Best floating sunglasses: 6 floatable sunnies for active sailors

Best floating sunglasses: 6 floatable sunnies for active sailors

Invest in a pair of the best buoyant floating sunglasses, which will stay afloat even when dropped in water – a necessity for sailors and watersports fanatics that want to prevent losing sunglasses at sea.


Protecting your eyes at sea is necessary for sailors, who are exposed to bright glare and harmful UVA and UVB rays for extended periods. But investing in one of the best pairs of sailing sunglasses can be a waste of money if a mishap causes them to fall off and sink straight to the bottom of the seabed.

For sailors and watersports fanatics with a tendency to lose their sunnies at sea, a pair of floating sunglasses is the solution.

Made from lightweight plastics or bamboo wood, floatable sunglasses are inherently buoyant. They are designed to stay above the waves so that they can quickly be retrieved by their owners. Floating sunglasses offer a convenient alternative to sunglasses retainers, which can be cumbersome to use.

Additionally, buoyant sunglasses are incredibly comfortable for long-term wear because of their lightweight nature, making you forget that you even have them on.

There are many different types of floating sunglasses on the market, with varying shapes and sizes suited to every individual. For sailors, the best floatable sunglasses offer polarized lenses with certified total UV ray protection, as well as hydrophobic and oleophobic lens coatings to protect your sunnies from saltwater exposure. Features like an anti-scratch design and wrap-around arms will ensure they can stand up to all conditions.

For sailors hoping to never lose another pair sunglasses, we roundup six of the best floating sunglasses to buy right now.

6 of the best floating sunglasses for sailors


Tribord 100 floating polarized sunglasses

Reasons to buy

-Secure fit
-Eco-conscious design

Reasons to avoid

-Some buyers noted the area of eye coverage is small
-Frame size can be tight for some wearers, but various sizes are offered

At a very reasonable price, Decathlon’s sailing brand Tribord has developed lightweight floatable sunglasses for offshore cruising. They are equipped with Category 3, 95% polarised lenses for excellent UV protection and reduced glare while on the water.

The low-density frames have an air capsule moulded into each arm to ensure they stay above the waves should they fall off, but wrap-around arms and a secure fit should prevent any accidents to begin with. Two different sizes ensure a secure fit for most face types.

The brand also boasts eco-friendly credentials. By reducing the lens thickness by 0.5mm, the designers have reportedly cut the model’s CO2 impact by 13% without compromising on eye protection.

Buy now from Decathlon

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Gill Kynance watersport sunglasses

Reasons to buy

-Hydrophobic and oleophobic coatings to reduce damage from salt and oil residues
-Transient lens filters suitable for bright, regular and darker lighting

Reasons to avoid

-“One size fits all” may not fit every face

The Kynance model is a popular choice for floating sunglasses by Gill. All sailing sunglasses by the British brand feature total UVA, UVB and UVC protection, but the Kynance style adds integral floatation, oleophobic technology to repel oils from fingerprints or sunscreen and a hydrophobic coating for clear vision even after saltwater submergence.

The polarized category 3 lenses allow for anywhere from 8 to 18% light transmission, meaning they’re suitable to wear in various weather conditions. A classic style in two different colour tones makes them a good choice for most face types too – and all for under £50.

Buy now on Amazon


Andwood bamboo floating polarized sunglasses

Reasons to buy

-Stylish, hand-made frames
-Unisex design
-Eco-friendly, natural material

Reasons to avoid

-Lenses are not mirrored, though the brand assures us this doesn’t diminish UV protection
-Some wearers noted that protective lens film may rub off if submerged frequently

The air-filled cellular structure of bamboo wood makes it an inherently buoyant material. For sailors in search of a plastic-free alternative to regular floating sunglasses, bamboo frames are an eco-friendly option. Andwood is a popular brand, with each pair of unisex sunglasses hand-made with a unique wood grain pattern.

Aside from comfortable and stylish frames, Andwood sunglasses are designed for wear by the water with total UV protection and polarized lenses to protect the eyes from the sun’s glare.

Buy now on Amazon


GoPro Mezcal floating sunglasses

Reasons to buy

-Polarized lenses
-Extremely comfortable, lightweight frames for long-term wear
-Three pairs of interchangeable lenses for different light conditions.

Reasons to avoid

-Fragile frames; users have noted intensive use can lead to chipping, scratching and lens tint degradation
-Swapping in the different lenses may be fiddly
-Frame size made for bigger heads

Action camera brand GoPro has turned its hand to creating sunglasses for its sporty customers. Designed to float in fresh as well as saltwater, GoPro polarized sunnies stand out by offering three interchangeable lenses to suit various light conditions.

For low light on cloudy days, wearers can opt for blue lenses, while the amber-tinted option is ideal for sun exposure at sea. Finally, the grey lenses are designed for use in extremely bright conditions including while skiing or driving.

If you can be bothered to change out the lenses, these glasses will do a great job of protecting your eyes. Users have also noted that the lightweight feel of the frames makes them extremely comfortable for long-term wear.

There are three frame styles in GoPro’s floating sunglasses range – poolside, magnum and mezcal – but the mezcal option is generally preferred by active wearers, as the frames are smaller and more compact for a secure fit.

Buy now from GoPro


SunGod x INEOS Britannia Tempests sunglasses

Reasons to buy

-Carbon-neutral product made from recycled materials
-Extremely sturdy, crush and scratch-resistant design
-Grip-lock arms and nose pad for strong and comfortable hold
-Lifetime guarantee; buyers receive a new pair in case of damage

Reasons to avoid

-More expensive

SunGod has become a well-renowned brand in the professional sports world, worn by the likes of McLaren racing drivers, the Lionesses of England’s rugby team and even Catherine, the Princess of Wales.

The new limited edition INEOS Britannia Tempests are an official partner of Britain’s America’s Cup team, led by legendary sailor Sir Ben Ainslie.

As well as the expected total UV protection and polarization, the Tempests boasts an ultralight 27g, floatable frame, a strong-hold grip for active wearers and a hydroleophobic coating.

The frames are credited with extreme sturdiness and supremely secure hinges, having been rigorously tested to be scratch- and crush-resistant.  To prove the point, SunGod customers are even given a lifetime warranty on every pair they buy, making the extra cost a worthwhile investment.

The cherry on top is that SunGod sunglasses are a carbon-neutral product, with frames made from recycled materials.

Buy now from SunGod


Rheos Bahias floating polarized sports sunglasses

Reasons to buy

-Wraparound, wide-armed frame prevents slipping and increases face protection
-Anti-scratch, hydrophobic and oleophobic lens coatings
-Excellent visual clarity
-A portion of sales profits donated to waterway protection charities

Reasons to avoid

-Designed for smaller faces
-More delicate frames and lenses

Rheos is a staple brand in the realm of nautical eyewear. Coopers are typically the best-selling model, but sailors, watersports lovers and anglers swear by the wrap-around frames of the Bahia model for a more secure fit and increased splash and wind protection.

The polarized lenses offer total UV ray protection and reportedly excellent visual clarity in all types of conditions. Hydrophobic and oleophobic lens coatings also ensure that these floating sunnies can stand-up to frequent saltwater and sunscreen exposure.

Users have noted that despite the higher price, however, Rheos frames and lenses are far more delicate than other brands. A portion of that higher cost will be donated to waterway protection charities though, which is a comforting thought for buyers.

Buy now on Amazon

Didn’t find what you’re looking for? Head to Amazon’s dedicated sailing page for more marine products.

The post Best floating sunglasses: 6 floatable sunnies for active sailors appeared first on Yachting World.


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