Native Eyewear asked if I wanted to review a few pairs of their sunglasses, so I happily obliged. They gave me several pairs of glasses to try, and once I found the sunglasses that fit me properly I was very impressed. All of the glasses I looked at have polarized lenses and great optics. The sharpness of the image was right up there with my polarized Oakley lenses, but the Native glasses look a lot more stylish and are something I could and will wear on and off the bike. Ive always felt that I look a bit goofy showing up to a wedding in a coat & tie with Oakleys on. They look great on a bike, but not with a suit. The Native glasses, however, look great on a bike or in casual clothes or even a suit. So you can bet Ill be wearing them to the next wedding I attend. But I digress.
We started with their new Wazee frame, which is all the rage among their sponsored athletes. Apparently its Jeff Lenoskys favorite frame. Whos Jeff? Hes a pro mountain biker, but more impressively he holds the world record for the highest bunny hop (jumping without a ramp) on a mountain bike. Awesome. But back to the glasses. The Wazee is made for medium to large head sizes, and it turns out I have a small/medium head. Fortunately, one of my training partners, Peter, has a big head, and they looked great on him. Here are his thoughts on the Wazee and on the Lodo frame, which is a somewhat similar style of sunglasses with larger lenses that women have been buying lately:
Both the Wazee and Lodo have successfully managed to be hybrid shades. You can wear them confidently around town and you can take them out on a big ride or run. While in the city everything looks nice and crisp due to the polarized lenses. Out on the trail they work great and here is why, Native has placed small vents above the lenses to prevent fogging. These vents are visually very subtle, while providing a huge benefit. One more thing I should mention, the shades have a rubber nose piece which keeps them from bouncing around while running or on a bike.
I found that the Throttle glasses fit both me and my fiancee, Katie, perfectly. In fact, if I dont watch them carefully Im pretty sure shes going to take them, as she too loved the look of the Tobacco colored frame, with the crisp polarized bronze reflex lenses. And she looks great in them too, if I may say so myself. The rubberized nose pieces are very comfortable and do a great job of holding the glasses in place. As Peter mentioned, the vents in the top of the frames are not visible when the glasses are being worn, but they do a great job of keeping the lenses from fogging up. Here are some of Katies thoughts on the Throttle glasses:
I am very picky when it comes to sunglasses but Ive found myself having to settle many times on just good enough so that I would have some type of sun protection for my eyes. The Throttles are a great blend of style and sportiness and they actually fit!!! And they are really comfortable. Like trying on shoes, sometimes they feel great in the store, and then not so much when you start wearing them around town or for a run. Not so, with the Throttles. They feel great all the time and I hardly realize Im wearing them some times. They dont slip down my nose thanks to the rubber nose piece nor do they pinch.just a perfect balance of fashion and function!
Id also like to add that all of the glasses we reviewed have replaceable lenses. Ive spent years struggling with Oakleys replaceable lenses switching between polarized lenses for driving & road riding, orange (persimmon) for mountain biking, and clear for night riding. Yes, having the right lens for the right condition makes a huge difference. Over the years Ive probably cracked 4 Oakley frames from the continual wear & tear of swapping lenses. I dont think that will be an issue with the Native Eyewear glasses, particularly since they have a lifetime warranty. They require much less force to remove or insert a lens and therefore I dont think the frames take nearly as much stress during the process.
My final assessment is a big thumbs up. Check out Nativeyewear.com or your local shop to see which Native sunglasses fit your look, then enjoy them in style!