The Dry Eye Zone

Rebecca's Blog

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Product review: Wiley-X "Blink"

Vendor: Wiley-X
Frame: Blink (in Wiley's Climate Control series), matte black
Lens: Polarized copper

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I used to wear Wiley's "JP3-P" frame for driving - I loved them, and was very disappointed when they were discontinued. They had lousy foam (slippery & made me sweat) but what I appreciated so much about them was the true wrap style of the lens, which gave me better vision for driving than Panoptx' more cumbersome frames which leave a considerably smaller visual field and have much more noticeable side blockage. I also loved the polarized copper lens which is dark enough to protect me from light sensitivity but has great optical quality.

So anyway, I recently finally found the time & money to catch up with Wiley again and bought a bunch of their newest frames, including Blink, Brick, Ink, AirRage and Top Jimmie.

Yesterday was my first serious test-drive. I picked Blink. Blink and Brick fit me better than any of the others. (For reference, in Panoptx frames I normally wear either Solano or Churada.)

I was at a family reunion. I spent about 3/4 of the day outside, including a few hours at the beach playing with the kids, so I got a good sense of how they worked for me in various environments.

Overall assessment: Big thumbs up on almost all counts.

Frame:
It's a nice-looking frame. Ideally I prefer something a little larger and a little less sporty looking (the top of the frame rests slightly below my eyebrows) but I can live with this. My husband is lusting after them.

Gasket:
The gasket fits more tightly into the frame than the Panoptx eyecup and while it made me a little more nervous removing it, I actually like this because I've sometimes had problems with Panoptx' eyecups slipping out. You need to put some effort into popping this one out and it has a robust mechanism keeping it in.

The gasket is vented (much smaller vents than Panoptx, possibly the reason why I fogged up in the car a little but then I'd been running and it was humid). The overall profile of the gasket & foam lining is pretty much comparable to Panoptx.

Foam: The foam on the gasket seems slightly more dense than Panoptx, otherwise they're pretty similar in look and feel.

Fit: The fit is excellent on me - the foam hugs my face closely. However, there's just something about Panoptx that is unique and that I've never seen matched by any other frame: when you put the frame on and you get that "fits like a glove" feeling.

Lens: Like always the Wiley polarized lens is, in my opinion, awesome. From the outside it appears quite dark, but from the inside not at all. I get super protection but at the same time the optical quality is tops. I see only a very slight warm tint through the lens - not an overall brownish tone to everything as so many copper lenses have. It was a very relaxing lens to wear.

Overall experience: Thrilled. I literally did not think about my eyes until early evening when I started needing drops. I could not have managed at the beach especially without something this close-fitting. I think that Panoptx would have given me equal comfort all day but they could not have equalled the vision. I was even able to play a little badminton.

Tip: If you look for the Climate Control series on the Wiley-X website, click on Motorcycle first. (TIME FOR A GRIPE: Wiley-X needs to take a cue from Panoptx and add a dry eye link on their website's home page so people can figure this out!
RebeccaComment