What is my main driver for writing reviews? Is it to inform the reader? Is to show my obvious personal vanity? Or is it the forlorn hope that some company will send me some free products to review (even if it is only for the week). To be honest it is a little of them all - yes I really do like having a joke at my own personal expense - my rationale being that everyone else thinks like I do but just hasn't got the gumption to admit it.
So why then start off my new round of reviewing items with the cheapest thing I have bought (inner tube and tyre levers excluded). Well maybe it is an effort by me to connect with the younger reader, who is cash strapped and busy paying off his student loan along with his drinks bill at the same time (not easy I hear). Or just maybe, I shocked myself that I actually went out and bought one of the cheapest products out there in this area and am generally very pleased with them (limitations being accepted given they are £14.99) the picture below links to them on the Evans website.
Well I have always been one for paying over the odds to get the "best" designer kit for me and my bike. I have the cash and I am sad enough to need the flash kit. I also have a terrible tendency to lose things like keys, money and glasses. Therefore, I was not willing to pay over £50 on a pair of shades. Even still, it came as a shock to me that I bought these glasses - and do you know what, I do not regret it one bit.
What do I need them for? Well mostly to stop flies and pollen going in my eyes. I had been suffering from hay fever lately and it was making my eyes water whilst riding (not the best situation to be in). I needed some glasses for days where there was no sun, I went for the slightly smoked grey / mirrored version, this seems to take the blinding glare out on sunny days and yet are still more than adequate when it is dark.
The glasses have an excellent amount of eye coverage - I find that a large lens is better as it compltely covers the eyes, keeping more pollen out and all the insects, so a big plus for these glasses, also I can't help but feel that miniature lenses look a bit crappy.
I tend to sweat quite a bit when riding (once again because I am sad and am always trying to keep up with all the young fit riders out there) and I have not had the need to readjust these glasses on runs of up to 40 miles. They don't slip down my nose because the grips are good and the glasses themselves are very light, so another plus for these glasses.
Now for the all important question - how do I look in them? I personally feel (and yes this is purley personal preference) that they look pretty good, you would have no idea that they are so cheap when you see someone in them.
The downside of these glasses is because they are cheap they can scratch easily (not a problem if you don't buy the grey slightly mirrored ones like I did) but I would assume that the others although less likely to scratch will easilt suffer from "scoring". They come with a case and cloth carry case, so it is up to you - use these items when they are not on your head and all should be fine if you take care.
These glasses come in a range of colours and are so cheap you can buy more than one if you want. I had initially thought I would buy yellow ones - but after trying them on I looked like I had just escaped from the local gun club.
The most important thing about these glasses for me was just how comfortable I find them - this is going to vary from person to person. Like I said at the begining I was willing to go as high as £50 - but truth be told I rejected all the other glasses because these were by far the most comfortable for me.
Here's the rub of it all - glasses need to be comfortable. You stroll into the shop and there they all are, locked away in cabinets or in their plastic sales packaging. My extra tip is, sod the packaging - either open it up if you intend to buy seriously and try them on - check how they look in a mirror if you want, if you are slightly more timid then ask a salesperson to get them out for you - if they refuse and have no testers to try out, then walk out and go somewhere that does. No one can tell you what is going to be comfortable for you - only you will know when you try them on - so try before you buy!
So the Mambo rating? A value busting 9/10