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Quality fishing sunglasses protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and act as a barrier against flying hooks and sinkers. Whether you prefer glass or polycarbonate lenses, your first priority when choosing your sunglasses should be to make sure that they’re polarized. By eliminating glare, polarized lenses allow you to see fish and potentially hazardous obstacles lurking beneath the surface. Other factors to look out for include lens color, frame material and fit. Want some help picking out the perfect pair to wear on your next expedition? We rounded up the best sunglasses for fishermen, so whether you're looking for clarity, comfort or a slim fit, you'll find a pair that works for you.
Best Overall: Costa Del Mar Fantail Sunglasses
They may be expensive, but excellent reviews prove that Costa Del Mar’s Fantail Sunglasses are well worth the investment. Their super-comfortable wraparound shape provides full protection from the sun’s rays and wayward fishing hooks. Meanwhile, the 580 glass lenses offer 100 percent UV protection in addition to the most effective polarizing efficiency available. The latter helps to reduce eye strain and ensure maximum sub-surface visibility. Costa’s high-tech lightwave glass is also 20 percent thinner and 22 percent lighter than your average polarized glass while still offering the same clarity.
The lenses’ encapsulated mirrors are fully scratch-proof. Choose from seven different colors according to your chosen fishing style. Blue mirror lenses, for example, are best suited to use on the reflective open ocean; while green mirror lenses offer high contrast vision perfect for fishing on saltwater flats. The glasses’ medium fit frame is made from co-molded TR-90 nylon, designed to be impact and weather-resistant. Like the lenses, the frames also come in a wide variety of different colors and patterns. These sunglasses are prescription-ready.
Best Budget: SUNGAIT Men’s Polarized Sunglasses
If you don’t have a spare $200+ to spend on high-end fishing glasses, the SUNGAIT Men’s Polarized Sunglasses are a worthy alternative with a much more affordable price tag. They are hugely popular on Amazon and come in a range of monochromatic colors, including black, silver and gunmetal. The composite polarized lenses offer 100 percent protection against UVA, UVB and UVC rays, are built to withstand impact and render colors with true-to-life accuracy. The aluminum-magnesium alloy frame is both lightweight and strong. You can also adjust the silicone-padded nose piece to achieve a custom fit.
Best Clarity: Smith Optics Guide’s Choice Sunglasses
Smith Optics Guide’s Choice Sunglasses use advanced technology to perfectly align the finest polarized filters in a multi-layer glass lens that promises flawless clarity in all environments. Choose TLT polarized lenses or ChromaPop polarized lenses. The latter is a Smith Optics innovation designed to filter two wavelengths of light that cause color confusion so you can see natural color in high definition. Both types of lens come in a range of colors and include anti-scratch and anti-reflective coatings.
A hydroleophobic coating repels water and oil, so that grimy fingerprint smudges are wiped away easily. The Guide’s Choice frame offers a medium-large fit, with wide temples and an aggressive wrap that blocks sunlight from all angles. The hefty price-tag is justified by the glasses’ superior engineering, which includes stainless steel Italian spring hinges and close-fitting Megol nose and temple pads. Choose from a range of frame colors, including black, matte black or Havana tortoiseshell.
Best for Low Light: Costa Del Mar Blackfin Silver Sunrise Mirror Sunglasses
Costa Del Mar’s silver sunrise mirror lenses raised the bar for low-light sunglasses when they were released in 2017. They are specifically designed for use at dawn and dusk when many fish species are at their most active and offer an incredible 30 percent light transmission. By comparison, the brand’s blue, green and gray silver mirrors all offer 10 percent light transmission. The lenses’ heightened contrast also makes them ideal for fishing in overcast conditions.
Several Costa Del Mar sunglass models offer the option to choose sunrise silver mirror lenses. The eye-catching matte black Blackfin model is a tried-and-true brand classic, loved for its sturdy wraparound style. Choose lenses made from 580 lightwave glass for excellent clarity and incredible lightness. Other highlights include 100 percent UV protection and a scratch-resistant coating that extends your glasses’ lifespan. The only downside is the budget-stretching retail price.
Best Comfort: Oakley Fives Squared Polarized Rectangular Sunglasses
Oakley Fives Squared wraparound sunglasses ensure maximum comfort with a tapered three-point fit system that feels secure out on the water while also scoring top style points. Reviewers praise the glasses for their superior fit and for their incredible lightness, which is achieved by the brand’s unique O Matter frame. Metal Square O icon accents and injection-molded O Matter/nylon hinges add to the overall aesthetic.
High Definition Optics lenses provide 100 percent protection from UVA, UVB, UVC and harmful blue light rays up to 400 nanometers. They also give a less distorted visual than conventional lenses, guaranteeing accuracy across your entire field of view. The polarized gray mirror is ideal for fishing in full sun, offering neutral contrast and 16 percent light transmission. It also looks great against the glasses’ polished black frame.
Best for Safety: Wiley X P-17 Polarized Sunglasses
Founded by military veteran Myles Freeman in 1987, Wiley X specializes in creating safe eyewear for use by members of the U.S. Armed Forces. The Wiley X P-17 Polarized Sunglasses bring the brand’s high safety standards to the civilian market, with shatterproof Selenite polycarbonate lenses that meet the ANSI High Velocity and High Mass Impact standards. With these glasses, you won’t have to worry about flying hooks and sinkers.
The fully polarized lenses also offer 100 percent UVA and UVB protection and feature a T-Shell coating that resists scratching even in the most extreme fishing environments. The smoke green mirror is ideally suited to daytime use, offering 13 percent light transmission and flawless distortion-free vision. A double-injected rubber nosepiece and temple pads prevent slippage, thereby ensuring comfort as well as safety.
Best Slim Fit: Costa Del Mar Trevally Sunglasses
The slim fit Costa Del Mar Trevally Sunglasses are the perfect choice for fine-featured men, women and teenagers. With lenses made from scratch and impact resistant 580 polycarbonates, they’re both lightweight and durable; while the 8-base lens curve allows for precise optical alignment. This model is also available with high-clarity glass lenses elsewhere on Amazon.
Whichever material you go for, these polarized glasses offer 100 percent UV protection. Choose from seven different mirror colors to suit different light conditions and fishing environments. These include a sunrise silver mirror for low light and a high contrast green mirror. The wraparound frame is made from heavy duty TR-90 nylon and features rubber nose pads and co-molded temples. Colors range from matte orchid to matte tortuga fade and tortoiseshell.
Best Casual Style: Hobie Men’s Baja Polarized Rectangular Sunglasses
Watersports brand Hobie makes an island-style fashion statement with their Baja Polarized Sunglasses. Featuring solid rectangular frames in either satin black, shiny black or wood grain, reviewers love the glasses’ classic retro look. They also feel great, thanks to their anti-slip Megol rubber nose and temple pads. The frame is made from durable TR-90 nylon with precision flex hinges. An anti-fog gasket keeps your vision clear on humid days; while the polarized polycarbonate lenses are both lightweight and budget-friendly. Choose from four different mirror colors, including versatile gray for moderate to bright conditions; ocean-going cobalt blue and high-resolution copper.