Are Full Face Snorkel Masks Safe? – Here Is All You Should Know!

Are Full Face Snorkel Masks Safe

Snorkeling is the best way to explore underwater colorful fish, amazing coral reefs, and other marine life. It is an easier activity than scuba diving since you don’t have to use much equipment. But you could still get in serious trouble if you don’t wear a proper mask. Full face snorkels are the latest snorkeling trend. These masks can cover your entire face. There is a built-in snorkel tube to breathe through your nose and mouth in this mask. That’s not all; it improves your vision and prevents fogging. But are full face snorkel masks safe? Many people ask this question a lot now before they buy or use them.

People are concerned about recent accidents and deaths related to full face snorkel masks.

So, are these masks dangerous? How can they affect kids? And how are they different from traditional masks?

Let us find answers to these questions in this article.

Are full face snorkel masks safe? Know before you snorkel

Full face snorkel masks can cover your whole face, from your forehead to your chin. And they come with a snorkel tube attached right on top. You can breathe through it normally with your nose and mouth, just like on the land. So, you don’t need to bite down on a separate mouthpiece or worry about water getting in your mouth like when you do with traditional marks.

Benefits of full face snorkel masks

Benefits of full face snorkel masks
Benefits of full face snorkel masks
They are user-friendly. Snorkeling beginners sometimes have a hard time breathing through a mouthpiece or sealing their mask properly, so these masks are great for them.
You do not need a separate snorkel.
You can breathe just like you normally do through your nose or mouth.
You can get a wide, immersive view of the underwater world.

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Drawbacks of full face snorkel masks

Drawbacks of full face snorkel masks
Drawbacks of full face snorkel masks
They cost more than regular snorkels and masks.
They are bulkier and heavier.
They can fog up more easily (especially if you breathe out through your nose)
You may struggle with adjusting and fitting them properly.
You may struggle to remove them quickly in an emergency.

How to use a full face snorkel mask?

You can’t get the complete snorkeling experience without wearing your full face snorkel mask properly. Here’s how you can do it.

Step 01 – First, use an anti-fogging spray or toothpaste on your mask. Don’t touch the mask with your hands. Rinse it with tap water.
Step 02 – Dry your mask with a soft towel or let it air dry. Don’t leave it in the sun for too long.
Step 03 – Wear the mask when it is dry. Open the foldable tube and button it.
Step 04 – Remember to pull your hair back so it’s not on your face. Then, lift the strap and put the mask on.
Step 05 – Adjust the mask and its straps until it feels comfortable. Breathe normally and check if everything’s good.
Step 06 – Wear the mask and test it in clear water to ensure you have worn it correctly before you go snorkeling.

What size full face snorkel mask should you get?

Picking the right size for your snorkel mask is very important. Otherwise, it could become a safety hazard. Your snorkel size affects how well it fits your face, comfortability, and effectiveness. If it’s too big, water can get inside. If it’s too small, it could be too tight for you, and it will make you uncomfortable.

Most full-face snorkel masks come in two sizes: S/M and L/XL.

How to find out your full face snorkel mask size?

Measure the distance from your nose’s bridge to your chin.

Is it less than 11.5CM? Then you should choose S/M.
Is it more than 11.5CM? Then you should go for L/XL

What if your face is wider or your nose is larger?

Then, you might want to consider L/XL.

Full face snorkel mask vs traditional snorkel mask

Traditional snorkel masks have been on the snorkeling market for decades now. Compared to them, full-face snorkel masks are pretty new since they were introduced around 2014. There are two parts to traditional masks.

A mask for your eyes and nose
A snorkel to breathe from your mouth.

Why do some snorkelers prefer traditional snorkel masks over full face snorkel masks?

They’re cheaper and more common.
Easier to pack and carry around.
Ability to breathe through your mouth or nose.

Traditional snorkel mask downsides

Traditional snorkel mask downsides
Traditional snorkel mask downsides
They have a smaller viewing window, so you can’t see as much.
You have to bite on a mouthpiece. Doing this always could make you uncomfortable and make your jaw tired.
It can leak and fog up more than full-face masks.
They can fill up with water if you go underwater or get hit by a wave.

Are full face snorkel masks dangerous?

Full-face snorkel masks do have some advantages over regular masks, but they also have a big downside. Actually, using a full-face snorkel mask has recently been found to be one of the top reasons for snorkeling deaths.

Why are full face snorkel masks dangerous? When you wear a full-face snorkel mask, you usually breathe in a closed-off space. If you do this for too long, you can end up breathing in too much CO2. Then, you will start to feel dizzy and confused, and you might even pass out. The worst thing is you could have a hard time taking off the full-face snorkel mask even when you’re already feeling out of it.

Isn’t there a fix to it? There is a way. Some mask manufacturers try to fix this by having a separate section at the bottom for breathing. This way, snorkelers can push out CO2. But can you depend on this to work all the time? It is pretty risky actually. And you could have a serious issue if your full-face snorkel mask is not top quality. Cheaper full face snorkel masks often use lower quality materials, so you’re starting off with a risk on your hands. When the seal around your face isn’t tight, it can let water in.

Full face snorkel masks and kids

Are full face snorkel masks safe for children? Yes, they are completely safe for kids. Kids can easily and comfortably use them, and they are a lot of fun. But full face snorkel mask kids need to be old enough and responsible enough to use them correctly. Also, an adult should always supervise them. You should remember that all full-face snorkel masks are not good for kids. You need to pick kids full face snorkel masks with a better fit, size and shape. Get them one with a safety valve to stop water from getting into the tube to ensure the kid’s safety.

Do you need to know about other snorkeling essentials? check out our snorkeling wear essentials and snorkeling gear list articles here.

Answers To The Frequently Asked Question

Here are answers to some of the most asked questions about full face snorkel mask safety.


We explored the fascinating world of full face snorkel masks in this article, including their benefits, safety concerns, comparisons to traditional masks, and effects on little snorkelers’ safety. So, are full face snorkel masks safe? Yes, they are safe. You can use them safely like any other equipment you use if you buy a reputable company’s masks and use them correctly and responsibly. Get the right full face snorkel mask size, learn how to use it properly, and you are ready for your snorkel.

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