Ray Ban vs. Maui Jim Sunglasses

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Difference between Ray Ban and Maui Jim

In the world of sunglasses, Ray Ban is of course a name that needs no introduction. A true classic that has stood the test of time, Ray Ban is one of those brands that has the distinction of being a cultural icon. Maui Jim hasn't quite achieved the same status, although it is popular enough in its own right to warrant a comparison with Ray Ban, as we do here.

Ray Ban
Maui Jim

Profile

Ray-Ban is a high-end brand of sunglasses, which was developed by Bausch & Lomb in 1937. The brand was developed for the United States Army Air Corporations, and the company was sold to the Luxottica Group in 1999 for a reputed sum of $640 million.

Maui Jim is a brand of luxury sunglasses manufactured in Peoria, Illinois. All Maui Jim sunglasses come with polarized lenses that block UV rays, and most feature a sporty, ocean-based theme.

History

Ray-Bans were first developed in 1937, after Bausch & Lomb was commissioned by Lieutenant John MacCready to creature sunglasses that provided adequate protection and looked elegant at the same time. MacReady had previously come from a balloon-flying trip during which he claimed that the sun had caused permanent damage to his eyes Bausch & Lomb obliged, and took out a patent for the sunglasses on May 7, 1937. The company came out with a prototype called Anti-Glare, which featured a lightweight frame that weighed only 150 grams. These glasses featured the now familiar gold-plated metal with green lenses, which were made out of mineral glass that effectively filtered out infrared and ultraviolet rays. The United States Army Air Corps was quick to use the sunglasses.

Maui Jim for its part was introduced on the hotel pool decks in Maui, Hawaii. Among its most distinctive features were gray polarized lenses that did not distort color. The brand was first released in the mainland in 1988, and due to a combination of aggressive marketing and distribution soon became one of the leading brands in the action sports and optical scene.

Reception

While Ray-Ban Aviator sunglasses were widely embraced by the buying public almost as soon as they were released, it was the General Douglas MacArthur’s use of them that caused it to really take off in sales. Pictures of MacArthur landing on the beach in Leyte in the Philippines during World War II showed him wearing these sunglasses, and along with numerous other famous wearers throughout history ensured Ray-Ban’s place as a cultural icon.

Maui Jim was originally based in Lahaina, Hawaii, but the subsequent purchase of RLI Vision in December 1996 resulted in a move to Peoria. The brand has achieved a respectable stature as a product that offers excellent value for money, and has in fact been listed in Forbes Magazine as one of “100 Things Worth Every Penny”.

Similarities and Differences

Ray Ban

  • A high-end brand of sunglasses developed by Bausch & Lomb in 1937.
  • First model featured a lightweight frame that weighed only 150 grams
  • Something of a cultural icon

Maui Jim

  • A brand of luxury sunglasses manufactured in Peoria, Illinois
  • Most models feature a sporty, ocean-based theme

 
 

Discuss It: comments 2

  • Guest
  • Cheap oakleys wrote on December 2011

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  • Guest
  • John wrote on June 2012

I had a hard time deciding b/t RB's and MJ's. I ultimately went with RB's due to MJ's being so pricey (RB's aren't THAT much cheaper either though) but then again, MJ's are worth the price. I agree with the writer in that MJ's are more of a sporty look which also played into my decision since I was going for more of an aviator look, in fact, I think the RB pictured above is the exact ones I bought hahaha. I'm really enjoying my RB's right now but Im sure if I went with MJ that I wouldnt be complaining either. Overall, can't go wrong with both!

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