SALT Vargas Sunglasses

Words Marcus Bloom | July 05, 2010
SALT Vargas sunglasses offer an incredibly comfortable, modernized take on the classic aviator design
Words Marcus Bloom July 05, 2010

Wrapping up our three-day lifestyle sailing feature, we’ve got a look at a product that, as with our other sailing gear, is at home off the boat as much as it is on.  The product to which I’m referring is a pair of SALT. Optics Vargas sunglasses – sunglasses that to date are hands down the best pair of aviators I’ve ever owned.  And believe me, I’ve owned plenty.

But before I tell you why I love the SALT. Vargas sunglasses, let me tell you a bit about SALT. Optics themselves.  Founded in 2006 and located in beautiful coastal southern California, SALT. has set out to provide the world with an alternative to the mass-produced optics of conglomerates and licensed brands.  Their optics are built on the principles of simple, timeless design; impeccable quality; useful technology; hand-craftsmanship; and a pure fit.  Is this a beautifully written mission statement?  Absolutely.  But SALT. delivers.  Their sunglasses are among the most comfortable I’ve ever worn; they look great; and SALT.’s polarized lenses give me seemingly superhero-like vision they’re so clear.

But back to the SALT. Vargas.  I own sunglasses in seemingly all shapes and sizes, but my favorite all-around style has to be the aviator.  They’re just a classic, beautiful all-around design.  They can be worn anywhere, for virtually any activity, and when spending time out on the water, they’re my go-to sunglasses.  The SALT. Vargas takes the classic aviator design and subtly streamlines it.  The lenses are just a touch shorter than some of the other aviators I own, and they’re contoured to wrap ever so slightly around your face.  The result is a more tailored aviator that despite its more modern character, retains the classic aviator styling – and they look fantastic.

Another endearing feature of the SALT. Vargas is the comfort.  In fact, this may very well be the defining attribute of both the SALT. Vargas and SALT. Optics as a whole.  SALT. are incredibly, incredibly comfortable.  I can’t tell you how many pairs of sunglasses I own that just don’t fit right.  They’re either too loose in an area, too tight, or there’s some part of them that after wearing them for a day, becomes an annoyance.  With SALT., the fit is absolutely perfect.  I can wear the SALT. Vargas all day and be completely comfortable.  They offer the perfect level of security, so when I’m on the boat or doing anything else with a high activity level, I don’t have to worry the SALT.’s are going to slip off.  But they’re not too tight either, so there’s not the feeling after wearing them for a few hours you need to take them off to give your aching temples a break.  The fit truly is superb.

Of course, when selecting sunglasses, the main goal is to protect your eyes, which is where quality lenses become vital.  All SALT. Optics feature PFV (prism-free vision) polarized technology.  If you’re unfamiliar with a prism in sunglasses, it’s when the optical center of a lens is cut and placed somewhere other than directly over the pupil.  Unless prescribed by a doctor, this causes a pulling effect on the eye and leads to distortion, both of which you don’t want.  All SALT. Optics utilize a prism-free design, meaning the optical center is always placed directly over your pupil.  As a result, you gain distortion free clarity, greater color contrast and maximum eye comfort.  In addition, all SALT. lenses are polarized, meaning glare is greatly reduced, colors are more vibrant and details are sharper.  Most importantly, 99 percent of UVA and UVB rays are blocked, both of which cause irritation of the cornea and have been linked to cataracts.

As for colors, the SALT. Vargas comes in your choice of four color combinations:  a Honey Gold frame with grey lenses, a Silver frame with grey gradient lenses, a Honey Gold frame with brown gradient lenses, and a Gun Metal frame with grey gradient lenses.  If you’re unsure which option to go with, grey lenses are a great all-around choice for sunny days, as they reduce visible light and glare.  Brown lenses serve to reduce blue light and also work great in sunny conditions, and they also serve to improve both depth perception and contrast.  I own the SALT. Vargas with brown gradient and grey gradient lenses, and you really can’t go wrong with either, as they’re both fantastic lenses to look through.  If I had to pick, I’d probably go with the brown gradient lenses, but that’s based on personal preference as opposed to the light filtering abilities of the lens.  Whichever route you take, you’ll be completely happy with the SALT.’s, as they’re truly phenomenal sunglasses.  The fit is incredible; their style is classic; and most importantly, they filter out impeccably the light you don’t want.  They may very well be the perfect pair of aviators.

Pricing for the SALT. Vargas is set at $390 for each, and all can be ordered directly from the official SALT. Optics shopping website.