Choosing the Correct Snorkel Mask
Masks are simple pieces of equipment, yet they are fundamental to enhancing your diving pleasure. Without a mask, you would not be able to see very far. It is important for you to choose a mask wisely.
There are hundreds of masks to choose from. You need to find one that fits correctly and provides you with the features you want (including prescription lenses for those who need them). If your mask does not fit you properly, it could leak or hurt your nose and face. In order to choose a mask that is right for you, you should understand mask features.
Most masks are made of silicone. Silicone resists deterioration better than some synthetic rubber materials and it can be made transparent or opaque. Mask frames and buckles are usually made of light plastic.
Mask lenses are made of tempered glass. They come with a single front lens or two lenses separated at the nose. The two-lens mask is ideal for prescription lenses. Some masks have side lenses that enhance peripheral vision. Choose your style based on fit and your personal preferences.
The body of the mask is important. Masks come in different sizes to fit small, medium, and large faces. All masks have soft nosepieces so divers can equalize easily during descent. Many masks have a double-flanged seal to help keep the mask air and watertight.
Lastly, check the ease of adjusting the straps. Underwater, this can be difficult, especially with narrows straps and close fitting buckles. Some straps come split into two parallel straps at the back of the head, which seems to be the most comfortable for divers. Buckles should pivot at the point where they attach to the frame. The best mask is the mask that fits correctly.