TESTED: Prescription Makos

QUALITY sunglasses are a prerequisite for any serious angler. For many years, however, I did without sunnies as prescription lenses weren’t readily available to suit my mild short sightedness. I wore my normal glasses (not great), tried standard sunnies (couldn’t see), used “pop-over” frames (crap) and finally ended up combining contact lenses with normal sunnies (not bad but the contacts irritated my eyes).

After persevering with these inferior options for a couple of years, I finally ended up getting a pair of prescription sunglasses. They were good but didn’t feature the same lens technology as non-prescription models – they were basically flat tinted lenses which, while polarised, didn’t look or feel the same as the lenses in high quality sunglasses designed for fishing.

Modern optics now mean prescription sunnies are available in the curved or “wrap” lenses now featured on many top quality brands. I recently busted my trusty old sunnies and upgraded to a couple of pairs of smick new Makos. I chose a pair of Blade frames with dark grey polarised lenses for everyday wear and offshore fishing and a pair of GT frames featuring yellow multifocal polarised lenses for estuary and freshwater fishing. The Blades are fantastic – light, comfortable and the customised curved lenses offer more eye protection and much less side light intrusion than my previous old school sunnies. They are ideal for driving and provide good vision when fishing offshore. I wear them all the time.

The GTs are equally comfortable and offer great vision into shallow water. I went for multifocals because I’m becoming an old fart and need different lenses to see close up (like when tying knots). The lenses are graduated, meaning when you look down you see better close up but when you look straight ahead the lens adapts to allow distance objects look clear. Take it from me, this focal change can initially be somewhat disconcerting … Getting long sighted is something that affects everyone at some stage or another (usually around the mid-40s) so if you’re a youngster this is something to look forward to.

Using the multifocals is much easier than having to take your glasses off every time you want to tie on a new lure but be warned that they do take some getting used to. Some people get mild headaches for the first few days of using multifocal lenses – I haven’t experienced this but it is a bit off putting to have the focus change if you look down or up. The guys at Mako said most people get used to multifocals within a week or so.

All up, I’ve found the move to high quality prescription Mako sunnies to be very satisfying. You basically choose the frame you want from your local Mako retailer (I got mine through Dave Rose, a keen fisho at Nowra’s EyeQ – 02 4421 3420), select the lenses you want (Mako offers 10 different polarised options in its Freeform Active range including photochromatic lenses) and either get an eye test or provide them with your prescription. A week or so later the glasses arrive with lenses individually suited to your prescription.

Prescription sunnies obviously cost more than an off-the-rack pair but are more than worth it, especially in regards to top quality frames and high-end optics as available from respected brands like Mako.

If you’re wanting to investigate prescription sunglass options, check out the Mako website at

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