With innovations upgrading every year it’s not a surprise that snorkeling masks have evolved from the traditional, tedious, two-pieced snorkel and goggle sets, into a more comfortable, one-piece, full-face, snorkeling mask.
A few significant differences…
Instead of spending so much time fiddling with the traditional two-pieced snorkeling masks, making sure your hair isn’t getting pulled by those annoying rubber straps, your mouthpiece is fitted properly, and your snorkel is not at some strange angle for easy water entrance.
These padded full-face masks, seals over your face like a glove in one easy movement. You just pull back the padded seams and adjustable back straps over your face, and you’re ready to go straight under.
Reviewers often say they feel like they have the vision they would under water if they weren’t wearing a mask at all. With a full 180-degree view, opposed to the narrow slit of vision allowed by traditional goggles, you get a significantly better snorkeling experience.
Instead of worrying about waves splashing water into your snorkel, or your mouth guard getting loose and letting in water, the full-face snorkeling mask allows you to breathe naturally. No mouthpiece is needed because the full-face mask allows you to breathe with your mouth and your nose, as you normally would on land. It’s much more comfortable and hygienic.
(Note: These masks are designed for snorkeling—staying on the surface of the water. Not for underwater diving. The reason being, is that although the snorkel valves are designed to not allow water inside even when submerged underwater, you cannot equalize your ears properly underwater with these full-face glass masks.
Though if you do go underwater and resurface… the water guard allows you to breathe normally without needing to “blow” the water out of the snorkel, like in traditional snorkels).
For All Levels of Snorkelers
What’s wonderful about these revolutionary full-face snorkeling masks, is no matter what your snorkeling experience is: whether you’re a ten year old kid who likes to explore underwater at your grandparents’ lake house, an avid coral reef vacationer, or a professional underwater film-maker; these masks are simple enough with exceptional enough quality, for anyone to use.
If you’re curious for more, below are our three favorite and best reviewed full-face snorkel masks.
The TriBord Easybreath is a perfect example of your modernized full-face snorkeling mask. To keep your mask from fogging up, which was always an annoying part of snorkeling in the past, the TriBord has a double air flow system identical to that of an extractor fan. This essentially means that air can circulate out of a small valve in the mask, without circulating back inside, which keeps your mask from fogging. Although a good anti-fog gel is always smart to have for backup.
Comfort is key with the TriBord with a cushioned, water sealed, full-face mask, and soft, supportable and adjustable back straps. It makes your experience snorkeling much less of a headache when your mask is not actually giving you one; like those tight rubber straps do on a traditional snorkeling mask (at least for us).
The TriBord also comes in a variety of sizes for your perfect comfort, ranging from x-small, to x-large.
Though it is essentially one piece, the snorkel can be detached for easier packing.
A few other things about the snorkel, it has a special valve at the tip that helps prevent water from splashing inside—even if you submerge yourself underwater. Though take note that it is difficult to equalize your ears underwater with this mask.
There is also a neon orange tip at the top of your snorkel for safety and visibility and a GoPro camera attachment.
A couple of negative notes on this one—it can only be purchased in Europe. So, if you are outside of Europe, you won’t be able to run to your local sports goods store and pick it up for the weekend. But not to worry, you can buy it online without a problem.
It’s also been reviewed to be a bit bulky. Though the larger full-face mask is part of its convenience compared with a traditional two-piece set. So, it depends on what you prefer.
Overall, the TriBord is a highly rated choice for all snorkelers that place importance on simplicity and comfort.
- Fog proof with double air flow system.
- Variety of sizes.
- Snorkel has a valve that keeps water from splashing inside.
- Can only be purchased in stores in Europe. Though you can purchase online outside of Europe.
- Has been reviewed to be a bit “bulky”.
- Can’t equalize ears underwater.
- Reviewed to have bad customer service.
Ocean Reef Aria
The Ocean Reef Aria is designed by a company that has been designing full-face scuba diving masks for years—and you can feel their experience in the quality of their full-face snorkeling mask.
The comfort is beyond parallel according to reviewers, with a better, even pressured fit around the face than most models; which can tend to put uneven pressure on various parts of the face. The fog-proof, face gasket is also reviewed to be slightly bigger and the cushioning on the facemask, softer.
It has the standard features of all modern, full-face, snorkeling masks—with the ability to breathe naturally through your mouth and nose, has a waterproof snorkel valve (though the air tube in this one is a bit wider than other models) and an extra valve close to the mouth area, allowing extra water to leak out in case your mask isn’t properly sealed.
The main differences between the Aria and the TriBord don’t differentiate too much in terms of quality. Though the Aria does have more choices in colors: orange, pink, black, blue and white; as opposed to the TriBord’s choices between blue and pink.
Another cool feature, is in addition to its already crystal clear viewing with a polycarbonate lens, Ocean Reef sells a prescription lens that can be attached on the inside of the mask and taken to any optometrist to personalize. So, for snorkelers that have experienced difficulties snorkeling in the past due to prescription lenses—this is perfect for you!
You can also purchase an attachable/detachable Aria GoPro attachment/selfie-stick (though it does not come with the facemask).
Overall, for an effortless, crystal-clear snorkeling experience (even for those with prescription lenses) this is a great choice.
- Can purchase a prescription lens.
- Highly rated in comfort.
- Reliable waterproof snorkel valve.
- Good color variation.
- Crystal clear viewing experience with polycarbonate lens.
- GoPro attachment/selfie stick is sold separately.
- Can’t equalize ears underwater.
- Reviewed to be a bit heavier than other models.
Shark Gear SeaFin
What makes this mask extra-good in our review is it’s cheaper than any of the above models, without losing too much in quality.
Quality is for the most part relatively the same (though reviewed to not be as great as the TriBord and Ocean Reef Aria). Still same fog-proof technology, comfortable silicone face padding, reliable waterproof snorkel valve (even after submerging under water and resurfacing).
The main two differences besides being a bit of a cheaper “knock off” from the real Easybreath models, is it only comes in two sizes—the S/M recommended for most women and youths and L/XL generally recommended for most men. So, less size variety than some models which include x-smalls, small, medium, large and x-large.
Also, only two of the five colors offered provide a GoPro attachment. This is something to keep in mind if you are set on buying one of a certain color.
It also has been reviewed to have some uncomfortable pressure when diving down below water compared with other full-face snorkeling mask models.
Overall, if you are looking for an option as close to quality as some of the more expensive full-face snorkel mask models… this is your best choice.
- Same standard features: fog-proof, comfortable silicone face padding, reliable waterproof snorkel valve.
- Less variety of sizes.
- Only two of five colors include GoPro camera attachment.
- Uncomfortable pressure on face when diving below the surface.
- Can’t equalize ears underwater.
With these revolutionary, full-face, snorkeling masks, our snorkeling experience is unparalleled to what it was before with traditional models. With the above masks being the highest rated of their kind, we hope you have been able to make an educated and confident decision for your next snorkeling trip.