October 27, 2020 4 min read

Foldable eyewear should be a thing everywhere. Because the convenience of folding up your glasses and neatly tucking them away is something that we can all do with.

Imagine this: You’re at the beach with your shades on but under the shelter of the cabana, you don’t need to wear them to have your lunch. But there’s no space on the table and you can’t slide the sunglasses into your pocket without that uncomfortable bulge.

Whether you leave it folded on the table, stuffed in your pocket, or hanging on the collar of your shirt (if you’re wearing one at the beach), your sunglasses are neither fully protected nor properly kept. Wouldn’t it be great to have somewhere to put them?

 

Folded, Folding, Foldable. What’s the Difference?

Now, when we say folded above, it’s really just the normal way of closing in the arms onto the lens frame. However, some of us have seen  foldable sunglasses. Something like this:


ROAV Unfolding

These are the real foldable sunglasses. These little bad boys that don’t just close in. They close up. That’s one of the reasons why we love the foldable sunglasses from ROAV Eyewear.

It used to be that folding in the arms of the frame was all that could be done to minimise the form factor of the shades, and that was good. But this. This complete folding that fits the shades in the palm of your hand. This is great. This is what ROAV does best in our opinion. Here’s why we think the ROAVs are awesome.


Patented hinge

Screwless Construction.

Even with normal eyewear, the repetitive opening and closing of the frame’s arms will cause the screws holding the parts together to loosen. We have to tighten the screws every now and then, or the arms would just fall back down when we open them.

Imagine that happening with every single hinge on your folding sunglasses. Well, your shades are screwed...

ROAV’s products are  screwless. Instead, they have patented micro hinges that are press-formed into an ultra-thin stainless steel frame. This brings more advantages than it immediately lets on.

Roav mid-fold
  • Less breakable parts = less broken shades

The hinges on the shades do not come off. They’re designed with a precision and intelligence about it, that the frame is pretty much a one piece thing. The thin stainless steel frame is malleable enough to afford some hyperextension, yet strong enough to keep its form and integrity.

They snap open and shut just like any other hinge, almost as if spring-loaded. No screws, no soldering, no rivets. Just one mechanical marvel.


ROAV light af
  • Light as F...eathers

You don’t feel their weight. These sunglasses weigh in under 20g. The Ray-Ban® Round Folding glasses, their model that’s most like the ROAVs, are 10g heavier. You can wear the ROAVs for the whole day and not feel it there. While you’re at it, say goodbye to those painful pressure marks on your nose bridge and along the sides of your face.

The weightlessness also removes the constant slipping down the nose. This means you may even forget you have them on! This doesn’t mean they’re not secure on your face though, watch the video below to know why.


ROAV and sleeve
  • Extra thin. Like, really thin.

Already ultra-thin, the ROAVs are also  ultra-smart. The typical foldable sunglasses only fold in one dimension - inwards. If you think about it, the final form still tends to be a little thick. You risk misaligning your frame’s arms if you press them too hard to compress them further.

The ROAV’s arms fold  downwards under themselves, putting them along the same vertical plane.

When we saw it, we wondered why no other manufacturer had thought of this. It is genius. The arms are still protected by the width of the lens this way, but it allows the ROAV to fold down to 8mm thick. That’s  thinner than an iPhone 11!


ROAV in pocket

 

The ROAVs are engineered to fit in the tightest of pockets and slot into the slimmest of purses. All their lenses are polarised, and provide the full protection from UVA and UVB rays. Each style comes with both mirrored or non-mirrored lens variants as well.

This is seriously one of our favourite sunglasses to pop out and watch the harshly-lit Singapore city with. You may even feel like you can stare down the sun in the ROAV, but please  do not do that. The shades may not be screwed, but your eyes most definitely would.


What About Other Brands?

Foldable sunglasses have been around for a while. However, most of the products in this category aren’t as readily available in our go-to stores, especially in Singapore. We’ve seen virtually indestructible frames such as the  Owndays AIR UItem and some really beautiful ones from other brands. But they don’t have a true foldable variant, and aren’t sunglasses. Sunglasses just don’t get as much love as clear spectacles do, I guess.

If we search online, we’ll see that there are some foldable sunglass products available. Some cost as low as  S$3.06, while Ray-Ban® - among others - has some neat ones for  6 of their popular models as well; but these will set you back about S$270. Uniqlo Singapore has the more affordable  Wellington online too.

But all these sunnies are pretty much the same at the essence: materials on the frame, screw hinges, one-dimensional inward folding. The ROAVs are different. Protective, stylish, special, more convenient, and more indestructible.

Our team’s favourites are the Balto, Jett and the Lennox. What’s yours? View our range  here and let us know!



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