Sunday, January 16, 2022

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Ski and Snowboard Goggles: A Buyer’s Guide


Choosing a set of ski goggles is usually the first step in the journey to the slopes. Many people buy their own goggles before they buy their own skis or snowboard. The best ski goggles are ones that fit your needs as well as they fit your face. If youíre only skiing once or twice a season in consistent light conditions, you should not buy the same goggles as a snowboarder who will be on the slopes every weekend through sun and clouds. When looking to buy new goggles, you want to choose the coolest ski goggles that suit your face the best. Some of the important things to consider are the shape and size of the frames, the shape and qualities of the lenses, goggle ventilation, and the overall style of the goggles.


Letís start with the basics. The frames of your goggles are what give them their shape. Frames range greatly in size and shape. Menís frames are often wider and bigger, suited for a larger face. Womenís goggles typically come in a smaller size, and childrenís ski goggles are small and durable.

Recently, oversized frames have gained popularity on the slopes. Frames should fit the face snugly, as the goggles will serve as the protection from the elements while out on the mountain.

For people wondering how to ski with glasses, the OTG-style goggles will work for you. They are designed to fit over prescription glasses and still maintain a secure fit to your face. While they look bulkier, they are much more conducive to wearing glasses than smaller frames.


One of the first things to consider when choosing a new set of goggle lenses is how much light you want to let in. One of the most common options for average skiers and snowboarders is the polarized lens. These lenses allow you to see in most light conditions and reduce the amount of glare on the lens. Photo chromatic lenses are considered the next step up. These are great for intermediate to advanced snow sport enthusiasts because they adjust to the amount of light, similar to transition lenses in prescription glasses. This means that over the course of a weekend, you will never have to change out lenses to adjust to new light conditions.

Next, assess the proper shape for your goggles. Spherical lenses contour to the shape of your face, wrapping around and offering optimal peripheral vision and glare protection. Flat lenses, also known as cylindrical lenses, are cheaper, but at the sacrifice of peripherals and increased glare.

The final lens-related consideration is how easily interchanged the lenses are. Some goggles have very easily-changed lenses. These are ideal if you will be spending a lot of time on the slopes and will see various weather and light conditions and need to adjust from low-light to high-light lenses. Other frames are harder to change out, and will have to be changed out at the lodge. Some lenses are set into the frames and cannot be changed. In these cases, you will have to have separate goggles for different light conditions.


One of the most important aspects of choosing a set of goggles is making sure they have proper ventilation. A poorly ventilated set of snowboard goggles will fog up quickly, especially when not moving. This will cause severely limited vision while on the slopes.

While some ventilation will be apparent on the goggles, with obvious slats in the lenses, other goggles may have hidden ventilation. This does not correlate with the quality of ventilation. The recommendation is to find a set of goggles with a high level of ventilation.


It is important to take care of your goggles. Contrary to popular belief, most scratches and damage to your goggles will come from an equipment bag or being tossed into your vehicle, not on the slopes. Make sure you keep your goggles in a case or protective bag when not in use. This will keep the goggles in working order.

When cleaning your goggles, it is important to only use a Microsuede cloth that is specifically designed for goggles or glasses. When wiping, only wipe the outside of the lenses. The insides of goggles are usually coated with a special anti-fog coating, and wiping them, even with a special cloth, can rub that coating off.

Also avoid cleaning your goggles with paper towels, toilet paper, or tissues. Any rough paper like those can scratch the protective layers on the outside and significantly increase glare.


The goggles you choose to wear on the slope will be how other skiers and snowboarders see you. Since the majority of your face will be covered, goggles form your image when youíre on the piste. With that in mind, it is important to find a good set of ski goggles that are also stylish and represent your personality.

You can also factor in various options when picking out the best ski goggles for you. Some features offered in newer goggles are GPS systems that can track your location, speed, and other statistics, anti-fog ventilation fans, and high definition cameras. While all of these features offer great convenience and additional functionality, they should not be the main factor in picking your goggles.

Keep the main focus on finding a set of goggles that fit your face well and offer all of the basics that you need. Your goggles are arguably the most important piece of equipment that you have on the slopes.

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