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Sunglasses - confused what to do...

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I was wearing Oakley M Frame (the originals or V1.0 igf you will) for many years swapping between Black Iridium and Persimmon lenses for good and bad light. I mistakingly bought some V2.0 replacement lenses which still fit the frame but the lenses themselves are much smaller and don't provide the eye cover I need.

Since then I've been using some cheap glasses from Lidl which are OKish but were always a bit of a temporarty solution. I am going skiing in 3 weeks and can live with the cheapos if needs be but my mind is turned again to a longer term solution.

Ultimately I am prepared to spend biggish for the right thing but at the same time I don't want to fork out any more than necessary within the context of what it is. In other words, it could be the dogs danglies but I ain't spunking £200+ on them. I need to be able to look the missus in the eye - when I am not wearing them of course.

First things first is knowing what the right thing is. Oakley Prism lenses seem to be "it"? But isn't there something as good? What about photochrome? Switching lenses doesn't overly get on my tits but equally not having to worry about/pay for two sets and switching them as some attractions too..

And assuming I can figure out what is the right thing... where to buy. I am concerned about the fit and the lens coverage but there aren't many/any places to try them out, especially without having some shop assistant breathing down my neck. Any recs for online/in store places (I'm in Milton Keynes) that will facilate this process? And or any recs for glasses that would work wit a biggish head with a biggish nose bridge?

And then finally is how to actual get the best deal? Perhaps best sale time, discount codes...? Not to mention reliable and genuine sellers?

Appreciate any contributions.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I picked up a set of Smith i/ox goggles on Amazon warehouse for a song (think they were £45) in summer the year before last. They came with two lenses that I find superb, and the change is really simple. They still ain't cheap but I think they're a bit better value than the Oakley's. I tend to make a lens choice at the start of the day and not have too many points during a day when I regret not having the other.

Before that I had some Bolle Modulator that dealt quite well with changing light conditions but only to a point and they weren't the best in low light. Also not an instant reaction so when you're going from light to shade there were a few seconds where they were a bit dark. Appreciate that's not the best info in terms of recommendation, but I'd advise to steer clear of them as they weren't quite as good as expected...although that may be because my lens was the 'bright light' end of their scale.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Bolle Safety Glasses - £10 in Screwfix - jobs a goodun
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Oakley 'Hi Pink' and 'rose' lenses are their low light options.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
I used to love Oakley lenses for high glare but had to replace a much battered pair and a recent pair were dodgy. Lens coating flaked after a year and nose piece came apart. Replaced OK but still dissapointing. In the mean time I bought some "Sinner" own brand from Go-Outdoor. I really can't tell the difference optically for the polarised ones and they are cheap as pommes and good choice of frame size and shape. Probably won't bother buying anything more expensive in the future.
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+1 for the Bolle safety specs from screwfix, best ski glasses I have had, the "safety" aspect means they wrap around more to prevent objects entering the eye from various angles, this also means wind is kept out of my eyes better than with other glasses, the peripheral vision is 100% with the arms fitting to the top bar. I tried many pairs of goggles but they all gave tunnel vision compared to these.
Also 100% UV block
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Maybe something like these: https://www.rxsport.co.uk/categories/Sunglasses/Oakley-Sunglasses/Oakley-Prizm-Sunglasses/Oakley-Prizm-Snow-Sunglasses/
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
I use the off-brand versions of stuff like that for cycling, but not on snow.

Use goggles, then you don't need sunglasses so it's cheaper, plus you can now ride in storms. I love photochromics, but I did use the multi-lens systems earlier and those are better than the old fixed-lens approach.

Oakley is a brand... their stuff isn't, in my experience, any better or worse than anyone else's. It is more expensive. I've had Oakley gear (they used to give it to me) and it's generally good, but people buy it because they want the label. If you want it, that's the way to go.

I've never bought snow gear in the UK - stuff just seems cheaper abroad, so I can't help there. In the US you can pick up last season's goggles for huge discount, and other than people who lose their goggles and have to buy replacements at a resort, I don't think anyone pays retail. I've never been given a pair of goggles which didn't fit, so maybe I have a cheap face, or maybe fitting isn't a huge issue. I suppose helmet compatibility may be a factor. Order several pairs online and return all but the ones you like best, perhaps?
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Decathlon have some very cheap Cat 4's. No experience of them but at the price I'd be tempted as they are rated lenses. I think they are like £30 or so. I tried to buy some but they inexplicably cancelled my order online. So I'd visit a store instead. They do the same style in Cat 3 or even reactive lenses. So cheap it would be folly not to at least take a look. Facial coverage looks good to me but fit is individual obv.

Oakley now arent what they were when you got the Mumbo's. I've had lots of Oakleys. The 90's were the best. T-Wires which cost a fortune but jeez did they last (until they got nicked). I bought a pair of "dawgs" or something in about 2010 and the coating came off after a couple of holidays in Spain. As if I hadn't learned my lesson, I bought a pair of Fuel Cells (prizm/polarized) last year and they feel like cheap crap to be quite honest. The lenses are clear but the frames feel like they would fall apart. Even the "dawgs" had strong hinges with a positive snap to them, the Fuel Cells are just shite. It's lightweight but cheap feeling plastic. Thank god I didnt pay retail. In the 90's Oakley were worth the extra coin, but I honestly think they have lost the plot. I mean how can the price remain the same as it was in 1998 and the quality not suffer terribly. It's shrinkflation of course, the same reason why Walkers crisps are now basically a bag of air. Oakley have basically been crap since Luxxotica took over in 2007.

If you want high end quality I'd suggest Maui Jim, but frankly for skiing, I'd be looking at Decathlon or, for a bit more coin, Bolle perhaps. Not seen/tried the safety glasses option but I'll be looking into it!

Another brand you could consider is ESS. They are issued to our military and pretty much bomb proof. I use them for shooting sports. Cheap as chips, too.
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@tangowaggon, Actually, IIRC it was an old thread on here where you recommended them - I bought them a year or so back (dark and low light) and have used them skiing in France, Scotland and for general "car sunglasses".

I bought a pair of fashion type glasses to go to Madrid a month or so back, not a patch on the Bolle glasses which have particularly good optical quality - which you need when driving etc.

I am off to NZ in a couple of weeks and the Bolles are coming too !

Cheers Very Happy
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snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
@nelly0168, @tangowaggon, I'm interested! Do you use the "smoke" ones for sunny days? Is it the second one of these ?

Are these yellow ones any good for bad light?

Or maybe the amber ones?
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Layne wrote:
@nelly0168, @tangowaggon, I'm interested! Do you use the "smoke" ones for sunny days? Is it the second one of these ?

Are these yellow ones any good for bad light?

Or maybe the amber ones?


Yes, I bought the Smoke ones for sunny days (yep, second one, contour smoke) - not as dark as my Bloc ones.......but, tbh I never liked "really dark" lenses, am more interested in blocking UV than the colour. I also bought the ESP ones for flattish light, and they work surprisingly well (my mates son was working in Tignes last year and I loaned them to him one poor light day as he had forgotten his goggles, he raved about them after................was somewhat surprised when I told him the price Very Happy )

As @tangowaggon says in previous threads they are so cheap that you can buy a pair, decide they are not really for you and fling them in the car !
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By far the best sunglasses I have ever used (optically) are Serengeti. They are so markedly better in comparison to my drawer of old Bolle, Oakley, Rayban etc glasses that it is almost comical.

They do a range of frames and lenses, so long as some of those suit then buy from them. I've been saying this for some time to anyone who asks, but this year I had such a fantastic experience (customer service wise) from their UK distributor (Bushnell) on a warranty issue (well I wouldn't have called it a warranty issue, I'ld have called it a repair) that I have now become quite evangelical about them.

Having said all of the above, for skiing (except touring) then it's goggles all the way.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
I thought Aviators were compulsory on a Bash??

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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
philwig wrote:
I

Use goggles, then you don't need sunglasses



I really hate goggles & only wear them if v cold or bad weather, too sweaty & itchy I think I have sensitive skin, can't stand beany hats or helmets either
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Vuarnet make great glasses...but are expensive. I also rate Smith.....I agree that Oakley are not any better quality than other decent brands....but their Prizm lens is worth seeking out for skiing.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
If you like skiing in sunglasses then I can 100% recomend something like this

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Padded-Motorcycle-Biker-Glasses-Mirror/dp/B00CKAG926/ref=sr_1_13?ie=UTF8&qid=1543593176&sr=8-13&keywords=padded+sunglasses&tag=amz07b-21

There are a few styles available but the key feature is that the padded rims keep the breeze out so your eyes don't water when you go over 10mph. Absolutely brilliant things.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
foxtrotzulu wrote:
If you like skiing in sunglasses then I can 100% recomend something like this

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Padded-Motorcycle-Biker-Glasses-Mirror/dp/B00CKAG926/ref=sr_1_13?ie=UTF8&qid=1543593176&sr=8-13&keywords=padded+sunglasses&tag=amz07b-21

There are a few styles available but the key feature is that the padded rims keep the breeze out so your eyes don't water when you go over 10mph. Absolutely brilliant things.


They look like the Bolle tracker safety specs from screwfix £12.99!

As nelly0168 says, they are so cheap, they are disposable. The reality is that your £100 Oakleys probably cost no more to produce than a pair of safety specs, just give them a flashy case, call them Oakleys and that's an extra £90 please Very Happy
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If in the hills you really need something that can cover 3-4 to protect your eyes. I use Jublo Zebra cat 2-4 photochromatic. Bought on EOSB in a sale for 49 euros. RRP 160 euros. Happy

Look stupid anywhere except on a mountain.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
plus another for the safety glasses idea. I use these De Walt ones.

https://www.screwfix.com/p/dewalt-reinforcer-fire-mirror-lens-safety-specs/2356g

And these for flat light

https://www.screwfix.com/p/dewalt-reinforcer-indoor-outdoor-lens-safety-specs/9281g

I'd be cosntantly worried about losing or breaking expensive ones and these do the job just fine. Been using them for a number of years now ....
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GlasgowCyclops wrote:
I use Jublo Zebra cat 2-4 photochromatic. Bought on EOSB in a sale for 49 euros. RRP 160 euros. Happy

+1 for the Julbo Zebra. Or, if using in low light, then Julbo Zebra light 1-3.
Both are great.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Check out Private sports shop - like Sportpursuit but French. They have Vuarnets for about £50-£60.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
@tangowaggon, Yes, they look very similar.

@Screaming Dave, Neither of those have the padding that is a real bonus in keeping the cold breeze out of your eyes.
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If you are looking for sunglasses with padding/foam gasket, some Wiley-X models have an insert.

e.g. https://www.rxsport.co.uk/categories/Sunglasses/Wiley-X-Sunglasses/Wiley-X-Gravity-Sunglasses/ (bit dearer than Bolle safety.....!)

Bolle and Addidas seem to have dropped their models which used to have the insert/gasket
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