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How to ski | 5 technical information about ski goggles

How to ski 7 min read

One of the things we love most about skiing and our winter holidays on- & off-piste are the views. Oh, how amazing are those beautiful snowy sceneries from the mountain top, sparkling and shining in the sunlight. Our eyes - the door to our souls - prove themselves to be one of the most important tools for skiing in those moments. Not just for enjoying the spectacular winter views but also for the orientation in the snow. Good eyesight changes the whole skiing experience on sunny and snowy more foggy days. Therefore, the right goggles are a game-changing piece of skiers equipment. Ski goggles exceed the skills of regular sunglasses. They not only protect our fragile eyes but also improve our sense of sight adjusted to weather conditions. In this article, we want to give you 5 technical information about ski goggles to show you what "the right" ski goggles are capable of.

How ski goggles fit: The frame

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The frame of ski goggles is no way comparable to any other pair of sunglasses or glasses in general. Usually, the frame is made of layers of foams of different densities. Finished off by a layer of fleece it is very soft on the skin. Therefore, ski goggles are very comfortable to wear, especially whilst skiing because no wind will blow into your eyes when you speed up. That is something simple sunglasses could never provide you with on-piste.

Another cool thing about a ski goggle frames is the size of the frame. Ski goggles are way bigger than other glasses and provide you with an unobstructed view. When choosing a pair of ski goggles we'd say the bigger the better. But still, we want you not to forget about the fit because every one of us has a different size, shape, and geometry of nose and cheekbones. The ultimate goal is the perfect sight but if they do not fit perfectly and feel uncomfortable - what's the use?

5 technical information about ski goggles | Photographer: Curt Nichols | Source: Unsplash

Make me see: The lenses

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Lenses are something crucial but very special about ski goggles. They come in different colors and shapes and are highly technical. That's because they are developed to improve vision and protect the eyes at the same time and that under various weather and light conditions.

First, lenses should give you 100% UVA and UVB protection. This is a non-negotiable feature because sunburns on the eyes are worse than a nightmare.

Apart from that, lenses on ski goggles are aligned to different light conditions. The different colors you will find on the market have nothing to do with fashion or aesthetics, but they are carefully selected to decrease internal glare to a minimum and to take advantage of base tint benefits.

Due to that background information, do yourself and us the favor of not choosing for your favorite color but the lenses you see best with. This should be something the 5 technical information about ski goggles should make clear - technology comes before looks.

Find the right lenses

Choosing the right lenses means finding the perfect visible light transmission (VLT). VLT is a measurement in % that tells you how much light comes through the lenses. This is very important to understand because highly mirrored lenses, that you wear on sunny days let less light come through than all-round lenses or lenses for foggy/snowy days. Best for you would be to try them on and ask the clerk whether you can try them on the outside (preferably on a day with similar weather conditions under which you would like to go skiing).

Interchangeable lenses

What many ski beginners to not understand is that ski goggles are not just about protecting your eyes from the sun. Ski goggles do not only protect you but also make you see. This might sound completely crazy but on cloudy days you will experience how difficult it is to see bumps on the piste if you wear glasses for sunny days. On the other hand, it hurts your eyes if you wear glasses made for foggy days on sunny ones because the VLT is too high.

Therefore, it is not about just finding one pair of ski goggles and always wearing the same lenses. Many people buy two pairs of lenses, one for good weather and one for bad weather and change day to day just how they need it. Ski goggles frames are made to change the lenses easily. This also gives the advantage that when you have scratches on lenses, or they break you do not need to buy a new pair of glasses - simply change the lenses.


Of course, researchers and product developers also developed a technology for lenses to automatically adapt to different light conditions. These glasses are the modern go-to because you won't need to change lenses every day. As you can imagine these photochromatic lenses are more expensive than other options but if you do the math and think about buying two lenses instead of one expensive one it almost comes down to the same price.

Contrast baby contrast: Polarization

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Polarization is a common technology that reduces glare from surfaces. Let's say water or snow reflects light and blinds you in some cases - polarization filters some electromagnetic waves and makes you see better. Seeing more contrast in the snow is very important and helpful whilst skiing.

Oakley ski goggle wearing in Lech
Powder skiing in Lech am Arlberg, wearing Oakley ski goggle

No more wiping: Antifog

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Baby, it's cold outside on skis, and when you breathe outdoor and your breath hits the lenses of your ski goggles it condensates. The result of this phenomenon is called fog in our circles. Unless you are a big fan of wiping your ski goggles we want to avoid that. And we can ski goggles that have antifog features. Double lenses or vents provide you with the effect of preventing fog. Often it makes sense to buy ski goggles from the same brand as your ski helmet. Because ski helmets have vents right above the line where ski goggles and ski helmets touch - this also has an antifog-effect.

A splash of natural color: High chromatic definition

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High chromatic definition (HCD) is almost like coffee for the eyes. It increases the intensity of natural color contrast and harmonizes color fluctuation due to shadow and light. Interestingly this reduces eye fatigue -- therefore wakes them up. Also, reaction time increases due to this technology.

Are you looking for ski equipment trends in 2020 - follow the link and read the article about it.

5 technical information about ski goggles: Conclusion

Ski goggles are worth an investment and a skiers' eyes best friend. Actually, they are a total must-have. They protect your eyes from the sun, water, snow, and wind besides supporting your eyes to see better contrast and scan the snow on- or off-piste. Highly sophisticated they are made for different and changing light and weather conditions. The frames are big and comfortable, warming your face whilst giving you a wide sight.

In that case, if you are a ski beginner, all we can say is buy a pair of ski goggles and see - see how helpful they are. We swear they are worth every single cent or penny.

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