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Best mountain bike (MTB) sunglasses in 2024

Eliška Malinová, Bc.

Medically reviewed by Eliška Malinová, Bc., Optometrist, on 18 Apr 2023. Written by Lentiamo

Table of contents

As any avid mountain biker knows, one small misstep on the trail can make or break your ride. Don't let debris or annoying glare hinder your progress. Enhance your vision and keep your eyes protected with a top-quality pair of off-road cycling sunglasses.

Wondering what sets a great pair of MTB sunglasses apart from an average pair? Check out Lentiamo’s top nine off-road cycling sunglasses recommendations below. Read about the main pros and cons of each pick, get advice on important features to look for, and find answers to frequently asked questions!

How we chose the best sunglasses for mountain biking

  • Research – From frame designs, lens features and more, we researched the best of the best to determine the advantages and disadvantages of each. We looked at popular brands and models to determine what elements mountain bike sunglasses must have.
  • Customer reviews – We looked into our best-selling designs to see what brands and models users actually wear and enjoy wearing.
  • Optometrist approved – Lentiamo optometrists offered their expert opinions on the best lenses, materials and designs for sport sunglasses.

Best MTB sunglasses

person sitting on hill with mountain bike and wearing sunglasses

9. Fila SF9326 0U28 99

These stylish sunglasses from international sportswear brand Fila are an easy choice for any off-road adventures. The polarised lenses reduce glare for increased visual acuity on the trail.

The aerodynamic silhouette is perfect for speeding up, down and off the beaten path. You're sure to appreciate the neutral black design for both casual wear or rides.

Pros

  • Small ventilation holes in lenses to prevent fogging
  • Soft, adjustable nose pads for comfort and better customisation
  • High-quality and durable plastic frames

Cons

  • Grey lenses don’t increase contrast of surroundings

8. Under Armour UA 7001/S KB7 Z9 99

These colourful Under Armour sunglasses offer a modern look for mountain biking or any sporting activity. The wraparound monolens provides ample coverage from sun and debris without hindering peripheral vision.

On top of being stylish, the purple mirrored lenses enhance contrast in low-light conditions. They are a versatile option for all-day wear.

Pros

  • Adjustable and anti-slip rubber nose pads for comfort
  • Supplied with two replacement lenses in different colours for great flexibility
  • Ultra-light and durable nylon frames

Cons

  • Narrow frame might not be comfortable for some

7. Evil Eye Traileye

Wear Evil Eye Traileye and see the difference they make! The orange lenses filter blue light to enhance contrast and brighten surroundings.

The large monolens ably protects your eyes from drying wind, flying debris and anything the trail throws at you. The Traileye model is sure to please anyone interested in functionality and style.

Pros

  • Gentle wraparound design for increased aerodynamics
  • Ultra-lightweight and durable plastic construction
  • Soft, vented nose pads for comfort and less irritation

Cons

  • Lenses are not vented and may be prone to fogging

6. Smith FLYWHEEL 8RU ZI 99

These retro sunglasses from Smith have a lightweight and comfortable design. They offer a secure fit that won't slip during intense rides.

The large polarised lenses reduce glare and offer considerable protection around the eyes. With an adjustable nose pad and snug wraparound shape, this Flywheel model is sure to stay put through the toughest terrain.

Pros

  • Lenses have ChromaPop technology for enhanced vision and colour rendering
  • Flexible arms with auto-locking hinges for easy fitting and removal on the go
  • Lightweight and extremely durable TR90 thermoplastic frames

Cons

  • No interchangeable lens options

5. Cébé S´TRACK 2.0

For optimal coverage and performance, try Cébé S´TRACK 2.0. The large wraparound lenses offer high protection from flying debris and precipitation. The frames feature vented temples to prevent fogging during high-endurance rides.

S´TRACK 2.0 have Sensor lens technology that boosts contrast and visibility to help you see trails and trees in greater detail.

Pros

  • Lightweight and crack-resistant plastic frame
  • Polarised lenses to reduce glare and enhance contrast
  • Clear replaceable lens option for greater flexibility

Cons

  • Mirrored lenses can be more prone to scratches

4. Bollé Aeromax

Bollé Aeromax sunglasses offer excellent coverage and fantastic optics. The large mirrored lens is surrounded by a durable half-rim frame. With the ability to replace the lens, the sunglasses can be customised and changed for various conditions.

Aeromax's dramatic design is stylish yet practical for different types of mountain biking.

Pros

  • Aerodynamic design for increased speed on downhill runs
  • Thermogrip temples and nose pieces for non-slip wear
  • B-Max technology for a wide field of vision with clear optics

Cons

  • Lenses are not polarised

3. Evil Eye Vizor

These sleek sunglasses from Evil Eye are designed to keep your eyes safe and your vision crystal clear. The wraparound frame provides complete coverage and protection from the sun's harmful UV rays and any unexpected debris.

With adjustable nose pads and temples, you'll be able to find the perfect fit. Handy traction grips on the nose piece and temple tips also prevent unwanted slippage.

Pros

  • Extremely durable polycarbonate lenses for protection and sharp visuals
  • 100% UVA, UVB and UVC protection
  • Ability to replace lenses using a Quick-Change Lens System

Cons

  • No vents in lenses which can cause fogging

2. Oakley Sutro Lite Sweep

Oakley Sutro Lite Sweep sunglasses are designed for athletes who demand high-performance eyewear. With a sleek design and lightweight construction, the large frames provide excellent range of view, protection and long-lasting comfort.

Oakley Sutro Lite Sweep are available in a variety of colourways to suit your needs. We love the red lenses as they create great contrast with green forests.

Pros

  • Red Prizm lenses enhance colours and contrast for increased clarity of vision, especially at dusk
  • HDO (High Definition Optics) lenses eliminate image magnification and colour distortion
  • Adjustable nose pads made from Oakley's non-slip Unobtainium rubber

Cons

  • No traction grips on arms or temple tips

Did You Know? Oakley developed state-of-the-art Prizm technology specifically for maximum visual acuity. The technology enhances colour contrast and clarity in different light and weather conditions, resulting in improved vision and depth perception.


1. Oakley Radar EV Advancer

Our pick for the best MTB sunglasses is Oakley's Radar EV Advancer. When it comes to Oakley sunglasses, there are endless contenders to choose from. The Radar EV Advancer model is practical, stylish and offers great value.

The Radar EV Advancer model has our vote for its advanced High Definition Optics lenses that prevent image distortion. The lenses also feature Prizm technology which enhances colours, contrast and details. Taller frames offer added protection against the elements and troublesome debris. What more could you ask for?

Pros

  • Lightweight and durable O Matter frame material for long-lasting comfort
  • Adjustable Unobtainium nose pads and temples won't slip when wet
  • Advancer No Fog technology ensures airflow to combat fogging and overheating

Cons

  • Higher price tag

What should a good pair of MTB sunglasses offer?

close up image of person wearing bike helmet and sunglasses

Protection against UV rays and debris

Sunglasses with proper UV protection are essential for long days on the trail. The best mountain bike sunglasses should protect your eyes from harmful UV radiation and debris.

A wraparound frame can offer maximum coverage and protection from debris, rogue branches, insects, and more. This design also enhances peripheral vision for a better range of view.

Pro Tip: Lentiamo optometrist Eliška recommends an aerodynamic design for MTB glasses as they reduce wind resistance for increased speed. They also offer better protection from sunlight, wind and debris since the frame shape closely follows the curves of the head.

The right type of lenses

One lens type doesn't work in all conditions. When looking for MTB glasses, choose sunglasses that offer the best visual enhancement and the most flexibility for different conditions.

For example, polarised sunglasses provide fantastic glare reduction and improve contrast so it's easier to see your surroundings. Changing terrain and weather can affect how your lenses perform as well. Photochromic sunglasses, also called transition lenses, adjust to changing light conditions to offer greater flexibility for all-day wear. They are useful for navigating shaded areas of the trail or riding in changing weather.

If you ride in largely uncovered areas or encounter bright sunlight often, consider mirrored or polarised lenses.

Sunglasses lens colours also impact what and how well you see.

  • Red lenses – Red lenses increase visual acuity with high colour contrast. They are particularly useful for boosting definition between greens which is great for trail rides through forests.
  • Purple lenses – Purple lenses enhance the contrast, minimise light reflections and suppress bright white colours.
  • Yellow lenses – Yellow lenses offer sharp vision in low-light conditions, increase contrast and brighten your surroundings.
  • Brown lenses – Brown improves contrast, clarity and depth perception while boosting shades of green.
  • Clear lenses – A clear lens offers essential protection from debris when it's too dark or cloudy to wear tinted glasses.

Still not sure? See what your favourites look like with our sunglasses virtual try on.

Comfort

MTB sunglasses should fit securely and comfortably for bumps, jumps and bails. Look for features like non-slip nose pads and temple tips so your shades stay in place. Lightweight materials like polycarbonate won't weigh down on your nose or ears. Comfort is key so you can stay focussed through every session.

Glasses frames that are too wide might press up against your helmet and cause discomfort. Adjustability ensures your glasses are the right size for comfortable rides.

Durability

Whether you're gravel riding or touring on unkempt tracks, off-road cycling can be tough on gear. Durable frames are imperative as they withstand impacts and stay securely on your face for the duration of your ride.

Sport sunglasses should be made from shatter-resistant materials like durable plastics and polycarbonates. Avoid metal frames as they can lead to injury to your eyes or face should they snap or crack.

Pro Tip: Lentiamo optometrist Eliška stresses that sport frames should be lightweight and comfortable. Moreover, they must be made from high-quality, durable materials as you often face bad weather conditions, strong sunlight, sweat, debris, and more.

Closing thoughts from Lentiamo

High-quality MTB sunglasses are the best type of eye protection for your next off-road adventure. Lentiamo optometrists have offered their advice on the best sunglasses to keep you safe and feeling good on the trail.

Now that you know what key features to look for, get ready to enjoy your rides to the fullest!

Frequently asked questions

Should you wear sunglasses when mountain biking?

Wearing sunglasses while mountain biking is highly recommended. MTB sunglasses can protect your eyes from harmful UV rays and debris such as gravel, dirt, insects, mud, and more. They can also enhance your vision by reducing brightness and improving contrast, allowing you to see the trail and obstacles more clearly.

What are the best budget MTB sunglasses?

When it comes to MTB sunglasses, durability and protection often come at a cost. You can still find quality sport sunglasses at affordable prices. Make sure to look for shatter-proof materials, sharp optics and UV protection. Popular brands like Cébé, Nike, and even Oakley offer sport sunglasses with great value for money.

Which photochromic MTB sunglasses are the best?

Some popular photochromic models include Oakley's Jawbreaker and Evzero Blades models that feature Prizm lens technology that enhances contrast and clarity. Athletic brands like Smith, Bollé and Cébé also offer various photochromic sunglasses that work well for mountain biking.

What is the right lens colour for mountain biking?

Mountain biking has specific conditions to contend with so it’s important to pick your lens colour wisely. Many cyclists wear yellow lenses because they increase contrast as well as depth and distance perception in low-light conditions. A universal brown lens enhances contrast in sunny conditions. Red, rose or pink lenses offer terrific colour contrast in green forests.

Which Oakley sunglasses are great for mountain biking?

Oakley Radar continues to be one of the most popular MTB sunglasses on the market. The large frames and quality lenses ensure optimal style and performance. Other popular Oakley sunglasses include Jawbreaker, EVZero and Sutro. Riders love Oakley's Prizm technology for its detail-enhancing qualities that help them see details on the trail.


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