Best Swimming Goggles Tested and Reviewed
Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or just dipping your toe in the water the first time, there’s one piece of equipment that can’t be overlooked: a solid pair of swimming goggles.
But the problem is not all goggles are created equal.
And as any swimmer who has battled with disobedient straps, immoveable fog and slow-leaking seals will tell you, sub-par goggles are no fun.
Indeed, the right swimming goggles can literally make or break your swimming session.
So, to help you ace your next aquatic adventure, we’ve put our brains together and rounded up our guide to choosing the best swimming goggles in 2020.
But before we get to that, let’s look at what you need to know to choose the best swimming goggles.
How to Choose the Best Swimming Goggles For You
With so many swimming goggles on the market, it’s easy to get confused. Here are 3 questions that’ll allow you to quickly sort the wheat from the chaff.
How Do They Fit?
Getting a good fit should be high on your list of priorities when it comes to goggles. Why? Because a poor fit causes a host of unpleasant side-effects.
At best, it’s going to be uncomfortable if the goggle frame is awkwardly pressing into parts of your face. At worst, a poor fit will result in water leaking into your goggles. Which defeats the purpose of having them at all!
Everyone’s face will be different, so you’ll need to do a little experimenting to find your perfect match.
If you’re shopping online (hint: our shop is top-notch!) make sure you buy from a retailer that has a reasonable returns policy. That way you can test them (on land) as soon as they arrive and if they don’t feel right, you can get your money back.
Pro tip: To find a good fit, see if the goggles will stay on your face, without using the straps. This indicates there’s an airtight seal and water won’t be able to sneak in.
What’s the Lens Like?
The majority of goggles have an oval lens that lets you see straight ahead. That’s ok if you swim lengths in a pool.
But if you swim in open water, then you’ll need to select a goggle that doesn’t limit your field of view. Choosing a google with a wider lens keeps your peripheral vision free so you can keep an eye on your competition.
Outdoor swimming goggles should also offer UV protection to keep your eyes safe from the sun’s harmful rays. Be sure to look for a pair that offer protection as well as reducing glare.
Mirrored lenses are also all the rage at the moment (let’s be honest they look cool). But if you swim in a darker pool, then you may have trouble seeing through a heavily mirrored lens. If that’s the case, it’s best to opt for a lighter tint or even a totally clear lens.
What are the Straps Like?
Is there anything worse than having your goggle strap snap just as you’re about to dive in?
Ok, there are worse things, but it’s important to understand that your goggles are only as good as their weakest link. And for most manufacturers, the weakest link is the straps.
To make sure your goggles last longer than a few weeks, choose a pair that boast silicone straps. They’re far more durable than their often used (and cheaper) cousin latex.
Also, make sure that there are two straps or one that splits into two at the back. This adds to the comfort and greatly reduces the likelihood that your goggles will slip off when pushing off the wall or diving.
Lastly, make sure they’re easy to adjust. You may need to fine tweak your goggles mid-session. And a simple process ensures that you won’t have to interrupt your training.
Pro tip: Even the strongest straps may eventually give way. So, always have more than one pair in your kit bag. That way you’ll never miss a session!
With that on board, let’s delve into our hand-picked selection of googles that you need to try this year. We’ve included something for everyone – from recreational swimmers to high-powered triathletes.
5 of the Best Swimming Goggles on the Market Now
Best All-Round Swimming Goggles: Speedo Futura Biofuse Flexiseal
The Speedo Futura Biofuse Flexiseal are incredibly comfy to wear. Even after long sessions, these goggles won’t leave you having to explain the marks around your eyes.
What’s more the design team at Speedo have worked hard to create a button system that makes adjusting these goggles between lengths a breeze.
They don’t come with a case which is a tiny bit of a let-down – instead, you get a mesh bag. But they’re sturdily built and can easily stand up to months of abuse tumbling around in your swimming bag.
Photo Credit: Speedo
Another cool benefit is the wider frame and field of vision makes these goggles suitable for sea swimming. There is a specific version made for triathletes (it’s more expensive), but I’ve found that the basic version to work perfectly in both open water, and in the pool.
Coming in at the lower end of the goggle price range, you can expect to get a whole lot more than you pay for.
- Very comfortable
- Easy to adjust
- Works in the pool & open water
- No marks left on your face
Best Swimming Goggles For Outdoor Swimming: Arena Nimesis Crystal
While perhaps looking like a simple aesthetic, that couldn’t be further from the truth. the Arena Nimesis Crystal earns its spot on this list through pure performance.
With a reassuringly secure fastening system and durable silicone construction, the goggles are very well built and will last you at least a few hundred swimming sessions, if not more.
And while they’re excellent for the pool, they come into their prime in outdoor conditions. The clear lenses give you incredible vision, while the ultra-wide field of view means you’ll never lose sight of the competition (unless they’re miles behind you!)
The Nimesis Crystal also comes with a great self-aligning nose bridge which takes the hassle out of adjusting to find that perfect fit.
Plus with UV protection 400 to keep your eyes safe, these are the goggles you need to take your next outdoor swim up a notch, without breaking the bank.
- Great for contact lens wearers
- Excellent UV protection
- Self-aligning nose bridge
- Wide split-strap for comfort
Best Swimming Goggles For Racing: Arena Cobra Ultra Swipe
If you watch any competitive swimming, you’ve probably seen many of the world’s fastest swimmers rocking these streamline looking goggles.
And there’s a good reason for that. Because the Arena Cobra Ultra Swipe are the product of thousands of hours of engineering design and ingenuity. They’re built for speed.
By melding into the contours of your face, the low profile design chops drag down to an absolute minimum. The wrap-around lens enhances your vision and ensures nobody will make a break in a race without you knowing about it.
From a durability standpoint, they’re surprisingly robust for a performance goggle. In fact, if you used these in training we’re confident that they’d easily stand up the regularity of multiple sessions per week.
But by far the most impressive thing about these goggles though is their outrageously powerful anti-fog. Arena says that their new anti-fog treatment lasts 10x times longer than a traditional goggle, and in my experience so far – that’s absolutely true.
The combination of sleek design, robust build quality and immense anti-fog make these the premier choice of goggle for competitive swimmers in 2020.
- Super low profile for minimal drag
- Powerful anti-fog
- Comfortable seal for use in training
- Keep an eye on the competition with enhanced peripheral vision
Best Swimming Goggles For Kids: Arena Cruiser Soft Junior
When it comes to kids goggles, there are a couple of essentials you need.
Durability, because they’re kids aren’t always the most careful. Comfort, so they can focus on their lesson. And solid anti-fog, so they can see what they are doing.
The Arena Cruiser soft Junior ticks all these boxes and what’s more, they don’t cost an arm and a leg either. In fact, most goggles in the same price range don’t come close to the build quality and functionality of the Cruiser Soft Junior.
Adjusting them is also a piece of cake – the nose is self-adjusting and the straps allow you to tighten or loosen in a few seconds. This means no more stingy chlorine eyes, goggle marks or interrupted lessons.
- Durable build quality
- Easy to adjust
- Good anti-fog
- Soft eyecups
Best Swimming Goggles For Triathlon: Arena Cobra Tri Mirror
The Arena Cobra Tri Mirror takes everything we love about the Arena Cobra Ultra Swipe and optimises it for triathlon performance.
Make no mistake, these goggles aren’t cheap. But you will certainly get more than your money’s worth with the combination of technology, materials and design that’s gone into creating them.
They’re built to withstand both sea and pool conditions – and short of a snorkelling mask, there’s pretty much no goggles that are as ruggedly built. I’ve no doubt they’d last seasons of extended training.
They come with arena’s industry-leading anti-fog tech so you’ll always see where you’re going. Plus the fastening system is built tough to ensure they always stay on your face – even during the most fervent scrabble at the start of a race.
- Built to endure seasons of training
- Industry-leading anti-fog
- Comfort for long-distance training
- TPE seals for a watertight fit
Google trouble can quickly suck the life out of your swimming sessions. Whether it’s pesky leakages, painful suction or chlorinated eyeballs it’s time to put an end to it.
Hopefully, by now, you’re full of information and ready to choose a set that’ll help you get the most out of your time in the water.
If you’ve any questions or comments, let us know in the box below. And don’t forget to share this post with any swimmers you know who need a new set of goggles, which you can shop for online in our store.
From all of us here at Swim Now – Good Luck!