Product Review: Kaenon Hard Kore Sunglasses

Product Review: Kaenon Hard Kore Sunglasses

Ever heard of Kaenon Polarized?  Well prior to me getting an opportunity from our friends at Sullivan Optometry to put their product to real-life field testing, I never heard of them either.  Kaenon Polarized is a company that makes high-performance sunglasses for a variety of sports, including water sports (surfing and kite-boarding), snowboarding, beach volleyball, golf, and motor sports (dirt biking and Nascar).  Their main competition is industry-giant Oakley who is obviously no stranger to putting their products on athletes of every sport.  I’ve worn many different pairs of Oakley’s over the years so I was interested in seeing how these Kaenon’s stacked up.  Read on to find out how they did.

Kaenon went out and developed their own, completely new polarized lens material.  Their proprietary SR-91 is the only polarized lens that combines the superior optical quality of the finest glass and the lightest weight, strength and impact resistance of polycarbonate.  Sounds cool right?  I’m kind of techie-geek so I thought it was.  Check out their website for all the technical details and products they sell.

Equipment: Kaenon Hard Kore with their SR-91, C12 lens

My engineered test plan:  Wear these sunglasses while I train clients or train myself and try to expose them to various weather conditions and lighting.  Rate the sunglasses on a 1-10 scale on the following criteria:

  1. Performance fit
  2. Lens performance in various weather conditions and lighting
  3. Wow factor (how many people stopped and asked me about the sunglasses I’m sporting on my face)

Over the last couple of months I put the Kaenon Hard Kore’s through many trials ranging from long-distance road biking, mountain biking, interval track sprinting, Crossfit WOD’s outside, golfing, and driving in the city.  I also managed to expose them to various weather conditions from full out raining to 30-degree celsius heat while exercising.


Here are my results:

The Hard Kores have an extremely light-weight frame that didn’t make my face feel like it was doing a workout to hold them up.  They fit well under a bike helmet or baseball cap when I’m golfing.  I found that if I performed rigorous exercises like burpees, skipping, short sprints, and agility drills, the Hard Kores stayed on and didn’t slide around during those movements.  The only thing I could say is maybe that this particular frame rested too low on my ears so if I wore these sunglasses for really durations over 4-hours straight, they would seem to rub my ears and create a minor discomfort.  Very minor.


1.  Performance fit:  Score = 9


I found that the C12 lens performed extremely well in low-lighting to moderately-bright lighting conditions while providing detail and clarity, sufficient shading for the eyes, and excellent anti-glaring properties.  In extremely bright conditions I found the glasses provide satisfactory shading but I would probably lean toward a slightly darker lens if I were to be exposed to brighter conditions for longer durations.  Whenever I went golfing, I found that I was able to see the detail and undulations in the greens while I attempted to read my putts.  Unfortunately while the sunglasses provided me with a heightened level of information, they did not help me correctly read the greens so my putting didn’t improve much.  I think it’d take a lot more than a pair of sunnies to do that though.  The one thing I thought was interesting was the fact that the Hard Kore’s didn’t have any venting in the lens and would occasionally fog up if I started to sweat or became warm.  I found that quite annoying sometimes as I had to remove them to de-fog them.


2.  Lens performance in various weather conditions and lighting: Score = 8.5


The “Wow” factor was one that I noticed while I sported these around the community.  I remember at least 5 people that stopped me to ask me about the sunglasses on my head.  Maybe because they were white in color and were very exotic looking.  I think they look sweet and can be worn obviously in a sport-setting but also when you’re just relaxing at patio with casual clothing.  If I was going to wear a suit or office clothes then I’d most likely wear my Ray Bans.


3. Wow factor: = 9


So there you have it.  I totally dig these sunglasses and I would recommend them to any athlete that wants high-performance sunglasses.
Our friends at Sullivan Optometry (@sullivanoptmtry on Twitter) has offered $100 off the eyewear they carry.  It’s going to be a draw and you have three ways to enter to win:
  1. post a comment on this blog post saying what you look for in a pair of sunglasses (e.g. style, function, performance)
  2. post on the Sullivan Optometry facebook page what you look for in a pair of sunglasses (e.g. style, function, performance)
  3. Tweet the following:  “I just entered to win $100-off eyewear @sullivanoptmtry with @aagtarap_peng:”
Draw for the prize will be on October 23rd at Noon!!  Good luck.
  • John Laser
    Posted at 03:50h, 17 October Reply

    Great review on these sunglasses and I can see the wow factor in them they look fantastic and great protection to the eyes too.

  • Hamad Deshmukh
    Posted at 09:11h, 17 October Reply

    Awesome Review Anth! I would prefer function and performance… big problem I have with sunnies is running in hot weather with fogging and sweat running down my eyes. How do these handle them?

    • Anthony Agtarap
      Anthony Agtarap
      Posted at 19:51h, 17 October Reply

      Hey Hamad,
      I talked about that actually. The lenses did not have a venting feature and did indeed tend to fog up whenever I ramped up the intensity of a workout. That’s the only drawback I could see.

  • MARK
    Posted at 10:45h, 24 October Reply

    I’ve been wearing Kaenon for 6 years for Rx and non Rx.
    they are the best around, “real deal” sunglasses. As far as i’m concerned
    nothing else compares. Kaenon actually can vent the sunglasses for you
    if you so desire. Of course there’s a fee but the quality they provide, it’s worth it. My 6 year old prescription sunglasses still look like new & i’ve taken them all around the world w/ me in different weather conditions for different activities. My buddy whom I let borrow them who’s a combat Marine now refuses to give them back, he no longer wants to wear his oakley’s. I think he should owe me a new pair. lol

  • B chord
    Posted at 00:15h, 15 December Reply

    I never heard of Kaenon Polarized… until now! Thanks, that is very good review. And, as John said – they look fantastic!

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