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Pros of the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP
-Wide frame shape fits larger faces
-Adjustable nose pads make a secure fit when sweaty
-Lens technology is superb
-Finish is exceptional for the price point
Cons of the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP
-Hybrid venting system doesn’t prevent all fogging, but does clear it quicker than other industry offerings
-Temple arms could taper in more for a better fit
-Colors are somewhat muted (some users may prefer this, I like bold sunglasses!) [/tab][tab]
The Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP
Native eyewear, long known in Colorado for making top quality Glasses and Lenses at affordable price points, has an excellent offering for cyclists, triathletes, and pretty much all active individuals with the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP. While the styling looks to be most at home in the cycling world, triathletes especially will appreciate the comfort and all day wearability; you can put the Hardtop Ultra XP on right out of the swim leg, and then just wear them all the way through the finish and home!
Sizing and Fit of the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP
The sizing on the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP is definitely on the larger side, but the shape of the arms and the adjustable nose pads make it a good choice for a larger variety of individuals than you might think. I especially liked the sizing of the lens relative to the size of the frame – the lens is designed to cover a larger portion of your face than most glasses in this category, which makes them great for riding in aero position while training for your next triathlon, or just on that next century. The fit is such that even on longer rides while wearing the Rudy Project Sterling Helmet, I never had any discomfort, even while wearing the arms pinned underneath my helmet straps. Off the bike and into the run they stayed on well it sucks to pull your helmet off mid race and have your glasses go flying.
Construction/Lenses on the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP
Despite the larger fit of the frame, the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP is fairly lightweight. The construction consists of high grade plastics (air frames – they are actually a bit hollow) and the lenses are extremely clear along with being impact resistant. In fact, Native is confident enough in the construction to include a lifetime warranty – but you probably won’t need it. I liked how the materials on the arms got slightly tacky when wet, and kept the Native Hardtop Ultra XP firmly planted on my face when training. On the Native site, the Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP gets a lot of press for having N3 Polarized Lens Technology – this delivers a more crisp line of sight than past offerings, and filters out up to 4X more UV rays than your average polarized lens. During very sunny days, a mirror blue lens was my go to choice as it provided excellent glare reduction – I had no trouble seeing through hood glare from oncoming traffic (a larger problem than you may realize, ‘cause blindness while descending at 40+mph in the mountains is a major no no), and the alternate grey lens combo was excellent for all other conditions, including slightly low light.
The Bottom Line
The Native Eyewear Hardtop Ultra XP became a favorite of ours during testing for it’s versatility and quality construction. If you’re looking for one pair of sunglasses for all your triathlon and cycling needs, you really can’t go wrong here – especially at a price point beginning $129. Plus, Native runs a great program called the “Locals Only Project” where they solicit fans to provide stories about what makes them a “local” – essentially, adventures stories to share and inspire all of us! Head on over to amazon.com/nativeeyewear to check out the Hardtop Ultra XP for yourself.