Oakley M2 Frame Origins Sunglasses Review

When it comes to cycling eyewear, there is more to consider than just keeping the sun out of your eyes. Presently, with ideal cycling sunglasses, you are guaranteed protection from UV rays and assured of aesthetics and comfort. In addition, you will benefit from highly powerful protection from flying debris. Clarity is also improved with the lens technology.

From the ’80s, when Greg LeMond flaunted the amazing M frames, Oakley has maintained its status as the go-to eyewear for many of the biggest names in the cycling world. They have continued leading the line in the innovation of cycling eyewear from the beginning. It, therefore, comes as no surprise that the brand is well represented in the WorldTour, with teams such as Groupama-FDJ and Team Ineos riding it.

Oakley presents with a wide array of sunglasses with personalized options to fit all your needs as a rider. Let us take a review of Oakley M2 Frame Origins and see what it has to offer.

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Oakley M2 Frame and History of M Line

Following a recent purchase of the Oakley M5 Frame, we sat down to compile a review of the sunglasses. Below is a little history of the M Line and a review of the Oakley M2.

M Frame History

The debut of the Mumbo from Oakley happened in the year 1989. The company’s initial HDO, XYZ, was an optically corrected pair. Taking from the Blade system, there were three lens options with the Mumbo; 67, V, and the Hybrid. 

Owing to copyright-related issues, the name was changed in 1990 to the M Frame. Among the key Mumbo features was a hammer stem. This was a temple stem bend, moving the stem out from the head to amplify the principle of 3-Point-Fit while allowing provision for items like helmet straps. The first M Frame generation is the same as the Mumbo except for the packaging. In 1991, the Heater and Strip were incorporated together with the sweeping lens. 

Fast forward to 1992/93, The Slash and Strike lenses were introduced to the exhibition. Slash is special in that it incorporates a strip of foam upgraded frame at its sweat brow and a strap for ensuring that the pair is more secure. 

In the following year, 1994, the first M Frame overhaul was witnessed. The hinges of the frame were reinforced and received a somewhat geometric alteration. The stem was stretched past the ear socks with “Hammer Fangs” from Oakley, and the stem logo was changed to a molded icon from the standard Oakley font. In 1996, the M Frame was expanded with sport-specific arrays, in particular, the straight stem variant in a baseball lineup tailored for fitting the baseball cap easier.

Later on, in 1996, Pro M Frames was introduced. This was yet another M Frame design overhaul, with curves replacing boxy lines. 

The hammer stems were changed to a “wings” design. A cue that continued in various other pairs that era. Pro pair stems are fixed, making single-handed manipulation easy as you perform tasks like riding your bicycle. The stems’ rubber was changed to imitate what Jackets used and enlarged the contact surface area with the head of the user. 

The “New” M Frame version continues to be produced. You can still buy it as Industrial Eyewear from Oakley and via the SI program from Oakley. With the introduction of Oakley M2, the M Frame production line has continued for the previous quarter of a century.

Oakley M2 Frame

Eventually, in 2014, 15 years from when Oakley introduced the first M2 frame, they brought in the next generation. It was anticipated that the 2.0 or 3.0 were to be Oakley’s M2 Frame inspiration. Design features, however, are similar noticeably with other sport releases from Oakley in the last couple of years. Let’s take a look at the two most critical aspects; the lens shape and frame size.

Shape of the Lens

The greatest alteration is the most conspicuous, the brand new shape of the lens. The Oakley M2 Frame was released with one lens shape. Although its look appears rather funky, it offers excellent functionality. If you have a broad face, the lens of the M2 is not as large as you would have preferred. However, no large gaps are left in coverage, as observed in the reduced M Frame lens sizes.

The general size is the same as that of the second-generation M Frame line, Hybrid. M2 frame is center and front, with the Hybrid S and Hybrid flanking.

Size of the Frame

Another direct difference is the smaller pair of the M2. They have shorter stems with a thinner frame, similar to the removal of M Frame hammer fangs. The stem also has a less defined hammer. Its wing is interchangeable and redesigned, hinting at possible modifications in the future.

M Frame Lenses have forward compatibility. The fit of the preceding lenses had a little fuss. The tension is sufficient to keep the lens in position. However, this can be affected by serious impacts or vigorous body movement. 

The flexibility of the frame can be highlighted as the main reason for the lens’s interchangeability.

Conventionally, the channel of the lens is the most rigid M Frame portion, with reduced flex to allow the perfect fitting and tensioning of the lens. However, more frame exploitation is required when fitting the M2 original lens. Changing lenses is more cumbersome in the M2 design than it was in the M Frame. 


The native Oakley M Frame became an icon in cycling in the 2000s. A lot has changed in the cycling world since then, although the styling of the Oakley M Frame continues to have a strong fan base. Get your Oakley M2 Frame Origins sunglasses to experience firsthand why they are much adored. Hopefully, in the future, we get a wide array of M2 lenses.