Help finding the cheapest polarized sunglasses
January 24, 2010 9:14 AM   Subscribe

Can you help me find the best/worst sunglasses out there? All I want is for them to have everything (except fashion sense) and cost almost nothing.

I have somewhat particular sunglasses needs. I work on a boat in a sandy environment, so glasses have a fairly finite lifespan.

Cheap < $10 (very willing to buy in bulk if it gets a discount)
Full coverage

Extra credit:
ANSI safety rating
Can be worn over prescription

They can be the ugliest things on the planet, i don't care as long as they work. i have a pair of safety glasses from the hardware store that fit everything ($5, UV, ANSI, glasses underneath) except polarized, which is critical with the boat. i just want a box of cheap glasses in my loft to dive into whenever a pair gets scratched or lost.
posted by bryak to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (5 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
These should do it, but you are much better off with blue blockers.
posted by pwally at 9:26 AM on January 24, 2010

Polarized sunglasses are not always labeled as such--especially at discount/dollar stores. If you have or can borrow a pair of polarized sunglasses you can quickly find another pair on the rack by wearing them and moving your head left and right. Any polarized lenses on the rack will get lighter and darker, and at one point completely black. It's quicker than reading labels. You can do the same thing by wearing the glasses you are considering buying and rotating an LCD screen on an old cell phone, calculator or wrist watch, which will change from light to dark when viewed through polarized lenses.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 9:43 AM on January 24, 2010

Radians Cobalt Shooting Glasses.
posted by MonkeyToes at 9:48 AM on January 24, 2010

These are the best, I have an XL pair that fit over everything. Did UV a blocking test in my chemistry class and they beat out everything including SPF 90 sunscreen. They have an ANSI safety rating and they block the peripheral light exposure which is more than you might realize. They are $20, but worth every penny. I actually love how they look but then I have a campy sense of style. I got my pair at Walmart for a little less (I think $18) but I don't normally shop there so I can't tell you if they still carry them. I live in S. Arizona FWIW re: sunshine exposure.
posted by Locobot at 10:50 AM on January 24, 2010 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: thanks weapons-grade pandemonium, that sounds like a great idea for back in states, problem is that i live in nicaragua. i'll try it next time i'm visiting.

thanks monkeytoes, so far i think the cobalts are my leader. i can even get a bulk discount through these guys.

funny, locobot, i actually own a pair of XL solar shields. they are really good, but the price tag was my biggest turn off to buying a box of them (since no one seemed to sell bulk any cheaper) and i didn't know they were ANSI rated. i had the lens pop out once and it was SUPER flimsy.
posted by bryak at 1:13 PM on January 24, 2010

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