Aerodynamic fairings on a pair of sunglasses? Yep, the Bollé 6th Sense are about as pro as you can get, especially with our test set being in AG2R La Mondiale colours. It isn't all about gimmicks, though, as these glasses are seriously good.
The big lens of the 6th Sense has a retro look to it, harking back to visors of the Nineties, but as far as technology goes they are bang up to date.
The frame is practically non-existent, which is something I like. There is nothing worse than crouching down in the drops or doing a quick shoulder check to find that there is a piece of plastic in your line of sight. The 6th Sense offer a massive field of vision without you even moving your head.
The 6th Sense are basically a set of components clipped to the lens: arms, nosepiece, top clip and aero fairings all detach with a simple twist. You can buy additional lenses to go with your frame, varying shades and even photochromic ones. The AG2R versions here come with 'neutral grey with a blue violet mirror for bright conditions'.
Those fairings clip onto the arms to create a streamlined helmet/glasses combo, plus they stop air or sunlight coming in through the side – almost like blinkers on a racehorse – yet they are far enough back to not restrict vision.
While we are on the subject of the lens, there are a couple of coatings to take a look at. Its Hydrophobic/Olephobic treatment basically repels water and oil, making it bead off the lens. It works well too, preventing water marks and even sweat and fingerprint marks. Well, they're still there, but just a lot less smeary than some with lenses, something you really notice when you ride into low sun typical of this time of year.
The lens also comes with an anti-fog coating on the inside to stop it misting up in humid conditions, and there are vents near each arm, which help keep air circulating so you don't get any visibility issues. The only problem you might have is if you suffer from hayfever – the breeze can really whip in once you pick up speed and you can feel it blowing over your eyes.
As far as fit goes, you certainly don't get any issues with slippage when the going gets a little bit sweaty. Both the nosegrip and temple grips are made of a hydrophilic polymer designed to absorb moisture; on a particularly hot day things can get overwhelmed, but they do continue to grip your face without any irritation.
The nosepad is adjustable too. You either squeeze or expand the grip and it stays put.
Overall, at 28g they are unbelievably light and you barely know you are wearing them. The arms apply enough pressure to keep a grip even when you're looking down, without being uncomfortable, the nose grip the same. They do feel a little flimsy in your hand in comparison to some – my Oakley Radars or the RH+ ones I tested a while back, anyway – but in practice I never felt I had to be careful with them.
Sunglasses have always been a fashion item and that can drive prices just as much as the technology, but while the Bollé are expensive, they are quite reasonably priced against the opposition.
Super-lightweight glasses which basically come in kit form, with excellent field of vision and lens clarity
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Bolle 6th Sense Cycling Sunglasses
Size tested: Colour: AG2R Shiny Blue-Brown/Blue Violet oleo AF, Size: Medium/Large Fit
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
We've got the pro team AG2R La Mondiale version of the Bolle 6th Sense glasses, so it's safe to say they are aimed at the top end of the market. Seriously light with excellent clarity means they feel exactly how I'd expect a pair of sunglasses costing £150.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
*Thermagrip Ear Grips
*Adjustable Nose Pads
*Trivex Lens Material
*Oleophobic/Hydrophobic Lens Coatings
*Anti-Fog Lens Treatment
Put together well, with plenty of screws used rather than just push fit.
Great fit, excellent clarity and field of vision. Low weight means you barely know you are wearing them.
They feel more flimsy than my Oakley Radars, though that doesn't mean they won't stand up to longterm use.
No pressure points anywhere and the adjustable nose pads allow for a custom fit.
I like sunglasses so I'd probably spend more than most, but I reckon the cost is comparable to the competition.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Great sunglasses in terms of fit, lens clarity and field of vision, but hayfever sufferers might not get on with the lens vents.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The light weight.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The blue and brown colour combination, others are available though.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
The light weight, cool looks and aero additions mean the 6th Sense are pretty well up there in the fashion stakes, plus that is all backed up with a really good lens. The clarity and field of vision allowed by the curved shape means they are some of the best glasses I've used for multiple riding disciplines. The only thing that lets them down is a slightly flimsy feel.
About the tester
Age: 37 Height: 180cm Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: Kinesis T2 My best bike is: Mason Definition
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.