Bollé Brands announces new ‘Eco’ range of helmets and sunglasses
In any hyper-competitive market, there are several paths to commercial success: make your product better, sell it cheaper, or somehow set your product apart from the rest. Often lost in a sea of better-known (and better-marketed) cycling helmets and sunglasses, Bollé Brands — the parent company of Bollé, Serengeti (and Serengeti Sport), and Spy Optics — has opted for the third option with two new products developed with an emphasis on long-term sustainability that the company hopes will prompt hesitant buyers to give them a second look.
The new Bollé Eco React MIPS helmet is aimed at the urban and commuter crowd with its integrated hat-like brim and smart styling. But instead of using a typical expanded polystyrene foam liner, a virgin polycarbonate shell, and synthetic pads and straps, the Eco React MIPS’s liner has a 20% natural cork content, the shell uses 40% recycled materials, the pads are made of bamboo fiber, and the straps are constructed using 50% cotton. Even the brim is made of bamboo (and it’s removable, too).
Retail price is US$180 / £130 / €150.
On the eyewear front, Serengeti Sport is now offering a range of sunglasses with frames made from Grilamid BTR, an “amorphous, transparent polyamide” made from castor oil that can be directly substituted for the more common petroleum-based Grilamid TR90 nylon. According to Serengeti, Grilamid BTR “offers the same characteristics that frames made with TR90 Nylon offer, which include durability, flexibility, and strength without the use of petrol.”
Moreover, the India-sourced castor oil seeds are claimed to reduce overall CO2 emissions relative to more conventional petroleum-based plastics by “more than 40%”. Serengeti has extended that eco-focus to the packaging, too, which is almost entirely recycled or recyclable cardboard with any remaining plastic bits made of recyclable “Bio-Plastics”.
At the moment, Bollé Brands’ use of the new Grilamid BTR material is limited too Serengeti’s more casual eyewear offerings, not any cycling-specific offerings under the Bollé brand, although that’s likely to change moving forward. Retail prices start at US$160 / £140 / €150.
Australian prices for all of these items are to be confirmed.
Of course, none of this stuff by itself is going to “save the planet” or anything, but it’s a step in a good direction nonetheless.