Let’s face it—the sunglasses most of us own are not sustainable. If they break, they usually go into landfills. (Or worse, they’re lost: dropped into waterways or on trails.) And how many pairs have you owned—and lost or broken—in your lifetime? It’s a question worth pondering. All that plastic adds to the garbage crisis unfolding around the world as we speak. But we need sunglasses, right? So why not pick the most sustainable pair possible, without sacrificing performance or fashion?
Enter Ombraz. Their sunglasses are armless, which is a concept worth examining. Company co-founder Jensen Brehm was on a camel safari in India when the sidearms broke off his sunglasses. He Macgyvered a piece of twine to both hinges and wrapped the twine around the back of his head. It worked. They were secure yet comfortable, and when he didn’t need them, they hung around his neck or slid safely into his pocket.
We tested the Leggero and it excels especially when you’re active—i.e., running, paddling, biking, climbing. If you’re used to regular sunglasses, which you can remove in one intuitive motion, Ombraz—which you need to loosen and tighten each time—might seem slightly annoying at first. But once you’ve figured out the (recycled) nylon cord for yourself, it will start to be intuitive.
And after trying Ombraz shades while paddling in hot weather, or trail-running in hot weather, you may not want to go back to conventional shades. If like me you’re annoyed by glasses constantly slipping down your nose—that’s all over if you’re wearing Ombraz. Naysayers might point out that you could simply wear conventional sunglasses with a removable strap, but I’ve always found that combo to be heavy and cumbersome. Ombraz sunglasses are decidedly uncumbersome. They’re among the lightest and definitely the most compact sunglasses we’ve ever tested.
With Ombraz the focus is on the innovative armless tech, but it’s worth pointing out that the lenses are Zeiss—and 100% UVA/UVB protected, polarized, hard-coated for scratch-resistance, hydrophobic, oleophobic and smudge-resistant. And there’s a lens colour for every condition.
More about Ombraz’ sustainability efforts here.