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Fishing Sunglasses Buyer’s Guide: Our Top Picks Tips To Find The Best Pair For You


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When fishing, the difference between a good day on the water and a bad one may come down to the gear you have at your disposal. Your clothing, your rod, your line, and your presentation are all critical for achieving success. While fishing glasses are sometimes overlooked by many, experienced fishermen know that a good pair of polarized fishing sunglasses can make a world of difference. Not only can they make your day more comfortable, but they can help you spot fish or debris under the water.

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What To Look For In Fishing Sunglasses? | Top Picks Under $50 | Top Picks Under $100 | Top Picks Under $300


Top Sunglasses Under $50 – The Best Budget Fishing Sunglasses

You can find some incredible pairs of sunglasses under $50. With this price range, you won’t find the same high level warranties, extreme durability, or top clarity class as you’ll find in the upper price ranges, but these will still get it done. If your budget is on the lower end, here are some of the top picks.



Black / Sunset Knockaround SunglassesIf you are on a budget, Knockaround sunglasses are one of the top brands. They feature some great designs, polarized lenses, durable frames, and are very much so on a budget. The customer service is great. While these aren’t the most durable options, and the lenses are not ultra clear, these are some of the most comfortable and lightweight glasses on the market. Choose from a variety of styles.

These are open style lenses making them great for everyday use, but if you are constantly in blasting sun with reflection, you may want a lense and frame that blocks out a bit more sun.

You’ll want to check out the polarized section of the site. You’ll find tons of great affordable and comfortable options.

Our personal favorite is the black / sunset as seen in image.

See On Knockaround | See On Amazon


KastKing Skidaway Sunglasses

KastKing Polarized SunglassesThese are inexpensive (under $30), available on Amazon, and feature a whopping 5,000+ reviews on Amazon with overall ratings. We don’t even need to tell you what we think, as the proof is in the shear numbers of happy owners of these glasses. You’ll have various lense colors and frame colors to choose from.


See On Amazon


HUK Sunglasses

HUK SunglassesThese glasses sit just under $50 but are super versatile, well made, and have full covered lenses and frames to keep your eyes as rested and ready to go as possible. They are super durable and come with various lens color options for your preference. Check out the over 150 reviews on Amazon as well.

View On Amazon

Shady Ray’s – Classic Timber Black Polarized

Classic Timber Black Polarized Shady Ray'sShady Rays sit just under $50 at retail price, but they have some of the best customer service, the frames are super comfortable, and the lenses are far more clear than similar glasses in the price range.

The best reason to choose Shady Ray’s is the free replacement policy where if you break your pair, they will send you another for only shipping costs. In addition, they will cover any manufacturing issues for free.

These are open style lenses making them great for everyday use, but if you are constantly in blasting sun with reflection, you may want a lense and frame that blocks out a bit more sun.

This pair comes in two frame sizes to fit all sized heads.

See On Shady Rays


Top Sunglasses Under $100

This next price range up you’ll find some pairs of sunglasses that are just another step up. Generally you’ll get some sturdier frames, potentially better glass, and better warranties from pairs within this price range.


BNUS Corning Glass Polarized Sunglasses

BNUS Polarized Corning Glass SunglassesWe chose these glasses because of the large options for colors while also having super solid and comfortable frames, and corning glass lenses. These lenses are very clear, much more so that you’ll get from plastic lenses, making these great for this price range. These glasses also feature nearly 3,000 reviews on Amazon, giving you safety in numbers.

See On Amazon


Top Sunglasses Under $300

These are the top of the line sunglasses. They have durability, crystal clear lenses, incredible polarization, great warranties, and just about everything you’d want in a pair of fishing sunglasses.


RedFin Sunglasses

Redfin SunglassesRedFin produces extremely comfortable glasses. Our team heavily uses them on hikes, trail runs, and days on the water due to a super comfortable design. In addition to great comfort, these glasses also have incredible clarity. RedFin has an awesome lifetime frame warranty, a 30 day return policy, and a loss / accidental damage policy that’s fantastic. We have listed RedFin at the top because they are just about the most comfortable all around glasses we have found, and they have incredible lens quality.

They have tons of lens and frame color options available as well, making it easy to find a pair or two for your specific needs.

See On RedFin


Costa Diego Sunglasses

Costa Diego SunglassesWe featured the Costa Diego’s here, but you can’t go wrong with any Costa sunglasses. The Diego’s have lense choices of plastic or glass, are crystal clear, super comfortable, and the company has some great values. Be sure to check out all of Costa’s options. If you have the budget, or are simply always out on the water, you’ll want to invest in a pair of Costa’s or similar.

See On Amazon | See On Costa


Smith Guide’s Choice Sunglasses

Smith Optics Guides Choice SunglassesSmith’s sunglasses are made with extremely high quality materials. The lenses are clear, the frames are comfortable, the hinges are high quality, and the variety of colors make it possible for any angler to find the exact right tint and color.

You’ll find hundreds of quality reviews on the Smith website, but these glasses are available on Amazon, Backcountry, and Smith’s site.

See On Amazon | See On Backcountry | See On Smith


What To Look For In Fishing Sunglasses

Below, we have each of the key features you should be looking for in the best fishing glasses for your particular needs. You’ll notice we didn’t list any glasses above $300 in this article. That is because we believe you don’t need to spend more than this to get quality sunglasses. You can get top of the line quality in that $300 price range.



Polarization is perhaps the single most important element in any pair of fishing sunglasses. Since polarized lenses cut down on glare from the water, they enable you to see under the surface of the water for increased situational awareness. In some instances, you may be able to see a fish taking your flies or lures where it would be impossible without polarized lenses. This can allow you to anticipate when to set the hook, giving you a significant advantage. More importantly, it can help you find fish visually before you even cast. If you plan to spend a long time outside, polarized lenses also protect your eyes and skin from UV rays that can damage your retina over time. If you are prone to light sensitivity or spend several hours on the water at a time, polarized lenses can reduce eye fatigue, eliminating headaches and improving your safety while driving to and from your favorite fishing spot.


Quality Frames

While many inexpensive brands offer polarization in their sunglasses, glasses that are produced with the intention of saving cost are likely to be made from low quality materials that can break or come loose over a relatively short period. Quality frames are not necessarily expensive, but they tend to far outlast their cheap, gas station counterparts.

Many anglers will want to avoid certain frame materials as they can erode, bend, or break easily. You should avoid metal framed sunglasses, or plastic framed sunglasses made out of acetate due to the lack of durability.

Look for Nylon based plastics like polyamides, co-polyamides, and gliamides. These materials can handle the heat, sunlight, saltwater, cold, and will retain their shape without warping. In addition, look for glasses with very high comfort ratings if you can’t try them on yourselves. You’ll want glasses that are comfortable to wear for the entirety of the day.


Acceptable Appearance

While it certainly isn’t the most important element for a successful fishing trip, if you plan to fish with others, style is likely to affect your willingness to wear your glasses. If your pair of high-performance fishing glasses look odd or out of place, you probably won’t feel especially excited to wear them when a pair of regular polarized glasses can cost as little as 20 dollars. A style that suits your personality and your look, on the other hand, is likely to remain in your inventory for a long time to come. Simply put, find a pair of sunglasses that you feel good wearing, because then you’ll be more likely to utilize them.


Customization And Prescription Lens Options

There are many potential considerations for improving your performance and enjoyment when purchasing a pair of prescription sunglasses for fishing. If you require a prescription or would like to add a prescription to your order, doing so is relatively simple and can give you as clear a picture of your surroundings as you need. Under certain conditions, tinted lenses can improve performance. Since the best tint for your eyes usually comes down to personal preference, you may want to try a few options or read different opinions online.

If you are an individual that needs a prescription, or a special tint or color, you’ll want to look for a brand or company that offers those customizations. Doing so will likely increase your overall costs, but you are going to want sunglasses that fit all of your needs.


Lens Type

The type of lens you purchase for your glasses determines their durability and clarity. Polycarbonate lenses are more durable than glass lenses and are generally cheaper. Glass lenses are often the clearest, though they are somewhat heavier. It is your choice which type of lens you prefer, but you should consider the type of hazards you are likely to encounter while fishing. If you do any activities that subject your glasses to significant force or projectile movement, opt for sturdier polycarbonate lenses.

There are three main types of lens materials: Polycarbonate, Glass, and Trivex.


Polycarbonate Lenses

Polycarbonate lenses tend to be the cheapest lenses, and the most durable, lightweight, and safest lenses. Because they are plastic, they are prone to more scratches, but also will not shatter with impact like glass lenses. Polycarbonate lenses will not be as clear as glass lenses.


Glass Lenses

Glass lenses are the most clear lens option, and are the most durable against scratches. Glass lenses tend to be the most expensive option, and they are also prone to shatter with impact, making them dangerous or not recommended for certain applications.


Trivex Lenses

Trivex lenses are more expensive than polycarbonate lenses, less expensive than glass, and are just as lightweight. They are often considered the middle ground between glass and polycarbonate. They are shatter resistance, but are capable of more clarity than polycarbonate, and are slightly harder to scratch.


Lens Mirror

You’ll notice most of the glasses above have mirrored lenses, which reduce glare and increase protection even more on top of the polarization. This is a common feature to look for in fishing sunglasses. You can read more about lens mirroring vs polarization here.


Lens Color

The color you choose is up to your preference, but it is important to understand that some colors are better for certain scenarios. We recommend you read this article for an in depth explanation on lens colors (tints): https://hikingandfishing.com/sunglass-lens-colors/

Some of the most popular color choices are blue, green, and brown lenses, so our articles on blue vs green lenses, and brown vs green lenses may be helpful to you.

Max DesMarais

Max DesMarais

Max DesMarais is the founder of hikingandfishing.com. He has a passion for the outdoors and making outdoor education and adventure more accessible. Max is a published author for various outdoor adventure, travel, and marketing websites. He is an experienced hiker, backpacker, fly fisherman, backcountry skier, trail runner, and spends his free time in the outdoors. These adventures allow him to test gear, learn new skills, and experience new places so that he can educate others. Max grew up hiking all around New Hampshire and New England. He became obsessed with the New Hampshire mountains, and the NH 48, where he guided hikes and trail runs in the White Mountains. Since moving out west, Max has continued climbed all of the Colorado 14ers, is always testing gear, learning skills, gaining experience, and building his endurance for outdoor sports. You can read more about his experience here: hikingandfishing/about