Top 10 Best Surfer Sunglasses

Your surfboard may be your best friend in the water, but any surfer’s favorite accessory on dry land is a trusty pair of sunglasses. You have it with you at every wave check because it’s impossible to stare straight into the ocean when the sun’s shining bright. You have it with you on the beach when you’re people-watching or cheering for your mates score their daily wave. You’re probably still wearing your sunglasses at sunset, just when it’s the perfect time to knock back a beer or two with your best buds as you reminisce your rides.

Whether you’re a beginner or an advanced surfer, you’re going to need that one pair of sunglasses to take with you throughout all of your beach life moments. Here is a list of the ten pairs we think are perfect for surfers and those who want to live a surfer’s life.


Our Top Recommended Surfer Sunglasses

Our #1 Pick – Ray-Ban Wayfarer

Wayfarer shades

    • The #1 classic surfer lifestyle shades


    • 100% full UV protection, plastic frame/glass lens


    • Unisex, lightweight & super comfy

#2 – Oakley Holbrook
Wayfarer shades

    • Shaun White’s signature sunglasses


    • Plastic frame and lens, polarized


    • Top of the line & Made in the US

#3 Oakley Frogskins
Oakley shades

    • Oakley’s take on the famous Wayfarer


    • Plastic frame & polycarbonate lens


    • Plutonite Lens provides the best UV Protection



What makes a great pair of surfer sunglasses?

So how do you know which pair is perfect for your coastal lifestyle? Read on below to see which pair of surfer sunglasses matches your mood and personality the most.



#1 Ray-Ban Wayfarer Sunglasses

Often imitated, never duplicated. The Ray-Ban Wayfarers are iconic sunglasses that are known all over the world. Its sharp and polished design speaks of class and sophistication alongside an irresistible edginess that’s perfect for the surfer lifestyle. The Ray-Ban Wayfarers are timeless

and functional, and they’ve never gone out of style. They’re the favorite brand of sunglasses by musicians, actors, politicians and other persons of influence since 1952.


Ray Ban Wayfarer Sunglasses



  • Polarized lenses provide remarkable color contrast
  • Reduces glare of shiny surfaces such as the ocean
  • Improves visual clarity
  • Lessens eye strain
  • 100% UV protection
  • Case and cleaning cloth included




#2 Ray-Ban Aviator Sunglasses

Before the Wayfarer was invented in 1952, the Ray-Ban Aviator took the world by storm when it was released in 1937. The mirrored lenses and metal frame have become so popular that the
term Aviator is now used for practically any metal-based sunglasses frame. Don’t settle for anything lesser than the original. The Ray-Ban Aviator has proven that it can withstand a lifetime.


Ray Ban Aviator Shades


  • Highly durable and functional
  • Iconic metal frame design
  • 100% UV protection
  • Case and cleaning cloth included








#3 Ray-Ban Clubmaster Sunglasses

When it comes to style that outlasts the ages, no one does quite like Ray-Ban. They’ve outdone themselves yet again with the Clubmaster, a sharp and stylish pair that boasts of a hip
rectangular frame outlined by a plastic upper rim. It comes with adjustable nose pads and plastic temples to provide supreme comfort.


Ray Ban Clubmaster Sunglasses


  • Scratch-resistant lenses
  • Simple yet strong style
  • 100% UV protection
  • Non-polarized lenses
  • Case and cleaning cloth included



#4 Oakley Frogskins Sunglasses

Oakley Frogskins Sunglasses reviewMeet Oakley’s most contemporary design yet. Popularized by pop culture influences in the 80s, the Frogskins is a pair of heavy duty and highly functional sunglasses for daily wear. Oakley prides themselves in the science that goes behind each pair of sunglasses. Their High Definition Optics allows for a level of optical clarity that surpasses the standards set by the American National Standards Institute.

  • Plutonite® lenses
  • 100% UV protection
  • HDO® for razor-sharp vision
  • All-angle vision
  • O-Matter™ stress-resistant frame





#5 Neff Daily Sunglasses

This everyday pair offers a plastic frame inspired by the classic Wayfarer look. It also features lightweight acrylic lenses, logos and arms. The Neff Daily Sunglasses is a prominent style staple Neff Daily Sunglasses reviewin the wardrobe of young surfers and beachgoers today because of its familiar silhouette and playful colors and printed designs.

  • 100% plastic frame
  • 100% UV protection
  • Great style at an affordable price


#6 Maui Jim Surf Rider Polarized Sunglasses

Nothing sparks Waikiki style like this pair of Maui Jim Surf Rider Sunglasses. Inspired by the Moana Surf Rider Hotel in Waikiki Beach, this pair stands out because of its classic full frame Maui Jim Surf Rider Polarized Sunglasses reviewshape and wraparound style. This pair suits a wide variety of face shapes.

  • 100% UV protection
  • Polarized glass lenses
  • Nylon frame
  • Available in bold black and neutral gray





#7 Oakley Holbrook Sunglasses

The Oakley Holbrook is heavy duty and highly functional, and it leaves little space for unnecessary frills and designs. It is a straightforward pair of shades that gets the job done. No Oakley Holbrook Sunglasses reviewmatter where your next adventure will be, the Holbrook will be at the helm of all your extreme outdoor activities.

  • Plutonite® lenses
  • 100% UV protection
  • HDO® for razor-sharp vision
  • O-Matter™ stress-resistant frame
  • Non-polarized lenses






#8 Neff Chip Sunglasses

Neff Chip Sunglasses reviewHighly versatile, the Neff Chip Sunglasses will look good on just about anyone. It’s another standout staple for street wear and urban beachwear. Favored by skaters and surfers alike, the no-nonsense yet playful frame encompasses the freedom that comes with a stoke-seeking life.

  • 100% plastic frame
  • Acrylic lenses
  • 100% UV protection





#9 Ray-Ban Justin Sunglasses

Ray-Ban caught up with the lightweight plastic game and came up with this fully shaped rectangular frame. The Justin aims to complement any face shape and any wardrobe, making it a top style choice of many street wear savants and beach life icons today.

  • Ray-Ban Justin Sunglasses review100% plastic frame
  • Full rim frame edge
  • Comes in many lens and frame colors






#10 Spy Helm Sunglasses

Who says you can’t look stylish and extremely adventurous at the same time? Spy Optics created the Helm Sunglasses to bring both epic and righteousness to the table. It comes with Spy Helm Sunglasses reviewthe trademark SPY Happy Lens technology, which enhances colors and contrast naturally through the use of filters for “bad sun rays” that only distort visual perception.

  • Built from virtually indestructible Grilamid®
  • Integrated hinges
  • 6-base polycarbonate ARC® lenses
  • 100% UV protection



Final Thoughts

There you have it. This is our round up of the best surfer sunglasses when it comes to style and function. Remember that a surf trip just isn’t complete without a stylish pair of shades. After all, it’s not just about style because these sunglasses provide you with eye protection, whether it’s from harmful UV rays or tiny floating debris. Imagine having to navigate the dusty streets of Indo on a motorbike without sunglasses. You’ll be rubbing your way to an eye infection even before you hit the water.

Keep a case and cloth handy to preserve this portable piece of investment. You wouldn’t want to wear scratched up shades when scoping out glassy waves and tropical beach babes.

So whether you’re an all-time waterman, a seasoned surfer, or just an average guy trying to have as much fun possible by the sea, pack away a pair of sunglasses before you leave for your trip. Trust us—we’ve all felt the joy of owning surfer eyewear; and we’ve also lamented its loss when a good friend accidentally swipes your pair!

Not all eyewear are created equally so double check our list of surfer sunglasses and see which pair matches your mood and lifestyle. Not all surfers are created equally too, but with the right pair of sunglasses, you can at least look like you rip like the best of them!




How should my surfer sunglasses fit?

You want them to fit comfortably snug.

You’ll need them to fit tight enough that they won’t easily fall off or slide down your nose but you don’t want them so tight that they will wear on you or hurt.


What makes a pair of sunglasses “surfer shades?”

To some degree this is up to ones opinion but there are definitely certain brands and styles of sunglasses that are regarded as more of a “surfer” type within the sunglass and fashion industry.

Brands would include Ray Ban, Maui Jim and Spy.

The iconic surfer type of sunglasses were first designed by Ray Ban and called the Wayfarer. Since, many other sunglass companies have taken this design. There are of course of styles of sunglasses that could be considered a surfer or beach type and there are many variations and tweaks of the classic Wayfarer that we see commonly sold today.


How should I take care of my new shades?

Make sure to keep them out of the sand and ocean water!

A case with cleaning terry cloth really helps protect them from harm as well.


What hazards and things to protect my surfer shades when I’m at the beach?

The sand, ocean water, ocean rocks and seagull crap can really be a bummer for your shades!

Again, a case is a great habit to make your new shades last as long as possible and other things like not putting your sunglasses in your pocket because I have broken mine before doing that in jeans (when you sit down your pants tighten and my frame at the nose has broken before!).


What surfer sunglasses should I NOT get?

Ones that you think are dumb and not cool, visually. But also ones that are not comfortable to your or are just outside of your budget.


Do I need a sunglass case?

Nope, but man do they help!

They are great to protect your favorite pair of shades from breaks to the hinges, nose and scratches on the lense or frame.


Can you see better underwater with polarized lenses?

Lenses that are polarized help to better distinguish things that are around you, so in turn, they could be more helpful when looking underwater. If you’re out there in the water, there’s a better chance that you could go under to look at fish, rocks, or anything else under the water for a bit of sea exploration. That being said, they are most effective in getting rid of glare atop the water.


Can I use a neck strap on any pair of surfer sunglasses?

Absolutely! Neck straps are typically made to fit all sizes of sunglasses. You can easily attach them to the two earpieces so that it is just tight enough to rest on the back of your neck.



Factors To Consider When Buying

Polarized Lenses

Even when you’re not surfing, it’s a good idea to make sure you are wearing polarized lenses. These lenses help to prevent damage and strain on the eyes, as well as reduce glare a reflected light, perfect for when you’re out on the water. Polarized lenses will absolutely help bring a bit more clarity to your surfing.


Photochromic Lenses

If you have a bit more money to spend, we recommend getting an upgrade and going for photochromic lenses. If you’re someone who is out surfing from dawn to the late afternoon, these are perfect. Photochromic lenses are made to change as the amount of present UV rays increase, giving your eyes the best protection at all points throughout the day.


Lens Material

Polycarbonate lenses or NXT lenses are what you’ll typically find in a pair of surfing shades. This is because these materials are the strongest and are built for high-energy sports like surfing where injuries are waiting left and right. Polycarbonate is the cheapest of the two and just a bit weaker than NXT. That being said, it is still incredibly strong. NXT, on the other hand, is near impossible to break and provides a toughness that your eyes will eventually thank you for when a surfboard comes barreling at your face.


Lens Color

Depending on the conditions that you will be surfing in, you’ll want to consider a couple different lens colors, as some provide benefits that others don’t. Grey lenses are excellent for bringing out true color and helping with depth perception. This is especially true if you’re out in deeper waters. If you’re surfing in lower light conditions, or in an area with obstacles such as reef or rocks, copper lenses are better, as they filter out blue light and give you a better sense of objects around you.


Shape and Style

Obviously, the first thing you want to do is make sure the frame you purchase fits your face and doesn’t fall off every time you bend over, as sunglasses that don’t fit will immediately be lost to Poseidon. We recommend that surfers get wrap-around frames for this reason, as they fit better to the face than any others. It’s a plus if your glasses come with some sort of strap to keep them tied to your head.



We’ve also written an article on floating sunglasses! These are basically made for people who are always in the water, just like us surfers. If they end up falling off, you can easily find them in the water and get them back. Floating sunglasses are also typically more lightweight, meaning they’ll be more comfortable as you wear them all day throughout your surf session.



If the sunglasses that you’re buying are pretty high quality, there’s a chance that they’ll have some sort of coating on the lenses. On surfing sunglasses, you’ll most likely find hydrophobic coating. This is because hydrophobic coating repels water so it doesn’t stick to your shades and impair your vision as your surfing. Some shades even go as far as being fog-proof, an excellent feature for surfing in environments with higher humidity.



It’s always difficult getting a pair of sunglasses if you need prescription glasses already. Luckily, some sunglass companies custom build pairs for those with prescription needs. After all, it is very important to have protection alongside the ability to see properly.



Proper Care

If you’ve found the ideal surfer sunglasses that make you feel like the world’s slickest waterman or woman, there’s no doubt you love them. Unfortunately, just like humans, sunglasses are susceptible to the dangers of surfing and everyday life. Here are a couple rules you should always follow to make sure your favorite pair of sunniest lasts more than one season:


Keep Your Sunglasses In A Case

If you’re not wearing your sunglasses, they should be stored away inside of a case. We know it can be annoying hauling around your case, but even having one in your car that is protective and resistant to the heat, can be extremely helpful. It also helps keep them off of surfaces that can possibly scratch and ruin your lenses.


Don’t Wear Your Sunglasses On Your Head

Many people like to prop their sunglasses atop their head when they take them off. This is actually really bad for your glasses and will eventually distort the shape of them.


Check The Screws Often

One of the biggest reasons why people end up tossing their glasses is because the screws fell out and they don’t have a replacement or a kit to fix them. Realistically, you should do a quick check of your sunglasses every time you take them off to make sure the screws are still on them tightly. That way, if you have a small screwdriver kit handy, you can fix them on the spot in less than a minute.


Only Use Micro-Fiber Cloths to Wipe

Using paper towels or other rough materials can actually do more damage to your lenses than good. There could be small dust particles on your lenses that you don’t see, and using a regular cloth can just wipe them across the lenses instead of removing them.


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