Increasingly, sports brands are launching their own eyewear ranges for sports mad spectacle wearers and an accessory once deemed geeky is taking on a new masculine aesthetic as a result.
Alongside familiar glasses brands like Ray Ban and Persol, eyewear retailer LensWay has seen a steady influx of new athletic frame designs take to its online store in recent years, from a range of brands better known for designing everything from football strips to extreme sports clothing. We’ve taken a look at some of the brands on offer, and found some surprising additions to the world of specs.
Global sporting giant Nike is involved with just about every sport under the sun, providing high quality and desirable sportswear that is instantly recognisable from the famous swoosh logo. With a brand this huge, which manufactures everything from volleyball knee pads to hockey pucks, it’s no surprise to see them branch out and put their own iconic spin on prescription glasses. Nike already designs an extensive range of shades for athletes that struggle against the sun’s rays – everything from golf to cycling. They’ve gone for an unashamedly sporty look with their optics range, concentrating on colourful plastics and acetates rather than metal frames. They also boast the latest in durable “damage-resistant frame technology” to suit the needs of even the most brutal of sports.
But while their iconic Chucks might be synonymous with the basketball court, the Converse brand has gone on to become much more than just a sports shoe. Now a global fashion brand with their sneakers the default footwear for bands, teens, their parents and off-duty A-list celebs, Converse has branched out into eyewear fashion, and they’re not afraid to mess with their classic designs either. Their glasses range features a mixture of plastics and metal frames, with plenty of red, white and blue, fully embracing the brand’s classic all-American spirit.
Known for their association with extreme and winter sports, the surf and snowboarding brand’s signature wraparounds became the sunnies of choice for an entire generation of youths both on and off the slopes. The iconic shades were born as a result of Jim Jannard’s experimentation into creating the perfect eyewear for MX racing where he aimed to create a product that would provide clarity with a wide peripheral view. These goggles pioneered the trend for sports sunglasses but why should perfect vision be limited to sunglasses? Now Oakley have extended into prescription frames setting the standard for optical clarity and stylistic flair.
Another brand that you’re sure to see on the snowboard and ski slopes is SPY. They’ve become the go-to shades for the world’s leading extreme sports competitors, from wakeboarders and surfers to BMXers and motorsports champions. The LensWay website boasts the top selection of SPY’s unique brand of unashamedly in-your-face, attention-grabbing range of shades. Setting out to design shades that possessed cult cool and protected the wearer’s eyesight from the glaring sun of the slopes and the sea while being built to withstand the most extreme conditions, SPY is another brand that started out in the sunglasses trade and have recently made the move into optics. As well as providing extreme sports dudes with styles that they’re as comfortable wearing for reading as they are for competing, the brand also gives the wearer the ability to harness some of that extreme sports cool for ourselves.