Sunday, October 11, 2009

Polarized Sunglasses in Hawaii

Polarized sunglasses are the way to go in Hawaii. The strong sunshine and reflections coming off of the ocean waves necessitate that extra coverage to protect the health of your eyes.

Two lines I'd recommend are: Maui Jim and Oakley. I researched them both well, and found that they have excellent technology put into their product. They work with different levels of polarization and bake them into each layer of the lens. Other companies like Ray Ban (and women's fashion line sunglasses--e.g. Prada, DKNY, Channel) only spray coat a top layer of "polarization" so that they can officially quality as a polarized sunglass. Don't let the latter models fool you--the coat will wear off in time and through extensive use.
Maui Jim has one of the lightest wrap around frames ever--perfect for the avid golfer. Cuts out the glare for those winning shots, and won't fall off your face with your swing. They have other great pairs, and in my opinion have a strong line for men's sunglasses. You can visit their headquarters in Lahanina, Maui. (Great made-in-Hawaii souvineir for yourself as well).

Similarly, Oakley rises high on technology and has amazing life time warranty policies. It's sports a more athletic and urban sensibility, and their frames are more suited for mens--I have yet to find a women's pair that fits my face well. I did however, purchase the Whistler in a burnished gold frame and loved it. It was a bit on the heavy side due to the weight of the lens, but the metal frame itself was light. On Maui, the sunglasses got thrown off my head by a wave and I lost the pair forever. I was so sad. I lost my Anna Sui polarized glasses that week as well. I later bougtht a second Oakley Whitler in silver and lost this pair somewhere on Oahu. A couple months later I lost a Ray Ban pair on Hilo. I now just pick whatever is available at Costco. {Maui Jims, Oakleys and Ray Bans are all available at Costco in Hawaii only.}
Sunglass Hut has a special Oakley deal right now: Exclusive Oakley designs, Free Oakley cleaning kit, free shipping, and double American Express bonus points.

For those with REI membership, Oakleys and Maui Jims are sold there giving you double REI and Oakley life time warranties. (Maui Jim gives you one year). REI is wonderful about returns, warranties and membership points. It's the Nordstroms of sporting stores.

And if you haven't been to the Oakley Headquarters in Foothill Ranch, California (South Orange County) it's worth a visit...if you can find it. I think they filmed some sci-fi movies here. And you'll soon see why when you arrive. It's truly an architect's dream project.

No comments: