Maui Snorkeling Tips - Choosing a Mask
Whether you're snorkeling in Maui or getting decked out for Halloween, choosing the right mask can make all the difference! A leaky, uncomfortable snorkel mask can really take the focus off of enjoying the sights—not what you want if snorkeling isn't something you get to do everyday. Thankfully, finding a good fit isn't difficult. Hold the mask up to your face and take note—does the plastic feel hard, stiff, or uncomfortable? If so, put it back and look for another. Masks with silicon skirts (the part next to your face) are usually your best bet. Silicon forms to the contours of your face and feels softer against your skin than older materials. When you’ve found a mask that feels reasonably comfortable, inhale through your nose to create suction. A seal should develop between your face and the mask. If you hold your breath and bend forward—like taking a bow—the mask should stay put. If it does, you’ve got a good fit and a mask that shouldn’t leak.
Tip: Clearing your Mask
If you find a mask with a good fit, the occasions of getting water inside will be limited. But from time to time it happens. Fortunately, clearing water from your mask is easy. You don’t need to remove your mask or even take a break from snorkeling. Here’s what to do: while keeping your mask underwater, tilt your head back and gently apply pressure to the upper portion of your mask. Exhale through your nose. This will cause the water to drain out the bottom of your mask. It’s a simple trick that works great with a little practice.
You'll notice "our model to the left" ;) is sporting a strap cover. If you plan on snorkeling a lot and are buying your own gear, you might want to pick up a neoprene strap cover for your mask. A strap cover just makes wearing a mask more comfortable and much easier to "slip on" or "slide off" over your head. It's definitely nicer than wrestling a rubber strap through wet hair—particularly if you have long hair. Strap covers are easy to attach, they slide right over your mask's strap and are secured with Velcro. While they're not a "must have," strap covers are icing on the cake for avid snorkelers.
Happy Halloween snorkel fans! If you're in Maui over Halloween, be sure to check out the festivities in Lahaina. Get there early if you can, it's quite the celebration and traffic can be a "fright!" For more snorkeling tips or questions about Maui, contact us here or through social media. You can find Maui's Best Snorkeling on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google+. We'd love to hear from you!