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How to properly Clean a Snorkel Mask (Step-by-Step Guide)

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The snorkel mask is the most important part of your snorkeling equipment. Only with masks can you admire the unique wildlife, coral reefs and fantastic underwater landscapes.

Compared to other water sports enthusiasts, snorkelers have it easy. If you want to snorkel, you don’t need much equipment. A mask, a snorkel and snorkel fins are all you need.

The care of the equipment is also important in snorkeling. Knowing how to clean a snorkel mask is one of the most important things. The snorkel mask will fog up quickly if it is not or incorrectly cared for.

Our step-by-step instructions will help you clean the snorkel mask. With this thorough cleaning you guarantee that the mask offers a crystal clear view and does not fog up even on long snorkel trips.

The instructions are divided into three parts because 1. snorkel masks must be cleaned before the first use, 2. they must be cleaned regularly after each use and 3. they should be treated before the next adventure to avoid fogging up on the tour.

Materials & Items for Snorkel Mask Cleaning

  • toothpaste
  • toothbrush
  • dishwashing liquid
  • performance water
  • Soft towel
  • Anti Fog Spray

How to Clean the Snorkel Mask after Buying it

Step 1: Scrub off with toothpaste

Yes – read correctly. All you need now is some toothpaste and a brush.

Snorkel masks are coated with a thin oily layer to protect the glasses better during transport. Just grab some toothpaste and scrub the visor inside and out. It is important not to touch the glass with your fingers. The visor would only get dirty again and fog up more quickly.

Step 2: Rinse out

Rinse the mask with tap water so that no traces of toothpaste remain.

Step 3: Dry off

Now dry the mask with a soft towel to prevent bacteria or dirt from accumulating. Alternatively, the snorkel mask can be dried in fresh air. However, it should not be left in the sun for too long as this could damage the plastic.

How to clean the snorkel mask after each time you use it

Step 1: Clean with detergent

After use, the snorkel mask must be cleaned of salt water, sand, dirt and all kinds of foreign bodies. To do this, dissolve commercial detergent in warm tap water and rinse the snorkel mask with it. This cleaning is also necessary after use in freshwaters, pools and swimming pools.

Step 2: Rinse off

The residues of the detergent are then rinsed off with tap water.

Step 3: Dry off

Dry the snorkel mask with a soft towel. Alternatively, the mask can be dried in the fresh air. Drying is important to prevent bacteria from settling in the mask.

Step 4: Storage

When storing the snorkel mask, the choice of a suitable storage location is crucial. The storage location should be dry, not directly exposed to the sun and as close as possible to normal room temperature.

Note: After the last use for the season, the snorkel mask should be cleaned particularly thoroughly. Otherwise, bacteria still sitting on the mask could spread over the winter.

How to prepare the Snorkel Mask for a Snorkeling Trip

Step 1: Use Anti-fogging Spray

Anti-fog spray is used before use. The liquid called Anti Fog Spray is applied to avoid fogging of the snorkel mask.

Alternatively, toothpaste can be used. Who is already in the water, can clean the snorkel mask also with spit – yes with spit.

However, it is very important that you do not touch the visor of the snorkel mask with your fingers.

Step 2: Rinse thoroughly

Rinse the mask several times with tap water. The amount of water should be sufficient to remove larger amounts of toothpaste. However, if you are using Anti Fog Spray, you should leave a thin layer on the glass.

More actionable Tips

  • Never put the snorkel mask on the visor. If the surface is stony, this could scratch the visor, which would impair vision and reduce the life of the mask.
  • Also avoid placing the mask in the sun for too long. The UV radiation from the sun will damage the silicone in the snorkel mask border. The border could wave and then be less dense.
  • The ideal storage location is neither exposed to direct sunlight nor too warm or too cold. Always store the snorkel mask in a room with not too humid air.
  • If you have problems with misting up snorkel masks, make sure to leave the mask on for the whole time. Fogging is caused by the glass coming into contact with moist air. With classic snorkel masks this can happen by breathing out through the nose. Also, if you remove the mask during a snorkel trip or push it high on your forehead, moisture will come from the inside to the glasses and the visor can mist up.
  • Beach, sun and snorkel belong together. However, the snorkel should never be left in the sand. The sand can get stuck in the mask. In the case of a snorkel full mask, special care must be taken because the snorkel is attached to an adjustable joint. Sand would quickly damage this device and in the worst case render the mask unusable.
  • Most manufacturers include a list of care instructions with their masks. Always follow these instructions first. The manufacturer knows best how to clean the snorkel mask.
    Those who prepare the snorkel mask for every use and rinse it thoroughly with detergent after every excursion will do a lot right. The main thing is that the mask is not dirty and fogged up by bacteria, sand, salt and other deposits. This increases the service life. Pre-treatment with toothpaste and anti-fog spray also prevents fogging.
  • After rinsing, the mask is dried with a soft towel or disposable towels. When cleaning, never touch the snorkel mask with your bare fingers. With your fingers you would only leave greasy fingerprints, which contribute to the misting up of the mask and attract dirt.


Cleaning and care of your snorkeling equipment is important for the life of your equipment and will also affect your next snorkeling trip. The visor of a well-maintained mask will fog up much less often. Salt water and bacteria can also eat deep into the mask over time and cause considerable damage.

Often the mask is only used for a week on holiday, then packed in a carton and only retrieved next summer. At this moment you will notice soberly that a layer of dirt and bacteria has formed.

Instead of cleaning the snorkel mask properly, many people throw the mask away and buy a new one. This behavior will cost you dearly over the years – not to mention the wasteful use of resources.

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