Sports Vision Training

Polarized Sunglasses: Which Ones Are Best For Fishing?


Many people that fish often wonder what kind of sunglasses are best. As anglers, whether you are fly fishing or taking part in another type of fishing, sunglasses should be worn a safety precaution. You only have one set of eyes, and you aren’t going to get another pair. When you are fishing, there are lots of sharp objects, such as hooks, flying around, and while it may be rare for a life-changing eye situation to occur, it could. In addition, there is the harmful damage that UV rays can do to your eyes.

If you think about the travel industry and fishing, one thing that never seems to amaze me is the fact that travelers will spend thousands of dollars on high-quality fishing tackle and other gear to ensure that they have a dream holiday, but when it comes down to their sunglasses, they’ll skip out on cheap or middle-of-the-line sunglasses. If you consider the fact that the majority of destination fishing relies heavily on using your eyes so that you can spot fish lying in rivers, saltwater flats, or free swimming, why is it that people assume it is wise to overlook quality gear for their eyes? If you’re fishing in the wrong place because you can’t see properly, it doesn’t matter how great your fishing tackle is.

Another misconception that individuals tend to make is that all polarized sunglasses are equal. This is not true, though. Polarized sunglasses are designed to remove the glare from the surface, allowing anglers to see deeper and further into the water—where the target fish are. Cheap polarized sunglasses tend to only utilize an adhesive film over the lenses to reduce the glare. While this can work, it doesn’t properly reduce the glare from all angles, and it may become distorted or warped due to the way it has been applied, resulting in inadequate polarization levels. Specialized polarized glasses, though, use their own polarization techniques—typically patented—to embed the technology within the sunglass lenses, providing 100 percent polarization and UV blockage.

Polarized sunglass lenses are available in an assortment of colors that suit various fishing and light conditions.

What Is the Best Color of Lens?

All individuals have their own opinion about the best color of lens, but copper tends to be the best all-around color for fishing in both fresh and saltwater.

  • Copper lenses are great at cutting glare and enhancing both contrasts and color in all lighting conditions.
  • Amber lenses are great at delivering the brightest vision
  • Sunrise high-contrast specialty lenses are designed to allow maximum light to reach the eyes, making them perfect for early or late-night fishing excursions.
  • Grey lenses help to maintain color saturation and natural contrast in medium to bright conditions. They’re ideal for saltwater conditions, though not freshwater since the grey tint will reduce the contrast between the fish and surroundings.

When you select a lens color, it is a good idea to know where you plan to fish at and what the lighting conditions will be.

It is also possible to purchase specialist fishing sunglasses with mirror finishes that can be fitted over amber, copper, or grey lenses. Some individuals say the additional layer with a mirror effect aids in improving the sight fishing, or does it just make the glasses look cool?

What Type of Lens?

There are two types of lenses that you can choose for polarized glasses: glass or polycarbonate. While you can also get acrylic, they are generally cheap and they’re not ideal for serious anglers.

  • Glass Lenses – In terms of optical clarity, these are superior. They are able to resist scratches better than polycarbonate lenses. However, they’re more expensive, heavier, and can shatter easier.
  • Polycarbonate Lenses – These are less expensive, lighter weight, and shatter-resistant. However, they can scratch easier and don’t offer as much optical clarity as glass lenses.

Another option that you can consider is prescriptions. As a general rule, you should opt for a manufacturer of prescription polarized sunglasses that offers a prescription service. Generally, these manufacturers will always make quality glasses, but make sure to do your research first.

Finding the Right Fit

In the end, the best polarized sunglasses for fishing will be the ones that you feel comfortable wearing, since you will be wearing them for eight to 10 hours a day.

Sunglasses are a vital part of your fishing holiday, so it is important that they enhance the experience as opposed to distracting from it. You’ll be wearing them all day long, so they need to be comfortable and fit your face—and if they make you look good at the same time, then that’s a bonus!

Everyone has a different face shape and size, so some models and brands may fit better than others, so make sur that you try glasses on. Here are a few pointers to help you find the best fit.

  • Make sure the glasses don’t slip down the nose – It is distracting if you have to continuously push your sunglasses up your face each time you look down. You can buy non-slip nose pads to help with this, or look for glasses that have rubber on the part of the glasses that goes behind your ears.
  • Make sure the glasses aren’t too tight behind the ears – Over time, you will end up with a headache.
  • Take note that if light is coming in the glasses from the sides, top, or bottom – When you try the sunglasses on, go outside and see where any light is coming in at. If you have too much light from any one direction, it isn’t good—and it is particularly important to have side coverage. Sunglasses that conform to your face as opposed to sitting flat across your face will help offer enhanced coverage for your peripheral vision.

Who Makes the Best Sunglasses?

When it comes to the best brands of polarized sunglasses for fishing, it comes down to personal preference. However, some of the top brands are Costa Del Mar, Native Eyewear, Oakley, and Filthy Anglers.

If you would like more information about polarized fishing sunglasses, contact us at Performance Vision.

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