If you’ve ever dunked your head in a swimming pool without goggles, then you already know how challenging it can be to find things such as keys or pool toys, and even your way in a subaqueous environment. A snorkel mask creates an air pocket in front of your cornea, so that your eyes can focus on amazing underwater real estate and hidden treasures.
Buying the right diving eye protection gear, however, can be a daunting task given the plethora of options available, but we’ve done the homework for you, and present you with the five best snorkel masks available including a detailed buying guide to ease your buying decision.
Snorkel Masks Reviews
1. Kraken Aquatics Snorkel Dive Mask with Silicone Skirt and Strap
When it comes to diving gear, not many can do it better than Kraken Aquatics, and the Snorkel Dive Mask makes this quite evident. Available in three color choices—black, red and clear blue, this snorkel mask is fitted with a silicone skirt and strap for great comfort and a watertight seal.
Its lens is crafted from tempered glass rather than flimsy plastic to prevent shattering and scratching, and protects your eyes from the harsh elements of the underwater world. The adjustable strap of the Kraken Aquatics dive mask makes it easy to achieve the right fit, and its integrated buckle holds it securely in place. Additionally, it boasts sturdy construction complete with a one piece lens so you get an unobstructed view whether you take it scuba diving, freediving or snorkeling.
The Kraken Aquatics snorkel mask is undoubtedly a winner in this space, but just like everything else, it isn’t perfect. Although it features soft silicone and a nice double seal, it may not sit firmly against the lip area especially for those with a mustache, causing it to leak a little at times. Apart from that, the mask is as good as they come and won’t disappoint you on your scnorkel adventures.
- Flexible Silicone for Leak-Proof, Comfort Seal: Skirt and strap come in soft, supple silicone, which molds to the shape of your face for comfortable fit and watertight seal. No more leaks or discomfort.
- Tempered-Glass Lens for Safety: Forget flimsy plastic lenses! This one is quality tempered glass, which resists scratching and shattering.
- Convenient Buckle for Easy Adjustment: Simply pull the straps to desired fit and the buckle will hold the straps securely in place. Presto: customized comfort.
- Rugged Enough for Scuba Diving: Thanks to its sturdy construction, your mask can stand up to all kinds of wear - from snorkeling in the pool to deep-sea scuba diving.
- One-Piece Lens: A snorkel mask should help you see better, not obstruct part of your view. Now you can enjoy all the underwater scenery clearly.
- Single pane design for unobstructed visibility
- Soft silicone with double seal
- Adjustable strap with buckle
- May not fit right over the nose for those with a mustache
2. Dive Energy Adult Dry Snorkel Set
If you’re tired of dealing with flimsy snorkel masks and snorkels, the Dive Energy Adult Dry Snorkel set is what you should be looking at. It features a smart design that consists of a wide view single pane glass that provides hours of anti-fog pleasure, and an extra comfortable dual strap with buckles and two buttons on each.
Further, it arrives with a soft silicone mouthpiece for you to breathe easily and a purge valve system. This Adult Dry Snorkel by Dive Energy can be ordered in a choice of two excellent colors, black and blue, and is CE certified, meaning it conforms to European quality standards.
The package includes a diving mask, snorkel, user guide and even a sturdy mesh bag for easy storage. And best of all, the Adult Dry Snorkel mask is backed by a 100% money back guarantee to safeguard your investment.
This snorkel mask is designed for young and old, and provides a great fit. If there’s anything worth complaining about, it’s the plastic at the tip of the mask, which though sturdy, may not be comfortable for some users. However, adjusting the dual straps does enhance the overall comfort and fit of the Dive Energy snorkel mask.
- SUPER CLEAR ANTI-FOG TEMPERED GLASS MASK: Enjoy a better view of your underwater adventures, our snorkel mask stays clear and does not fog up and provides a panoramic view.
- PERFECT FIT MASK FOR EXTRA COMFORT: You won't ever have to worry about tight straps on your head, our dual straps make it a breeze to customize the fit to your size.
- LEAK-FREE SNORKEL TECHNOLOGY: No more leaks makes a better snorkeling experience. Our dry snorkel technology means no more swallowing water!
- SLEEK DESIGN MADE WITH PROFESSIONAL GRADE MATERIALS: Our well-made snorkel kits are designed with high quality, durable materials that are comfortable and built to last.
- Single pane anti-fog lens
- Extra comfortable dual strap
- Wide view and CE certified
- Plastic tip may be hard for some users
- Only two color options available
3. Supertrip Scuba Snorkel Set
The Supertrip scuba snorkel set features a silicone mouthpiece, which is soft and comfortable, and designed to reduce jaw fatigue. It is fitted with a single, tempered glass lens and adjustable strap and buckles, making it easy to get the right fit quickly and easily.
Furthermore, it is available in a choice of several exciting colors including yellow, blue and pink, making it easier to mix and match with your existing scuba gear. The snorkel mouthpiece of the Supertrip scuba mask is made from high quality, full grade liquid, soft and safe silicone, and is fitted with a dry top that eliminates water when submerged.
The package of this snorkel mask includes two mouthpieces, one dive mask and snorkel, and one mesh bag, so you can get started right out of the box. Lightweight at just 1.2 lbs, the Supertrip snorkel mask is a great choice in terms of performance and longevity without breaking the bank.
The Supertrip snorkel mask is easy to assemble, but the plastic straps that lock the adjustable straps may break off after a few years of use. The good news is that in the event this issue occurs within 365 days, you can return the damaged mask for a full refund.
- DRY TOP SNORKEL: designed to eliminates water entry when submerged
- SILICONE MOUTHPIECE: soft and highly flexible tube provides comfort and reduces jaw fatigue
- SAFETY AND ENVIRONMENT FRIENDLY :Mask with tempered glass lenses 100% silicone material
- EASILY ADJUSTABLE BUCKLES: Our snorkeling mask adopts adjustable buckles so that you can adjust the strap easily and quickly.
- WIDE RANGE VIEW :snorkeling and recreational swimming & snorkeling for panoramic vision
- Comfortable high grade silicone mouthpiece
- Easily adjustable buckle for angle adjustment
- Tempered glass, single lens provides wide range view
- Mask does fog up at times
- May be a bit challenging trying to get the right fit
4. Scuba Choice Black Dive Nearsighted Prescription Mask
The Scuba Choice snorkel mask can be fitted with several different nearsighted tempered glass corrective lenses including -1.5, -2.0, -2.5, -3.0, -3.5, -4.0, -4.5, -5.0, -5.5, -6.0, -6.5,-7.0,-7.5, -8.0,-9.0, -10.0. It is appointed with a crystal silicone facial skirt and a comfortable mask strap, making it a joy to wear on long dives.
The strap can be adjusted easily for the right fit, owing to its unique buckle design, which also helps set the mask securely over your head. Ordering this scuba masks is pretty easy. You simply select the right RX lenses to match your prescription.
It showcases a robust build due to its high quality skirt construction and dual pane lenses. If you’re looking for a prescription snorkel mask that allows you to see clearly underwater, the Black Dive Nearsighted Prescription snorkel mask by Scuba Choice is a great choice.
The Scuba Dive nearsighted prescription snorkel mask is an excellent choice for those with corrective lenses. When adjusted properly, it fits well, but on the downside may leak sometimes, which is an issue with even the best snorkel masks. Although it is available in several different prescriptions, it can only be had in one color, black.
- Available corrective lenses: -1.5, -2.0, -2.5, -3.0, -3.5, -4.0, -4.5, -5.0, -5.5, -6.0, -6.5,-7.0,-7.5, -8.0,-9.0, -10.0
- Tempered glass lenses
- Crystal silicone facial skirt and mask strap.
- Unique buckle design which allows you to adjust the mask easily
- Unique buckle design
- Tempered dual pane lenses
- Comfortable crystal silicone facial skirt and mask strap
- Only 1 color available
5. Cressi Ranger Scuba Mask
Founded in 1946, Cressi is regarded as one of the world’s largest manufacturers of water sports equipment in the world. The Cressi Ranger is a CE approved, tempered glass, dual pane ssnorkel mask that is fitted with a silicone made skirt and strap for an unmatched fit and seal on your face.
It is easy to adjust, owing to the integrated strap push-button swivel buckles, and its low volume design makes it easy to clear the water out. The Cressi Ranger snorkel mask features a one handed, easy to access nose pocket for excellent ear equalization.
Available in a choice of eight color options including yellow and lilac, the Cressi Ranger dive mask is a perfect fit for trips in the pool and tropical waters, and is extremely lightweight so it won’t weigh you down on your underwater excursions.
The Cressi Ranger snorkel mask boasts a sturdy build and even though it is a great fit for a range of faces, it may not sit right on wider faces. But adjusting it appropriately should help you achieve a tight seal.
- The Ranger is a 2-window silicone mask ideal for both snorkeling and scuba diving.
- The Ranger features dual safety tempered CE approved glass lens and a low volume design that helps keep the mask close to the face for great visibility, while the super soft silicone double feathered edge skirt helps ensure a great seal on the face.
- It features a soft nose pocket for ear equalization.
- The push button buckles and wide split strap allow for easy adjustments, and in concert with the double feathered edge, skirt provides a great seal.
- The Ranger is designed in Italy by Cressi and made in Taiwan. Cressi is an Italian brand pioneer in scuba diving, snorkeling and swimming equipment since 1946.
- Tempered glass CE approved glass lenses
- Super-soft silicone skirt
- Push button buckles allow easy-adjustments
- May not fit well on wide faces
A snorkel mask is a vital piece of equipment for your adventures because it not only provides you with a clear view, but also protects your eyes from the harsh elements of the underwater world.
This range of diving masks can be had in a plethora of designs, materials and features, but what’s most important is that you choose one that allows you to clearly focus on the surroundings when underwater, while keeping water out of your nose.
That said, here are a few aspects to consider when on the shopping trail for the best snorkel mask.
Snorkel Mask Type
Although all snorkel masks are designed with one goal in mind, to help you see under water, they have to fit perfectly in order to do it right. Dive masks are available across a spectrum of types, and each one is geared towards different facial types.
Snorkel Mask No Purge – These masks are the most common type available, and basically feature a plain rubber nose with no opening.
Snorkel Mask with Purge – This range of snorkel masks is fitted with a purge valve at the bottom, which is designed to clear out the trapped water by simply exhaling into it rather than lifting the mask off your face to drain it. Snorkel masks with purge valves not only help you clear the water easily, but also free up your hands to do other things such as underwater photography.
Furthermore, they’re also a great solution for divers who wear contact lenses and those with mustaches who sometimes may have trouble with fitting the mask properly. However, the pitfall of purge snorkel masks is that there’s one more piece to clean and then add to that the chance of malfunction.
Full Face Snorkel Masks – This range of snorkel masks, just as the name suggests, covers your entire face, and provides both a wide angle of view and extra protection for your face.
Frameless vs. Framed Masks – The lenses in the former are generally set closer to your eyes which results in a wider field of vision in all directions. Additionally, they are also mostly low volume and can be folded up easily compared to frame designs.
Small Fit Masks – Owing to increasing popularity, some manufacturers sell smaller versions of their standard size masks to fit smaller faces. If you have a smaller face but can’t find the right features and high quality construction in children’s snorkel masks, this range of masks is worth checking out.
Snorkel Mask Comfortability
A snorkel mask that doesn’t fit right or offer you the right level of comfort can be your archenemy underwater. The skirt of snorkel masks is the part that creates a seal with your face, and generally wraps around your eye area without any gaps.
The best snorkel masks feature skirts made from hypoallergenic silicone, with the thickness and suppleness varying across models. Some skirts mold to your face like a glove to provide a comfortable watertight seal, while cheap snorkel masks mostly showcase stiff edges that sometimes dig into your skin.
Additionally, straps play an equally important role towards the overall comfort of the diving mask. They can be made from rubber, silicone or neoprene, each with their own share of advantages.
Regardless of the type of material you choose, the best snorkel mask straps tend to adjust easily, quickly and stay that way during your dives. Furthermore, the right buckles make it easy to adjust the strap and consequently add to the comfort quotient of the respective snorkel mask.
Snorkel Mask Color
Snorkel masks back in the day were mostly made from rubber, hence most of them were available in only a black color and a few shades of blue or green. Clear silicone snorkel masks released a few years later became an instant hit among divers, mostly because they let more light in and felt more open.
However, this extra inward surge of light entering from the back of the mask tends to bounce off the lens directly towards your eyes which results in a reflection of yourself in the lens, which can get annoying and at times obstruct your line of vision. Most silicone snorkel masks can be had in an assortment of colors, and are often a preferred choice for underwater photographers because they reduce glare.
Snorkel Mask Volume
The volume of a snorkel mask refers to the amount of air space inside, where low volume or low-profile snorkel masks can be quickly cleared of water and sit closer to the face, and high volume masks offer extended peripheral vision and a feeling of openness.
While choosing between the two boils down to personal preference, low volume masks, given that they hold very little air, are generally a go-to choice for spearfishers, freedivers and technical divers.
Snorkel Mask Lens
Lenses are an important component that distinguish one mask from another, and determine how a respective mask can be used. They are mostly made from tempered glass with few models fitted with plastic lenses for a lighter footprint. Snorkel mask lenses come in several different styles such as:
- Single Pane lenses – This range of masks is fitted with a single pane without the divider. They are generally preferred by people with smaller faces who like to enjoy unobstructed peripheral vision. On the downside, they are a bit heavier than double pane snorkel masks because of the extra single glass and cannot accept true corrective lenses. You can, however, use them with separate prescription glasses.
- Double Lenses – These are distinguished by two separate panes of glass held together by a frame. Few of the noteworthy benefits of dual pane snorkel masks are that they can accommodate optical lenses for divers with vision problems, and are much easier to clear and equalize since they sit closer to your face. They also greatly reduce the internal volume of the mask.
- Multi-Lens Snorkel Masks – These can be either single or two window snorkel masks with side panes to enhance peripheral vision as well as welcome more light. The airy feel this range of masks offers works great for divers who are prone to claustrophobia. One of the downsides, however, of multi lens snorkel masks is that the intersection of the side and front lenses can lead to distortion at depth and create blind spots.
- Prescription/Corrective Lens Masks – If you wear prescription glasses or contact lenses, you may want to check snorkel mask models that can be fitted with corrective lenses.
Snorkel Masks FAQs
Question 1: How do Snorkel Masks Work?
What do a pygmy seahorse, a ship wreck and leafy seadragon have in common? The only way to cherish their innate beauty is by wearing the best snorkel mask. This important piece of diving gear is engineered exclusively for snorkeling and is not to be confused with any other masks for several reasons.
They are crafted from robust materials such as tempered glass and silicone to withstand the harsh elements of the underwater world, enclose your nose to keep water out, and help divers clearly see and experience the jewels of the underwater world.
The main job of the best snorkel mask, however, is to create and maintain an air pocket in front of your eyes, because the cornea’s focusing properties are eliminated when human eyes are immersed.
The windows panes of a snorkel mask separates your eyes from the surrounding water with an airspace allowing you to see clearly underwater. Snorkel masks can be had in half and full mask designs, where the former covers the eyes and nose and latter eyes, nose and mouth.
Question 2: How to Clear a Snorkel Mask?
Snorkel mask clearing is the most fundamental skill to master in the open water, after breathing of course. Even the best snorkel masks can leak at some point of their life, and mask clearing is the process of efficiently clearing the water without surfacing or panicking. The inability to perform this solo skill can ruin a good dive, so here are a few tips on how to get it right.
- Start by placing your left hand (heel or fingers) on the top part of the frame of the mask to hold it securely against your forehead. Although you can use two hands for this task, it is recommended that you practice with one hand in order to minimize movement.
- Next, look slightly upwards by tilting your head a bit.
- Simultaneously, exhale through your nose to push the water out of the snorkel mask.
Question 3: How to Fit a Snorkel Mask?
A snorkel mask that doesn’t fit properly may result in leaks and consequently ruin your diving trip. Even the best snorkel masks feature an outer and a narrower inner seal, and if both touch the face, the fitting of the mask is on point.
Start by wearing the mask with the strap in place but slightly loose, and then tighten it accordingly as if you were diving. The next step is to take a mirror, and look around the entire mask while wearing it to ensure that the inner seal touches everywhere. Lastly, repeat the same process for the outer seal.
Question 4: How to Clean a New Snorkel Mask?
So you’ve bought the best snorkel mask, but before you head out underwater, it is important that you clean it thoroughly to get rid of the thin film of silicone and mold-release agents that may have developed on the lenses during the manufacturing process.
Get started by scrubbing the lenses of the mask and the interior and exterior skirt with a powerful surfactant. You can use toothpaste, but some can be too abrasive so it’s best to avoid using them. Once you’ve worked the cleanser into the lenses and the skirt, rinse it out completely with warm but not hot, clean fresh water.
Question 5: How to Use a Snorkel Mask?
Wear the snorkel mask and ensure that no hair is stuck in the skirt, which may result in leaks. You may have to make minor adjustments to the strap, and position it properly at the back of your head.
People with mustaches may find it challenging to try to get the perfect seal, but there are several websites you can access for tips on how to do it right.
Finding the best snorkel mask can be a tricky task considering the myriad options to choose from. However, the five models in our list are designed to help you explore the underwater world like it was meant to be.
The Dive Energy snorkel mask comes with a snorkel, saving you the trouble of buying one separately. But if you have a snorkel or do not feel the need for one, the Supertrip and Kraken Aquatics snorkel masks are available in several color options and designed to deliver optimal performance.
For divers with corrective lenses, the Scuba Choice snorkel mask can be fitted with several prescription nearsighted lenses starting from -1.0 to -10.0.