The best fishing sunglasses are polarized. These sunglasses can block harmful UV rays from damaging your eyes and also cut down on the glare from the reflection of light that comes up off the water. (Learn More)
Fishing sunglasses are specialized lenses that have vertical polarized filters. This helps fishermen see through the water to the fish they are trying to catch.
Wearing a good pair of fishing sunglasses can protect your eyes and also increase your chances for a successful fishing trip.
Best Fishing Sunglasses
A good pair of fishing sunglasses can help you spot what you are looking for on a fishing trip — fish!
Fishing sunglasses are designed to protect your eyes from the sun and to cut down on the glare that the sun can create on the surface of the water. This glare caused by the sun’s reflection on the water can make it hard to see what is under the water, such as fish.
The best fishing sunglasses both protect you from UV rays and improve your vision clarity. They can help you spot the fish under the water and see colors more clearly.
Polarized sunglasses can also help to decrease eyestrain that is caused by squinting to see through the water. This can lessen the potential for headaches and eye fatigue, helping you to make it through a long day of fishing more easily.
When looking for a good pair of sunglasses for fishing, be sure to take the following into account:
Full protectionChoose lenses that block 100 percent of UVA and UVB rays for the best protection while in the sun and on the water.
Vertical filterLook for sunglasses that are polarized with a specialized vertical filter to cut down on glare so you can see clearly through the water.
Polarization thicknessPolarized filters come in different thicknesses, usually 0.75 mm or 1.1 mm. The thicker the polarization, the more durable the glasses. When choosing glasses with a thicker polarization filter, you are better protected from inevitable drops.
ColorThe color of both the lenses and the frames can be important too. For example, black frames cut down on sunlight reflection on the nose, forehead, and ears.When it comes to lens color, the type of fishing you are doing can come into play. For example, blue-colored lenses are great for offshore fishing, as they can most easily block yellow light to help with color contrast and more vibrant colors. Green mirrored lenses are good for fishing in shores, streams, and flats, offering high contrast as well.When fishing on an overcast or partly cloudy day, silver mirrored lenses can help you see well through these variable light conditions. If you are fishing at sunrise, sunset, or when it is extremely overcast, light yellow mirrored lenses are good for these low-light conditions.Gray-colored lenses are a great general purpose lens for both fishing and use in other conditions. Brown and dark copper are best for bright sunny days.
DurabilityChoose lenses that are scratchproof. Typically, glass lenses are more scratch-resistant than plastic or polycarbonate ones, but they can also shatter more easily. It is often best to consider high-quality polycarbonate lenses for both safety and longevity. They are also lighter.
ComfortChoose an ergonomic fit. You are going to need to wear these sunglasses for an extended period of time, so you want them to fit well and cover your eyes as securely as possible. Fishing sunglasses often have bigger or wraparound lenses as compared to traditional sunglasses for use on land.
The Need for Sunglasses While Fishing
UV light exposure from the sun can age and damage all parts and structures of your eyes. It is important to wear sunglasses when you are going to be out in the sun. Even on a cloudy day, you can be exposed to UV light.
Fishing entails long days on the water and out in the elements. Water also reflects UV light, exposing you to 65 percent more sunlight and UV rays than you would be exposed to on land alone.
- Age-related macular degeneration
- Corneal damage
- Decreased visual quality
- Sunburn on the eye
- Solar retinopathy, which occurs from looking directly at the sun
- Non-cancerous growths like pterygium and pinguecula
- Snow blindness, a type of photokeratitis, which can develop from UV light exposure that is reflected off water, sand, or snow
When you are going to be on the water fishing for any length of time, it is important to wear a hat to protect your face, head, and skin from the sun’s dangerous rays and also UV-blocking sunglasses to shield your eyes.
Protect Your Eyes
Polarized and specialized fishing sunglasses can be costly, but remember that this is an investment in your eye health. These sunglasses can actually end up helping you come home with a bigger haul as well.
The best fishing sunglasses are ones that you can wear on the water all day, are polarized and glare-resistant, and decrease UV exposure to your eyes.
How to Protect Your Eyes from UV Damage. (July 2019). Johns Hopkins Medicine.
17 Best Polarized Fishing Sunglasses in 2020. (February 2020). Global Fishing Report.
The Sun, UV Light and Your Eyes. (June 2020). American Academy of Ophthalmology (AAO).
8 Polarized Fishing Sunglasses Reviewed (For Fly, Sight Fishing, etc). (July 2020). Outdoor Empire.
Why Do Fishermen Prefer Polarized Sunglasses? (August 2020). Fishing Sunglasses.