Are Ray-Ban sunglasses worth it? – KXAN Austin

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The best Ray-Ban sunglasses

Since their inception in 1936, Ray-Ban sunglasses have become a cultural phenomenon across the world, reigning as the world’s most popular luxury brand. Its best-known designs, the Aviator and Wayfarer, are iconic accessories worn by everyone from fighter pilots to movie stars – even the President of the United States. Besides the familiar styles designed for both men and women, Ray-Bans are recognizable by their higher-than-average prices, especially compared to cheaper shades sold in department stores and gas stations.

If you’re looking for a new pair of sunglasses this summer, a cool pair from Ray-Ban is also a big investment, but are they really worth it?

What to know before buying Ray-Ban sunglasses


Ray-Ban sunglasses have a long and storied history in the United States, beginning with their development by the US Army Air Corps and eyewear manufacturer Bausch & Lomb in 1929. Aviator was originally designed to reduce glare and prevent fogging, two of the many distractions fighter pilots could encounter. What began as military equipment quickly became a commercial success in the United States, thanks in part to General Douglas MacArthur’s war photos during and after World War II.

Ray-Ban RB2140 Original Wayfarer Sunglasses

In the 1950s, B&L expanded the Ray-Ban line with its other most recognizable style, the Traveler, which was quickly embraced by cultural icons like Bob Dylan and James Dean. In addition to their pop appeal, Ray-Bans won over wearers with their high-quality frames and cutting-edge eye protection. The line was sold to Italian eyewear giant Luxottica in 1999, and Ray-Ban remains the world’s most popular sunglasses brand.


Besides cultural touchstones, Ray-Ban sunglasses are popular for their functionality as protective eyewear. According to American Optometric Association, excessive exposure to solar radiation over time increases the likelihood of developing cataracts, eye cancer and other conditions later in life. For adequate protection, the AOA recommends wearing sunglasses that block UV rays as much as possible, in addition to reducing visible light and eliminating visual distortions. Fortunately, all Ray-Ban lenses offer 100% protection against the harmful ultraviolet rays that your eyes absorb while wearing the sunglasses.

The original Ray-Ban G-15 solid green lenses absorb 85% of visible light, effectively block glare and remain popular nearly 100 years after their innovation. Blue, brown and gray gradient lenses are also popular, which change from a solid color on top to a clear finish on the bottom. They are as fashionable as they are functional and are a great option for road trips and sightseeing.

Most Ray-Bans are also available with polarized lenses which significantly reduce reflective glare. Polarized lenses offer no additional protection against UV rays, but they are especially useful when driving or near water. Mirrored lenses offer similar prevention of reflective glare, and some pairs of Ray-Bans offer a combination of both lens features, providing maximum protection from the sun.

Construction and functionality

Ray-Ban RB2140 Original Wayfarer Evolve Everglasses

Ray-Ban offers a high functionality factor with most of its tints, relieving eye strain and preventing visual distractions like glare – factors that could affect a number of activities, including driving. Ray-Ban also offers tinted, clear and of transition styles for people with poor vision and various eye conditions. The brand offers features for everyone, regardless of their visual needs.

Ray-Bans are also well constructed from high quality materials and designed to stand the test of time. Frames are made with several different materials that vary in durability and cost, with nylon at the cheaper end and titanium steel for the bigger budgets. Like many glasses, the most common frame material for Ray-Bans is cellulose acetate, a durable, lightweight, and hypoallergenic synthetic plastic. Plus, every pair of Ray-Bans comes with a carrying case to help wearers protect their investment and hopefully prevent them from losing their expensive shades.


Ray-Ban Justin Rb4165 Polarized Rectangular Sunglasses

Ray-Bans didn’t become the first name in goggles just for their quality and functionality; they also paved the way for sunglasses as fashion accessories. Although the brand offers sunglasses designed specifically for Men or women, their classic styles are universally appealing. the club masterone of the brand’s “classic icons”, has a retro chic touch that never goes out of style, while the new style Jack pays homage to the round and hexagonal popular models in the 1960s and 1970s. Icons like Marilyn Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, John Lennon and Michael Jackson all made an impact wearing Ray-Ban classics, enshrining the Aviator, Wayfarer and others in the pantheon of shades.

Are Ray-Ban sunglasses worth it?

For all their practical benefits and classic, fashionable styles, Ray-Ban sunglasses are worth the investment. Cheap sunglasses are a great option for trying out new styles, but ultimately, if you want a pair of sunglasses that look great and protect your eyes, Ray-Bans can’t be beat.

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Matt Fleming written for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their buying decisions, saving them time and money.

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