How to Find the Right Prescription Dive Mask for You

Going diving is one of the most awe-inspiring experiences most of us will seek out willingly. No matter which ocean you choose or even simply exploring the local lake, being able to surround yourself in the world of fish and aquatic plants is an unusual delight. There are dozens of ways to go diving from snorkeling above coral reefs to scuba diving down to shipwrecks and each one offers its own tempting promises of discovery. People sometimes fly thousands of miles for the opportunity to fit on a swim mask and explore what lies below the water’s surface in unique places like the beautiful Caribbean or historical harbors.

Glasses on Vacation

However, when families go on vacations where these kind of aquatic adventures are possible, often those who live their lives behind prescription lenses simply can’t be a part of the experience. Either they go along but are unable to make out the vast majority of the oceanic wonders through blurry vision or they simply forgo the outing entirely in favor of something that can be done with glasses on.

What most people don’t realize is that with a fraction of the time and effort they put into planning a vacation, prescription dive masks and swim goggles could be easily custom ordered and received. In fact, it’s easier than ever to get prescription swimwear simply because product and lens production technology has improved significantly in the last few decades. Now, all you need is your prescription and an idea of the kind of swimwear you want and a specialized manufacturer can make vacation-ready airtight lenses to fit the frames. At this point the only question is how to be certain you’ve ordered the right ones.

Finding the Right Prescription Dive Mask

As easy as it is to get yourself prescription swimwear, it’s actually notably more challenging to get the right prescription swimwear. Dive masks, in particular, don’t fit the same way on everyone. If your cheekbones, forehead shape, or nose don’t fit the basic mold, you’ll need to find a model and design that does fit right. The most important factor is whether or not the mask seals easily to the front of your face. It should be able to do this without tightening the strap because the suction is what makes it waterproof, not the strap which is there as a backup. If the seal breaks, water will get into your eye and nose cavities and put you at risk of stinging eyes and snorting water at minimum.

For this reason, we do not advise ordering a prescription dive mask then trying it for the first time while on your vacation. Instead, do your research before ordering and test every step of the way to be sure you’re getting exactly the right prescription dive mask for your face and adventuring needs.

Pick a Dive Mask Style

For those who haven’t looked into the options yet, you might be surprised just how many styles of dive mask there are. With just a quick look around the internet, you can find dozens of different shapes, designs, colors, and sizes. All dive masks cover your nose, but some have a special soft nose compartment and some are a single compartment that includes the nose. You’ll find dive masks where the glass is all one piece which tend toward wider and simpler designs while there are a vast number of options where the lenses are separated into two different pieces with the nose bridge in-between.

The style of the mask will also determine how well the ‘skirt’ fits over your face and creates a suction bond. This means your mask style isn’t just a personal preference, it’s a necessity.

Know Your Size

The next step is to know how big your face is. This is an amusing concept to consider for most people because we don’t generally think about face size but it absolutely matters in this case. Most of your avenues to prescription dive masks include mail ordering which means you’ll need to be able to mail order a mask of the right size. Because there are no standard sizes for eyewear and everyone’s head is different, this will require a tape measure. Have a friend help you measure the distance between your temples and the distance from the underside of your nose to the peak of your eyebrows. This is the area your mask will need to cover.

Get a Fresh Prescription

While you may still have last year’s prescription rattling around in your junk drawer or personal medical files, it’s never a good idea to order new prescription eyewear on an old prescription. Ideally, you want the latest prescription so that the dive mask will be useful to you without lens replacements for the longest possible amount of time. Swing by your optometrist to get an updated prescription and make sure to leave with that little slip of paper in your hands so you can copy your prescription into an online order form.

Investigate Your Options

Now is your opportunity to do some widespread research on which frames, sizes, colors, and styles of dive mask are available to you as prescription items. There are a few online venues like ours that offer a selection of frames that prescription lenses can be put into. Some services might even be able to make a dive mask you already own into a prescription mask if you’re willing to mail the original mask in for measurements and lens fitting. Know your options and find the right one for your dive mask needs.

Try On Everything

Just like with a pair of glasses, never assume that your prescription dive mask is going to fit right immediately. If you’re mail ordering a mask, there is a high likelihood that there is some kind of policy to allow you to try it on and then send it back for prescription lenses. If so, make sure to perform the suction test before completing your transaction. Set the mask on your face as if you were going to go swimming but don’t pull the strap tight. The mask should sit on your face easily. Then breath in through your nose, which should create a small suction seal. Check around the edges for signs that the seal might break easily, then blow out through your nose to break the seal.

If all goes well, you have just found yourself the perfect prescription swim mask. Confirm the fit, send in your prescription information, and you will be able to take off on a vacation full of aquatic adventures in a matter of days.

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