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We here at Northeast Hunting have tried Costa Del Mar sunglasses before, and been pretty impressed with their attention to detail, quality and the plain old usefulness of each pair.
They’re designed for fishing, but the demands of that sport make them great for a ton of outdoor activities. But sunglasses are far from one-pair-fits-all, especially when it comes to the stronger sex — I’m speaking of women, of course.
So Costa set out to create a new selection of their high-quality sunglasses for women, who want the same performance, but are pickier about things like shape, design, frame size, and flexibility.
Among that new range is the Tippet, which has a small frame size better for many women, and a pretty stunning array of choices for frame colors and lens type.
Since my head is way too big for these elegant sunglasses, and I’m not about to presume to tell you what a woman would think of them anyway, I asked my wife, Kim, to try out a pair with amber lenses, which she usually favors for fishing. You also can get mirrored, gray and copper, among other choices.
Here’s what she had to say:
One of the first things I noticed about the Tippet sunglasses was their neat, flexible hinge design. A lot of sunglasses have fixed hinges, and that makes them difficult to push up on top of your head when you’re not wearing them, because eventually, you spring the hinge too far open, or they break.
Costa Del Mar must have paid attention to what women actually do with their sunglasses. They also look great – as if they might be couture, except that they are deceptively sturdy despite the clean, curvy lines and sleek metal accents.
I first tried these out while fishing from shore in a small lake on a sunny day – you know, the kind where most of the silver you’re seeing is off the surface of the water. The difference when I slipped these on was remarkable. The surface reflection was almost entirely gone, and I could see not only my bobber but the fish hitting the bait underwater.
I’m sure I annoyed everyone there who was not wearing sunglasses as awesome as these, because I kept remarking how well I could see, and pointing out fish they couldn’t see yet.
This performance inspired me to take them everywhere with me after that, testing them out while driving, walking or even reading a book outside in my yard. Yup, you can read a book with these on, because what they do best is filter out unneeded light, yet somehow let through exactly enough to see what you’re doing.
I’ve even used them for driving on those grey, partly cloudy days that have you straining your eyes to see everything through that half-light; the Costas remove the eyestrain and have you seeing clearly.
And I have to say, I happened to put them on during one particularly piercing sunset, and was blown away by the intensity of color I could see without being blinded by the setting sun. That’s probably not what the makers intended with their optic engineering, but it’s certainly a neat side bonus.
I actually tried to hold the sunglasses over my camera so I could capture how cool it looked for everyone to see, but I wasn’t coordinated enough to pull that off, sorry.
Now if the lakes would freeze so I can see how they work for ice fishing – I am willing to bet they are great at cutting down glare from snow and ice, too.Costa Del Mar Tippet Women's Polarized Sunglasses,
I haven’t found a better pair of sunglasses. They could easily replace all other pairs, because they’re good at everything, and incredible at outdoor uses in all seasons. And, people complimented me on how cute they are all the time.
I found them to be really reliable, and used them for everything. They do come with a hard case that protects them well in between uses. If you take care of them (do I sound like your mom yet?), they should last for years.
The Tippets range from $149 to $249 depending on what kind of lenses you choose. Yeah, that’s pricey, I’m guessing because of the work that went into them, which is pretty obvious. But consider how many pairs of cheap sunglasses you can trash in a year, and how much less performance they offer.
I can’t recommend them to everyone, all the time, because of the price range (sometimes that’s just not appropriate). But I can say for certain these are the kind of sunglasses you cherish, take care of, and use every day. If you fish, they’re really hard to beat. Or, if you know a woman who fishes, look no further for an amazing holiday gift. (Hint… hint…)