Open-water swim goggles: 7 of the best reviewed and rated
Make sure you have the best visibility on race day with a set of good open-water swimming goggles. We test and rate 7 of the best
The blue mirrored Vapours from Zone3 are a little more subtle than the loud and proud gold versions, and aesthetically we much prefer our test pair. The lenses are both mirrored and polarised for various light conditions,
so they’re fine for pool use as well as the full spectrum of light conditions outdoors. The silicone gaskets are very soft, which prevent unsightly marks, yet they still provide a very firm seal that left us leak-free after some dive tests. The straps are well secured with a button mechanism for tightening, while the integrated nosepiece is soft and mouldable. After some long-term testing of the Vapours since our 2017 review we’ve experienced some fogging in our latest test pair, and also found the mirrored coating can scratch quite easily, which doesn’t significantly affect performance but was a little disappointing.
Verdict: some fogging and longevity issues, but comfortable and well-fitting goggles 80%
Buy from www.simplyswim.com
Years after their release, Aqua Sphere’s Kayenne remain one of the most popular open-water goggles on the market, and with good reason. They’re simply outstanding for the money and we’re yet to hear from a swimmer who finds fault with them. The polarised versions do a great job of reducing glare, and they provide excellent clarity in low light conditions. The triangular shape of the lenses are unique, and they offer a really good field of vision while still maintaining a low, hydrodynamic profile to please speedier swimmers. The reinforced nose bridge is tough and durable, and the strap system is one-touch with a buckle for quick and simple adjustments. We’ve enjoyed countless hours of swimming in them over the years so, for us, they’re still number one.
Verdict: versatile and very comfortable: one of the best for open water or the pool 93%
Buy from www.wiggle.co.uk
The Biofuse range from Speedo is slimmed down compared to many open- water goggles, which means some may find the closer fit offers less peripheral vision than expected. The Futura Biofuse Flexiseal Mirrors, to give them their full name, are described as having a ‘super soft flexible seal’, but we didn’t find them hugely comfortable and the gaskets left slight red rings. The nose bridge is also quite firm, and some swimmers we passed them on to struggled to get a good fit. Saying that, this tester had a leak-free experience! There’s an internal button for loosening the straps and you simply pull through to tighten them. The mirrored lenses worked great in bright sunlight and appeared to work fine in murkier conditions and in the pool too, with no fogging evident after our various test swims.
Verdict: not the most comfortable, but the lenses are of a high quality 78%
Buy from www.speedo.com
The Aphotics have photochromatic lenses that change from clear to dark and back again depending on light conditions – perfect for the open water where turning at a buoy could mean swimming straight into the sun. Clarity
is near perfect in low light conditions and as good as any of the best polarised lenses in bright sunlight. A split strap
with a button adjustment system makes them simple to tighten, and the gasket seal is very comfortable. Four different colour options and a protective case make the price more justifiable. It’s noticeable that the Aphotics are pretty large, even compared to most training goggles, and the bulkiness might put off front-pack chasers. But if you want a comfortable goggle that will serve its purpose in a variety of light conditions, the £45 outlay goes a
Verdict: great lens quality, and suitable for a variety of light conditions 87%
Buy from www.tredz.co.uk