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The best sunglasses for fishing in 2024

Eliška Malinová, Bc.

Medically reviewed by Eliška Malinová, Bc., Optometrist, on 27 Apr 2023. Written by Lentiamo

Table of contents

From the gear in your tackle box to the bait on your line, fishing supplies can affect your catch of the day. Don't forget that one of the most important pieces of equipment is a quality pair of fishing sunglasses.

Whether you're looking for carp fishing sunglasses or wondering what colour lenses are best for fly fishing, we've got you covered. In this guide, we explore fishing sunglasses and highlight the best universal lenses for fishing, as well as the best sunglasses for shallow waters, offshore and inshore fishing.

Find Lentiamo's favourite product recommendations and read some frequently asked questions. Let's dive in!

How we chose the best sunglasses for fishing...

  • Research - We researched frame designs, lens materials and more to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of each. We looked at popular brands and products to determine what works best for fishing.
  • Customer reviews - We looked into our best-selling designs to see what brands and models wearers love, select and wear on the water.
  • Optometrist approved - Lentiamo optometrists offered their expert opinions on the best lenses, materials and designs for sport sunglasses.

Best sunglasses for fishing

person fishing and wearing sunglasses

The best sunglasses for fishing should provide protection from harmful UV rays, reduce glare and enhance visibility on the water. Did you know that different lenses perform better than others in certain conditions? Read about the features of various lens colours and types to understand which pair is right for your needs. Find the best polarised fishing sunglasses and non-polarised lenses in our guide.

Best all-purpose: Grey lenses

Grey lenses are a fantastic universal choice for fishing. Because they effectively reduce bright light, they perform well in open waters or anywhere glare and reflections bounce off surfaces. Additionally, grey accurately preserves colours for a more natural viewing experience.

Grey is amongst the darkest lens colour available which means these might not be the best option for dark mornings or evenings. The best polarised sunglasses for fishing can also offer great protection against bright glare.

Overall, this versatile lens colour is suitable for a wide variety of weather conditions. Protect your eyes and reduce eye strain or fatigue on sunny or overcast days with grey lenses.

Our top pick

We love Smith Hookshot. The polarised sunglasses feature ChromaPop technology that accurately filters specific wavelengths of light to ensure more natural colour representation and contrast. The hydrophillic lens coating also keeps lenses clear for better protection from splashes.

All recommendations for all-purpose fishing sunglasses:


Best for shallow waters: Brown or amber lenses

Brown lenses are great at increasing contrast and improving depth perception. For this reason, brown lenses are ideal for inshore or shallow water fishing. They provide the necessary contrast between sandy or muddy bottoms and hard-to-see fish. Since they offer higher light transmission, brown and amber lenses are also great for low-light or cloudy conditions. Unfortunately, their warmer hue can distort certain colours.

Any experienced angler knows polarised sunglasses should be considered for fishing in shallow waters as well. Polarised lenses reduce glare on the surface of the water and allow you to see straight down into its depths. Brown polarised lenses work well to reduce glare in shimmering streams or rivers for fly fishing.

Brown lenses are great for all of your shallow fishing needs!

Our top pick

Lentiamo experts love the Oakley Sylas model. The sunglasses feature Oakley's HDO (High Definition Optics) technology which ensures sharpness and detailed views. Prizm technology is designed for true colour perception. As a bonus, the frames feature a hat-compatible shape for convenience and comfort.

All recommendations for shallow water fishing sunglasses:


Best for offshore fishing: Blue lenses

Blue lenses are popular for full sun conditions or where excessive glare is present such as on large lakes or oceans. When you're out on the open water, the sun can reflect off waves and create distracting scattered light. Blue mirrored lenses in particular are ideal for reflecting light away from the eyes and combating glare.

In terms of increasing colour contrast, blue lenses don't perform as well as other lens colours. They mainly offer better distinction between objects on bright or white backgrounds.

When fishing on open water or when flats fishing in bright waters, consider blue mirrored or polarised sunglasses for better vision and increased comfort.

Our top pick

Our favourite blue lenses are Oakley Split Shot. Unobtanium nose pads prevent slippage even when wet for comfortable wear. As some of the best polarised fishing sunglasses, these lenses feature Oakley's Iridium lens coating for further glare reduction and better light transmission and colour balance in varying conditions.

All recommendations for offshore fishing sunglasses:


Best for freshwater or inshore saltwater: Green lenses

Green lenses reduce glare and provide great contrast on cloudy or overcast days. They offer good colour balance in variable light conditions. In freshwater or in calm areas along an ocean shoreline, green lenses are great at brightening shadows created by rocks, weeds or trees.

You'll be able to navigate through changing environments and see fish clearly with green lenses.

Our top pick

For the best green sunglasses lenses, Lentiamo experts love Cébé ACROSS. With adjustable nose pads and a lightweight construction, these sunglasses offer fantastic comfort for all-day wear. The mirrored lenses are non-polarised, meaning they expertly reduce light without impacting digital displays or colours.

All recommendations for inshore fishing sunglasses:

What should you consider when buying fishing sunglasses?

fisherman kneeling in water while wearing sunglasses

Polarised lenses

Polarised sunglasses for fishing offer crucial advantages for any angler. Their anti-glare properties let you see below the surface of the water so you can easily spot fish amongst the weeds. Polarised lenses provide better visibility on bright and overcast days.

Consider polarised or mirrored sunglasses for effective light reduction to keep you comfortable and protected out on the water. The best polarised fishing sunglasses can make a big difference on your fishing trip.

Lens material

Just as lens features such as polarisation are important to consider, sunglasses lens material can have an impact on your angling experience.

Glass lenses are highly scratch-resistant and provide excellent optical clarity but are heavier and more fragile than other materials. Polycarbonate lenses are lightweight and more impact-resistant, making them a popular choice for fishing sunglasses.

Pro Tip: Look for hydrophobic coatings to repel water droplets and prevent smudging on fishing sunglasses. Lentiamo optometrist Eliška recommends this lens feature for its ability to keep lenses cleaner for a longer period of time.

UV protection

Fishing can involve long days on the water. Look for sunglasses with high UV protection that shield your eyes from 100% of UVA and UVB rays. Not only will your eyes be protected, the surrounding skin can benefit from the added UV protection as well.

Frame material

With fishing sunglasses more than other sport sunglasses, be sure to look for materials that can withstand prolonged exposure to sun and other elements like saltwater. Nylon or high-quality polycarbonate are preferable to rust-prone metal or low-grade plastics that may corrode or warp.

Fit

Fishing sunglasses should fit comfortably and snugly without slipping when wet. Look for sunglasses with thick frames, large lenses or wide temples for ample coverage and high sun protection.

Wearing the right glasses size can determine comfort. Sunglasses that match your face shape can also impact how the frames feel on your face.

Still not sure? Let our sunglasses virtual try on feature help you try frames online.

Closing thoughts from Lentiamo

No matter what type of fishing you enjoy, sunglasses are key in keeping your safe and comfortable. Turn to this guide for advice regarding the best lens colours for fishing and information about frames, lens features and more. 

Next time you set out to cast a line, make sure you have your fishing sunglasses.

Frequently asked questions

Is it worth buying fishing sunglasses?

The right pair of fishing sunglasses can help you see clearly and protect your eyes. Polarised sunglasses for fishing let you see deeper into the water to expose the fish swimming below the surface. For more enjoyable days on the water and a better catch, quality fishing sunglasses are almost essential.

Are polarised sunglasses better for fishing?

Polarised fishing sunglasses are extremely advantageous for fishing. They cut through reflections and reduce bright glare on the surface of the water so you can see deeper into the water. The best polarised sunglasses for fishing enhance contrast and colours for a better view of what's below.

What colour of polarisation is best for fishing?

While different lens colours perform better in different conditions, grey polarised lenses are a great universal option. Grey lenses offer true colour perception and light reduction on bright or overcast days.

For low light conditions, brown or amber polarised lenses perform well because they provide contrast while still offering protection.

What is the disadvantage of polarised sunglasses?

The biggest disadvantage of polarised sunglasses is how they impact your ability to read LCD screens. They can distort the display on fish finders, GPS, electronic compasses, and radar devices. Polarised lenses allow you to better see below the surface of the water, however, they can be inconvenient if you use digital displays often.


Read more

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