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Monday, October 11, 2004
Updated: January 25, 3:56 PM ET
Grab Your Goggles

By Alyssa Roenigk, goggle guru
EXPN.com

Now that our heads are all warm and toasty, we bring you our second winter product preview. This week, we check out the best in vision-shielding, eyeball-protecting tech.

We couldn't begin to show you every pair of goggles these companies produce (that's what their catalogs and websites are for), so we selected one pair, let's call it our Editor's Choice, from each company and reviewed them based on style, performance and comfort.

Unfortunately, the plug on our goggle-testing trip to New Zealand was pulled at the last minute, so we weren't able to subject the goggles to a field test. We can tell you how they perform in a NYC office building or after a few minutes in my freezer, but unfortunately, that's the best we can do.

Our performance tests were limited to fit, helmet compatibility and ease of adjustment. We'll leave the true field tests up to you.

The gang's all here.

Anon [Prada Replacement Award]
Anon
FIGMENT
Click photo for larger image
and specs.





  • Style:The black leather pair are super stylish, but priced to match.
  • Comfort:These could be the most comfortable pair of the bunch.
  • Performance: The Hinged Strap works well to adjust to different face sizes or helmets. You'll need to take your gloves off to adjust this single strap.
  • www.anonoptics.com



    Bolle
    Bolle
    XP
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: Designed with the male rider in mind, they're classic with a touch of modern update.
  • Comfort: A comfortable fit on a large face. Small faces need not apply.
  • Performance: The double strap only adjusts on one side and is a bit confusing at first. The seatbelt-like buckle seems easy, but may be a challenge in freezing temps.
  • www.bolle.com



    Dragon [Flair Award]
    Dragon
    DXS
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: An easy pick for our flair award. Pink was last year's color, but these are cool enough to keep an extra season.
  • Comfort: Not the most comfy, but not the least.
  • Performance:The single strap is pretty easily adjusted, but remove and relocate the Dragon pin that comes on the strap. It can get in the way.
  • www.dragonoptical.com




    Electric
    Electric
    EG1
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: A great looking pair of white goggles. Clean, with just enough extra touches.
  • Comfort:Foam a bit itchy, but the goggles seal well.
  • Performance: The single strap is easy enough to adjust, but the strap is small and has a tough time fitting over a helmet.
  • www.electricvisual.com




    Oakley
    Oakley
    WISDOM SNOW
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: Very SCUBA inspired, these goggles sit far off your face.
  • Comfort: Foam is comfortable, but the fit is better on a larger face. Great peripheral vision.
  • Performance: Single strap adjusts very easily. The strap snaps onto the frame with ease and pivots 360 degrees around the frame.
  • www.oakley.com




    Roxy/Quiksilver
    Roxy/Quiksilver
    CHICKADEE 2
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: Clean, traditional Roxy-style. Great for young girls.
  • Comfort: Fits comfortably, but leaves a little room for air to get into the mask.
  • Performance: The single strap is a bit hard to adjust. Possibly the most resiliant of the bunch. Sit on them, stand on them, fall on your face ... these babies won't break.
  • www.roxy.com





    Scott
    Scott
    MOTIVE
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: Clean, classic goggles.
  • Comfort: The foam is super soft on your face and the goggles seal well.
  • Performance: The double-adjusting single strap is the easiest of the bunch to adjust. Fits medium-to-large faces, slides easily over or under a helmet and the straps are (maybe too) easy to adjust. Be sure you snap them fully into place.
  • www.scottusa.com



    Smith
    Smith
    PRODIGY TURBO FAN
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.




  • Style: The pimp-my-goggles Hop-Up Kit will be a best seller. Match your goggles to your outfit for 10 bucks? Sold!
  • Comfort: Fit small faces surprisingly snug and the foam is very cushy.
  • Performance: The fan seems a bit unusual at first, but is innovative and works well (at least in a freezer). I thought the battery pack would be heavy, but you don't notice it. Over-the-helmet only. Strap adjusts easily and hooks in the back.
  • www.smithoptics.com



    Spy
    Spy
    ORBIT
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: Also inspired by the under-water world, these look better on small heads.
  • Comfort: The foam is firm, but surprisingly comfortable and these goggles are well-fitted for a smaller face.
  • Performance: The single strap takes work to adjust because of a grabby strip of rubber on the inside of the strap. The rubber holds the strap snugly to your helmet or your head.
  • www.spyoptic.com



    Velvet
    Velvet
    The Velvet Flurry
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: The girliest pair we reviewed, for sure. Leave it to a gals-only company to make a pair of goggles that actually fit a small face well.
  • Comfort: These gogggles fit snugly, but the foam is rather narrow and a bit hard to the touch.
  • Performance: The seatbelt-like buckle on the strap could become cumbersome in the cold. Both sides of the strap adjust, but not without work.
  • www.velveteyewear.com



    Version
    Version
    Vent
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: Superhero styling. The noseguard protects your face while you're bumping through the trees.
  • Comfort: These goggles fit snugly, but are designed for the male face. Gals, check out their partner company, Velvet.
  • Performance: Same seatbelt-like buckle and double-adjusting strap as Velvet. The strap adjusts snugly, but takes all 10 ungloved fingers to work.
  • www.versionoptics.com




    Von Zipper
    Von Zipper
    BUSHWICK
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.



  • Style: At first glance, the candy-apple Ferrari red is overwhelming. But on the face, these are the best-looking goggles (with flair) we tested.
  • Comfort: The foam is soft and a bit itchy, but the goggles seal well.
  • Performance: Take off your gloves to adjust the single strap. Much more durable (able to twist and fold) than they look. The lens is a little loopy, though. Ride for a day and you feel like you spent too many hours in the bar.
  • www.vonzipper.com


    Zeal Optics
    Zeal Optics
    DETONATOR
    Click photo for larger image
    and specs.





  • Style: Two words: animal print. The hard case and the foam on the inside of the goggles are covered in cheetah, leopard or zebra print.
  • Comfort: The foam is surprisingly comfortable and fits snugly on any size face w/ or w/o a helmet.
  • Performance: The strap buckle is easy to use, even with gloves on, and each side of the strap is adjustable. The straps swap out easily. The lenses smudge easily and the frame is very durable.
  • www.zealoptics.com