Last Updated on February 13, 2021 by Diver Dan
Snorkeling Mask Fogging
Snorkeling is a popular recreational activity to enjoy viewing the rich, underwater aquatic life. Snorkeling masks provide the required protection when the snorkeler is submerged in water. Traditional masks have a snorkel, or a tube that has a mouthpiece attached and the free end emerges out of the water surface.
There are several inconveniences that occur sometimes while using the snorkeling mask. Fogging is one of them. Fogging is extremely inconvenient because it hinders the snorkeler’s view and cannot be cleared instantly.
This can ruin the snorkeling experience and the snorkeler might end up craning their necks to find one clear spot on the lens to get a clear view.
The snorkeling mask fogs up when water vapor condenses within the mask due to temperature difference between the outside and inside surface of the mask lens. The condensed water collects on the mask, hindering clear view of the snorkeler.
Main cause of fogging
- The most common reason for fogging in a snorkeling mask is because the mask is unclean. The condensed vapor within your mask needs a surface to attach to. The dirt specs or oil form a base for the vapor to attach to. With a clean mask, the vapors trickle down and collects at the bottom of the mask instead of fogging
- Microscopic imperfections on the mask lens also give a surface for the vapor to settle and hence fog the lens up.
- Any form of moisture within your mask or on your face can cause your mask to fog up during snorkeling. A wet face, or a non-dried mask provides the necessary moisture for the mask to fog up.
- An ill-fitting mask can cause fogging as well. It can allow water to trickle in through the sides, causing the water to condense and fog up.
There are several ways to avoid your mask fogging up during your next snorkeling experience. Some of them are listed below:
- Clean your mask thoroughly before wearing it. Try the following steps:
- Wash and dry your hands
- Apply an inch of non-gel toothpaste to the lens of the dry mask.
- Smear the toothpaste liberally on the inner and outer area of the lens with a toothbrush.
- Use a soft washcloth to clean the lens with gentle circular motions.
- Rinse the mask with cool water.
- Dry the mask with a soft towel.
- Buy a well fitted mask. When you try it on, the mask must fit snugly on the face to prevent any water leakage. Choose a mask with a large skirting to prevent water from entering.
- Use anti-fog product every time you snorkel. The simplest anti-fog product is baby shampoo. Try the following steps:
- Mix about 10 drops of the baby shampoo with 2 ounces of water in a spray bottle.
- Spray the solution in your mask and swish it around to cover the entire surface of the mask.
- Rinse off the product.
- Dry the mask with a soft towel
- Dry your face before wearing the mask to avoid moisture from collecting on the lens. Also try exhaling through the mouth, and not through the nose, in order to prevent the warm breath from causing fog.
- Avoid removing the mask once it is secured in place on the face. When you remove the mask, warm, moist air comes in contact with the cold inside layer of the lens causing fogging.
- If the mask fogs up and you have no cleaning liquid at hand, take the mask off, apply spit on the mask, coat both surfaces of the mask evenly and rinse it away. Don’t touch the lens thereafter with your fingers.
- Rinse your mask with lukewarm or cool water after every use. Cleaning extends the life of the mask.
- Consider investing in a full face anti-fogging snorkeling mask available on the market. They have a separate breathing chamber that keeps the lens away from the breathing area, thereby preventing fogging.
Take good care of your mask and keep a few things in mind and you can thoroughly enjoy your next snorkeling experience with a clear unobstructed view. Have fun!