Oakley’s Jawbreaker Prizm Road sunglasses are, for the most part, an excellent pair of shades for road cycling. The optics are crystal clear with no distortion and the Prizm tint clarifies road surface as well as provide the basic UV protection and shade for your eyes. The adjustable fit is comfortable and, thanks to Oakley’s so-called Unobtainum rubber bits, quite sturdy.
Yes, the look is polarizing (forgive the pun), but I’ll focus here on what you see from the inside out, not how the glasses themselves look. That’s for you to judge.
The 53mm tall lens works well for riding in the drops. The extended upper piece lets you see up the road when your head is tilted down.
The 131mm width wraps around the face considerably, with scalloped lower sections making room for your cheekbones.
My own gripe with the construction design is how the Oakley logo protrudes on both sides into your peripheral vision.
There are tradeoffs regarding the merits of frameless glasses versus something like the Jawbreaker with a full frame. Frameless offers excellent, unobstructed vision, but, if you drop ’em, you scratch ’em. The Jawbreaker frame isn’t really visible (save those annoying logos), unless you’re really rolling your eyes, and it has saved me more than a few times when accidentally dropping the glasses.
The nosepiece is adjustable for width and the earpieces for length. Both feature a tacky rubber that Oakley, in true Oakley fashion, calls ‘Unobtanium’. Whatever the silly name, the stuff works quite well. When rattling across lousy road surfaces or even the cobbles of Paris-Roubaix, the glasses stay perfectly in place, no matter how much sweat is pouring off your face.
Speaking of pouring sweat, Oakley has an excellent water-deflecting treatment that it puts on the outside of the lenses. For my money, I’d like to see it on the inside, too, as sweat smears are annoying.
The vents on the lens do their job. I have yet to notice the lenses fogging up, despite slow, laborious climbing in a full range of temperatures.
Opening the Jawbreakers to change or clean the lens is a tidy mechanical process. You flip up the nosepiece on a pivot, slide open a little metal latch and the upper and lower frame pieces then pivot open like a jaw.
The channels that hold the lens have little rubber bumpers too for a quiet and secure fit.
The Jawbreakers aren’t the lightest things in the world, but at 34g they aren’t a nuisance on your face.
The Jawbreakers come in a variety of frame colors and special edition models.