Native Eyewear Acadia Review
Compare prices at 3 resellers Pros: Secure fit, great lenses, padded frame, excellent coverage
Cons: May be tight, style doesn't work for everyone
Manufacturer: Native Eyewear
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Native Eyewear Acadia
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|Pros||Secure fit, great lenses, padded frame, excellent coverage||Great lens quality, excellent gradient, very comfortable, versatile style, good case||Great contrast, comfortable, easy style to love||Protective lenses, good contrast, secure fit, versatile use across lighting and activities||Bold style, great narrow fit, adjustable nose pads, good protection, sturdy build, cool case|
|Cons||May be tight, style doesn't work for everyone||Not polarized, may be loose on top of head||A bit small, translucent frame magnifies light, expensive||May be tight, mirror lenses collect smudges, case is a poor cleaner||Narrow fit, not great directly into sun|
|Bottom Line||A blend of sporty and stylish, these secure fit shades offer great protection and great value||Excellent quality shades that are protective and stylish, offering top-notch quality for a reasonable price||These are great quality sunglasses with excellent contrast and a superb face feel||A sporty yet chic pair of cute, comfortable shades that can keep up with you from casual brunches to afternoon hikes||A great set of aviators for smaller faces with good protection and a brazen style|
|Rating Categories||Native Eyewear Acadia||Ray-Ban Erika||Maui Jim Honi||Smith Caper Chromapop||Costa del Mar Fernandina|
|Lens Quality (30%)|
|Style And Versatility (20%)|
|Frame Quality (15%)|
|Specs||Native Eyewear...||Ray-Ban Erika||Maui Jim Honi||Smith Caper...||Costa del Mar...|
|Lens Tested||Brown||Grey Gradient||Blue HCL Bronze||Opal Mirror ChromaPop||Green Mirror 580P|
|Visible Light Transmission (VLT)||13%||Not specified||12%||15%||10%|
|VLT Protection Index||Cat 3||Cat 3||Cat 3||Cat 3||Cat 3|
|HEV/Blue Light Protection (claim)||94% HEV blockage||None||"HEV reduction"||None||100% HEV blockage|
|Infrared Protection (claim)||"up to 4X more than regular polarized lenses"||None||None||None||None|
|Neutral/Contrast||Increased contrast||Neutral||Increased contrast||Increased contrast||Increased contrast|
|Lens Material||Crystal carbonate||Polycarbonate||SuperThin glass||Carbonic||Mineral glass|
|Protective Coatings||None||None||Anti-reflective, anti-scratch, hydroleophobic||Anti-reflective,hydroleophobic resistance, mirror coating||C-WALL (anti-scratch and hydroleophobic), mirror|
|Can take prescription lens?||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Case Included||Yes; semi-rigid zippered shell, microfiber bag||Yes; semi-rigid snapshell case and microfiber cleaning cloth||Yes; rigid triangular collapsible case, microfiber cleaning cloth||Yes; microfiber bag||Yes; cork box, microfiber bag|
Our Analysis and Test Results
We tested the Native Acadia with Polarized Brown lenses. They're a Medium fit and can be fitted with some prescription lenses. They come with a semi-rigid zippered clamshell case and a microfiber drawstring bag.
The Polarized Brown lenses we tested are some of our favorites. They have a touch of increased contrast, making greens just a bit brighter and helping retain clarity everywhere you look. They're well-suited to both bright light and patchy lighting when the clouds roll in. Their Visible Light Transmission of 13% strikes a good balance of protecting the eyes without dimming the surroundings too much.
- 100% UV Protection
- 13% Visible Light Transmission (Category 3)
- 94% HEV/Blue Light Blockage, Infrared Blockage "up to 4X more than regular lenses"
- Color: Brown, Material: Crystal Carbonate
- Impact Resistant
Furthering the usefulness of the Acadia for wide-ranging activities, these lenses are polarized. This makes them a good choice when glare is a factor, as when driving, out on the water, or crossing over bright surfaces like rock faces, snow, or sand. Though we didn't test specifics of light transmission, Native also advertises their Polarized Brown lenses to block up to 94% of HEV or harmful blue light. They claim they block "up to 4X more infrared than regular lenses", though we're not sure exactly what kinds of number that is meant to translate to. Either way, we enjoyed the comfortable feel of our eyes when wearing these lenses for long periods of time.
The Acadia have a very limited reflection from the back of the lenses as well. Though we found no mention of an anti-reflective coating, this lack of counter reflection is likely assisted by how closely the glasses fit against the face and the curve that leaves very little room for reflections to be created in the first place.
The Acadia have a specific fit that's a bit difficult to define. Some of our testers found the wrap shape at the backs of the bows to be too narrow, digging uncomfortably into their heads after extended wear. Others didn't notice that at all and loved the added security of these snug-fitting bows. While it would make sense that larger heads are less comfortable in these Medium fit shades, that's not the pattern we found. Nor did we find the opposite, that smaller heads are more comfortable. Instead, the comfort of the wearer seems to be due to specific head shapes in a multitude of spots around the skull. In other words, you just have to put them on and see if you like them.
At 27 grams, the Acadia are about average among women's sunglasses we tested. They're just a tiny bit front-heavy, though this effect is effectively offset by their closeness to the face and securely wrapped bows. They feature Cushinol pads embedded both at the nose and behind the ears. These sections feel smooth when dry, sliding easily over skin and hair. Then when wet (aka sweaty), that gripping power kicks in and helps hold them to the face.
Style and Versatility
Here is another area where some really enjoyed how they looked in these shades while others didn't care for them as much. The lenses are rather large, if that's more to your style, while the roundness adds more femininity to a baseline wayfarer style. They fit fairly close to the face, which adds another layer of style that our testers had mixed feelings about.
We tested the Acadia with tortoise frames that feature a tan stripe down the middle and an olive green layer facing the inside, which we quite like. They seem to be splitting the difference between sporty and stylish and aren't solidly in either camp. Once again, you'll probably have to just try to see if you like them on your face or not.
These lightweight frames are made from a bio-based plant resin with a matte texture. They have embedded Cushinol nose pads and bow grips, all of which are very well integrated into the model we tested. They're smooth and lack any mismatched edges or corners sticking out.
The hinges are formed as pieces of the frame and attached with a simple screw that's easy to access from the bottom. It did not seem to make any difference to the durability of the Acadia, but the head of the screw lies on top of the resin frame, rather than fitting inside of a small indent, like most other sunglasses. The hinges auto-lock open and closed and are simple and pleasant to operate.
With large lenses and a close-fitting frame, the Acadia offer some of the best coverage of any women's sunglasses we tested. They have a base curve of 6, which is a pleasing face-hugging shape without being a full wraparound style. Combined with larger-than-average lenses, the sun is left with very few gaps to bother you through.
The secure wrap of the bows and fit of the frame combines with the cleverly placed Cushinol pads on the nose and above the ears to help these shades stay firmly on the face. However, they're not our favorite feel for super active sports (like running), because the tall lenses rested firmly on all our testers' cheeks. But in a pinch, they'll do, and we certainly appreciate the coverage and staying power on hot summer hikes.
The Acadia case is one of our favorites. It comes with a semi-rigid zippered clamshell case that's easy to operate. Also included is a microfiber bag with a two-sided drawstring.
This is another area in which the Acadia really shine. They have a high degree of protection and build quality, for a surprisingly low cost. They're a bit specific in who they feel good and look best on, but if that's you, then rest assured you're getting a great deal on some excellent quality glasses.
The Native Acadia offer great quality protection for a very reasonable price. They have a fit and look that isn't everyone's favorite, but women who like them LOVE them, and that could be you. They're protective with great lenses and top-notch protection, and (for those who they fit) a joy to wear.
— Maggie Brandenburg