What are the best sport sunglasses for women 2021? We review sunnies from Oakley, Rayban, and Sungod

Protect your peepers when you’re getting active with our top-rated sunglasses suitable for sports

What are the best sport sunglasses for women 2021? What are the best sport sunglasses for women 2021?
What are the best sport sunglasses for women 2021?

This article contains affiliate links. We may earn a small commission on items purchased through this article, but that does not affect our editorial judgement.

Make sure you protect your eyes from the sun’s rays when you’re getting active with a quality pair of sunglasses – we’ve tested out eight of the best frames to suit different sports, adventures and weather conditions.

What should I look for in a pair of Sports Sunglasses?

A good pair of sunglasses should filter out UV (ultraviolet) rays, which are harmful to both skin and eyes. Wondering what the difference between UVA and UVB is? UVA rays are less damaging than intense UVB rays – the latter are far stronger in the summer months, and their effect is also amplified by snow.

To protect your eyes from both, pick sunglasses that offer 100% UV protection – the good news is that most decent sunglasses on the market, and all of our top picks, do so. In the UK, look for sunglasses with a CE mark, which is a European standard of protection, and/or the British Standard, BSEN1836. Avoid any cheap pairs that don’t have a safety certification.

What do the labels on tinted lenses mean when buying sports sunglasses?

You might also see tinted lenses labelled by category (CAT0-CAT4) –CAT2 and CAT3 offer good levels of protection from sunlight and CAT4 is specifically for use in very bright sunlight. It’s worth noting that an affordable pair of sunnies with a certified UV filter will offer just as much protection as a designer pair – some of the difference in price is a higher quality lens, which will offer a sharper view, and a better design and build quality.

One common misunderstanding when shopping for shades is that the colour or darkness in tint of a pair of sunglasses correlates to eye protection – it doesn’t, and a clear pair with 100% UV protection can protect your eyes just as much as a dark set of lenses. Like ski goggles, there are sunglasses suitable for all weather conditions.

Should I buy brown or black lenses?

Brown and black lenses are good for bright sunlight, and a yellow tint is helpful in poor light conditions. Photochromic lenses, which darken on exposure to light, are ideal for long-distance cycling or running, where you need one pair of glasses to work all day.

You’ll also find polarised lenses on offer - these reduce the glare from water and snow and offer good visibility on flat surfaces such as roads, so they’re a brilliant choice for water sports, snow sports and for driving or road cycling.

Next up, consider the frame and style of the sunnies you buy. Traditional Wayfarer-style sunglasses are absolutely fine for lots of sports, but if you’re on snow or water, wraparound sunglasses which shied the sides of your eyes as well as the front are the best choice, as they protect you from peripheral glare.

Cyclists should also choose large wraparound styles, to protect eyes from wind, dirt and insects on the road or the trail. Make sure the sunglasses sit snugly on your face, and lean forwards to check they don’t slide down your nose or immediately fall off.

We find unisex sunglasses work perfectly well for women, and in fact most sports sunglasses are unisex, but if you have a small face a female-specific pair might be your best bet.