Wiley X WX Contend Captivate Sunglasses Review


Will a good pair of sunglasses increase your quality time on the water?  Without a doubt.. And that’s where a good pair of sunglasses, like the Wiley X’s WX Contend Captivate, really earn their keep. These are not just about looking cool (though, they do a pretty good job at that too), they’re about shielding your peepers, enhancing your view, and, not to mention, upping your fishing game.

Wiley X WX Contend Sunglasses
Wiley X WX Contend Sunglasses

First Impression

When I first laid eyes on the WX Contend, I was rather taken by its stylish demeanor and handsome green mirror film. It stood there, almost daring me to test its toughness, despite its featherweight build. Wiley X is making a statement here, not just with aesthetics but also with its promise of true safety impact resistance.

How Well Did the Wiley X Contend’s Work on the Water?

It was a lot of work and a miracle for timing, but I got a blue skies sunny day right after some trout were stocked in a local river. I laid +17 pairs of sunglasses out and snapped pictures of fish through all those lenses.  But the MOST important factor for fishing sunglasses is – HOW WELL THEY SEE FISH!

Without Sunglasses (Testing Wiley X Contend)
Without Sunglasses (Testing Wiley X Contend)
Seeing Fish with the Wiley X Contend Sunglasses
Seeing Fish with the Wiley X Contend Sunglasses

Where did the Wiley X Contend Place in My Comparison?

Out of all the sunglasses I tested, the Contends finished in the top 10. They ranked in 6th place out of 17 at the time of my review. A stand out feature for the Contend sunglasses are the impact resistance and super lightweight.

These sunglasses are a solid choice for the fisher person. They placed 6th out of all the sunglasses tested. These would be perfect for someone how fishes and needs safety rated sunglasses. Check prices and availability on Amazon with this link. πŸ‘‰ Wiley X WX Contend Captivate

If you’re looking for the BEST, check out my FULL REVIEW link πŸ‘‰ Looking for the Best Fishing Sunglasses. In the article I detail all the sunglasses tested and provide the nitty gritty details covering 16 factors that I reviewed.

Fit and Comfort

Now, don’t get me wrong, these sunglasses, though lacking padding on the ear or nose, were reasonably comfortable. But then again, after long hours on the river, you might start to feel a slight pinch.

Fit of the Wiley X Contend
Fit of the Wiley X Contend

They did sit well, snug against the face, providing good coverage, which is a huge plus when you’re out in the water under the glare of the sun.

Looking to Learn More About Fishing Sunglasses?

Here’s a complied list of articles related to fishing sunglasses. Be informed about what you’re getting.

πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘‰ Glass vs. Plastic: Which Lens Is Best for Your Next Fishing Trip
πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘‰ Seeing is Believing: Are Mirrored Sunglasses Good for Fishing?
πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘‰ What’s the Best Lens Color for Fishing Sunglasses?
πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘‰ Protect Your Eyes and Catch More Fish: A Guide to UV-Blocking Sunglasses
πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘‰ A Fishing Guides’ Secret: How Polarized Sunglasses Help You Spot Fish
πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘‰ The Power of Visual Light Transmission in Fishing Sunglasses

Lens Features of the Contends’

The bronze/amber tint of the lens is a boon for us fishermen. It helps enhance contrast and visual sharpness, making it easier to spot fish underwater. Plus, with a polarization score of 8, glare was hardly an issue. The UV protection, also scoring an 8, means you can fish all day without worrying about those harmful rays.

And, let me add, the VLT (Visible Light Transmission) seemed just right at 14.5%, allowing enough light for adequate contrast.

Fishy Factor

The WX Contend sports a medium-sized side shield and a decent hook on the ear. A couple of features that make fishing more comfortable. However, lacking a glass lens option, it scores a modest 5 on the fishy factor. But, and this is important, it excels in the seeing-fish department, so it’s not without its merits.

Frame and Design

The frame is made of durable plastic, but it’s the base 8 wrap that really adds value, reducing peripheral glare.

The lack of spring hinges might not make it the most durable option out there, but it more than makes up for it with its lightness. Weighing in at a mere 20 grams, these sunglasses are built for comfort.

Wiley X Contend Sunglasses Style

I’m not a model, but to “compare the look” both my daughter and I posed for pics wearing the Contend sunglasses.  I’m a “fat head” wearing a large to XL size hat.  She’s a small thing wearing a size small.  Check out the pictures.

My daughter wearing the Wiley X Contend sunglasses
My daughter wearing the Wiley X Contend sunglasses
Me wearing the Wiley X Contend sunglasses
Me wearing the Wiley X Contend sunglasses

Included with Wiley X WX Contend Sunglasses

Items included with the Wiley X Contend case, bag, lanyard and sticker
Items included with the Wiley X Contend case, bag, lanyard and sticker

The package comes with a case, cleaning cloth/bag, a lanyard, and a sticker. Quite the comprehensive bundle, I must say.

Additional Features of the Wiley X WX Contend

One feature worth noting is the true impact resistance, which is ANSI Z87.1 tested. This translates to better optical clarity and protection against high-mass and high-velocity impact. The lens material is plastic, but it’s promised to be scratch-resistant, which adds to the overall durability.

Performance and User Experience

When out on the water, the WX Contend felt light and comfortable, allowing me to focus on what really matters – the fish.

Wiley X Contend Performance on water was pretty good
Wiley X Contend Performance on water was pretty good

The bronze tint of the lens and the good wrap coverage enhanced my ability to spot fish. However, the lack of padding on the nose and ears might be a point of contention for some.

Technologies that Set Brand and Model Apart

Wiley X is known for its advanced technology and the WX Contend is no exception. It boasts an ANSI Z87.1+ safety rating, assuring top-notch optical clarity and impact resistance. It’s not just a pair of sunglasses, but a protective shield for your eyes.

Pros and Cons of Wiley X WX Contend

Lightweight and durableLack of padding on the nose and ears
High polarization and UV protectionNo spring hinges on temple arms
Good lens tint for fishingLens material is plastic, not glass
Impact resistance with ANSI Z87.1 testingMedium fishy factor

Price and Value

The WX Contend Captivate comes in at $185. Given the quality and features, it’s a reasonable price. However, considering some of the drawbacks, some might argue that there are other options in the market that offer better value.


Wiley X offers a 60-day manufacturer’s warranty, which provides a bit of peace of mind when investing in these sunglasses.

Customer Reviews and Ratings

The WX Contend Captivate has garnered an average star rating of 8.4, with customers appreciating the lightweight design and the high polarization and UV protection. However, some users did mention the lack of

The Last Cast with the Wiley X Contend Captivate

All in all, the Wiley X WX Contend sunglasses are a solid choice for the dedicated angler, despite a few shortcomings.

The Contend sunglasses would be perfect for the fisherman that also requires safety glass protection in their working environment. Read more and check prices with this shortcut link to Amazon. πŸ‘‰ Wiley X Contend Captivate Sunglasses

With excellent polarization and UV protection, as well as a comfortable lightweight design, they are well suited for a day out on the water. The bronze tint and good wrap coverage are added benefits for spotting those elusive fish.

If you’re looking for “The Best Fishing Sunglasses” Check out my review of the πŸ‘‰ Smith Guides Choice

However, for long hours of wear, the lack of padding might be a deal-breaker for some. Still, if your primary concern is seeing your fish and keeping your eyes safe, the WX Contend might be the right pair for you.

Hi David Humphries Owner of Guide Recommended. I love everything to do with fly fishing. Casting, Tying, YouTube, writing about it and even teaching. I’ve got a FREE video workshop teaching how to dry fly fish at this link How to Fly Fish

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