I’ve been testing the new Leupold Performance Eyewear glasses since January 2020, when I wore a prototype at SHOT Show Range Day.
In a nutshell, they’re designed, machined, and assembled in the U.S.A.
Most of the models are ANSI Z87.1+ rated but you’ll want to check each specific model as there are a couple of pairs that are not. Check out the video of them being shot below.
To receive an ANSI rating, impact-rated eye protection must pass certain high-mass and high-velocity tests and provide eye protection from the side. Impact-rated eye protection will have a plus symbol (+). Impact-rated flat lenses, for instance, will be marked “Z87+.
All of the glasses shown in this review are polarized, which in my opinion is important. Polarization is a filter that reduces horizontal glare like what you get off of water, snow, windshields, or really anything that reflects light.
They also have a special hydrophobic coating that sheds dust, water, or other liquid so that it just runs off.
A few of the models are compatible with prescription lenses.
My favorite pair is the Switchback model because it’s a little wider and I feel like it fits my face better. I’ve found them to be quite comfortable for everyday wear, fishing, hunting, driving, and the occasional trip to the range. They have absolutely reduced eye strain in bright conditions.
So far they’ve lasted longer than any pair of eyewear that I’ve ever had, except my shooting glasses which I only wear while shooting. They are still free of scratches.
I have two complaints. The first one is completely personal, and someone else’s experience may be different, but when wearing the glasses with earmuff style hearing protection the arms dig into my head and ears and I find that uncomfortable. It’s not unbearable by any means, just not as comfortable as my dedicated shooting glasses. This is NOT a problem during normal wear, just with earmuffs and it’s no worse than other brands. It’s an issue for me and so I’m mentioning it.
It’s not a huge problem as I use them more for driving, hunting, and fishing, which is really what they’re designed for, than I do at the range.
The second complaint is the price. I think they could be a little less expensive. However, they’re within $20-30 of Magpul’s and Oakley’s similar offerings and some of the models cost less.
As far as ballistic protection, the glasses would have saved my eyes had I been shot in the face by a 12 gauge shotgun at 35 yards. They won’t save your eyes at 15 yards and they won’t save you from 9mm frag if you’re only six inches away from the where the frag originates. Watch the video!
Overall, they’re pretty awesome glasses that have an ANSI rating for those times in life when you didn’t know you needed it. They look good and don’t look overly tactical. They’re very appropriate for concealed carry type activities and don’t scream, “I’m wearing a gun.”Visit Leupold’s Performance Eyewear Page for More Information