Photo: Aaron Black-Schmidt

Review | Under Armour Launch Storm Polarized


For those of us just looking for a pair of polarized shades tailored to an athletic life on the water, the Under Armour Launch Storm Polarized are an option as stylish as they are functional.

The first thing you’ll notice when putting these shades on is the excellent clarity and large field of view of the 100% UVA/B/C protective lenses. Less obvious at first glance, the Launch Storms’ lenses are layered with a coating that repels saltwater, oil and mud. The combination worked well for us on the water to provide a glare-free view on the water under mid-day California sun. The repellant seemed to lessen the residue of dried saltwater spots on the lenses, and wide field of vision allowed an unimpeded view in our periphery. Despite their larger size these shades are lightweight and fit comfortably. Added nonslip grip around the frames keeps them glued to your face even during heavy workouts so you can ditch the eyewear retainers—a benefit we specifically look for in a good pair of paddling shades.

Another interesting feature is the ventilated brow gasket, which is built into the frames to help reduce fogging. It works well, though our reviewer found the frames hugged his face so snug that fogged lenses were unavoidable with substantial perspiration. Still, with the added layer of protection we didn’t have to be too careful about wiping them down for a fresh view.

The frames are classified by Under Armour as Large-Extra Large and can look a little “Terminator”-ish on small faces, but that’s not necessarily a bad look in our eyes. For those with bigger features and faces, the Launch Storm is a sleek, sporty and bold look. They fit right in with the paddle crowd, but if a subtle fashion statement is what you’re going for, the UA Launch Storm Polarized will do the trick.

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