- Tusa Masks
- Frameless, Low Volume, Black Skirt Masks
- Mid-Sized Masks
- Checking the Fit of a Mask
We get it. You’re here to purchase a scuba diving mask.
There’s so many options out there, you’re not really sure which one to get.
Well… welcome to ScubaOtter! This page will compare and contrast you different options for scuba diving and snorkeling masks.
|Tusa Freedom Ceos||View Reviews|
|Tusa Freedom Elite HD||View Reviews|
|Hollis M1||View Reviews|
|OMS Tribe Mask||View Reviews|
|Atomic Aquatics Subframe||View Reviews|
Tusa masks are fantastic beacuase they fit so many different face shapes and have an extremely soft silicone skirt.
Here’s some of the most popular models:
The Tusa Freedom Ceos is the first mask I have someone try on when I am trying to fit them for a mask.
Most of the time, this will fit them on the first try. One unique feature of this mask is that the left and right lenses are interchangeable. This makes it very easy to make prescription lenses for.
If you need prescription lenses, and this mask fits you, this would be my recommendation.
The Tusa Freedom Elite has nearly the same fit as the Freedom Ceos, but it has a single lens instead of two, giving you much more visibility compared to the Ceos. As with the Ceos, this mask will fit nearly everybody, but it is a tad taller than the Ceos.
The Tusa Freedom Elite HD has all the same features of the Elite, but this mask is very tall. If you have a large face and a large forehead, this mask will probably fit you better than any other mask.
Frameless, Low Volume, Black Skirt Masks
This is the standard for a good mask for a few reasons.
- A frameless mask is comfortable because it is only glass and silicone (not every single-lens mask is frameless. See the Tusa Freedom Elite: there is a frame that separates the silicone and the glass).
- A low volume mask is easy to clear because it doesn’t contain a lot of water if it gets flooded. It also provides very good visibility because the glass fits so close to your face that its almost as if there is no skirt on the mask.
- A black skirt is nice because the clear skirt tends to have a lot of glare, and peripheral vision isn’t obscured very much because the glass fits so close to your face.
According to the Hollis website, the mask also features extra clear glass giving it an extremely attractive appearance and unrivaled levels of visibility.
Many users of this mask also claim how well it fit’s them when many others didn’t so this could be an interesting choice for those strugging to find a mask that fits just right.
I personally have owned and used both the Hollis M1 and the OMS Tattoo. I found that my face was too wide for the M1, but this mask fits me very well.
This mask has nearly the same features as the M1 mask, except it comes in more variants and colors!
I have never used the UV variant underwater, but it works like a pair of sunglasses on the surface.
As for the color variants, I own the white one, and I don’t find the color of the mask to be bothersome when diving.
Mid-Sized masks are masks designed for very narrow and small faces. They are usually variants of other masks, but a mid-size mask is a perfect solution for someone who is too small for other scuba masks!
This is my go-to mask when I try to fit someone with a slim face or older kids. It’s just a tad narrower than most masks, and can usually fit those smaller faces! It also has two lenses, so it can easily be fitted for prescription lenses!
Checking the Fit of a Mask
You will know it when a mask fits. I have done entire dives without a mask strap because my mask fits so well.
Your goal should be to find a mask that fits your face as perfectly as possible because it will not only be the most comfortable but it will be much less likely to leak during your dive.
The part of the mask that actually does the sealing is the outside part of the mask skirt. The mold of the skirt should naturally fit the curvature of your face.
Do the following to check how well the mask fits your face
- Remove the mask strap or fold it in front of the mask.
- Look straight up at the ceiling
- Place the mask on your face. Do not suck in, do not force it onto your face, just lightly place the mask on your face.
- Have a friend or a professional look for gaps between the outside skirt of the mask and your face. Make especially sure to check under the nose, on the forehead, and on the temples.
- Remove some air from the mask by gently sucking in through your nose or gently pushing the mask closer to your face.
- The mask should effortlessly stick to your face as you move your head to a forward facing position (from looking straight up.)
- Try to remove the mask while there is still some suction. It should take a little effort, but shouldn’t be too hard to take off.
Masks are a very picky thing. If possible, it’s recommend that you get professionally fitted for a mask.
It’s impossible to choose a mask for someone without having them try it on, so go support your local dive shop and have them help you with this one!