The Difference Between Cheap & Expensive Sunglasses Lenses

Are Expensive Sunglasses Worth It?

Pick them up. Put them on. You’ll feel the difference.

Sunglasses come in all shapes and sizes, from aviators to wayfarers to submariners. But no matter what your style may be, your lenses are what ultimately make the sunglasses.  A cheap pair of lenses can be damaging to your eyes, will scratch easily, and offers subpar visual clarity. A high-quality pair of lenses should block out 100% of UV rays, offer lasting durability, and provide perfect optical clarity.

Compare Randolph Engineering to cheaper options and you’ll quickly see: Randolph sunglasses are built for those who demand the best.

High Quality Sunglasses

Worthy of Celebrity-Status.

  • Military spec construction, worn by US Military pilots and NASA astronauts
  • Jewelry metals like 23k Gold, double baked for durability
  • SkyTec™ Premium lenses, minimizes lens scratches
  • Made by hand in Massachusetts, USA
  • Guaranteed for life

Aviators with Durable Clarity

Made for those who see things differently.

Cheap vs Expensive Sunglasses: 5 Factors

1. UV Protection

Just because a pair of sunglasses says “blocks UV rays”, doesn’t mean it has complete, 100% UV protection. Cheap plastic sunglasses usually just have a thin tinted coating on them to provide a very weak level of protection. A high-quality pair of sunglasses will completely block all harmful UVA/UVB rays. Prolonged exposure to UV rays can lead to a number of eye problems, including cataracts, macular degeneration, or corneal sunburn. All of Randolph’s proprietary lens technology (SkyTec™, SkyForce™ and SkyForce Air™) have 100% UVA / UVB protection

Good enough for fighter pilots, good enough for us.

2. The Best Sunglass Lenses

The best sunglasses lenses are durable. A cheap pair of glasses can quickly become unusable due to scratches. Our SkyTec™ lenses are developed with military pilots in mind – meaning they’re ready for anything. All SkyTec™ lenses are built to be weatherproof, scratch resistant, and impact resistant. Scratch resistant coating is applied to all our lenses. Then, the lenses are tested for their impact resistance by dropping steel balls onto each lens from three feet above. If you want a pair of sunglasses that stand the test of time, go with either chemically-tempered glass lenses or our SkyTec™Mineral Glass lenses with a durable hard coat.

Complete UV Protection

Look great in these stunning Aviators!

3. Sharp Visual Clarity

There’s durability, then there’s clarity. Cheap sunglasses will offer a tint that might obscure your vision, whereas expensive sunglasses provide a tint to enhance your vision. Glass and nylon lenses are the best lens materials for optical clarity. While low-end materials quickly warp and distort, both glass and polycarbonate lenses provide ideal sun protection with zero distortion. Our SkyTec™ Mineral Glass lenses are ground and polished to provide a level of optical clarity fit for fighter pilots. With these sunglasses, your lens will rival that of a professional camera’s.

4. Durable Metal Frames

When you purchase quality metal frames, they can last a lifetime. Or two. That’s why Randolph offers a lifetime guarantee on the solder joints of every pair of sunglasses. We once heard from a fan who shut the hood of their car on a pair of Aviators – but don’t worry, they bent right back into shape. You won’t find this strength in cheap metal sunglasses, and certainly not from a plastic pair. Randolphs are plated at 5x the industry standard for the ultimate durability.

Built to last a lifetime. Or Two.

Worn by pilots, adventurers and tastemakers alike.

5. Premium Comfortable Acetate

When you have a pair of sunglasses you love, you’ll wear them every day. The comfort of Mazzucchelli acetate is unbeatable for long-term wear. Each pair of Randolphs are coated with premium acetate on the temple tips for a soft fit around the ears. Randolph’s Fusion Collection also contains soft acetate hand-inlayed around the lenses, and styles with a sweat bar, including the Aviator II and Sportsman, contain soft acetate against the forehead. You’ll never want to take them off. Cheap sunglasses, on the other hand, can’t match this level of comfort. You might wear them for a summer just for the fashion. Instead, you’ll wear Randolphs for a lifetime of fashion and function.

Why are Sunglasses so Expensive?

In order to achieve superior lens quality and military-grade frame durability, each pair of Randolphs go through a rigid manufacturing process. Family owned and operated for three generations, we’ve proudly supplied aviator sunglasses to the US military from 1978 until today.

In over 200 individual steps, more than 50 experts cut, mold, twist, plate and polish each and every pair. Randolph sunglasses are also wear tested and drop tested to pass strict quality assurance standards.

This handcrafted process takes place in the United States. Since 1973, we’ve been committed to keeping this craft on American soil. We exist thanks to extraordinary fans who seek more from their adventures.

Cheap Sunglasses Lenses Aren’t Worth the Cost

Clearly, a cheap pair of sunglasses just isn’t worth the potential damage it can cause to your eyes and the discomfort they can bring for long-term wear. With poor UV protection, easily damaged material, and low-quality optical clarity, a pair of plastic sunglasses simply aren’t worth it.

For great vision and lasting quality, go with a high-quality pair of sunglasses with SkyTec™ lenses.

Perfect Optical Clarity

Look great in these stunning Aviators!

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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of Randolph Engineering and not of individuals or other corporations. Statements are limited to opinions by Randolph Engineering and not endorsements by others.

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