How to Choose Your Mask

Our faces are different shapes and sizes. Masks also come in different shapes and sizes.
Using a mask that doesn’t fit perfectly enters you into a world of frustration.
It is essential that you try on as many masks as you can.

Select the mask that is most comfortable and has the features you want.
Try and avoid buying the mask for its look or colour.
Fit and comfort is the rule.

Features:

Skirt material
The cheap masks are made of Silita or PVC. This is a hard material that does not seal well. Usually found in chain stores and sports shops. Avoid.

Proper masks are silicone of various thickness. The thinner silicone skirts are softer and very comfortable but not hardy. They usually have a name such as crystal, ultra or liquid silicone. You pay much more for these!

Lenses
You get 1,2,3 or even 6 lens masks. There are also curved wrap around masks. But be warned that there is often vision distortion with these and the lens is plastic and very very prone to scratching.
Side lenses are great for increasing vision so well worth getting.

Straps
The standard straps have an incredible ability to get tangled in long hair. Fit an add on neoprene strap to reduce this bad behaviour. They are also far more comfortable and float.

Frames
You get masks with frames or frameless. The frameless use the glass lens as support and allow the lens to be closer to the eye. Better vision but more money.
Really expensive top quality masks have metal frames instead of plastic.

Black or clear skirts?
Clear skirts give the impression of lightness. They look better but will yellow quite quickly. This is normal. Black masks have better view when in bright light.
It’s like looking out from a cave or a green house.
So black, although less attractive ….works better.

Volume and Size
The small minimal volume masks are for free divers that have to equalise them with only limited air. These have sacrificed vision for low volume and are like diving wearing blinkers.

Peripheral Vision
Most important!
You want to see as much as you can. Try on the best fitting masks and compare how much you can see. Up, down and side to side.

Style
Some masks just look good. Others are the dog’s breakfast. While it’s nice to have a cool mask, the other features should come first.

Lastly nothing is worse than a misty mask. Get yourself some defogger. Sprays are better than drops. They work best when the mask is dry.