The 5 Best Sunglasses for Sports

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer // Pictures Columbia Pictures
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer // Pictures Columbia Pictures

Yes, your Wayfarer sunglasses are classic. Unfortunately, they’re not the best shades to wear when you get sweaty (which you’ve probably realized if you’ve ever worn them on a jog and spent the entire outing pushing them back up your nose). But you don’t have to give up on sunnies when you’re active al fresco. Athletic sunglasses have come a long way, now sporting more fashionable designs, advanced materials, and features tailored to specific activities. Whether you’re getting outside this summer to go cycling or do some stand up paddleboarding, there’s a pair for you. Read on for our top picks.

1. BEST FOR RUNNING: NIKE VAPORWING ELITE; $320

Nike has thought of everything a runner needs with its Vaporwing Elite glasses. They’re ultra-light, so they won’t bounce with every step you take, and a floating nose pad also helps absorb shock while letting air flow—meaning your sweat won’t fog up the lenses and make the shades slip off your nose. Rubbery panels along your temples help keep them in place, too. One very cool feature: The lenses are a single piece, with no plastic bar between your eyes, so you get a totally clear view of the road ahead.

Find it: Dick's Sporting Goods

2. BEST FOR ROAD CYCLING: SMITH PIVLOCK ARENA MAX; $159

Smith added a larger, single-piece lens to these sunglasses for increased coverage and ultimate visibility on the road. This lightweight pair comes with two interchangeable lenses, so you can pop one out and slip in another based on how bright the sun is during your ride. The nosepiece is adjustable for a comfortable, customized fit, and the arms gently adhere to the skin around your temples—so they stay firmly in place as you pedal.

Find it: Amazon

3. BEST FOR MOUNTAIN BIKING: OAKLEY EVZERO RANGE PRIZM TRAIL; $170

Grippy pads on the arms and nosepiece mean the shades stay in place when you get sweaty, no matter how bumpy the ride, while Plutonite Lenses filter 100 percent of UV rays. But the best part (and what makes these a top pick for off-road riding) is that Oakley’s Prizm technology enhances the browns and reds of dirt and makes the greens of grass and shrubbery pop. So if you’re riding on dirt and grass, it’s easier to spot transitions—making you less likely to wipe out. 

Find it: Oakley

4. BEST FOR TRIATHLONS: ROKA PHANTOM; $250

This pair from triathlon-gear brand ROKA looks like your typical aviators but has high-tech features that make the pair a smart pick for biking and running. For one, grippy strips on the nose pads and arms keep them in place but won’t snag on your hair. They’re also available with polarized lenses to help cut down on glare. Plus, they’re way more stylish than typical athletic sunglasses—so you’ll look good in those finish line photos.

Find it: Amazon

5. BEST FOR WATER SPORTS: VUARNET GLACIER; $640

Unlike most sunglasses, these boast lenses made of mineral glass; they’re incredibly scratch-resistant, clear, and reduce glare from the sun and light reflected off water. Plus, a coating helps prevent fog and a buildup of sweat or sunscreen. Leather patches on the sides block light (though you can pop them off if you prefer), and a cord attached to the arms can be tied at the back of your head for an extra-snug fit. Oh, and Daniel Craig wore them in the latest James Bond film (pictured at top)—so you know you’re in good company wearing these bad boys. 

Find it: Vuarnet

A version of this article first ran in 2016. It has been updated to reflect current availability.

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10 LEGO Sets For Every Type of LEGO Builder 

Amazon
Amazon

This article contains affiliate links to products selected by our editors. Mental Floss may receive a commission for purchases made through these links.

If you’re looking for a timeless gift to give this holiday season, look no further than a LEGO set. With kits that cater to a wide age range—from toddlers fine-tuning their motor skills to adults looking for a more engaged way to relax—there’s a LEGO set out there for everyone. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite sets on Amazon to help you find the LEGO box that will make your loved one smile this year. If you end up getting one for yourself too, don’t worry: we won’t tell.

1. Classic Large Creative Gift Box; $44

Amazon

You can never go wrong with a classic. This 790-piece box contains dozens of types of colored bricks so builders of any age can let their inner architect shine. With toy windows, doors, tires, and tire rims included in addition to traditional bricks, the building possibilities are truly endless. The bricks are compatible with all LEGO construction sets, so builders have the option of creating their own world or building a new addition onto an existing set.

Buy it: Amazon

2. Harry Potter Hogwarts Express; $64

Amazon

Experience the magic of Hogwarts with this buildable Hogwarts Express box. The Prisoner Of Azkaban-inspired kit not only features Hogwarts's signature mode of transportation, but also Platform 9 ¾, a railway bridge, and some of your favorite Harry Potter characters. Once the train is built, the sides and roof can be removed for play within the cars. There is a Dementor on board … but after a few spells cast by Harry and Lupin, the only ride he’ll take is a trip to the naughty list.

Buy it: Amazon

3. Star Wars Battle of Hoth; $160

Amazon

Star Wars fans can go into battle—and rewrite the course of history—by recreating a terrifying AT-AT Walker from the Battle of Hoth. Complete with 1267 pieces to make this a fun challenge for ages 10 and up, the Walker has elements like spring-loaded shooters, a cockpit, and foldout panels to reveal its deadly inner workings. But never fear: Even though the situation might look dire, Luke Skywalker and his thermal detonator are ready to save the day.

Buy it: Amazon

4. Super Mario Adventures Starter Course; $60

Amazon

Kids can play Super Mario in 3D with LEGO’s interactive set. After constructing one of the courses, young designers can turn on the electronic Mario figurine to get started. Mario’s built-in color sensors and LCD screens allow him to express more than 100 different reactions as he travels through the course. He’ll encounter obstacles, collect coins, and avoid Goomba and Bowser to the sound of the Mario soundtrack (played via an included speaker). This is a great gift for encouraging problem-solving and creativity in addition to gaming smarts.

Buy it: Amazon

5. Gingerbread House; $212

Amazon

Gingerbread houses are a great way to enjoy the holidays … but this expert-level kit takes cookie construction to a whole new level. The outside of the LEGO house rotates around to show the interior of a sweet gingerbread family’s home. Although the living room is the standout with its brick light fireplace, the house also has a kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, and outdoor furniture. A LEGO Christmas tree and presents can be laid out as the holidays draw closer, making this a seasonal treat you can enjoy with your family every year.

Buy it: Amazon

6. Elsa and Olaf’s Tea Party; $18

Amazon

LEGO isn’t just for big kids. Toddlers and preschoolers can start their LEGO journey early by constructing an adorable tea party with their favorite Frozen characters. As they set up Elsa and Olaf’s ice seats, house, and tea fixings, they’ll work on fine-motor, visual-spatial, and emotional skills. Building the set from scratch will enable them to put their own creative spin on a favorite movie, and will prepare them for building more complicated sets as they get older.

Buy it: Amazon

7. Collectible Art Set Building Kits; $120

Amazon

Why buy art when you can build it yourself? LEGO’s Beatles and Warhol Marilyn Monroe sets contain four options for LEGO art that can be built and displayed inside your home. Each kit comes with a downloadable soundtrack you can listen to while you build, turning your art experience into a relaxing one. Once you’re finished building your creation it can be exhibited within a LEGO brick frame, with the option to hang it or dismantle it to start on a new piece. If the 1960s aren’t your thing, check out these Sith and Iron Man options.

Buy it: Amazon

8. NASA Apollo Saturn V; $120

Amazon

The sky (or just the contents of your LEGO box) is the limit with LEGO’s Saturn V expert-level kit. Designed for ages 14 and up, this to-scale rocket includes three removable rocket stages, along with a command and service module, Lunar Lander, and more. Once the rocket is complete, two small astronaut figurines can plant a tiny American flag to mark a successful launch. The rocket comes with three stands so it can be displayed after completion, as well as a booklet for learning more about the Apollo moon missions.

Buy it: Amazon

9. The White House; $100

Amazon

Reconstruct the First Family’s home (and one of America’s most famous landmarks) by erecting this display model of the White House. The model, which can be split into three distinct sections, features the Executive Residence, the West Wing, and the East Wing of the complex. Plant lovers can keep an eye out for the colorful rose garden and Jacqueline Kennedy Garden, which flank the Executive Residence. If you’re unable to visit the White House anytime soon, this model is the next best thing.

Buy it: Amazon

10. Volkswagen Camper Van; $120

Amazon

Road trip lovers and camping fanatics alike will love this vintage-inspired camper. Based on the iconic 1962 VW vehicle, LEGO’s camper gets every detail right, from the trademark safari windshield on the outside to the foldable furniture inside. Small details, like a “Make LEGO Models, Not War” LEGO T-shirt and a detailed engine add an authentic touch to the piece. Whether you’re into old car mechanics or simply want to take a trip back in time, this LEGO car will take you on a journey you won’t soon forget.

Buy it: Amazon

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10 Practical Gifts Everyone Will Appreciate

Philips/Amazon
Philips/Amazon

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Holiday shopping can be one of the most anxiety-provoking experiences of the year. There’s pressure to get the “perfect” gift for everyone you know—and that “perfect” gift doesn’t always exist. To help you spend less time stressing and more time enjoying the holidays, we’ve rounded up 10 practical gifts that everyone will use and appreciate.

1. LapGear Ergo Pro Lap Desk; $38

LapGear/Amazon

This lap desk works just as well on the couch as it does in the office. LapGear’s Home Office Lap Desk not only has plenty of room for a standard-sized laptop, but it also has a built-in slot for keeping a mobile device close by. You can even adjust the angle of your laptop to better fit whatever position you're in. And if laptop heat is a concern—especially for those working long hours—the desk is built with a cushion to keep things cool from 9-5…and for the Netflix binge afterwards.

Buy it: Amazon

2. Powlaken 4in1 Wireless Charging Station; $33

Powlaken/Amazon

Anyone with multiple devices knows the pain of trying to keep them charged at the same time. Cut the stress—and the charging cords—with this four-in-one wireless charger from Powlaken. The charger is designed to charge an iPhone, AirPods, Apple Watch, and Apple Pencil all at the same time. Once devices are plugged in, they’ll still be completely functional, so users can watch TV and Facetime with friends while the power strip is hard at work.

Buy it: Amazon

3. Rapid Ramen Cooker; $14

Rapid Brands/Amazon

Ramen just got a major upgrade. The perfect gift for college students or quick-fix chefs, this microwave-safe ramen cooker is a secret weapon in the kitchen. Simply add a noodle block, fill water to the top of the cooker line, and microwave for three minutes for perfect noodles, every time. The cooker is built with heat-resistant handles for easy handling and is also dishwasher safe, making the cooking experience almost as enjoyable as lunch itself.

Buy it: Amazon

4. Instant Vortex Pro Air Fryer; $140

Instant Pot/Amazon

From the same company behind the magical Instant Pot comes an appliance that’s even more handy. The Instant Vortex Air Fryer not only air-fries food to crisp perfection, but it also roasts, bakes, toasts, and more. By rapidly circulating hot air around food to cook it evenly, the Vortex gets dinner on the table without having to turn the oven on. It’s large enough to fit two included air fry trays inside—perfect for cooking a main and a side at the same time—and comes with cooking accessories to help get the job done.

Buy it: Amazon

5. Philips SmartSleep Wake-up Light; $124

Philips/Amazon

Waking up is hard enough, but a blaring alarm clock can make it downright awful. Have a more peaceful morning with Philips’s sunrise-simulating alarm clock. The clock goes through an incredible one million light stages when it’s time to rise, gradually brightening with a warm orange light to awaken sleepers. But it doesn’t just assist with waking up; it also has a sunset simulation for winding down at bedtime. And, with 10 additional light settings for non-sleeping use, the clock is an excellent replacement for a bedside lamp.

Buy it: Amazon

6. PETLIBRO Automatic Feeder; $66

PetLibro/Amazon

Whether pet owners have an erratic schedule, want to prevent early morning wake-up calls, or need to go on a quick overnight trip, PETLIBRO’s automatic feeder is a great way to keep their furry friend's meals on track. It can be programmed to deliver up to four meals a day, and it can be customized to fit the needs of smaller pets. Although the feeder is powered via a regular adapter, there is an option to install batteries as a backup source, ensuring that dinner’s on time even if the electricity goes out.

Buy it: Amazon

7. Oster Cordless Electric Wine Bottle Opener; $17

Oster/Amazon

Wine lovers who have trouble with traditional corkscrews will love this electric wine bottle opener from Oster. Accompanied by a foil cutter that can easily remove a bottle’s seal, the opener removes corks with the single touch of a button. Oster’s bottle opener can open up to 30 bottles on a single charge, allowing sommeliers to spend less time struggling with the bottle and more time enjoying happy hour.

Buy it: Amazon

8. TRENDOUX TouchScreen Winter Gloves; $10
Trendoux/Amazon

Winter gloves are always a practical gift, but winter gloves with texting capabilities take gift-giving to a whole new level. TRENDOUX’s touchscreen winter gloves are made from soft napping wool to keep hands toasty while shoveling snow or shooting off a quick text. In addition to touchscreen-friendly fingertips, the gloves feature a webbed silicone design inside each palm to prevent phones from slipping in wet conditions.

Buy it: Amazon

9. SOULWIT Cable Holder Clips; $9

Soulwhit/Amazon

SOULWIT’s cable holder clips will keep tech fiends organized—and, of course, always plugged in. The cable holders can adhere to most surfaces and hold standard cables for things like phone chargers, keyboards, and ethernet cords. The clips come in a pack of three, so they can be placed in multiple areas of the home. For starting the new year off right, swapping tangled wires for mini tech centers is the way to go.

Buy it: Amazon

10. Under Armour Sports Mask; $30

Under Armour/Amazon

Give the gift of a good—and safe—workout with Under Armour’s sports mask. The mask is built with a three-layer design to maximize air flow, along with special fabric on the inside lining and ear loops to keep it feeling cool during exercise. But the mask isn’t just built for comfort. It’s also treated with an anti-microbial coating to stop the spread of germs and prevent odors. Accessorize the mask with a chic yoga bag so fitness buffs can take their post-workout stretches on the go.

Buy it: Amazon

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