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Used and Abused: Ombraz Armless Sunglasses

The no-sidearm design has this writer giving traditional shades the side-eye.

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I’ve put my Ombraz Armless Sunglasses through the wringer this spring. And, whether I am ski touring, hiking, trail running, mountain biking, doing yard work, or taking trips to the grocery store, they’ve quickly become a favorite piece of gear.

Designed with a comfort-focused acetate plastic, Ombraz’s aviator-style frames are eco-friendly and super lightweight, making them perfect for no bobbing around while I’m trail running. But more importantly, these shades are low profile with no screws, hinges, and a flat design. Also, you might notice, Ombraz sunnies don’t use traditional arms, and instead, use a cord that wraps all the way around the head.

Ombraz Sunglasses side view
The Ombraz with tortoise frames.Photo courtesy of Ombraz

The idea of cinching a string to keep my sunglasses in place seemed funny at first. I thought maybe this was just a gimmicky attempt to marry the Croakie—a line of material that prevents sunglasses from falling off a face—to the shades in some cut-the-middleman-out-of-the-equation kind of way. Turns out I was wrong.

There’s something liberating about quite literally attaching a pair of sunnies to your face. I love leaning over a garden bed of weeds or bending over to tie a shoe and never feeling the necessity to push them up the bridge of my nose, a common crime of regular shades.

Man with a beard wearing Ombraz
Beard not included with the purchase of sunglasses.Photo courtesy of Ombraz

The Ombraz blinkers are also polarized with scratch-resistant Zeiss Optic lenses that have UVB protection, providing me with clear, colorful vision as I go about my activities. While ski touring in warm, 40-degree weather in the Colorado sun, they never fogged up and I totally forgot I was even wearing these sunnies as I transitioned from a beanie to a baseball cap. 

The real winner is that you can treat these sunglasses like gas station throw-arounds, but they’re polarized and they’re the most packable sunglasses I’ve ever used. Take them off, wrap the cord around the flat frame, slip them in their pouch, and tuck them away wherever you choose.

And sure, the cord does act as a Croakie, letting the glasses rest around my neck when I’m not wearing them. But, after wearing them for a while, that part just feels like a bonus.