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The Latest Trends in Police Gloves and Eyewear

Today’s officers need the most advanced technology when it comes to their equipment, including gloves and eyewear. Here is a look at some of the latest trends in gloves and sunglasses/goggles for both patrol and tactical operations. New products are helping officers look more stylish and feel more comfortable on the job.

Gloves (Patrol & Tactical)

Fire & Cut Resistant

In the BLACKHAWK! cut-resistant glove program, the CRG1 and CRG2 are the latest additions to provide protection with a contemporary look, feel and fit. Made with a KEVLAR reinforced palm, the CRG1 protects against cuts. The CRG2 provides substantial cut protection for the entire hand with a Honeywell Spectra blend liner. Both models are made from a flexible neoprene/spandex shell with a form-fitting ergonomic shape; both have a durable synthetic leather palm with a reinforced thumb cradle; and both have a pull-on loop for easy donning and/or attaching to carabiners. An adjustable hook and loop closure provides a comfortable, secure fit.

The Leather Tactical Enforcement Glove from HexArmor is enhanced with SuperFabric material to provide the highest cut and puncture protection. These gloves also feature a double layer of the material in the fingertips for high-risk search situations where needles may be present.

The NITRO™-Kevlar Tactical Glove features one of Damascus Protective Gear’s latest designs with Carbon Tek knuckles for ultimate protection to the back of the hand. Kevlar on the back also makes it flame/flash retardant as well as cut protective. The digital print on the palms creates better weapon control and tactility. Other trends include: wrist length with Velcro closure for a secure fit and a rolled fingertip design for trigger sensitivity.

Oakley®’s new SI Tactical FR glove features a Pittards fire-resistant leather palm and topside reinforcements, as well as anatomical protective knuckle plating covered with FR leather. Two layers of Nomex protect the backs of hands and fingers.

Franklin®’s 2nd Skinz™ gloves use Pittards Parados Chemical Resistant Palm, in addition to a Lycra back with Exo Seam for Support and a tri-curve design for an anatomical fit. Franklin’s model 17760 is Cut and Chemical Resistant. This glove is also Dyneema lined for high-level cut resistance.

Safariland’s (a BAE Systems business) new cut, heat, flash and fire-resistant Hatch Model SOG-HKL100 Leather Operator™ Hard Knuckle Glove is constructed of goatskin leather for abrasion and tear resistance and provides added protection and durability.

The new Safariland SOG-HKL100 Hard Knuckle Glove’s full Kevlar liner provides cut resistance and is designed to wick moisture and perspiration away to help cool the user’s hand. This glove also features Safariland’s Ergo Cut technology and uses 100 percent Nomex thread, providing flame resistance throughout all parts of the glove. Both the new Wiley X Orion™ glove and Wiley X Aries glove are constructed using a lightweight Nomex/Kevlar weave throughout the fingers and the back of the hand to provide extra flame resistance and protection from cuts, while sheepskin allows for increased dexterity, durability and protection.


The TAC-A2 from 5.11 Tactical is a general tactical application glove for everyday wear. Tactical Touch precision fit fingertips allow for dexterity and comfort. Other 5.11 features include: synthetic suede palm, breathable stretch nylon back panel, synthetic leather grip pads, reinforced finger joints, lightweight and fast drying material, sweat wipe panel on thumb, Neoprene and Velcro wrist closure and reinforced pull tab.

The new BLACKHAWK! Neoprene Patrol Gloves are specially designed to meet the needs of patrol work with the fit for outdoor recreational use. The 1.5mm neoprene provides warmth and the polyurethane palm with BLACKHAWK!s screen-printed contact points provides control, even in wet conditions. An adjustable hook and loop closure provides a comfortable, secure fit. ­

The Impact Elite from Camelbak is a versatile padded glove with a reinforced palm that uses Thermal Plasticized Rubber knuckle padding that protects hands from impact and vibration without affecting flexibility and dexterity. Tacky fingertips increase sensitivity and finger control. Applications include: tactical operations, shooting, using other weapons or driving in rough conditions. It is lightweight and breathable for all climates. Supple, breathable, durable Clarino synthetic leather palm provides a firm grip and the two-way stretch spandex with 3 percent carbon-conductive anti-static fiber provides a snug fit. Concealed interior seam stitching enhances durability and protects from abuse such as heat, cold, abrasion and impact.

Hatch’s SOG-HKL100 Hard Knuckle Glove’s full leather construction increases its durability, buffers sound and reduces its IR signature. Hatch’s patented Cut-Ring is used on the index finger, allowing for the optional removal of the trigger finger without unraveling the remaining edge. In addition, the Hatch advanced Ergo-Cut design decreases hand fatigue and enhances weapon control by mimicking the exact functional position of the hand. The overlay of goatskin aniline leather in the weapon cradle of the glove provides extra grip and better weapon control.

The Ringers’ Law Enforcement Line is composed of five different styles of gloves, ranging from a daily patrol glove to a heavy-duty tactical response glove. Each glove features Ringers’ patented SuperCuff design. The non-binding, non-restricting cuff provides a snug and secure fit without hampering wrist or hand movement. The gloves are conducive to both cold and warm temperatures, making them ideal for the first responder community.

Leather-reinforced in high-wear areas, the new Wiley X Aries Glove has the thumb, index finger and middle finger tips removed to expose the fingers with an adjustable cuff for a comfortable custom fit.


Interchangeable and Distortion-Free Lenses

High-tech lenses that can be interchanged is one of the latest trends in eyewear for first responders. 5.11 Tactical teamed up with Wiley X Eyewear to offer 5.11’s Climb sunglasses, which feature die-cut Selenite polycarbonate lenses that prevent angular distortion and offer 10 times the impact resistance of glass or resin. Also standard are a T-Shell lens coating for scratch, crack and craze (stress mark) resistance.

The BLACKHAWK! A.C.E. Tactical Goggles provide a full 180-degree peripheral vision with wind and dust protection via foam dust filters. Also, the lenses are treated with anti-scratch and anti-fog materials. Clear or smoke tint lenses are available and goggles come in Foliage Green or Coyote Tan.

BODY SPECS Sunglass/Goggles Ballistic & Safety Eyewear provide protection in close quarter combat. They also provide protection from dust, wind and sunlight. The BSG series are Lab Certified for Ballistic & Safety Standards MIL-STD 662, MIL-PRF-31013 and ANSI Z87.I+. In addition to providing Ballistic protection, the BSG line has an optional RX Frame that fits in the gasket behind the main lens providing better protection for a prescription lens, and allows users to interchange all three lenses.

ESS Eyewear’s new Crossbow ballistic Eyeshield features Tri-Tech Fit technology for a universal fit with zero pressure points. On range and on duty, the ESSOPTICS turn the 2.4mm polycarbonate lenses into distortion-free, optically precise tools. The Crossbow’s ClearZone FlowCoat lenses are engineered to eliminate fog inside and prevent scratches outside. For switching tints, the DedBolt Lens Lock pivots up for easy release, then clamps down for secure retention under impact.

The all-new Wiley X Black Ops Collection Airborne is a low-profile addition to Wiley X’s new Black Ops Collection with 20 percent light transmission smoke grey ANSI Z87 certified lenses, and matte black frames. The collection features the company’s High Velocity Protection (HVP™), including shatterproof Selenite polycarbonate lenses, along with features like the wide temple design for more peripheral protection. In addition, this vision system is part of Wiley X’s Climate Control series, and includes a removable foam Facial Cavity seal that fits any facial structure like a glove. The patented design provides Top Down Ventilation that keeps out dust and debris, and allows air to flow from top to bottom—keeping lenses clear.

The Wiley X Black Ops Collection Revolvr also features the company’s High Velocity Protection. The Revolvr’s other features include matte black frames and military spec neutral grey lenses that are both ANSI certified and meet the ANSI Z87.1- 2003 certification for safety. The shatterproof Selenite polycarbonate lenses stay intact with a scratch-resistant lens hardcoat.

Oakley SI Ballistic M-Frame 2.0 IP Strike Photochromic glasses feature Oakley’s latest Photochromic technology, which reduces eye fatigue and improves performance and safety by automatically darkening and lightening the lens in response to the environment. It optimizes visual acuity and depth perception with precise filtering along the light spectrum.

The Wolfspider Tactical Goggle System from Revision Eyewear sports easily interchangeable lenses for various light conditions and provides 100 percent UV-A-B-C protection. The system features OcuMax coated interchangeable lenses for fog-free vision, and is 100 percent UV protective.

Rudy Project teamed with USA Shooting for their premiere Shooting Package designed specifically for shooters, and the tactical and law enforcement communities. The package includes a pair of Rudy Project’s Rydon Frames, Quick Change interchangeable lens system (Laser Copper, Action Brown, Transparent, Racing Red and Yellow) and a tailored carrying case. Additional features include: complete Rx capabilities and a replacement lens guarantee.

The Shooting Package is available in two lens technologies: RP Optics, a polycarbonate that is injected under pressure to ensure lightweight UV protection; and ImpactX, which is guaranteed not to break or crack for life. The lenses also incorporate RP-D-Centered technology to minimize eye fatigue.

Impact Resistant

Glasses or goggles must be durable for officers in the line of duty. 5.11’s low-profile frames are built with Grilamid TR-90 homopolyamide nylon for high bend strength, low density and high resistance to chemical and UV damage. Oil and sweat-resistant rubber touch points at the nose and temples also make these sunglasses comfortable for any scenario.

ESS’s CDI series of ballistic sunglasses meet MIL-SPEC, and ANSI Z87.1+ impact ratings with a comfortable fit and multi-lens functionality. Revision’s Wolfspider Tactical Goggle System’s dual-material frame technology offers durable high-impact protection and flexibility for comfort. Compact, low-profile design with unrestricted field-of-view offers enhanced war-fighting capabilities. OcuMax coating protects against fogging and scratching.

Rudy Project’s ERGONOSE II is made from copper beryllium, with aerated Megol nose pads with E-Lock Grip System to ensure maximum comfort and eliminate slippage. The KYNETIUM temples feature a special aluminum alloy that contains magnesium, silicium and titanium that is lightweight and flexible. The glasses also feature adjustable temples with ends in Megol for a customized fit, and composite plastic material mixed with advanced carbon offers a lightweight and durable technical platform.

Style and Fit

If glasses are not stylish or are uncomfortable, officers are less likely to put them on and keep them on. ESS updated its CDI and CDI-Max sunglasses to feature street-smart style in addition to interchangeable lenses. They easily transition from on-duty to off-duty and any light conditions. The CDI offers a medium fit, while the CDI-Max offers a medium to large fit.

Crossfire Safety Eyewear has bridged the gap between function and style with their Z87 approved safety eyewear. The newest additions to the Crossfire line are the KP6, RPG and OG3. By branding this line with fit, function and style, Crossfire expanded their frame and lens combinations within their existing styles to give users the ability to make choices that speak to their personalities.

The Wiley X Black Ops Collection Revolvr’s fitted profile features new Wrapback Technology with lenses that are curved, providing added peripheral vision in a fashionable Italian design.

Jennifer Gavigan is the editor of Public Safety IT and a frequent contributor to LAW and ORDER. She can be reached at jgavigan@

Published in Law and Order, May 2010

Rating : Not Yet Rated

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