Snorkeling can be a way of escaping life, but when you wear glasses, that escape can come with its own problems. The beauty under the surface of the water is waiting to be explored. Often, if you want to snorkel with glasses, you have a choice between jamming glasses between your eyes and your face or going without the very means of being able to see.
You need to know that there are options out there for you. Technology has advanced. Snorkeling gear is constantly being improved. If you are a glasses wearer, you need not worry any more about getting out into the water and immersing yourself in another world.
Do I Really Need My Glasses?
This is a valid question. If you use glasses to read, then are they really essential in the water? If you are diving down to explore a cave full or hieroglyphs, then maybe, but if you are there to explore the hidden depths of the ocean and the sea-life which lives there, then maybe not.
If you can still see without your glasses on, then you do not need to worry about anything. Take off your glasses, put on your snorkel mask, and get out there. You should also try the mask underwater first and check the magnification. The combination of the water and mask may negate slight sight problems.
If your glasses are essential to you not getting lost and ending up in the hidden city of Atlantis, then read on.
Well, Can’t I Just Wear Glasses Under A Mask?
The short answer is no. The long answer is probably not. If you do want to snorkel with glasses, then you are more than welcome to try. I am not saying that it is impossible, but it does pose some problems. The first of which is the seal around the mask. The earpieces can break the seal of the mask and allow water to flow inside. I don’t know about you, but I prefer my water to stay outside the mask.
Glasses are also prescribed to sit a certain distance from your eyes. A snorkel mask may push or pull the glasses closer or further away. You may find that your vision is worse when you snorkel with glasses under your mask. If this option does work for you, then great. It likely will not, but there are still more options, so stay with me.
Contact lenses are most people’s go-to option. If you need to have a lens to help you see, then contact lenses are the way to go.
- Consult your optician about prescription lenses if you have not already and get a set (or two) to use in your daily life. Snorkeling with contact lenses is an easy way to solve the problem of snorkeling with glasses.
- Hard contact lenses also work, though you will have to spend some time ‘breaking them in’ before you can wear them for prolonged periods of time. Of course, there is one major problem which comes with contact lenses (along with a lot of minor ones). You have to stick something in your eye! People wear glasses for a reason. If you are the kind of person who does not like to attach some silicon to your eyeball, then keep reading for more options.
Why try and find a snorkel mask for glasses when your snorkel mask can be your glasses. You have two options here. The expensive and the cheap.
- If you have the money, then you can get a prescription snorkel mask just as you would get prescription glasses. You will want to visit your local water-sports or snorkeling shop for this (you can also get them online, but you may not get the desired precision). When wearing them on land, your vision will be slightly off, but underwater you will be able to see with crystal-clear clarity.
- The second option is to go for an optical mask. They are cheaper than the prescription masks, but they are not custom made. You will be able to find these in your local scuba store or online from sites such as Amazon. They are available for near sighted or far sighted people, and you can also find bifocals. You will need to look for the SPH measurement (or equivalent) and find the ‘best fit’. You should be able to find a mask which comes pretty close to being perfect for you.
Some of these options are pricey. After shelling out on your scuba equipment, you probably do not want to have to spend more money than is necessary. If you want a cheap option which works, then find some removable magnifiers. They are basically flexible lenses which can be attached to the inside of your mask. Magnifiers are great if you do need to do some reading while you are under the water, but would not be recommended for long-term diving use.
If you love to dive and need glasses, then you are going to make it work.
To me, contact lenses seem to be the most obvious solution. They are easy to use, fit under a mask, and are prescribed specifically for you. Who knows, you may make the switch to contacts and ditch your glasses.
If you hate the thought of putting something in your eye, then an optical mask works great. Get one prescribed if you have the money or find an optical mask in your scuba store which best matches your prescription. No need to worry about putting anything in your eye or trying to fit a mask over your glasses without letting the water in.
Now that you can make an informed choice, you can get out into the water and enjoy nature as nature intended. If you do find some hidden treasure down there, please do not forget to share.
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- Contact Lenses, allaboutvision.com
Have you tried snorkeling with glasses? Tell us about your experience in the comment section below.