Now you can wear Kolari filters on your face
Kolari Vision has announced their newest filters – sort of. These ones don’t go over your camera lens, though. No, these ones are for your eyes, in the form of sunglasses.
The company has decided to launch the new Kolari Shades on Kickstarter. Kolari has taken their knowledge and filter technology and applied it to the new sunglasses. This includes ultraviolet and infrared blocking to protect your eyes.
Kolari Shades – Not for your camera
The Kolari Shades, unlike many sunglasses on the market today, contain actual glass lenses instead of plastic. They utilise Corning’s Gorilla Glass for maximum strength and durability, making them extremely wear resistant.
The frames are made from titanium so that it can stand up to the same kind of punishment as the lenses. Frames are available in either silver or gold colour. The lenses are available in Basic, Ultra and Ultra Gradient varieties.
Blocks UV and IR light for safer vision
There are three versions of the lenses. The Basic version blocks all UV and 90% of infrared light. The Ultra and Ultra Gradient versions bump this up to 99% infrared. Both of these help to protect your eyes from bright sunlight.
Their infrared blocking features can also help with privacy. Many facial recognition systems operate with cameras using infrared light. With sunglasses that block infrared, they can’t see through it. Therefore, they can’t recognise your face.
It’s always interesting to see successful companies applying what they know to other fields. Sunglasses are a logical step for a company that makes optics or filters – especially ones held in such high regard.
Often, when companies dip their toes in new product types, their existing products can suffer. Given Kolari’s commitment to the photography and video industries, however, I don’t think that’s going to be an issue here.
There doesn’t seem to be anything in their promotional material or the Kickstarter campaign about whether or not the lenses are polarized. Given the absence of the word, I would suspect that they’re not. If they are – or Kolari produces polarised versions in the future – I might have to get some!
Price and Availability
The Kolari Shades are currently running on Kickstarter, with pledges starting at $119 for the Basic and $179 for the Ultra models. Once they go retail, they will cost $219 for Basic and $339 for Ultra or Ultra Gradient. Kickstarter pledges are expected to ship in March 2024.
John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.