Ray Ban and Oakley have very different sunglasses. Although both brands are manufactured by the Luxottica company, there are significant differences in the choice of materials and styles. In this article, you can learn more about the differences between Ray Ban and Oakley.
First of all, the difference is directly noticeable in the design language. While Ray Ban has produced the classic designs par excellence in sunglasses, which often seem timeless Oakleys are more sporty oriented with a more extreme and dominant design language.
Ray Bans are usually classic fashion statements that anyone can wear well. The concept is continued with the materials. Many of the Ray Ban sunglasses sold today still use real glass for the lenses of the sunglasses and high-quality acetate is used for the customizable temples. These materials are very durable but heavy.
Oakley uses only shatterproof and very lightweight plastic lenses for the sunglasses. Many of the models of Oakley are provided with a rubber that is called unobtainium. This rubber can be found on the nose pads and on the ear.
As soon as you sweat the sunglasses become even grippier on your nose and on the sides of your head. So Oakley aims for maximum performance. However, the surfaces of the lenses. Scratches become noticeable more quickly and the nose pads or earsocks need to be replaced sooner.
Oakley is therefore generally sportier from the style and partly also from the functionality. interchangeable lenses that can be changed depending on the desired contrast or temple ends that can be changed themselves can be found mainly with Oakley but not with Ray Ban. That was now a small overview of the differences. Let’s dive a little deeper into the subject so that you can decide for yourself whether Oakley or Ray Ban is right for you.
Oakley vs Ray Ban Price
Oakley and Ray Ban prices are very comparable. Many of the sunglasses from both manufacturers start at around $140 and have an extra charge for polarization of around $50.
These are the basic models. However, both brands also have limited edition models that can be significantly more expensive. Prices of around 2000$ are possible for limited editions.
Ray Ban vs Oakley – Which Is Better?
Oakley’s sunglasses are better for sports use. They hold better on the head in extreme situations when there is a lot of sweating due to the unobtainium. However, when it comes to use in normal everyday life then Ray Ban and Oakley have equally models to offer, which can be combined very well with many styles.
However, if you value the durability and real glass lenses should reach for the respective models at Ray Ban, which offer that.
In terms of contrast, color perception and options for the lenses have both brands incredibly much but also similar to offer. Both have polarized and non-polarized lenses. There are lenses that can tint and wacky mirrored lenses.
My pro tip is to go to a local store and try on the different variations. That way you can experience how an Oakley or a Ray Ban feels to you and which is the better option for you.
If you are interested in an guide style article about Ray Ban lenses I have an article here for you.
Comparing the Durability of Ray Bans and Oakleys
If you look at the build quality of both brands, you might get the impression that Oakley has a cheaper build quality than Ray Ban. As a rule, the hinges of Ray Ban, for example, are made of metal with metal screws, while the hinges of Oakley are made of plastic. But more precisely Oakleys are generally built to resist. Instead of acetate Oakley uses O matter which does not degrade with time as much as most Ray Bans do.
I have Oakleys and Ray Bans that are over 15 years old and with acetate (often used in Ray Ban) the material changes due to UV exposure or the evaporation of plasticizers over the years. So the surface became a little duller and the material became more brittle. This has not happened with Oakley sunglasses.
However, the lenses look flawless from the surface of the Ray Bans although these were not treated with particular care while the Oakley glasses wore out faster and had fine surface scratches and were replaced.
The question is just what aspects we compare when it comes to the durability of Ray Ban and Oakley. Here in the picture below you can see the same old Ray Ban and Oakley sunglasses lenses. The Ray Ban was worn more often and was also often put on the glasses in the car and treated somewhat improperly. However, you can hardly see a scratch.
In contrast, the Oakley glasses are simply worn although this was treated rather carefully and rarely namely only when biking was put on. However, the surface is much more susceptible to scratches. The frame from Oakley’s O Matter can be adjusted perfectly and has in no way lost flexibility. The Ray Ban, on the other hand, will be at risk of cracking or breaking due to age, even with proper warming.
Depending on how aggressive the composition of the sweat, the Ray Ban has a perfect surface or less brittle material for longer or less time. With my Ray Ban even cracks have formed in the area of the nose pad while the Oakley in the same place still looks like unworn. Although the Oakley had more contact with sweat than the Ray Ban.
What I write here about Oakley applies to the durability of the vast majority of frames and all Oakley lenses. With Ray Ban, however, you have to look at the whole thing more differentiated. There are different frame and lens materials.
And the Ray Ban lenses that are made of plastic have the same durabilty as Oakley lenses. Likewise, there are different materials in the frames of Ray Ban. Besides the already mentioned acetate, very resistant nylon is also used. However, the materials are always tied to a specific model.
For example, you get the classic Wayfarer (RB2140) in acetate with glass lenses while you get the New Wayfarer (RB 2132) always from the material nylon with glass lenses. If you take the Wayfarer Lightforce you have a very light material in the frame in combination with polycarbonate plastic lenses.
Prescription Glasses for Ray Bans and Oakleys
Both Oakley and Ray Ban have their own lens designs. Oakley’s lenses especially in the area of sunglasses, which are very strongly curved around the head were already great years ago. Ray Ban followed suit. So you have the opportunity to enjoy the original colors of both manufacturers with your eyeglass strengths.
Alternatively, however, both manufacturers can also be provided with lenses from other manufacturers. If, for example, a color is not available in the range, then this can be individually manufactured for you. Such a service is not yet available from the two brands.
This article is based on my own experiences with Ray Ban and Oakley and the experiences my customers have had with the brands. Over the last two decades I have owned several pairs of glasses from both manufacturers and sold countless.