable lenses, shatterproof PC material, 100% UV protection
Best use: Driving, cycling, hiking, walking, trekking, racing, fishing
Description: The RIVBOS 801 Polarized Sunglasses are designed for all outdoor activities. Their lenses are made of unbreakable, shatterproof PC material and are durable for use in the long term. These sunglasses feature five interchangeable lenses: the main black lens is polarized against the strong sunlight, while the other four are colored for different environmental conditions.
To prevent these products from the damaging, never clean them with clothing or paper towel as these can leave scratches on the lenses. Also, avoid using soaps and other household detergents as this could disintegrate the coatings of the lens. The downside of these sunglasses is the frame.
Although it comes with a lifetime breakage warranty, a lot of reviewers said that the frames were actually of poor quality, not only breaking, but even melting under the sun. This is something a bit extreme, but if you decide to buy them, just make sure you protect them with a case, or just don’t leave them under the sun all they long.
- 5 interchangeable lenses for different activities
- The PC Lens is of great quality
- Come with a lanyard
- The frame, although it comes with a lifetime breakage warranty, is of poor quality
Related: The Optiix Sunglasses Case for sports sunglasses is a good match with these sunglasses. It will protect them and you can then take them or store them anywhere and know they won’t break.
Price: $20 – $30
Dimensions: 2.2 x 5.2 x 7.5 inches
Specific features: 5 interchangeable lenses, polarized lens, durable and unbreakable frames and lens, polycarbonate lens.
Best use: Driving, cycling, hiking, fishing
Description: The Torege TR002 Sunglasses protect your eyes from the harmful radiation of the sun. The cool rimless jacket design helps in creating a clear lower vision field. This lightweight design is suitable for various outdoor activities including running, driving, skiing, hiking, trekking, climbing, among others.
Torege features super light PC frames that are almost negligible on your face. The polarized lenses of these sunglasses block 100% of the UVA and UVB rays. These particular sunglasses come with a rubber nose pad, that not only is very comfortable, but keeps them in place.
You can be sure theses sunglasses can be sued during running, hiking, skiing or even cycling activities, they will stay in place, not fall down and protect your eyesight. Another thing is the flexible frame, it can be moved in different positions and it won’t break easily. It’s even advertised as an unbreakable frame, and it certainly is very flexible and strong.
- Rubber notepad for comfort and stability
- Unbreakable and flexible frame
- Interchangeable lenses
- Only the black lenses are polarized, the rest aren’t
Related: The BUFF Pro Angler Gloves are commonly bought with sporty sunglasses, as these are gloves ideal for many sports activities, such as cycling.
Price: $12 – $20
Dimensions: 6 x 2.1 x 1.5 inches
Specific features: Lens width: 69 millimeters, 100% UV protection, polarized, plastic frame and lens
Best use: Driving, hiking, walking, fishing
Description: The Nitrogen NT020 Sunglasses are the product of ExtremeUV. They are created to be outstanding and to compete with other reputable contenders in the range of $20 – $50.
The manufacturers of the Polarized Wrap Around eyewear offer trendy and up to date products with designs and quality that surpass similar mainstream products.
This market expertise is as a result of numerous years of experience in the industry. ExtremeUV is dedicated to constant development and improvement of its products while at the same time maintaining relationships with its customers.
The Polarized Wrap Sunglasses offer great value for money, making it one of the best products to own for your outdoor expeditions. These sunglasses offer 100% protection from UV radiation, creating a clear vision, without causing damage to your eyes.
The only upside is that some reviewers consider them a bit small, or tight, and they complain about the tips pressing a bit too hard against their heads.
- Very good price
- A bit small or tight
Related: The BUFF UVX Headmask is a product you might want to buy with any pair of sunglasses. If you are likely to go running or fishing, and know you’ll be under the sun all day long, a face mask will protect you from getting burnt, whilst the glasses protect your eyes.
Price: $12 – $20
Dimensions: 5.5 x 5.5 x 1.6 inches
Specific features: Bendable frames, HD polarized lens, ultralight, unique design
Best use: Driving, cycling, skiing, hiking, walking
Description: Combining the best of performance with versatile style, the Duduma Du645 Sunglasses have a lightweight, clean design, and ventilation suitable for activities such as training, running, and beyond. These sunglasses feature bendable frames which are made of flexible composite material.
These frames cannot break and can return to their initial shape after being bent. Duduma polarized lenses filter out ninety-nine percent of reflected glare without the haze and optical distortion, which can be seen with, polarized lenses that are manufactured with conventional techniques.
The extreme lightness of the Duduma Frame Du645 is due to the revolutionary super light materials. An upside is that some of the reviewers don’t find them very comfortable. They say the feeling when wearing them is like of the plastic of the tips of the frame, hitting the back of their ears or head and irritating it.
However, this hasn’t happened or wasn’t described by all reviewers, meaning that like many sunglass models, it depends on the shape of the head of each person.
- Affordable price
- Strong plastic frame
- The frame can be too sturdy and uncomfortable
Related: The Optilix Extra Large Sunglasses Case will protect these sunglasses from any possible damage. It’s a strong case that will help you take the sunglasses safely anywhere.
When it comes to choosing sunglasses for outdoor activities, it’s imperative you select products that are lightweight, durable, and can last a lifetime. The market is filled with a lot of designs and brands making it daunting to choose the right one.
The above sunglasses are some of the best products available on the market, but the choice of these options will depend on the amount you are willing to spend since they are available at different prices.
Just check to ensure your budget is right before you can decide to buy. Also, ensure you have the pointers highlighted above if you are to choose the best hiking glasses.
So, did you find this article informative? Are there any other products you feel can be added to this list? Please let us know by posting your views and opinions in the section below. In case you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask. We will be more than happy to respond to all your queries.