There's a blinding array of cycling eyewear out there — here's how to find the best protection for your peepers
  • Cycling eyewear's not just for looking cool; it protects your eyes from harmful UV light and flying insects, dust and other crud.

  • Glasses designed for cycling usually cover more of your face than fashion eyewear for better protection, and use tougher lenses.

  • Many manufacturers offer interchangeable lenses so you can tailor the glasses for the conditions.

  • Photochromic lenses automatically darken in bright sunlight so you can use the same glasses in a range of conditions.

  • Need prescription glasses? Most top eyewear makers offer them; ask your optometrist.

Why wear cycling sunglasses? Besides being a fashion accessory, cycling sunglasses shield your eyes from bright sunlight and harmful UV rays, and also offer protection from the wind, rain, dust, grit and bugs that can impair your vision.

What should you look for in a pair of cycling sunglasses? Well they differ from regular sunglasses in that they have a wraparound design so they sit closer to your face. The frames are usually thinner and they're made from lightweight and durable materials, and the lenses are lighter too, typically shatterproof and they come in a vast rainbow of tints to suit different lighting conditions.

> On a budget? Read our roundup of the best cheap cycling sunglasses with glasses from £9.49
> Looking for a bargain? We've found half a dozen great deals where retailers have cut up to 61% off their glasses.


Fit is the a key criteria when choosing a new pair of cycling sunglasses. They need to be comfortable with no pinch points or excessive tightness, and they need to sit close to your face and not obscure your vision. Some manufacturers offer sunglasses in a narrow design or a women-specific fit, but the vast majority of sunglasses are unisex with a one-size-fits-all design. For that reason, it's always a good idea to try some on before you buy and choose the glasses with the best fit.

Bianchi Falco glasses - worn

Fit can sometimes be adjusted to preference. Some sunglasses have adjustable arms and nosepieces that can tailor the fit, and some have interchangeable rubber parts that can customise the fit even further. You want the sunglasses to be stable so they don’t bounce around or slip forward. The rubber contact points will help the glasses stay put when you sweat a lot. Generally, a sign of good fit is that you forget you're wearing them when you're cycling.

Arms can be flexible or rigid, Most are covered with a rubber material to grip your head and stop them moving about. When you're trying on a pair of glasses, it's worth doing so with your helmet on, as some glasses can foul the straps and retention systems of some helmets. The nose piece can either be fixed or adjustable, some glasses come with several differently sized rubber nosepieces so you can get the fit just right.


Lenses come in a huge range of tints and colours from dark black to protect your eyes in bright sunlight, to yellow for boosting contrast in poor light. Clear lenses are good for riding at night. There's now so much choice that it can be a little bewildering picking the right lenses for the particular conditions.

Optilabs Switch eyewear 3

You need to choose a lens that matches your riding requirements. Many sunglasses have a fixed lens, so you're stuck with whatever lens come with the sunglasses. Cycling sunglasses with interchangeable lenses are common these days, and very popular, for good reason. Choose a pair of glasses with several sets of lenses and you are going to be prepared for most typical cycling conditions.

Some manufacturers make photochromic lenses that get lighter or darker according to the conditions, but the range they offer is more limited at present than specific lenses, but can be a useful and appealing alternative if you don't want to have to worry about changing lenses.

Some lenses are vented or have an anti-fogging coating to help reduce fogging when you sweat. Some manufacturers apply a hydrophobic coating to help rain run off the glasses. You also want to make sure the lens has UVA and UVB protection. Some cycling sunglasses offer a prescription option, either with the sunglasses lenses made to your prescription or with clip-in lenses behind.


The price you can expect to pay for cycling sunglasses varies hugely. What does paying more money get you? The biggest difference is in the lens. The top-end glasses boast very high quality optics that provide exceptional clarity, and you often have a wider range of tints to choose from.

The extra money often gets you a lighter weight frame and often more fit adjustment. You can expect extras like spare lenses to suit different conditions, hard-shell cases to store them in as well as soft fabric bags cleaning the lenses and storing the glasses when they're not in use.

Let’s not forget that as well as performance, cycling sunglasses are also a fashion item, and looks are an important consideration for many. Cycling sunglasses are available in a massive range of designs and colours and there's something for all tastes and styles. But we'll leave that bit to you.

Orao Arenberg — £3.99


Decathlon's Orao Arenberg glasses are light, comfortable and cost less than a coffee and slice of cake. If you can put up with the inevitable 'safety glasses, aren't they?' jibes, you're quids in over the eye-candy brigade.

The Arenberg comes from Decathlon's Orao in-house optical range. The model is a fixed lens coming in clear, and also a yellow and a grey for overcast/foggy and bright weather respectively. All three are made from 100% UV-blocking impact-resistant polycarbonate.

Read our review of the Orao Arenberg glasses
Find a Decathlon store

Northwave Predator — £19.99

Northwave Predator Sunglasses (1).jpg

These are good value with clear, scratch-resistant lenses, and the ergonomic shape provides a particularly wrapped feel. The lenses have been treated to make them perfectly smooth to allow any water to slide off, keeping your vision clear.

Read our review of the Northwave Predator

Madison D’Arcs triple glasses set — £26.99

madison glasses

A really popular model, these D’Arc glasses have a classic half-frame wraparound design and they’re supplied with three lenses to suit different conditions. They have a single lens design for maximum protection and the frame is coated with a rubberised material to provide a comfortable and non-slip fit.

Find a Madison dealer

dhb PhotoChromatic Half Frame Sunglasses — £34.99


Photochromic glasses are very handy if you’re riding in varying light conditions and at £35 these from Wiggle’s own brand sdhb look like a very decent deal. They have rubber nose and temple grippers and the mirror lenses have a hydrophobic coating. You also get a zip-up soft case to protect them.

BBB Select Sport glasses — £43


These offer great style and impressive value for money, and the lightweight Grilamid plastic has a good degree of flex to allow them to fit different head sizes. The hinges have a nice smooth action and the rubber nosepiece is adjustable. A nine-layer coating gives the MLC blue tinted polycarbonate lens (pictured) great contrast in a range of lighting conditions, and the lenses are relatively easy to swap.

Read our review of the BBB Select Sport glasses
Find a BBB dealer

Tifosi Dolomite 2.0 sunglasses — £53.99

Tifosi Dolomite 2.0 sunglasses

The Tifosi Dolomites 2.0 are a strongly performing pair of glasses that allow for a good level of ventilation around the nose and ears, without being too breezy. We found that the lenses were both easy to fit and secure in the sturdy frame.

We've generally been impressed with Tifosi glasses; they're usually very good quality for their modest price. If the Dolomites don't quite float your boat take a look at the Radius FC glasses and the Talos model.

Read our review of the Tifosi Dolomite 2.0 sunglasses
Find a Tifosi dealer

Salice 011 RW sunglasses — £35.23-£44.17

Salice 011 RW Sunglasses

Lightweight, comfortable glasses with two lenses and a hard case included in the sensible price. The lightweight frame is made from a Grilamid material. You notice the lack of bulk when you first extract them from the hard case. You get two lenses in the hard case, a tinted multi-layer mirror coating lens and a low-light orange lens.

Read our review of the Salice 011 RW sunglasses

Tifosi Optics Davos Interchangeable— £51.99

Tifosi Davos Race Neon Interchaneable 2018 Sun Glasses - extra lenses.jpg

The Tifosi Davos Interchangeable Lens glasses offer good clarity, a wide field of vision and decent venting, although it would be nice if changing the lenses was a little less fiddly. Nevertheless, they're well made, and light.

When conditions are changeable it's important to have glasses that can adapt to the different lighting while also having good venting. The Davos, with their three lenses, are a good option. There are three colours included in the package: clear, AC red and smoke. These are each made of Grilamid TR-90, which according to Tifosi offers high resistance to chemical and UV damage, high alternative bend strength, and low density.

Read our review of the Tifosi Optics Davos glasses
Find a Tifosi dealer


BBB Summit glasses — £55


Although BBB's BSG-50 Summits are mid-range models, they're really good glasses and pack in a number of innovative features. One of the most important, and one that BBB is keen to promote, is the ease with which the lenses can be switched. In fact they excel here; aside from the high-end hinged Oakleys, they are one of the simplest to change that we have used.

It's good because you get three different lens colours with the glasses, with varying degrees of protection: full mirrored, yellow and clear. These lenses work really well and we were particularly impressed by their anti-fogging qualities, which works through a combination of anti-fog coating and very impressive ventilation on the top and sides of the lenses.

Read our review of the BBB Summit glasses
Find a BBB dealer

Uvex Sportstyle 104 glasses — £79.95

Uvex Sportstyle 104 Glasses 3.jpg

Uvex makes a wide range of eyewear for various purposes including s a really nice range of cycling glasses. These are smart looking and comfortable glasses with interchangeable lenses to suit different conditions. Changing lenses involves pulling a small flap above the nose bridge out, which releases the lens from the frame, and means the lenses are held in place very securely.

Read our review of the Uvex Sportstyle 104 glasses
Find a Uvex dealer

Endura Benita Glasses — £71.24


These Benita glasses from Scottish clothing company Endura use a one-piece photochromic lens with an anti-fog finish to reduce misting, and the fit is adjustable with a flexible rubber arms tips. The nosepiece is vented to provide extra comfort.

Find an Endura dealer

Lazer Walter — from £82.86


Lazer's Walter full frame glasses offer very good performance and a certain amount of dashing '80s style. Because of that they've become a bit of a favourite.

Shape-wise, and with their full-frame, single-lens design, these Lazer glasses bear more than a passing resemblance to Oakley's Pilot Eyeshades of the mid '80s. They don't have the sweat-catching brow strip, but that always used to fall off anyway. They're a bit more angular, too, and not as big, but they certainly have a retro kind of a feel.

There's nothing retro about the materials or construction, though. The polycarbonate frame is light and tough, with adjustable, rubberised ear and nose pieces that make getting a good fit very simple.

The Walters come with three lenses. There's a low-transmission semi-mirrored lens for sun, a high-contrast lens for overcast conditions, and a clear lens for night-time. All three have a hydrophobic coating which is very effective: the water beads on the surface very well and taking them off and tapping them on the handlebar clears most of the rain.

Read our review of the Lazer Walters
Find a Lazer dealer

ZeroRH+ Olympo Triple Fit Glasses — from £105

Zero RH Olympo Triple Fit Glasses

Zero RH+ know a thing or two about glasses thanks to having an optical range selling specs to the High Street. These are brilliant sunglasses with excellent fit and performance. The Triple Fit part of the name comes from the fact that the Olympos are adjustable in three places, the nosepiece in two ways and the arms, helping you to get a a really good fit.

Read our review of the ZeroRH+ Olympo Triple Fit Glasses
Find a ZeroRH+ dealer

NRC X1 RR Blackshadow — £110.44

NRC X1 RR Blackshadow glasses.jpg

The NRC X1RR Blackshadow glasses certainly look the business with their gold details and lenses, and thankfully they deliver top drawer performance and comfort too.

The lens is made by Zeiss and it has done a very good job as I couldn't find a single flaw in them. There is no loss of sharpness, wherever you move your eyes, and thanks to having no actual frame your field of vision is completely unobstructed, allowing you to see everything that is happening in front and to the side of you.

Read our review of the NRC X1RR Blackshadow glasses
Find an NRC Eyewear dealer


Julbo Aerospeed photochromic — £124.99

Julbo Aerospeed Sunglasses - front 2.jpg

They're a shade expensive compared to some other manufacturer's light-reactive shades, but the Julbo Aerospeed photochromic sunglasses are a sophisticated and very well-made set of sports glasses. The lenses automatically adjust to changing light and offer CAT 1-3 ratings for ultra-violet protection. Better still, should a lens, arm or similar component break, replacements are readily available.

The lenses are made from NXT, a plastic originally developed for helicopter windscreens. Aside from being light and shatterproof it has the lowest distortion of any plastic so there's no bending of light or warped vision. Since the lens is cast, and so takes longer to produce than an injected type, this increases the cost.

The reactive element is activated by ultra-violet light and will steadily darken, from clear to a dark shade, in around 15 seconds. This is also cast into the lens, so cannot scratch, or otherwise deteriorate. The other features are pretty much what you'd expect from high-end sports sunglasses. The inside and outsides feature anti-fogging and water-repelling (hydrophobic) treatments and the frame is made from Rilsan G85 polyamide and features silicone grippers for a secure, unobtrusive fit.

Read our review of the Julbo Aerospeed photochromic
Find a Julbo dealer


Tifosi Pro Escalate FSH set — £125.99

Tifosi Pro Escalate FSH 3-frame glasses system.jpg

With an RRP of £139.99, the Pro Escalate FSH glasses set is the most expensive that Tifosi makes; the company is better known for its good quality mid-range riding specs. It's a really good set though: there are three frame options, six lenses and a nice case to keep them all in.

FSH stands for Full, Shield and Half, and that's what you get: a full frame, a shield frame – where the lens itself is the frame – and a half frame. Well, you don't get the three whole frames, there's just one pair of Grillamid TR90 plastic arms that snap onto whichever front you fancy wearing.

Read our review of the Tifosi Pro Escalate FSH
Find a Tifosi dealer

BZ Optics PHO Bi-focal Photochromic Glasses — £99.99


The BZ Optics PHO Fluro Yellow Frame with Photochromic Bi Focal Lens is a fully featured item of sports eyewear, for people who need bi-focal assistance in all conditions from darkness to bright glare. For £99.99 with interchangeable lenses, they're a pretty good pair of goggles in their own right.

At first glance the PHOs look like any other pair of cycling glasses, albeit clear ones if seen indoors the first time. Clear lenses always run the risk of resembling safety specs, and in this regard the PHOs aren't wide of the mark – particularly in fluorescent yellow ('graphite' and white are also available).

The near-ubiquitous design of a single top frame facilitates the changing of lenses, done via a nifty wee grey clip at the temple that pivots out to unlock things. We must confess we wore the PHOs for a month before realising the lenses could be removed, the mechanism is so well hidden and its hold on the lens so secure. Additional lenses are available in photochromic non-prescription and with a 'blue mirror' finish, and of course as a replacement should you damage the original lens. The 'Reader' lens with the bifocal bit is available in +1.5, +2 and +2.5 powers.

Read our review of the BZ Optics PHO Bi-focal Photochromic Glasses
Find a BZ Optics dealer

Rudy Project Fotonyk Black Matte Glasses — £101.99


These Rudy Project Fotonyk sunglasses are perfect for riding any time of the year thanks to their photochromic lenses changing from clear to dark in reaction to lighting levels. With great optics, comfort and not the slightest hint of fogging, they are a joy to wear.

We did the bulk of our testing of these in winter, perhaps the toughest time of the year to choose which glasses you're going to stick on for the ride, leaving and arriving home in the dark but with that whole sunrise/daylight/sunset thing going on in between. This is where the Fotonyks come into play with their ability to become all-rounders; they're suitable for practically every eventuality.

The first thing you notice is the clarity of the lenses. Our tester swapped mid-ride from POC Blades to the Fotonyks and the difference was noticeable, the Rudy Projects being so much clearer and sharper. Even as the lenses curve around your face there is no distortion at all.

Read our review of the Rudy Project Fotonyk Black Matte Glasses
Find a Rudy Project dealer

Bollé 6th Sense — £108

Bolle 6th Sense Cycling Sunglasses - FrontSide

Aerodynamic fairings on a pair of sunglasses? Yep, the Bollé 6th Sense are about as pro as you can get, especially with our test set being in AG2R La Mondiale colours. It isn't all about gimmicks, though, as these glasses are seriously good.

The big lens of the 6th Sense has a retro look to it, harking back to visors of the Nineties, but as far as technology goes they are bang up to date.

The frame is practically non-existent, which is something we like. There is nothing worse than crouching down in the drops or doing a quick shoulder check to find that there is a piece of plastic in your line of sight. The 6th Sense offer a massive field of vision without you even moving your head.

Read our review of the Bollé 6th Sense glasses
Find a Bollé dealer

Oakley Jawbreaker Prizm — £109.99

Oakley Jawbreaker - 1.jpg

Oakley's Jawbreaker Prizm Road glasses were developed in collaboration with Mark Cavendish, a sprinter renowned for his very low head position when racing for the line. Usually for the win. The downside to that sort of aggressive position is that the top of the frame on most cycling glasses obscures your line of sight, and the result is usually a sore neck from craning to see under or over the frame.

With the Jawbreakers, Oakley sought to increase the upward field of view. The result is that the top of the frame is much higher than most other eyewear we have ever tested. There's very little intrusion into your vision. It's very impressive. Get your chin down on the stem and assume an aggressive position, as you would when racing or time trialling, and the top of the frame really doesn't intrude into your vision at all.

Read our review of the Oakley Jawbreaker Prizm

Optilabs glasses — £175.95

Optilabs Switch.jpeg

Optilabs is a Croydon-based specialist sports optician that offers a range of eyewear, all of which are available with prescription lenses. They all offer 100% UV protection.

Read our review of the Optilabs Switch glasses

Oakley Radarlock Path sunglasses — from £151.99

oakley radarlock.jpg

Oakley is a name synonymous with cycling sunglasses, and they demand a premium price. They are top-quality glasses, as you'd hope for when you spend this much, offering excellent protection with easily interchangeable lenses and high quality optics in a vast range of tints. The frames come in a variety of colours and you can customise them too.

Read our review of the Oakley Radarlock Path sunglasses

POC Do Blade — from £120


Swedish company POC made a statement with its first ever road helmet, and its cycling sunglasses have made a similar impact. These Do Blade sunglasses feature a wide wraparound Carl Zeiss lens with an anti-fog treatment and rubber arm grippers and an adjustable nosepiece.

Find a POC dealer

Smith Attack Max — £179.99


The Smith Attack Max glasses provide excellent coverage and great vision, and swapping between the two supplied lenses could hardly be easier thanks to a clever magnet-based system, though the price is towards the top end of the spectrum.

Read our review of the Smith Attack Max glasses
Find a Smith dealer

>>On a budget? Read our roundup of the best cheap cycling sunglasses with glasses from £9.49 uo to £42.99

About road.cc Buyer's Guides

The aim of road.cc buyer's guides is to give you the most, authoritative, objective and up-to-date buying advice. We continuously update and republish our guides, checking prices, availability and looking for the best deals.

Our guides include links to websites where you can buy the featured products. Like most sites we make a small amount of money if you buy something after clicking on one of those links. We want you to be happy with what you buy, so we only include a product in a if we think it's one of the best of its kind.

As far as possible that means recommending equipment that we have actually reviewed, but we also include products that are popular, highly-regarded benchmarks in their categories.

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Road.cc buyer's guides are maintained and updated by John Stevenson. Email John with comments, corrections or queries.

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.


Duncann [1447 posts] 1 year ago

I've found Aldi and Lidl's interchangeable lenses jobs to be fine. Same price as the Decathlons above but better looking IMO.

ClubSmed [761 posts] 1 year ago

Any of these go OK with a KASK helmet?

keirik [153 posts] 1 year ago

bolle safety glasses are £7 on amazon, look as good as these and who cares when you lose them - oh and they work with kask helmets ClubSmed



Yorkshire wallet [2384 posts] 1 year ago

Got bolled-up when I had my eye ulcer. I got the £12 ones with an elasticated strap and a proper seal around the eye. Worth considering if you need really keep dust and stuff out of your eyes. 

farty [17 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Its a piece of plastic between your eye and an object, thats all. Whatever the cost . 

willvousden [46 posts] 1 year ago

Where are the polarised options?  They're so much better – why are they so hard to find?

Morat [317 posts] 1 year ago
keirik wrote:

bolle safety glasses are £7 on amazon, look as good as these and who cares when you lose them - oh and they work with kask helmets ClubSmed




and you can chuck them in the dishwasher  1

David_S [15 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

"Narrow fit" shades are mentioned at the top yet never mentioned again in the recommendations. As a person with a narrow face, where Oakley glasses look quite frankly ridiculous, what options are out there for me?

MikeOnABike [105 posts] 1 year ago

I wear prescription glasses. Does anyone know of a clip on, clear, wrap around lens?

FatTed [19 posts] 1 year ago
David_S wrote:

"Narrow fit" shades are mentioned at the top yet never mentioned again in the recommendations. As a person with a narrow face, where Oakley glasses look quite frankly ridiculous, what options are out there for me?


I think  Oakley "Asian" fit is what your after

urbane [100 posts] 1 year ago

I have older, long-sighted eyes, so order full-cover sports-glasses, on-line, with the better-transitions, prescription lenses, so can wear them all year round without any lens changes.
The glasses which take prescription lens holders are rare, expensive and a poor selection.

SingleSpeed [429 posts] 1 year ago
1 like
FatTed wrote:
David_S wrote:

"Narrow fit" shades are mentioned at the top yet never mentioned again in the recommendations. As a person with a narrow face, where Oakley glasses look quite frankly ridiculous, what options are out there for me?


I think  Oakley "Asian" fit is what your after


That's not what Asian Fit is at all!


Asian fit is designed for flatter wider noses and high cheekbones.


Some Oakleys come in youth fit.

Morgoth985 [158 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

"There's a blinding array of cycling eyewear out there"

Should we assume that was intentional?

MichaelAlbany [2 posts] 10 months ago

@MikeOnABike Look into BicycleBooth.com THey have inexpensive Rx glasses with blades in front. Spend the extra $10 for a second Rxframe insert as a backup. my first broke and i am waiting for a replacement. As they come from China, they come a long way and take forever. 

bendertherobot [1531 posts] 7 months ago
1 like

I've gone sungod for the bike, every day wear and skiing




Competition here



BehindTheBikesheds [2631 posts] 7 months ago
1 like

My cheapo glasses from LIDL saved my life yesterday, a big fat bumble bee hit the lens as I was doing about 30mph, another reason to wear glasses, I wear them at night all the time as well. 

Oh and I'm still owed a pair of Road CC socks after my sunglasses submission lasy year!

Nickrolyat [5 posts] 5 months ago

For those needing prescriptions, I’ve found that being a lot long sighted that curved lenses give dangerous distortion. I’ve used the Rudy projects with the clip in prescription insert which were Great sunnies but the clip system was a bit crap and needed tape to secure it. Using Julbo  now with a much better clip in prescription lens system .