Review – Smith Persist Helmet and Shift Mag Cycling Sunglasses

Smith Persist Helmet and Shift Mag Sunglasses

I have become an avid fan of the Smith brand over the last five years; their products are exceptional in quality level and comfort, as well as being some of the best value cycling helmets and sunglasses on the market today.

Review ­– Smith Persist Cycling Helmet

The new Smith Persist Cycling Helmet is a fitting example of the innovation and development that the Smith brand puts into its products. Despite it being one of the lower priced helmets within the Smith helmets range, it holds some of the most developed comfort and protection technologies seen in the world, as well as some of the best styling.

The classically shaped and smoothly contoured helmet features a multitude of vents that suck air through the helmet and deliver an impressive cooling effect for those sweltering summer days. A comfortable adjustable chin strap keeps the helmet in place, and inside the antibacterial padding offers good comfort and moisture wicking capabilities.

The outstanding thing with the Smith Persist helmet is that it features the innovative MIPS protection system. This unique web-like plastic layer between the expanded foam outer and inner padding helps to reduce the rotational motion transferred to the brain in the event of an impact. I really buy into this technology, and it is a huge bonus when a helmet features it, especially at this price point.

The Smith Persist helmet is light – at just 300g for size Medium. In the classic gloss black colourway I chose, it also offers a timeless design that can be easily matched with any cycling kit or cycling sunglasses.

Supremely comfortable, highly protective, and definitively stylish. This helmet from Smith is another real winner in my book, all for less than £100.

>> Shop the Smith Persist Cycling Helmet

Review – Smith Shift MAG Cycling Sunglasses

The Smith Shift MAG sunglasses are a fitting (if quite expensive) counterpart to the Smith Persist helmet.

These cycling sunglasses are a two-lens model, with a retro look created by a more subtly curved lens than some wraparound models. The optical quality and performance are second to none, and the fit is also superb.

Starting with the polycarbonate frame: the glasses have a featherweight feel, but remain impressively robust. The nosepiece and frame ends are made from 'Megol' – a plastic that is impressively grippy, even when wet with perspiration or precipitation. The nosepiece is adjustable to bring the glasses closer or further away – helping to overcome fogging; and quite uniquely, even the arms are (apparently) user-customisable if you heat them to 90° and gently bend them by hand.

'MAG' refers to the system of magnets connecting the frame to the lens. It is simple and secure, and the same tech Smith uses in its snow goggles. There are two Smith Logos at the hinges; you open these and then you can prise the lens away to switch between the ChromaPop and the clear lenses provided in the case. Both lenses offer 100 percent UV protection from UVA, UVB and UVC (made from polycarbonate).

Smith ChromaPop lenses are said to give 'natural colour-enhanced visual clarity and greater definition of objects' – in essence they are designed to enhance colour and contrast. There is also a separate photo-chromatic clear lens option available at an extra cost that automatically darkens to grey in strong light.

The ChromaPop lens is superb and offers some of the best clarity I have seen in cycling sunglasses. They also seem to be impressively protective and resilient—not getting scratched as easily as some, and shedding water well.

Overall, the Smith Shift Mag sunglasses are a fantastic pair of uniquely styled cycling sunglasses. They are retro in looks, but perform at the height of modern technology. They aren't cheap at +£150, but they should stand the test of time and the trials of adventure.

>> Shop the Smith Shift MAG Sunglasses 

Smith Shift MAG Sunglasses

Smith Shift MAG Sunglasses

Smith Persist Helmet Review

Smith Persist Helmet Review

Disclaimer: Smith UK supplied a Smith Persist Helmet and Smith Shift MAG Sunglasses for test and review


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