Ski goggles can be one of the most important purchases ahead of a ski trip. They come in some pretty diverse styles, colours and brands - but selecting the right goggles is about a lot more than just fashion!
Selecting the right pair of goggles, means finding the goggles with:
There are other factors that should be taken into consideration, but these are the key points to consider when looking for the goggles that best suit you and your skiing needs... Here is White Stone's guide to selecting the right pair of goggles…
The lenses you have in your goggles can make a huge difference, depending on the conditions you are skiing in, and the kind of skiing you are doing.
Cylindrical Lenses curve horizontally while remaining flat vertically. Cylindrical Lenses are a popular choice in ski racing, as they provide slightly less peripheral vision than spherical lenses - which makes them great for keeping focus on what’s ahead! Cylindrical lenses are also a favourite for parents buying goggles for kids as they are flexible, light and difficult to break. Here are a few examples of the cylindrical lens goggles available at White Stone:
Spherical lenses curve over three planes and are made from polycarbonate. This makes them much less flexible than cylindrical lenses, however it gives significantly improved peripheral vision, with an increased surface area allowing the wearer to see more above and below them, as well as to the sides. The flat edges of a cylindrical lens can cause visual distortion at certain angles, while the shape of a spherical lens allows for better optics. Oakley's polycarbonate lenses are also said to be 'bullet-proof', however it is important to note that this does not mean they are scratch proof!
Lens colour/tint is one of the most important things to get right when selecting your ski goggles, as this can make a big difference to your visibility in different weather conditions and lighting. Each lens colour filters light differently and offers different advantages in particular weather and light conditions.
Some lenses perform better in low visibility situations, like when it is snowing, foggy or overcast. Typical lens colours for low light conditions like these are amber, orange, pink and blue. Other lenses are designed for use in sunny conditions with high visibility - where their function is more about keeping the light out. These lenses will typically come in darker colours like black, grey, brown and gold, and are often mirrored. Clear lenses should be used for skiing at night.
Photochromic lenses are designed to react to the lighting conditions in which they are being worn; these will typically appear orange when they are not exposed to UV light, but will change to almost black when they are outside in sunny conditions. These are a great choice for skiers anticipating changeable conditions, who do not want to carry more than one pair of goggles!
Polarized lenses offer increased clarity, reducing the "bounce-back" of sunshine off snow. These are typically available in grey and brown, as well as in the yellow or rose tones that combine improved contrast with glare reduction.
Overcast / Fog / Snowing:
Half-way between a ski goggle and a visor, Indigo's Award winning Ski Voggle combines the best features of both, creating a new category in the field of eye-wear. With an automatic adjustment mechanism and rubber lip for locking onto a ski helmet, the voggle offers an extra wide 230 degree field of vision and is compatible with prescription glasses. The ski voggle also includes all the features and technology that can be found in a pair of Indigo ski goggles, like a double-layer polycarbonate lens, anti-moisture sealing technology, ventilation and anti-fog system.
Now that you know which lenses will be best for you, it is vital that you select goggles that are the right fit for you. One of the most important things to take into account is the helmet that you will be wearing your goggles with. It is important to choose a pair of goggles that fits comfortably, while you are wearing your helmet. When wearing your goggles and your helmet together you should try to avoid a gap between the top of your goggles and the front of your helmet.
Additionally, your ski helmet size can often act as a good guideline to what your goggle size will be; skiers who wear a size small in a helmet will often be a size small in a goggle frame. This is not always the case, as sizes vary between manufacturers, but it can act as a good starting point for trying goggles on.
One of the most important things to look for in a fit is that there are no gaps between your face and the frame anywhere around the goggle; ultimately you want your goggle frame to create a seal against your face around the edge of the goggle itself. The foam around the lens should offer a consistent snug fit around the edge of the goggle, with no pressure points or gaps.