5 Best Freediving Masks For All Levels (2023 Update)

Written and Reviewed By

Cressi Nano Freediving Mask product shot

Besides a pair of freediving fins, a reliable freediving mask is one of the most important pieces of freediving gear.

While you could use a standard scuba mask or snorkel mask, it’s not ideal.

Owning a freediving mask will make a huge difference to both your enjoyment and performance underwater.

With so many different freediving masks on the market nowadays, and major brands featuring endless product lines, it can be tough to pick the best mask for freediving.

Throughout all my time working as a scuba and freediving master instructor with PADI and Molchanovs in Southeast Asia, I know what to look for when picking a freediving mask.

I’ve condensed a list of the best freediving masks down to just seven options, based on the following categories:

  • Lens, strap, and skirt material
  • Anti-fog properties
  • Mask volume
  • Price
  • Color & style
  • & more

Below, you can find all the products we reccomend, along with in-depth reviews. We follow the reviews up with a freediving mask buying guide and FAQ section.

So let’s dive into it!

Best Freediving Masks

Our Top Pick

Tilos Spawn

4.5
$63.95
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03/09/2024 02:31 am GMT

Lense Material: Tempered Glass | Color: Camo | Skirt Material: Silicone | Strap Material: Silicone

The Tilos Spawn mask is the freediving mask that I personally use. The mask is designed with a soft silicone skirt that molds to your face, providing a comfortable and watertight seal.

The tempered glass lenses on the mask provide a clear and unobstructed view of the underwater world.  The camo design of the mask and snorkel can help you blend into your surroundings, making it easier to approach fish or other marine life. The snorkel features matches the  mask its straight tube for simplicity and easy to use. 

Pros:

  • Comfortable
  • Anti Fog technology
  • Shatter resistant

Cons:

  • Limited styles
Budget Option

Scuba Choice Low Volume Black Silicone Mask

4.5
$19.99
Pros:
  • Very cheap
  • Wide field of vision
  • Feels high quality
  • Fits well on smaller faces
Cons:
  • Runs a little narrow
  • Only available in black
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03/08/2024 11:51 pm GMT

First up is an awesome low volume freediving mask from Scuba Choice. With such a low price tag, we were seriously shocked by how high quality this mask feels. And so are other freedivers! Many of which even prefer it to more expensive freediving masks.

The 2 large lenses sit close to the eyes to provide a wide field of vision without increasing the internal volume. And the silicone skirt creates a soft yet reliable seal. The only downside is that this mask does run a little narrow.

It’s a fantastic freediving mask that’s perfect if you’re on a tight budget. But even if you’re not, it’s definitely worth grabbing one of these masks to have as a backup.

  • Lens Material: Tempered glass lenses
  • Anti-fog Coating: Yes
  • Volume: Low
  • Strap Material: Silicone 
  • Color: Black
  • Skirt Material: Silicone
Luxury Option

AQUALUNG Micromask X

4.8
$92.95
Pros:
  • Exceptional field of vision
  • Top-quality materials
  • Virtually indestructible
  • Exceptionally comfortable fit
  • Compact & streamlined designed
  • Suitable for almost every face
  • Doesn’t fog easily
  • Suitable for scuba diving & snorkeling
  • Variety of colors
Cons:
  • Expensive
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02/19/2024 03:25 am GMT

If you’ve got the budget to spend, the AquaLung MicroMask is arguably the best quality freediving mask that you’ll find. 

The patented design tilts the lenses to provide superior streamlining and a vastly improved field of vision, especially to the periphery.

This is incredibly rare in an ultra-low volume mask, making it an excellent option for scuba diving and snorkeling as well as freediving.

With an ultra-soft silicone skirt, this mask naturally molds around your face for a completely leak-free fit. 

Aqualung Micro

And the quick-adjust buckles rotate in all directions to create a pinch-free and custom fit.

With its innovative design and superior materials, it is the most expensive option on our list. But it’s most certainly worth the investment. And with such solid construction, it’ll probably be the last freediving mask you’ll ever need to buy! 

Product Specs

  • Lens Material: ‎Single Lens
  • Anti-fog Coating: No
  • Volume: Low
  • Strap Material: Silicone 
  • Color: Black, White, Red, Blue
  • Skirt Material: Silicone
Lowest Volume

Mares Viper Mask

4.5
$79.95
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03/09/2024 03:00 am GMT

Mares are known for creating some of the best freediving masks on the market. And the Viper is considered the best of them all.

Developed in collaboration with the world’s best freedivers, it’s designed specifically to enhance your performance underwater.

With a super streamlined, low profile design, Mares has maximized the hydrodynamics of this mask to allow you to glide effortlessly through the water.

The decreased lenses to eye distance combined with the matte silicone finish and anti-glare interior provide a broad and clear field of vision underwater.

Mares x viper freediving mask product shot

The unique skirt creates a strong yet comfortable seal on most face shapes, whilst the lip-free edging promotes a self-equalizing effect. And the ergonomically designed double-button buckles help you get the perfect fit.

This is an ultra-low volume, high-performance freediving mask that will not disappoint.

Product Specs

  • Lens Material: Dual Lenses
  • Anti-fog Coating: No
  • Volume: Low
  • Strap Material: Silicone 
  • Color: Black
  • Skirt Material: Silicone
Best Clarity

AQUALUNG Sphera X Mask

4.5
$79.00
Pros:
  • Very high-quality materials
  • 180-degree view
  • Exceptional clarity
  • Ultra-low volume
  • Easy to access nose for equalization
  • Very comfortable seal
  • Extremely hydrodynamic
  • Different colors available
Cons:
  • Not suitable for beginners
  • Plastic lenses are more prone to scratching than glass
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03/09/2024 01:24 am GMT

The AquaLung Sphera has been a firm favorite among freedivers for many years, thanks to its unique hydrodynamic design and crystal clear 180-degree visibility.

It’s extremely low volume, which is ideal for more serious freedivers but beginners may find this a tad claustrophobic.

Unlike curved tempered glass, the patented Plexisol lenses provide a completely distortion-free view. As well as offering 100% protection from UVA and UVB rays.

The crystal silicone skirt creates a firm, yet comfortable seal. 

aqualung sphera x freediving mask product shot

And AquaLung is known for creating high-quality gear, so you can be confident that this mask will last you a long time.

Although treated with an anti-scratch coating, the plastic lenses are still much more susceptible to scratching than tempered glass. So you do need to be extra careful when handling this mask.

Product Specs

  • Lens Material: Plastic
  • Anti-fog Coating: No
  • Volume: Low
  • Strap Material: Silicone 
  • Color: Black
  • Skirt Material: Silicone

Scuba Diving Mask Vs Freediving Mask

Scuba vs Snorkeling

So you might be thinking…

Do I really need a dedicated mask for freediving? Can’t I just use my scuba mask?

While scuba masks and freediving masks might look similar, they’re actually very different when it comes to volume and shape. 

The main difference is that a freediving mask has a significantly lower internal volume and a much more hydrodynamic profile than a scuba diving mask.

But why is that important?

When you’re freediving you only have 1 breath for your entire dive, every single sip of air is precious. As you are finning down, you need to equalize the pressure of the airspace inside your mask quickly.

Your freediving fins propel you at a faster rate than scuba fins and you will use more oxygen. So a low volume means you can conserve your oxygen.

Equally, you want to be as streamlined as possible to conserve energy. Even the slightest amount of drag from a wide mask can greatly impact your performance.

Whereas when you’re scuba diving, the tiny amount of air needed to equalize your mask is nothing when you have a whole tank full. 

What’s more important is having a wide field of vision so you can see as much of your beautiful surroundings as possible. And when you’re wearing a full set of scuba gear, the mask won’t impact your trim or streamlining.

Although no one will stop you from using your scuba mask for freediving, it’ll be rather uncomfortable and difficult.

Plus you’ll probably struggle to get much deeper than 5 or so meters. So we highly recommend investing in an additional mask for freediving.

Alternatively, just invest in a good freediving mask as you can use it for scuba diving as well!

How To Choose The Best Freediving Mask

When you’re buying a mask for freediving, it’s not just about picking the most appealing design and price point. There are a few very important factors that you need to take into account.

Volume

Mares viper

The internal volume is one of the most important things to look at when choosing a freediving mask. In general, the lower the volume, the better. With a limited amount of air in your lungs, you want to use as little as possible to equalize the pressure in your mask as you dive deeper.

A low volume mask requires much less air to equalize the pressure inside. This means you can conserve as much of that 1 precious breath as possible.

If you use a large volume mask for freediving, you’ll struggle to equalize the space inside the mask and can end up with a painful squeeze. So make sure you choose a freediving mask with a low volume!

Anything with an internal volume below 100ml is considered a low volume mask. You’ll also find some ultra-low volume masks under 75ml.

Comfort & Fit

Even more important than volume is comfort and fit.

The best freediving mask will fit so perfectly that you forget you’re even wearing one, allowing you to focus fully on your dive.

So how should a freediving mask fit?

A freediving mask should fit flush against your face without feeling tight or restrictive. It should be lightweight, soft, and comfortable. The way the skirt sits on your face will determine how watertight the mask is, while the frame and the straps will influence the comfort.

Pay close attention to the nose pocket. If it’s too big then you’re adding to the volume and you’ll find it difficult to pinch your nose to equalize. But if it’s too small. it might leak.

For a quick test, simply place the mask on your face without using the straps and breathe in through your nose. Hold that breath and if the mask suctions onto your face without leaking any air then it’s a good fit.

Most freediving masks have a wide double-edged skirt that fits well on most people. But if you have facial hair or a wider face then it’s worth trying out a few masks before buying.

Design

Cressi Nano Freediving Mask product shot

The best freediving masks are hydrodynamically designed to make you as streamlined as possible in the water. By reducing drag, a streamlined mask can significantly improve your performance underwater, both in terms of duration and depth. Look for a compact and streamlined design.

Color can also be important, especially if you want to use your mask for spearfishing. A bright color will make you more visible to your freediving buddy, but also to any marine life.

Plus face and eyes convey aggression in the animal kingdom. So if you plan to spearfish, then opt for black or muted colors like dark brown and green.

Lenses

Spectra

Mirrored lenses can be helpful in reducing glare and UV rays as well as enhancing the colors underwater. This can be useful for reef freediving and spearfishing.

However, mirrored lenses make it difficult for you to clearly communicate with your freediving buddy.

Without clear eye contact, it’s almost impossible to properly assess your buddy’s physical or mental state. So we recommend choosing a lens with at least some transparency.

Frequently Asked Questions

It really depends on the conditions, and slightly on your own preference. Masks with a black silicone skirt are preferred by photographers, freedivers and spearfishers because it helps block out unwanted light that reflects on the inside of the lens and makes it a little trickier to see clearly. A black freedive mask also helps shade your eyes and reduce glare, which is helpful in tropical locations where the sun is bright and the water is clear.

A clear silicone skirt on a freedive mask offers a very open and airy feel. A transparent skirt can also help extend the field of view and reduces your blind spots.

In destinations where the water is not as clear, or there is not as much bright sunlight, a clear freedive mask can be more beneficial than a black one as it allows more light in. Some people can find a black freedive mask a little claustrophobic and feel much calmer wearing a clear mask.

So it really depends on how you feel personally in the freedive mask. But the basic rule is that black freedive masks are better in bright water and clear masks in dark water.

To keep it simple, the main difference between a scuba mask and a freediving mask is that a scuba mask usually has a high volume allowing for larger lenses, giving a wider field of view. Whereas a freedive mask normally has a lower volume to cope with pressure change as you descend. Usually this will mean a slightly lower field of vision.

You wouldn’t usually use a scuba diving mask for freediving, but generally,  a good freediving mask can be used for scuba diving if you are happy with slightly losing the field of vision.

If you plan to scuba dive and freedive a lot, then it’s maybe worth thinking about investing in 2 separate masks. But as we have already mentioned, a really good freedive mask might serve all your needs.

In the end, we buy a mask to see underwater, so it’s always very frustrating when they constantly fog.

And to be honest, there are many different little tricks you can find on the internet ranging from toothpaste to soap, and even burning the lenses before use.

These processes do seem to work but we recommend looking into a good mask anti-fog treatment. This will minimize the damage caused to your mask and of course, the result will be much more satisfying.

Conclusion

Freediver

Ultimately, the best freediving mask for you is the one that you feel confident and comfortable in.

If you’ve done any freediving at all, then you know that if you don’t feel good, then neither will freediving!

So it’s worth taking your time to find your perfect mask.

Do you think we should add any other freediving masks to this list?

Let us know in the comments below!

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