Rx Sunglasses
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Corey Downing
(hardcorey) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Rx Sunglasses on 04/01/2013 23:14:40 MDT Print View

So I found myself in a situation where I need to get new prescription sunglasses sooner than anticipated as I seem to have lost a lens on the train the other day.

I'm searching for glasses that are versatile--I'd love a pair that won't look out of place in the city or on the trail, slightly inclined to transition-style lenses so I don't have to bring a second pair with me on trips, and something that won't slide down my face when I get sweaty.

What brands should I look at?

What styles are most versatile (city or mountains) and won't slide down my face constantly?

I have a fairly weak prescription, does polycarbonate matter or is CR-39 suitable?

Should I go polarized? My instinct is yes, as my previous pair were.

Do transition lenses work? Particularly in the context of the outdoors.

Randy Martin
(randalmartin) - F

Locale: Colorado
Re: Rx Sunglasses on 04/02/2013 01:03:14 MDT Print View

Transitions tend to not be dark enough for me but i hike in the Alpine where protection from bright snow reflected light is very critical. But maybe the technology has improved in the last few years. I also think it is totally worth something like Oakley or Rudy Project frames that are designed for athletic activity. As for lenses you absolutely should get polarized. It's a huge difference.

Edited by randalmartin on 04/02/2013 01:29:12 MDT.

Charles G.
(Rincon) - M

Locale: Desert Southwest
Transitions on 04/02/2013 06:28:17 MDT Print View

There are several levels of darkness available with the Transitions lenses. The darker versions also stay darker when out of the sun. You can get an idea of what is available online before you go to an optometrist.

Ken Thompson
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: Behind the Redwood Curtain
Re: Rx Sunglasses on 04/02/2013 06:33:26 MDT Print View

Polarized lenses drive me crazy for everyday use. Electronic displays and car windows are difficult. I don'tlike the non scratch coating either. Hard to clean, wears off.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Rx Sunglasses on 04/02/2013 09:13:33 MDT Print View

Ha! I see you'll get no consistent answers here

I hate polycarbonate because of it's high index of refraction. When I look at something with different colors, like the blue obhects appear closer than the red objects (or vice versa?) but I have strong correction and a lot of cross-eyedness correction. Polycarbonate resists breaking (bullet-proof glass) but my regular plastic never breaks so this isn't an issue. Maybe the polycarbonate will be lighter which would be an advantage.

Worst thing about glasses is they get scratched. Get the best hardness coating you can get. Don't wipe them with paper. Wash them with soapy water, then dry with clean cotton.

John Vance
(Servingko) - F

Locale: Intermountain West
RX sunglasses on 04/02/2013 10:44:18 MDT Print View

After years of transition lenses I recently got dedicated polarized sunglasses and couldn't be happier. My rx isn't that bad so I can get away with just one pair but I like stargazing while laying in my bag and bring an extra pair.

It's worth the extra 2oz and I can read the map up close as my sun glasses are single vision and my regular glasses are double. I really haven't been enjoying the ageing process....

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: RX sunglasses on 04/02/2013 10:52:48 MDT Print View

Yeah, I wonder if getting prescription sunglasses with the reading correction is worth it?

I have been enjoying the ageing process so far - don't have to work and can still do things

John Vance
(Servingko) - F

Locale: Intermountain West
Rx on 04/02/2013 11:15:28 MDT Print View

I initially had my sun glasses with the variable reading but didn't like the blurry peripheral vision. With my helmet on, bike, motorcycle, or ski, they rode up and I was looking through the reading portion and couldn't see a thing. I skied one day with them and took them back. They swapped the lenses and I just remove them if i have to see up close.

Stephen Barber
(grampa) - MLife

Locale: SoCal
Different advice on 04/02/2013 11:21:28 MDT Print View

Seriously - save up your $$$, skimp on new gear for awhile, find a good laser eye doctor and get your eyes permanently fixed. I struggled with the prescription glasses, sunglasses, etc, for 50 years. Finally risked the surgery - and I couldn't be happier! For those of us who enjoy the outdoors, getting to see it without corrective lenses is so fantastic! It's the best outdoor "gear" money I ever spent.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Different advice on 04/02/2013 11:40:37 MDT Print View

I have heard that with laser surgery you can lose the ability to see up close without glasses.

Some people have a problem with dry eyes.

I don't mind wearing glasses because so many times, a little piece of something heads toward my eye but it runs into my glasses.

Talbot Hardman
(talbotdale)

Locale: Rocky Mountains
Maui Jim on 04/02/2013 12:04:48 MDT Print View

Of course frame comfort depends on the shape of your face, but I just bought a new replacement pair of Rx Maui Jim "Stingrays". I have only used these glasses for the last five years. I have been so happy with them that I replaced them with the exact same model.

In the winter I backcountry ski quite a bit and in the summer I'm hiking, biking and fly fishing. I appreciate the frame design because they don't have the "uber athlete" look but they protect my eyes from wind without fogging up, and the spring loaded temple pieces allow me to wear them all day without any discomfort. I use these for all activities and they look just fine for my occasional trips to Denver.

My lenses are not glass but they seem to avoid scratching pretty well. I am not sure what the official color of the lenses are they look like a cross between bronze and brown. (Actually, now I'm not sure. My lenses may be glass. A long time ago I had glass lenses and they were so heavy I hated them, but Maui Jim's site is stating that the lenses are glass. Sorry for the confusion.)

Definitely go polarized for a pair of glasses you will be using in the backcountry.

Good luck on your search.

Edited by talbotdale on 04/02/2013 12:08:39 MDT.

jim logan
(jim_logan) - MLife
Why not clip-ons? on 04/02/2013 15:33:53 MDT Print View

I have worn glasses for more than 55 years and have had varied sunglasses/transition alternatives in that time. ESPECIALLY for outdoors I find clip-ons, especially flip-ups, to be the best bet. They weigh little (in the 20+ grams range) and they can be instantly lifted from the eyeglasses if you go from sun to shade (yes, the reverse is true, too). If you are driving in an area that has tunnels(Maine doesn't), you can instantly adjust without reaching for different optics.

Mine are polarized, which I very much prefer. They are also cheap. AND they can outlast your current prescription so that they retain utility longer.

I ALWAYS have a spare pair of eyeglasses with me on hikes because I know if I lost my glasses on a trail in open woods or while bushwhacking I would become lost immediately. I also carry a spare set of clip-ons on the buried eyeglasses for the just-in-case.

Again. these are a lot cheaper and more versatile than rx sunglasses which are a dubious back-up system as they are not what you want for your only glasses at night.

John Vance
(Servingko) - F

Locale: Intermountain West
Lasik on 04/02/2013 16:37:41 MDT Print View

I had lasik performed some 14 years ago and now need readers and have a bit of stigmatism that returned but I went from a 9.75 in both eyes to my current 1.25. I can see fine during the day but at night and for reading it's a bit sketchy.

I never found clip-ons that I liked, but that could be the best option. I ended up scratching my lenses with the ones I tried. I did check out a pair of glasses that had magnets that matched up with magnets on the clip on portion. A neat idea but my wife didn't like the style on me.

Could be worth a look...(pun intended)

d k
(dkramalc) - MLife
Re: Lasik on 04/02/2013 16:46:44 MDT Print View

The worse my nearsightedness and astigmatism get, the more I think about laser vision correction, since peripheral vision gets worse and it's just harder in general to see even with new glasses. But when an ophthalmologist who examined me once for a different problem told me that his glasses were even thicker than mine, I asked him why he hadn't had Lasik, and he said "because extremely nearsighted eyes like ours have a higher chance of having negative side effects from the surgery." Fear of that has kept me away from surgery so far, since I figured he knows better than I do about those things. I keep kind of wishing for cataracts so that I can have lens replacement, which I understand they will do without cataracts in Europe, but not here apparently.

I feel like "damned if I do, damned if I don't." Meanwhile I'm getting more and more like Mr. Magoo...

Susan Papuga
(veganaloha) - M

Locale: USA
Re: Rx Sunglasses on 04/02/2013 19:32:10 MDT Print View

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/forums/thread_display.html?forum_thread_id=73220&skip_to_post=624837#624837

see this thread from February 2013 for more ideas.

I tried a lot of the online sites, but they really didn't have my size and once I decided to go with transition lenses, the price wasn't much better than my local PX, but you may find something that works for you.
goog luck!

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Rx Sunglasses" on 04/02/2013 19:47:06 MDT Print View

Cocoons. They fit over your prescription glasses. They're polarized, uva/ubf protection. They keep dust/rain off of your regular glasses. They're wrap around and have a flange on the top that keeps out the sun almost as good as glacier glasses. If your prescription glasses are not too large, you can get a model that's acceptable looking. They're not too expensive. Come evening, take them off.

Kent C.
(kent) - M

Locale: High Sierra
Rx Sunglasses on 04/02/2013 21:51:41 MDT Print View

Corey, you may want to check out Oakley, code on temple bar is:
143 OX3110-0354 (or similar - these are spring-hinged, straight-bar temples, not curved behind ears).


On Lasik...if anyone considers epi-lasik (this is the type in which they 'shave' layers of the cornea to shape it), be SURE to have your cornea thickness measured by your regular eye doc (not the Lasik center) beforehand. If your corneas are on the thin side, epi-lasik may be very problematic.