Windsurfing Sunglasses

Each windsurfing discipline presents unique challenges when it comes to choosing the most suitable eyewear.

 

The model that is best suited to you will depend on the genre of windsurfing that you specialise in, the strength of the wind, the water conditions and the prevailing weather conditions. The first two considerations relate more to frame choice and the last two are more relevant to lens choice. We take a look at all of these factors below.

 

Before taking a closer look at the disciplines within windsurfing and how they might influence your choice of sunglasses, it’s worth remembering that there are 6 key considerations for keeping your eyes happy and healthy on the water. 

6 KEY CONSIDERATIONS

UV & SPRAY PROTECTION

If there is a route for UV rays and sea-spray to get behind your lenses and into your eyes, it will be found!

With anything less than a full wrap frame, the gap between your face and the edge of the sunglasses frame is asking for trouble. Choosing an ‘8-base curve radius’ frame is essential to minimise the potential for lasting damage to your eyes.

GLARE & POLARISATION


When sunlight is reflected off a surface like water it can lead to distracting and blinding glare, particularly when the sun is at a low angle. This not only makes life uncomfortable but it can also be hazardous particularly in a fast moving environment.

Polarised lenses cut out this blinding glare and increase comfort and contrast, which in turn reduces eye fatigue.

IMPACT PROTECTION

The frame & lenses should have good impact resistance. This will be kinder to your pocket and protect you against eye injury.

The frame should be robust, capable of withstanding impacts and shatterproof. The lenses should be constructed of high impact resistant material like polycarbonate, nylon or NXT™(Trivex). Mineral lenses should be avoided at all costs.

VLT RATES


‘VLT’ (Visible Light Transmission) or “TV” rates determine what percentage of visible light (not to be confused with UV light) passes through the lenses and into the eyes.

Category 3 lenses are generally the most suitable for watersports, unless you’re located in a cloudy region where it might be more appropriate to consider a category 2 lens. Category 3 lenses let through between 8-18% of visible light.

LENS COATINGS

You’ll want to ensure that your lenses have at least a hydrophobic coating so that water droplets do not accumulate on the lens surface, and better still an oleophobic coating too.

A hydrophobic coating repels water whereas an oleophobic coating repels oils, sweat, dirt and dust. It is the last layer on the lenses. Having both of these coatings on your lenses will add significantly to your visual awareness and enjoyment.

RETENTION SYSTEM

Give some thought to what happens when you suffer a spectacular wipeout. Will the jolt catapult your sunglasses into the ocean? Sunnies going AWOL happens all too frequently and it’s surprising how fast it happens.

There are two ways to mitigate against this:

● Use sunglasses that float, or

● Use a reliable retention system

SUNGLASSES FOR WINDSURFING

Our three watershades are designed for windsurfing: (1) FLO, (2) Typhoon and (3) Surge.

The FLO is lightweight, strapless and unsinkable, and is incredibly versatile because it is at home on the ocean, at the beach or in the car. With no leash system to contend with thanks to its in-built flotation technology, it is a ‘plug & play’ watershade. It comes with all the essential coatings needed for watersports and with a heap of lens options for different environments. In general, the FLO is suited to the more leisurely windsurfing disciplines in calmer waters and light winds.

The Surge and Typhoon models are recommended for all types of racing, wave-riding or more challenging conditions where the wind is stronger than 8 knots or where there is chop. Although the FLO can be used in these conditions, they may be difficult to retrieve after a wipeout. And if you are competing and carefully planning your next tack when a rogue wave knocks you off balance and your sunnies get launched, the last thing you are going to want to do is turn around to fish your sunglasses out of the water.
Read More

Up Your Game with LiP Windsurfing Glasses!

Windsurfing glasses are arguably one of the most important investments a windsurfer can make. Strong wind, exposure to spray, reflected glare and UV radiation all play their part in challenging our vision and focus on the water. Our founders have been windsurfing for over 25 years so here at LiP we understand very well the challenges windsurfers face. With decades of R&D and continuous testing and refinement, we’ve probably put more effort into designing and building the ideal windsurfing sunglasses or surf eyewear more than anyone else. Our watershades designs are the result of a deep understanding and devotion to our favourite watersport, and the result is a selection of sunglasses for windsurfing that not only protect your eyes, but also help boost your enjoyment and performance. We offer three models of sunglasses for windsurfing and a wide range of lenses for each model to suit all windsurfing disciplines no matter your local weather conditions. Our three watershades are Typhoon, Surge and Flo. So, what might your prescription for windsurfing glasses be?

The Three Models of Sunglasses for Windsurfing

As there are many disciplines in windsurfing, the model of watershades that is best for you should be based on an assessment of the genre of windsurfing that you specialise in, the water conditions that you normally ride in, the strength of the wind, and the prevailing weather conditions. The first two considerations relate more to frame choice and other two considerations are more relevant to lens choice. The Flo is suited to light wind windsurfing or windfoiling in calm waters with little to no current. In this environment, locating floating sunglasses lost in a fall will be a straightforward exercise. In rougher seas or when windsurfing at higher speeds, you absolutely need a retention system, as locating and retrieving floating windsurfing sunglasses in choppy water will be challenging if not impossible. The Typhoon and Surge are specifically designed for these more challenging conditions as they incorporate our FAILSAFE leash and necklace system which is guaranteed to keep you connected to your sunglasses no matter how hard the wipeout. Our sunglasses for windsurfing are perfect for professionals and amateurs alike. Windsurfers just starting out in the sport will benefit from the reliable retention system as they are likely to take a tumble frequently. Free riders, speed freaks, and those launching back loops off the LiP will benefit greatly from the full eye protection afforded by our wrap-fit frames. Read our detailed description below for the suitability of all three watershades frames for the different windsurfing disciplines.

Windsurfing Sunglasses Lenses

The lenses are at the heart of any sunglasses and here we make no compromises on either quality or functionality. We source our lenses only from leading optical suppliers like ZEISS, and make use of the most up to date lens materials and state of the art coating technology available in the industry. Sunglasses for windsurfing need to be tailored to the individual as everyone perceives light in different ways and different locations may require a specific type of lens. What is comfortable for one person might not be the perfect fit for another. The first factor to consider is where you are likely to be windsurfing or windfoiling. If you know that you will be most likely in harsh sunlight with little cloud cover (e.g., Caribbean or Indian Ocean) you will benefit from choosing a lens tone geared to that environment. The same goes for someone who is likely to be windsurfing in low-lit, overcast conditions. Many of our lenses (but not all) are polarized. Our polarized lenses cut out 99% of reflected glare and 100% of UV, but they may not be the best choice if the day is cloudy. View our full range of lenses with comprehensive descriptions below for more information on lens tones and mirror coatings. Check which conditions each is ideal for, and that they are suitable for the frame you have selected. It’s time to up your game with the perfect windsurfing sunglasses for your environment. We are one of only a few companies globally which specializes in water sport eyewear. Buy from a respected manufacturer and invest in yourself – your eyes with thank you in the years to come. Read Less
Below is a quick reference guide for all three watershades.
Model / Functions Typhoon Surge Flo
UVA/B Protection Yes Yes Yes
Polarised Lenses? Yes Yes Some
Hydrophobic Coating? Yes Yes Yes
Oleophobic Coating? Yes Yes Yes
Hard Coating? Yes Yes Yes
Retention Leash? Yes Yes No
Floating Frame? No No Yes
Anti-fog Venting? Yes Yes No

FRAME RECOMMENDATIONS

TYPHOON

SURGE

FLO

general-windsurf

FREERIDE & NEWBIE

If the wind is 8 knots or over or there are white caps on the water’s surface, we recommend the Surge or Typhoon as both these models were specifically designed for windsurfing in average to strong wind conditions. Spotting floating sunglasses can be difficult if there is any chop or white water, especially if you take a tumble and it takes you a minute or so to regain your orientation and reconnect with your equipment.

If you’re learning or just finding your way in windsurfing, you’ll also benefit from the double vortex anti-fogging ventilation that both the Surge and Typhoon incorporate.  In the early stages of windsurfing, you tend to spend as much time ‘in’ (as opposed to ‘on’) the water, and wipeouts are frequent. Breathing heavily as you get back onto the board and get moving again is a primary cause of lens logging, particularly if the water is cold and the air above is humid. In such conditions, venting will help clear the lens fogging once you start moving.

 

 

wave-windsurf

WAVES & FREESTYLE

In anything more than a few feet of swell, and especially where you are going to encounter white-water, we strongly recommend that you choose the Surge or Typhoon as both these models are designed with a bombproof retention system which incorporates an adjustable chord leash that attaches to the temples of the sunglasses, which itself is attached to a silicone necklace. 

If you like to boost and occasionally experience epic wipeouts, the Typhoon is preferable owing to the fact that it has shock absorbing rubber on the inside of the frame. When you’ve bailed mid air on your sail and board and you’re coming down for a heavy splash, it’s good to know that there is padding surrounding the Typhoon frames that will cushion the impact.  

When riding waves, the leash system is guaranteed to keep you attached to your watershades, even if a wave closes out on top of you. If you’ve ever been caught inside, you’ll know that the forces unleashed can be incredibly powerful and disorientating. It will be virtually impossible to find floating sunglasses in bubbling frothy water, especially if it takes you a minute or so to regain your orientation and reconnect with your equipment.

race-windsurf

SPEED & SLALOM

For speed and slalom, you’re going to want the secure attachment of the Typhoon or Surge, no doubt about it. The last thing you’ll want when shredding it at maximum speed between the buoys is your glasses flying off as you hit bumps and swell. You’re not going to want to stop and look around for your sunnies while the race is still running. 

As with windfoiling, wipeouts at speed can be epic and intense. So you’ll definitely want to be tethered very securely to your sunglasses using the non-slip cord and silicone necklace that is included with the Typhoon and Surge.

An extra consideration for riding at speed is the closeness of the fit. Both the Surge and Typhoon frames are a ‘wrap’ shape. The Typhoon has a slightly fuller frame compared to the Surge while the Surge is more tapered at the periphery. If you’re travelling at high speeds  (20-40 knots), then you’ll want to make sure that the frame closely follows the contours of your head. If you have a gap at the side of the frame between the frame and your face, this can lead to turbulence forming at the edges which may cause your eyes to weep – not ideal when you’re moving at high speeds close to others.

foil-windsurf

FOILING

Foiling wipeouts can be intense and incredibly rapid, particularly if anything in the water gets in the way (like a shark, big fish or reef) and for this reason we strongly recommend that the best option is the Typhoon as this model offers the best impact protection with shock absorbing TPU rubber surrounding the frame. This is even more the case if you are racing because you’ll be moving at very high speeds. Crashes can catapult you into the water and this can also quickly put a distance between you and your sunglasses if they are not tethered to you.

If however, you like to foil in light wind flat water days, then any of our watershades will be suitable, including the Flo. Just bear in mind that wipeouts occur and if you’re wearing the Flo without a retainer leash, then it may take a little time to relocate them in the water if they fall off in the crash.


CHOOSE YOUR LENSES

Once you have chosen the frame most suitable for the discipline of windsurfing that you specialise in, consider next the lenses that are ideal for the weather conditions that you expect to experience. You can follow the broad guidelines detailed below for choosing the right lenses for the right weather conditions, but it is important to remember that not everyone perceives light in the same way, so ultimately the choice boils down to comfort and your personal preferences:

 

TYPHOON, SURGE & FLO 

SMOKE (GREY)

The smoke (grey) nylon lenses for the Typhoon and polycarbonate lenses for the Surge and FLO offer a neutral tone, and are both category 3 polarised lenses. If you like a natural representation of colours, then this is the lens for you.

The Typhoon ‘methane smoke’ nylon lenses by ZEISS have a  visible light transmission rate (VLT) of 11.1% which means that they are designed for bright & sunny environments.

For our Flo and Surge models, the VLT is 10% (FLO) and 12% (Surge). At these VLT levels, the lenses will be able to handle strong sunlight and significant glare. However, for cloudy days and sessions when the sun is well on its way down, they may be a little on the dark side when it comes to the end of the day.

Both are equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coatings to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

POLARIZED

 

TYPHOON & SURGE

BROWN

The brown base colour lenses for the Surge & Typhoon offer more enhanced colours, and are also both category 3 polarised lenses. As the base lens colour has a red/brown hue, this tends to lift or ‘pop’ all colours (but especially reds and greens). This in turn increases contrast.   

The specification for the methane brown Typhoon lenses was recently upgraded from polycarbonate to nylon material. The Zeiss nylon methane brown lenses have a VLT of 15.6%. For the Surge and Flo models, the VLT is 10%.  

There is a noticeable difference in the performance of the brown lenses in cloudy / darker conditions. Owing to the increased contrast afforded by brown base lenses, it is noticeably easier to see details when the light levels drop. This is not to say that the brown lenses do not function well in bright light. In fact, they perform admirably in bright conditions. Brown lenses are versatile all round lenses for all types of conditions.

As with the smoke lenses, both are equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

POLARIZED

SURGE & FLO

ice-blue-len-set-for-surge
ROSE / ICE BLUE

The Ice Blue polycarbonate lenses for the Surge & Flo offer yet more enhanced contrast and colour perception than the brown lenses. The base colour of these lenses is pink / rose. Our VIVIDE lens technology controls light transmission into the eye by filtering out blue light and enhancing red and green light. If your local kiteboarding environment is awash with hues of blue (e.g the Caribbean or Indian Ocean) these category 3 polarised lenses will bring the visible light back into balance.   

The VLT for the Ice Blue lenses is 8.35% which is right on the lower end of a category 3 lens.  It is therefore a lens suited to very bright sunny conditions and is the darkest tint of all our watershades lenses. However, as with our brown lenses, there is good performance of these lenses in cloudier conditions owing to the increased contrast afforded by the lens base colour. 

As with all our watershades lenses, the VIVIDE Ice Blue lenses come equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

POLARIZED

TYPHOON & FLO

VIOLET / PACIFIC BLUE

Similar in performance to Ice Blue lenses noted above, the violet base colour of the Pacific Blue lenses by ZEISS provide enhanced contrast and vivid colour perception. Available in both the Typhoon and Flo models, the lens material is polyamide (nylon) which offers super crisp vision with an Abbe value of 52, the highest of all of our lenses.

The Pacific Blue lenses subdue the amount of blue light entering the eye and enhance the reds and greens. The blue mirror coating also reflects blue light. These category 3 polarised lenses are perfect for bright sunny conditions in environments with deep blue ocean colours like the Pacific or Atlantic. 

The VLT for these lenses is 9.95% which is also at the lower end of a category 3 lens and so are perfectly suited to bright and sunny conditions.

The Pacific Blue lenses come equipped with Zeiss’s advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

POLARIZED

TYPHOON

BROWN / ROSE GOLD MIRROR

ZEISS Rose Gold nylon lenses have a brown base lens colour which is coupled with a rose gold mirror coating. This lens option is available only in the Typhoon. 

The brown base lens colour provides good contrast. The VLT rate for these lenses is 14.2% which while still squarely within the category 3 range, is a bit higher than some of our other watershades lenses which fall in the 8-12% range. This lens is therefore well equipped for lower light conditions and cloudier days, but may not be the ideal choice for super-bright sunny conditions. 

These lenses come equipped with Zeiss’s advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses..

POLARIZED

SURGE & FLO

BROWN / MULTILAYER GREEN

These polycarbonate Levanté Series lenses by LiP Sunglasses have a brown base colour and a multilayer green mirror coating. They are available in both the FLO and Surge models.

The brown base colour offers excellent contrast and colours really ‘pop’ with this lens. The VLT rate is 11.5%. so they are a good all round tint – not too bright – not too dark. As with most multilayer mirror coatings, depending on the angle at which these lenses are seen, the mirror colour blends from a deep blue to a rich dark green.

These lenses come equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

POLARIZED

SURGE & FLO

SMOKE / MULTILAYER BLUE

These polycarbonate Levanté Series lenses by LiP Sunglasses have a grey base colour and a multilayer blue mirror coating. They are also equipped with an anti-fog coating on the inner lens surface. They are available in both the FLO and Surge models.

The anti-fog coating is designed to defog lenses that become foggy due to body heat / moist exhaled breath so this lens is ideal for beginners that spend as much time in the water as on it.   

The grey base colour has a neutral tone and the VLT rate is 12.5% – which is a good all round tint for bright and sunny conditions. 

These Smoke Multilayer Blue mirror lenses come equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating, anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on the front surface and anti-fog and hard coating on the inner surface. 

POLARIZED

SURGE

SMOKE / MULTILAYER RED

These polycarbonate Levanté Series lenses by LiP Sunglasses have a grey base colour and a multilayer red mirror coating. They are available in the Surge model only.  

The grey base colour has a neutral tone and the VLT rate is 17.4% – ideal for cloudy or variable lighting conditions. The injected polarisation layer cuts out 99% of reflected glare

As with many multilayer mirror coatings, depending on the angle at which these lenses are seen, the mirror colour blends from deep red to fiery orange.  

These lenses come equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

POLARIZED

 

SURGE & FLO

COPPER-SMOKE / SILVER

These polycarbonate VIVIDE Series lenses by LiP Sunglasses have a blended copper-grey base colour and a uniform silver mirror coating. They are available in both the FLO and Surge models.  

The copper-grey base colour enhances reds and greens, while the uniform flash mirror coating cuts out some of the glare. With a VLT rate of 10%, these lenses are at the darker end of Category 3 lenses and are ideal for very bright cloudless skies.

However, as these lenses are not polarised, reflected glare is not significantly filtered out so these lenses may not be ideal if you are looking for lenses that remove glare. 

These lenses come equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating on both sides of the lenses.

NON POLARIZED

FLO

flo-multilayer-red
SMOKE / MULTILAYER RED

ZEISS multilayer red lenses are category 2 polycarbonate lenses with a VLT rate of 26%. The base colour is smoke (grey). It is a true tone lens with a progressive red multilayer coating with red/yellow hues. 

Available only in the Flo model, these lenses are suited to medium / low light conditions. As they are not polarised, they are not suitable for handling significant glare. They are however suitable for cloudy days with intermittent sunshine or dawn dusk sessions when glare is not a concern.

As with all our watershades lenses, these Zeiss lenses come equipped with an advanced hydrophobic coating to repel water, an anti-smudge oleophobic coating and a hard coating.

NON POLARIZED

We use cookies for a number of reasons such as keeping our site secure, personalising content and ads and to analyse how our site is used.  By using this website, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

We use cookies for a number of reasons such as keeping our site secure, personalising content and ads and to analyse how our site is used.  By using this website, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

/ Digital Marketing by King Kong
  • Water Sport Sunglasses
  • Windsurfing Glasses
  • Sunglasses For Sailing
  • Floating Sunglasses
  • Fishing Sunglasses
  • Surfing Sunglasses
  • Sunglasses For Paddle Boarding
  • Fly Fishing Polarized Sunglasses
  • Boating Sunglasses
  • Wakeboarding Sunglasses
  • Jet Skiing Sunglasses
  • Kayaking Sunglasses
  • Sunglasses For Rowing
  • []