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A scuba diving mask is often your first piece in a water adventure kit, possibly the cheapest, but one that makes the biggest difference to your swimming or dive experience. To find the best diving mask for you, check out our TFG top picks!
Best Mask for Diving or Snorkeling
Written By: Laura Pulling
Table Of Contents
A dive mask is important to let you see the world beneath the waves. And what a beautiful world that is!
If you want to see the colorful corals, dancing fish, and if you’re really brave, encounter whale sharks (they are lovely—they just have a bad reputation!) you’re going to need a scuba mask.
Dive masks come in all shapes, sizes and (as diving becomes more female orientated) a great range of pretty colors. The most important aspect is to find a mask that fits your face properly though, as one that leaks in water will ruin your dive experience.
So which do you choose? Check out these TFG underwater mask choices for snorkeling and scuba diving!
Best Scuba Diving Mask and Snorkel Mask
Cressi Frameless Mask F1
The Cressi F1 mask is light and low volume to sit close to your face. The flared single lens offers a good field of view, including over the bridge of the nose.
The soft silicone skirt flexes to most face shapes, including smaller faces, and the double seal system is effective in blocking water entry. The mask folds flat for use as a spare in your BCD pocket.
This Cressi mask is also a great budget buy, and it comes in a ton of bright colors too—so your mask can suit your dive style!
If you want this mask with the matching snorkel as a set, shop here.
Atomic Venom Frameless Dive Mask
The Atomic dive mask is a comfortable and high-quality model. The skirt is made from the brand’s special “gummy bear seal” that is super soft and stretchy to create an effective seal to your face. The silicone skirt edge is a little plumper than on a normal scuba face mask to create a seal without the pressure that leaves a mask ring on your face.
The ultra-clear lenses are large for a wide field of vision. The whole Atomic scuba mask folds completely flat to fit into a BCD pocket.
Beuchat X Contact 2 Mask
The Beuchat X diving masks have a really comfortable skirt that’s soft and is also hypoallergenic. The mask has a solid frame and two large lenses. The transparent design lets in a lot of light to see as well.
You can get it in different colors too to brighten up your gear. The strap adjusts easily and you can clip on a snorkel without having to take the whole strap off.
Mares One Vision Mask
This Mares dive mask has a funky looking frame (similar to the Mares X Vision mask, but with a single lens instead). The nose pocket is high, which helps if you have a bigger nose and it’s made of soft silicone, with ridges to help you equalize.
The clear skirt has frosted sides to reduce the light that comes in to not distract your peripheral vision. The straps on this Mares mask are adjustable with a ratchet system which pivots freely.
TUSA M1001 Freedom HD Scuba Mask
This TUSA scuba mask sits close to your eyes for a wide field of vision. The skirt that presses to your face has a clever design that’s dimpled silicone, which makes it super soft and minimizes the chance of water leaking inside. The buckles that hold the strap pivot and swivel for a perfect fit.
Phantom Aquatics Panoramic Scuba Mask
This Panoramic snorkel mask from Phantom Aquatics allows a wide range of vision, due to its patented tri-window design. The soft silicone gives a good facial seal and the strap adjusts easily with a push-button buckle system. This low volume mask comes in different colors, so you’ll never mistake yours on the dive boat again!
Alternatively, you can also get the Phantom Aquatics Panoramic scuba mask snorkel set here.
Beuchat Maxlux S Mask
This Beuchat low volume dive mask is a favorite amongst divers who value style as well as comfort. The single-lens design has a low teardrop shape that gives you a clear field of vision. The mask has a baby soft and hypoallergenic skirt that divers love, and is available in a rainbow of colors.
The strap can be a little tricky to adjust (especially when wearing gloves), but users still love this design with one sharing, “I have Beuchat Maxlux and I love it… very comfortable!”
SCUBAPRO Synergy 2 TruFit Mirrored Dive Mask
The SCUBAPRO mask is a single lens style that has a narrow frame. The skirt has a double layer of silicon to keep the frame shape. It is low volume and sits close to your face, so you don’t need to equalize it as much. This version comes with mirrored lenses, that make fish appear in sharper detail and clearer.
But you can also get these Scubapro masks with normal lenses and in a range of colors too—shop here.
Are you a first-time diver? Check out these 5 must-do tips!
Best Prescription Dive Mask
Sherwood Scuba Bifocal Prescription Scuba Mask
If you need to wear glasses to read, you might think that snorkeling and diving is something you can’t enjoy, but think again. You can get masks that are specially designed to fit your eye challenges.
This Sherwood bifocal scuba mask has two lenses, so the top half is made of plain, non-prescription glass, and the bottom half has a prescriptive lens that allows you to easily read your gauges or focus on small objects underwater.
The mask comes in two different colors and has a +1.75 bifocal lens.
Promate Optical Corrective Scuba Mask With Prescription Lenses
This Promate prescription snorkel mask has full corrective lenses to make seeing easier underwater. The two window design fits a wide range of face shapes and the crystal, liquid silicone injected skirt creates a soft facial seal.
The lenses are available in 1.0 to 10.0, in 0.5 increments. If you need a different lens in each eye, you can contact the manufacturer for a special order too.
DiveOptx Hydrotac Stick-On Bifocal Lenses
If you already have a swim mask that you love and fits your face well, you may not want to replace it for a diving mask with prescription lenses if your eyesight wanes. You can get stick-on lenses that convert your mask into a bifocal lens.
These DiveOptx lenses have a large 1.6-inch diameter and can be cut to any shape so you can trim them to your own mask shape perfectly. They’re reusable and can be removed from your mask without leaving marks or residue.
Best Freediving Mask
Cressi Nano Dark Low Volume Freediving Mask
This low volume Cressi dive mask is mainly designed for freedivers (but can be used for scuba diving) because it has a low internal air pocket. The frame is much smaller than conventional frames. The nose pocket has a solid ridge around the bottom to enable wear with a nose clip too, but it’s still easy to equalize.
The two lenses sit close to your eyes for clear vision and the strap is held on through a flexible material that pivots to fit your head.
Hollis M1 Frameless Dive Mask
This Hollis frameless mask has a single lens with a large modified teardrop shape that makes it easy to look around or see your gauges. The silicone skirt is very soft and fits your face comfortably, creating a good seal without squishing your face too tightly.
The straps attach to the frame through a flexible material, giving a good range of movement and the whole mask folds flat, so it would fit into a BCD pocket as a spare easily.
SCUBAPRO Solo Scuba Diving Mask
The Scubapro solo mask is frameless and low volume, making it easy to clear. It can fold flat so it travels compact and will fit inside a BCD pocket.
The lens is closer to your eyes which gives you better peripheral vision. As it has no frame, the strap attaches to the skirt using a flexible material so it adjusts to your head shape. The strap adjusts using a one way ratchet system which won’t budge when you fit it. It could also be used for freediving.
Top up more of your dive kit with the most lightweight scuba gear for travel!
Best Mask and Snorkel Set
TUSA Sport Serene Snorkel and Mask Set
This TUSA diving mask and snorkel set is great for beginner snorkelers, but also great for scuba divers looking for a matching combo.
The single, tempered glass lens offers a wide range of vision. The solid plastic frame gives it good rigidity and strength. The snorkeling mask skirt has a double edge and is made of a soft black silicone and the strap has a pivoting buckle for adjustable fit.
The snorkel has two valves, a one way purge valve at the bottom that pushes the water through when you exhale and a valve at the top to keep the water out. The mouthpiece is angled to fit comfortably, no matter the shape of your face.
SwimStar Snorkel Set
If you’re looking for a swim mask and snorkel on a budget, try this Swim Star set. This budget buy contains a mask and snorkel together in matching color designs.
The single lens is made from tempered glass and the silicone fits most face shapes. The dry snorkel stops excess water coming in the top in choppy seas, and the bottom purge valve makes clearing it easy.
Cressi Panoramic Wide View Mask and Snorkel set
This Cressi mask snorkel set is excellent for snorkelers and divers. It has a panoramic lens to give you the widest vision. It allows for good peripheral vision to see the aquatic life and makes you feel less claustrophobic. The skirt is soft and creates a good seal with your face.
The snorkel is “dry” due to the valve at the top that seals off to keep the water out. The end is flexible and moves away from the mouth which is good for divers when swapping to a regulator.
Seavenger Aviator Snorkel Mask And Fins Set
This Seavenger snorkel mask set has everything you need to hit the ocean. You get a shatterproof single lens mask with a clear skirt that lets in light and allows for a good field of vision. The swivel buckles adjust easily to fit your head so you can share with family and friends.
The dry top snorkel has a one-way valve at the bottom to let blow out any water that gets in, plus a top valve that limits the water that comes in. The short fins have adjustable heel straps and will add propulsion to all kinds of swimmers, you can even wear them bare footed as the footpocket is so soft.
The mesh bag it comes with is handy for keeping it all together for your epic beach trip!
AQUA LUNG Trooper Dive Mask and Snorkel Set
The AquaLung scuba mask set includes an anti-fog scuba mask and snorkel and fins, which all inside a handy gear bag. The mask has a silicone skirt that fits closely to your face and tempered glass lenses with an anti-fog coating.
This set also comes with short-blade fins that are ideal for traveling as they’ll easily fit in your luggage.
Best Full Face Snorkel Mask
SUBEA Tribord EasyBreath Snorkel Full Face Mask
The Subea full snorkel mask has an anatomic design that has been specifically created for surface snorkeling. The mask allows you to breathe naturally through the nose and mouth.
The large visor on this easy breath snorkeling mask has a hypoallergenic silicone facial lining and gives you a full 180° panoramic field of vision, plus prevents fogging up with a clever air circulation system. For safety, the dry top snorkel can be seen by other swimmers and boats from four times further away than a traditional snorkel.
DIVELUX Snorkel Mask Full Face
This DIVELUX full face diving mask lets you see everything around you, with its panoramic window when snorkeling. The full-face design allows you to breathe with your nose and mouth naturally. No special skills are needed. This mask is available in three sizes, so you can find the right fit.
The silicone sits on your face snugly but softly and does not leak. Plus, the dry snorkel keeps water out, even in choppy conditions.
Best GoPro Dive Mask
OCTOMASK GoPro Scuba Mask Mount
The Octomask is one of the best ways to mount a GoPro camera while scuba diving or snorkeling, leaving you hands-free but safe in the knowledge that the camera is filming wherever you are looking. It comes with a camera mount on the top edge of the frame to attach your GoPro to (GoPro not included). The two lenses are wide and low profile so it keeps the mask close to your face. They are tough but comfortable.
You can get this GoPro snorkel mask with a black silicone skirt or a clear skirt, that lets in more light. And then you’ll be ready to grab some epic underwater footage or photos!
Check out more diving gear with these cute aqua lung diving accessories!
Best Anti Fog for Scuba Mask
GEAR AID Sea Drops Scuba Mask Anti Fog and Cleaner
Nobody wants a foggy mask underwater! You go to see the fish and corals, so a defog liquid is essential to keep your mask crystal clear. These GEAR AID dive mask anti fog drops contain an alcohol-free formula that performs in all water temperatures.
AQUA LUNG Anti Fog Snorkel Mask Cleaner
This long-lasting formula of Aqua Lung gel is natural and biodegradable. The non-toxic formula contains no harmful chemicals and works on all masks. Simply drop on, rub in, and you’re good to go!
Best Scuba Mask Strap Cover
Flow Scuba Gear Dive Mask Strap
These Flow diving mask strap covers come in a range of pretty colors and designs. They make your mask easy to identify, but also protect your hair from the annoying snags from the silicone of the mask strap. You can also buy just one, or two in a set.
Cressi Neoprene Scuba Mask Straps Cover
The Cressi neoprene strap slips over the silicone of your scuba or snorkel mask strap to make it easier to slide on. It will make your mask easy to spot on a crowded dive boat and will also protect your hair from pulling when putting a mask on and off. Grab it in a selection of colors!
Best Scuba Mask Box
WIN OUTDOOR Diving Mask Portable Protective Case
The Win Outdoor case fits most standard masks and has a zip to keep it super secure. The inside is softly lined to ensure your mask won’t get scratched, plus it has a carry clip to attach the case to your dive gear.
Innovative Scuba Concepts Dive Mask Case
This Innovative bag has a cute dive flag on it, so you can show your love of the sport through your gear! There’s a pocket big enough for your diving face mask and a side pocket that’s perfect to keep your defog in.
It has small drainage holes to dry off, and you can even loop your snorkel under the handle. Users love it and think it’s a great protective bag for the price!
SCUBAPRO Mask 2 Mask Pocket Bag
This SCUBAPRO mask bag has a velcro opening to keep your mask safe and secure. The cover is padded to protect the mask face. It has a mesh bottom for quick drying and loops on the back so you can keep your snorkel close too!
As it is made of fabric, it will pack better than a sturdy plastic box when traveling.
Cressi Protective Scuba Mask Case
This Cressi box is simple and does what it says—stores your mask so it won’t scratch. It has clips to keep the lid in place and is clear so you can easily see what’s inside. You can fit your mask and a bottle of defogger inside easily.
Best Dive Mask Comparison Chart
|BRAND | MODEL||FEATURES | REVIEWS||RATING | PRICE|
|Best Scuba Diving Mask and Snorkel Mask|
|Cressi Frameless Mask F1||The flared single lens offers a good field of view, including over the bridge of the nose.||Check Price|
|Atomic Venom Frameless Dive Mask||he whole Atomic scuba mask folds completely flat to fit into a BCD pocket.||Check Price|
|Beuchat X Contact 2 Mask||The strap adjusts easily and you can clip on a snorkel without having to take the whole strap off.||Check Price|
|Mares One Vision Mask||The nose pocket is high, which helps if you have a bigger nose and it's made of soft silicone, with ridges to help you equalize.||Check Price|
|TUSA M1001 Freedom HD Scuba Mask||The buckles that hold the strap pivot and swivel for a perfect fit.||Check Price|
|Beuchat Maxlux S Mask||“I have Beuchat Maxlux and I love it... very comfortable!”||Check Price|
|Phantom Aquatics Panoramic Scuba Mask||The soft silicone gives a good facial seal and the strap adjusts easily with a push button buckle system.||Check Price|
|SCUBAPRO Synergy 2 TruFit Mirrored Dive Mask||This version comes with mirrored lenses, that make fish appear in sharper detail and clearer.||Check Price|
|Best Prescription Dive Mask|
|Sherwood Scuba Bifocal Prescription Scuba Mask||The mask comes in two different colors and has a +1.75 bifocal lens.||Check Price|
|Promate Optical Corrective Scuba Mask With Prescription Lenses||This Promate prescription snorkel mask has full corrective lenses to make seeing easier underwater.||Check Price|
|DiveOptx Hydrotac Stick-On Bifocal Lenses||They’re reusable and can be removed from your mask without leaving marks or residue.||Check Price|
|Best Freediving Mask|
|Cressi Nano Dark Low Volume Freediving Mask||The nose pocket has a solid ridge around the bottom to enable wear with a nose clip too, but it’s still easy to equalize.||Check Price|
|Hollis M1 Frameless Dive Mask||The silicone skirt is very soft and fits your face comfortably, creating a good seal without squishing your face too tightly.||Check Price|
|SCUBAPRO Solo Scuba Diving Mask||It can fold flat so it travels compact and will fit inside a BCD pocket.||Check Price|
|Best Mask and Snorkel Set|
|TUSA Sport Serene Snorkel and Mask Set||This TUSA diving mask and snorkel set is great for beginner snorkelers, but also great for scuba divers looking for a matching combo.||Check Price|
|SwimStar Snorkel Set||This budget buy contains a mask and snorkel together in matching color designs.||Check Price|
|Cressi Panoramic Wide View Mask and Snorkel set||The snorkel is “dry” due to the valve at the top that seals off to keep the water out.||Check Price|
|Seavenger Aviator Snorkel Mask And Fins Set||The swivel buckles adjust easily to fit your head, and share with family and friends.||Check Price|
|AQUA LUNG Trooper Dive Mask and Snorkel Set||This set also comes with short-blade fins that are ideal for traveling as they'll easily fit in your luggage.||Check Price|
|Best Full Face Snorkel Mask|
|SUBEA Tribord EasyBreath Snorkel Full Face Mask||The mask allows you to breathe naturally through the nose and mouth.||Check Price|
|DIVELUX Snorkel Mask Full Face||The silicone sits on your face snugly but softly and does not leak. Plus, the dry snorkel keeps water out, even in choppy conditions.||Check Price|
|Best GoPro Dive Mask|
|OCTOMASK GoPro Scuba Mask Mount||The two lenses are wide and low profile so it keeps the mask close to your face.||Check Price|
|Best Anti Fog for Scuba Mask|
|GEAR AID Sea Drops Scuba Mask Anti Fog and Cleaner||These GEAR AID dive mask anti fog drops contain an alcohol free formula that performs in all water temperatures.||Check Price|
|AQUA LUNG Anti Fog Snorkel Mask Cleaner||This long lasting formula of Aqua Lung gel is natural and biodegradable.||Check Price|
|Best Scuba Mask Strap Cover|
|Flow Scuba Gear Dive Mask Strap||These Flow diving mask strap covers come in a range of pretty colors and designs.||Check Price|
|Cressi Neoprene Scuba Mask Straps Cover||The Cressi neoprene strap slips over the silicone of your scuba or snorkel mask strap to make it easier to slide on.||Check Price|
|Best Scuba Mask Box|
|WIN OUTDOOR Diving Mask Portable Protective Case||The Win Outdoor case fits most standard masks and has a zip to keep it super secure.||Check Price|
|Innovative Scuba Concepts Dive Mask Case||This Innovative bag has a cute dive flag on it, so you can show your love of the sport through your gear!||Check Price|
|SCUBAPRO Mask 2 Mask Pocket Bag||This SCUBAPRO mask bag has a velcro opening to keep your mask safe and secure.||Check Price|
|Cressi Protective Scuba Mask Case||It has clips to keep the lid in place and is clear so you can easily see what’s inside.||Check Price|
How Do I Check a Mask Fits Me?
Test the way it fits by standing up straight and facing the floor. Place the mask firmly on your face BUT DO NOT put the strap around your head. Breathe in through your nose, and if it stays securely on your face, it fits! If there are gaps around your face when you breathe in or it doesn’t stay on, you need to try a different mask.
There’s no point in investing in your own mask if it doesn’t fit, you may need to try different brands and styles.
Can I Use a Snorkel Mask for Scuba Diving?
Snorkel masks are cheaper than scuba masks.
Masks that are made for scuba diving are specifically designed to be of better quality. The manufacturer knows they will be going deeper and therefore they are tested to a higher standard as it’s important that water stays out at greater depths.
Scuba mask skirts tend to be made from a better-rated silicone than snorkel masks, that are sometimes made from rubber. A silicone skirt provides a better seal to your face.
If you’re going to be a diver, it’s better to buy a scuba mask that you can use for snorkeling, rather than buy a snorkel mask and then need to buy a scuba mask later.
What Is the Difference Between a Freediving Mask vs Scuba Mask?
Scuba masks and freediving masks are different shapes and designs. A freediving mask is typically shorter and more compact to your face. This means they have less volume inside, so they use less oxygen and are easier to equalize.
You can use a freediving mask for scuba diving, but your vision won’t be as good as the lenses are a lot smaller and they don’t fit different shaped faces as easily.
How Do I Stop My Mask From Fogging?
Before getting in the water, you can use a defog liquid (described above) or you can rub a tiny bit of baby shampoo on a dry mask. Rub it in the lens and let it sit for a few minutes. Rinse it thoroughly with sea or fresh water so the shampoo or defog doesn’t get in your eyes.
Another disgusting, but effective tip is to spit into the inside of your mask and rub it in the lens—I know this sounds weird but all scuba divers do this to avoid fog. This is another reason to travel with your own mask!
How Do I Prepare a Brand New Snorkel Mask?
When you first get a new scuba mask, it has a coating on the lenses that stop them from getting scratched during manufacturing and shipping. This coating makes the lenses foggy if used straight away. Scuba divers have two main ways to get rid of the coating, either toothpaste, and burning!
When using toothpaste, you coat the lenses in toothpaste (the cheaper and whiter thick stuff) and leave them overnight, rinse it out and repeat two to three times.
The other sounds a little more dramatic—you (carefully!) burn your expensive new diving mask with a long-nosed lighter. It will cause the lenses to blacken, which you then clean with soap and water. It seems frightening, but the coating will then disappear, and then it won’t fog up.
What do you think are the best scuba masks? Share in the comments below!
For more water activity tips, please read:
- 5 Scuba Diving Essentials for the First Time Diver
- Scuba Gear for Women: Cute Aqua Lung Diving Accessories
- Scuba Gear Packing Tips for Liveaboards and Diving Holidays
- What to Pack for a Galapagos Scuba Diving Trip
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