Best Freediving Mask: Top 10 Low Volume Masks in 2021

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The best freediving masks will have a few things in common, and this article will break down all of them! 

If you’re on the hunt for the best freediving mask to take on your underwater adventures, keep reading to find out why you need a freediving mask, what to look for, and the 10 best freediving masks available today.

Best Freediving Mask: Comparison

Name
Image
Features
Price
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AquaLung MicroMask9 color options, ultra low internal volume, compact shape, rotating buckles, high grade silicon$$$
Mares Star Liquid SkinLiquid skin silicon, star mask lens & skirt shape, ergonomic buckles, tempered glass$$
Cressi NanoDual frames, inverted tear drop lenses, anchored buckles, highly adjustable$$
Aqualung Sphera X5 color options, 180° panoramic vision, advanced fit technology, easily adjustable buckle$$
Mares X-Free Mask6 color options, very low internal volume, matte finish to prevent reflection, reduces drag, grip on nose$$
Salvimar Noah4 color options, very light weight, tempered glass, hypoallergenic silicon, dual lenses$
Scubapro Spectra Low Volume 2 Window Mask7 color options, optional mirrored lens, dual lens design w/ tempered glass, push-button buckles$$$
Kraken Aquatics Freediving MaskDouble lens design with tempered glass, flexible silicon, simple buckle adjustment$
SeaDive Oceanways Superview-HDMirrored, high definition single lens, super soft silicon, tear drop rigid frame$$
Scuba Choice Low Volume MaskSuper budget, tempered glass, narrow fit, soft silicon skirt$

Scuba Diving Masks vs Freediving Masks

While intuitively you may think that a scuba diving mask and a freediving mask are the same (they sure look similar), there are actually some key differences that set freediving masks apart and makes them a more practical option for the sport.

The main feature that sets freediving masks apart is that they’re designed to have an extra low internal volume. While this may seem like mumbo jumbo, this is actually huge when it comes to staying safe and comfortable underwater.

Low volume masks (also known as micro masks or low profile) sit closer to your face and are typically 100ml or less. 

While descending during a freedive, you’ll have to equalize the pressure in your mask. Since you’re diving on a single breath, it’s important to use as little of your precious air as possible to do this. With low volume masks, you’ll need significantly less air to equalize the pressure than you would with a scuba mask, which is why it’s recommended to buy a mask specifically made for freediving. 

At this point you might be thinking “well, what happens if I do use a scuba diving mask for freediving?” Well, you run the risk of mask squeeze, which happens when you can’t equalize in the right way. Mask squeeze creates a vacuum on your face and can pop the blood vessels in your eyes… No thank you! This is the main reason why we recommend investing in a freediving mask, even if you’re on the fence about it. 

Another huge perk of freediving masks over scuba diving masks is that many are designed to reduce drag in the water. When you’re scuba diving with an oxygen tank and a ton of gear, mask drag will be close to unnoticeable. However, when you’re freediving, this can be a huge factor contributing to your performance.

In most cases, freediving masks will be more streamlined than scuba diving masks, with an excellent field of vision.  

Equipment of freediver on pebble coast near the sea, mask and flippers with snorkel

10 Best Freediving Masks

To help you find the best freediving masks for your adventures, here’s a complete round up of the 10 top options on the market today. 

Best Overall: AquaLung MicroMask

Features: Ultra low internal volume | Compact shape | Cardanic Joint Buckles | High grade silicon | Lenses in ocular orbit for large field of view

When it comes to the best freediving masks, the AquaLung MicroMask is a very strong contender. Well revered by freedivers and spearfishers alike, this low volume mask will keep you comfortable in the water on even the longest days. 

Thanks to the ultra low internal volume, you’ll have no problem equalizing while underwater, and the super soft silicon will stay snug on your face without getting too tight, and will keep from leaking. 

If you’re worried about mask drag, the MicroMask combats this with a compact shape, and the dual teardrop shaped lenses that sit close to your face allow for an unparalleled field of view.

A huge draw to this mask is it fits a wide variety of face shapes without sacrificing on comfort or seal. Both larger men and smaller women report a snug fit, regardless of drastically different face sizes, which is a huge plus in the mask world. 

It’s also fully adjustable with rotating jointed mask buckles and has a push button release system so you can make quick fixes with ease underwater. Plus, the range of colors makes it fun to customize this mask to match the rest of your gear or personal preference.

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Best for Comfort: Mares Star Liquid Skin

Features: Patented liquid skin technology | Star mask lens & skirt shape | 2 types of silicon (firm & soft) | Ergonomic buckles | Tempered glass

If you’re worried about mask fatigue, you should have no problem staying comfortable in the Mares Star Liquid Skin mask. This freediving mask uses patented technology to ensure a smooth fit against your face.

It actually uses two different types of silicon to create a fit that’s 45% softer than the other masks on the market. One type of silicon is used to build the more rigid structure of the mask, while the second type is designed to be softer for skin contact. 

Beyond just creating a comfortable fit, this silicon design and ergonomic buckles makes the mask highly adjustable to suit anyone and everyone looking for the best freediving mask.

This mask has an extremely low internal volume and will sit quite close to your face, making it simple and painless to equalize with a tiny bit of air. The field of vision is quite decent, and is unobstructed thanks to the specially designed skirt shape. 

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Best for a Narrow Fit: Cressi Nano

Features: Extremely low internal volume | Dual frame technology | Inclined & inverted tear-drop lenses | Anchored buckles for stability

This nano mask lives up to its name as it’s a compact model that will sit quite close to your face. It’s designed with freediving in mind and has one of the lowest internal volumes on the market, so you won’t have to struggle to equalize or clear it.

Another reason why this is among the best freediving masks is the field of vision. Not only are the lenses super close to your face, but the exaggerated teardrop shape increases downward visibility while maintaining a solid seal.

If you have a smaller face and struggle to find a snug fit, this is the mask for you as it’s slightly more narrow than other diving masks. That being said, it’s also highly adjustable with the anchored buckles, so it can easily accommodate different size faces. 

All in all, Cressi is a highly reputable brand when it comes to snorkel and dive gear, and make products that won’t let you down. If you need even more convincing, this freediving mask comes in multiple colors, as well. 

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Best Horizontal Field of View: Aqualung Sphera X

Features: 180° panoramic vision | Plexisol lenses w/ UV protection | Advanced fit technology | Innovative strap shape

All hail the Aqualung Sphera X, the latest installment in the Aqualung Sphera family. This is the newest edition of this mask and has many welcome improvements from the last model. Butt first, the basics.

This pick checks all the boxes when it comes to the best freediving masks. It has a low volume design with a 180° field of view thanks to the curved lenses. The only downside is the lenses are designed for horizontal viewing, and leave a little to be desired when it comes to downward visibility. 

But it’s also been refined to the point where it’s nearly a perfect mask. Compared to the standard Aqualung Sphera (rather than the X), this upgraded mask is easier to put on thanks to the larger adjustable strap, and seals better too, due to the thinner and more pliable silicon. 

It’s suitable for a wide range of faces, no matter the size, and is quite reasonably priced, even for freedivers on a budget. 

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Best for Various Face Sizes: Mares X-Free Mask

Features: Extremely low internal volume | Lightweight matte finish | Hydrodynamic design to reduce drag | Ergonomic mask strap | Embossed grip on nose

Another high quality freediving mask from Mares, this pick leaves nothing to be desired. It’s super low volume (80ml) and can be equalized with a little pinch, so you won’t have to worry about mask squeeze while underwater.

This lightweight freediving mask is streamlined with tempered glass to reduce drag in the water. It also features a matte finish to keep from scaring away any marine life you may come across.

You’ll find this mask will fit a wide face just as well as it will a thin face and the skirt uses new silicon technology to keep it from leaking or fogging. It’s even suitable for men with moustaches, if you aren’t keen on a shave before your dive!

And what’s more, the competitive pricing makes this mask accessible, even if you’re not the most experienced freediver. Great for beginners and advanced divers alike, the Mares X-Free is definitely one of the best freediving masks out there. 

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Best for Easy Equalization: Salvimar Noah

Features: Multiple color options | Hypoallergenic silicon | Tempered glass lenses | Micrometrically adjustable strap

This little mask packs a big punch and frequently appears on lists of the best freediving masks for good reason. Whether you’re just learning to freedive or are already an expert, this mask will serve you well today and for many years to come.

As soon as you get your hands on this mask, you’ll understand why it’s so well loved. The hypoallergenic silicon is soft and buttery, guaranteed to sit comfortably on your face.  

While the durable tempered glass lens is tear shaped and split in two, it’s actually a single lens with a bridge in the middle that will sit comfortably just above your nose while in the water.

There’s close attention to detail with this mask construction. Take the nose piece for example, which is more textured than the rest of the silicon. This is so you can get a good grip while equalizing this already low volume mask (94ml).

This is apparently one of the most comfortable masks floating around these days and that’s only accentuated by the highly adjustable buckles and excellent field of view.

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Best Field of View: Scubapro Spectra Low Volume 2 Window Mask

Features: Multiple color options | Dual lens design with tempered glass | Push-button buckles | EZ Equalize nose pocket | Mirrored lens options

Holy moly will you look at the lenses on this thing! A freediving mask with an incredible field of view, these teardrop shaped, tempered glass lenses and low profile design will ensure you don’t miss anything on your dive.

You’ll have no problem equalizing this low volume mask, that’s designed to fit a huge variety of divers. With push button buckles that adjust with ease, this mask will snugly hug your face and ensure it doesn’t leak or fog up.

And if you’ve tried several masks and leaks are a real concern, you can rest assured that this mask is designed to withstand water, thanks to the double-sealed silicon skirt. It’s been reported that the skirt isn’t the most comfortable, but does the trick. The nose pocket is also a bit larger than on other masks, which is something to keep in mind. 

It comes in a variety of color choices and also has a mirrored lens option if you’re concerned about glare underwater. 

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Best for Beginners: Kraken Aquatics Freediving Mask

Features: Double lens design with tempered glass | Flexible silicon for comfortable fit | Easily adjustable button | Storage case included

A stand out beginner option, this Kraken Aquatics freediving mask is a solid pick if you’re just learning the sport and want a high quality mask without shelling out tons of cash.

It covers all of the bases when it comes to a good freediving mask with a very low internal volume and wide field of view with the double lens design. Forget plastic lenses, with this mask you get tempered glass, which will resist shattering or scratching on your adventures. Plus, it won’t go yellow after tons of use!

You shouldn’t have many problems when it comes to this mask leaking, though past reviewers state that if you have some facial hair, it may not be a very tight seal. But it’s easy to adjust the mask to your comfort with the anchored buckle and so long as you treat the lenses properly, you shouldn’t have any issues with it fogging up. 

Many lists of best freediving masks will list the Kraken Aquatics Snorkel Dive Mask, which is a great all-rounder, however, we feel this option is much more suited to freediving thanks to its design. 

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Best for True Colors & Shallow Dives: SeaDive Oceanways Superview-HD

Features: High definition single lens w/ TrueColor | Extra wide field of view | Soft silicon skirt | Teardrop shaped frame

If you’re freediving to experience the magic of the underwater world, this mask is a prime contender. 

With a single, TrueColor lens, this mask is designed to show you the colors red and yellow which are lost the further you dive. This also greatly helps with depth perception, allowing you to see clearly defined objects while you explore, and offsets glare, too. And since it’s a single lens, you won’t have a hard bridge pressing into your nose.

Though it’s categorized as a low volume mask, it’s not as low volume as some other options on this list. That being said, it’s more geared towards beginner freedivers who aren’t going too deep or scuba divers who won’t need to equalize with as little air as possible.

It’s still worth consideration thanks to the extra wide field of vision and super soft silicon skirt for a perfect fit every time.

Past reviewers state that this mask doesn’t leak, even with a larger face shape, and women can rejoice as your hair won’t get stuck or pulled in the smooth strap. Sounds like a winner in our books!

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Best Budget Mask: Scuba Choice Low Volume Mask

Features: Dual tempered glass lenses | Narrow fit | Highly adjustable strap | Best for beginners

And finally, if you want to simply try your hand at freediving without committing to expensive gear, this ultra budget freediving mask will do in a pinch.

It’s classified as low volume and definitely works for freediving, but may not sit as close to your face as other low volume models. That being said, it’s certainly the least expensive mask of its kind on the market and will perform beautifully in the shallows.

Divers who have used expensive masks claim that the Scuba Choice model outshines them all. Perhaps not in the low volume department, but definitely in terms of comfort and fit with a silicon skirt and highly adjustable strap.

There are dual tempered glass lenses that provide a pretty decent field of view. But the one annoying thing is that the tempered glass label sits at the top of the lens and can get in the way if you’re trying to achieve the perfect fit.

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How to Choose the Best Freediving Mask

When it comes to choosing the best freediving mask, there are a few things to look out for:

freediver with a black freediver snokel and mask

Low Volume

The first and most important quality in any freediving mask is low internal volume. I’ve covered why this is important throughout the article, but just as a refresher, low volume masks are essential for freediving because they take much less air to equalize than a traditional dive mask.

This allows you to conserve your single breath, and since the low internal volume holds less air, you’ll have a decrease in buoyancy pulling you towards the surface. 

Fit

A good fitting mask is key to an enjoyable day in the water. The last thing you want is to constantly be tugging and pulling at your mask, readjusting it to get the right fit.

You’ll want to find a mask that will fit snugly against your face without squeezing or feeling too tight or restrictive. It shouldn’t weigh you down in any way, and the material should be soft on your skin, rather than pinching. 

If you want to see whether a mask fits you correctly or not, hold it up to your face (without putting the straps on) and take a small breath in. If the mask suctions against your face without letting any air out, this is a mask that fits. 

You should also ensure that the nose pocket isn’t too big, which will make it difficult to equalize, or not too small, which will create leaks. 

Most masks are designed to fit a variety of face shapes and sizes thanks to the silicon skirt, but it helps to choose one that’s highly adjustable. The only time you’ll really run into problems is if you have facial hair, in which case you’ll want a mask that has a little extra room to accommodate for this without leaking.

Material

The material of your mask directly corresponds to its comfort and durability. The masks that will feel best against your face are typically crafted from soft, high-quality silicon. You’ll also find masks with a more rigid silicon, which won’t be as comfortable.

Also pay attention to the material of your lens. The best is tempered glass which doesn’t scratch or shatter, and is built for durability. You should avoid masks with plastic lenses which run the risk of bursting from pressure. 

Lens

While we’re on the topic of lenses, you’ll generally come across masks with a single lens or double lenses.

But first, let’s remember we’re talking about low volume masks here, which sit much closer to your eyes than traditional scuba diving masks.

For this reason, many freedivers opt for masks with dual lenses as it’s nearly impossible to sense the bridge between the two. Dual lenses on freediving masks also tend to have a teardrop shape, which gives you superior downward visibility, which is especially handy for checking your dive computer or what’s below you without moving your head.

However, there are still plenty of freediving masks with a single lens. It just boils down to personal preference.

A last consideration are mirrored lenses. While these are rising in popularity in recent years, when it comes to freediving, it’s best to stick to transparent lenses so you can maintain nonverbal communication with your buddy. 

With mirrored lenses, it’s hard to read facial expressions or sense signs of distress. Our advice is to play it safe and stick with a see-through pair. 

Freediving Mask FAQs

If you still have some more questions about freediving masks, check out these FAQs.

Masks and snorkels for diving, freediving and snorkelling

What is a good freediving mask brand?

In general, Cressi and Mares are highly reputable brands when it comes to freediving masks and diving gear in general. However, you won’t go wrong with any of the masks on this list. 

What are the main skills needed for freediving and how to develop them?

First and foremost, the main skill needed for freediving is the ability to hold your breath for an extended period of time. You can develop this through careful practice and the proper breath holding techniques. 

Other necessary skills include a deep awareness of your body and mind, how to equalize underwater, diving safety, and how to conserve oxygen underwater.

The best way to develop these skills is through a designated freediving course.

Travel Must: At the risk of sounding like your parents, make sure you get travel insurance before hitting the water. Trust us, it’s one of those things you don’t want to leave home without. We recommend either World Nomads or Safety Wing, depending on the type of traveler you are.

What are the best places in the world for freediving?

You can actually find amazing freediving all over the world! But there are huge hot spots for it in places where there’s an abundance of marine life and warm waters, like Southeast Asia, Australia, Egypt and the Gulf of Mexico. 

There ya have it, everything you need to know about freediving masks and the best options if you’re looking to purchase one. Hopefully this guide brought you one step closer to a prime piece of gear for your freediving inventory. 


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