Kids & Full Face Snorkel Masks

Kids are taking to full face snorkel masks like ducks take to water.

These masks take a lot of the annoying things out of snorkeling and make it fun again, but there are some things you need to know before buying. 

Our Guide to Buying Full Face Snorkels for Children

There are some minor drawbacks to full face snorkel masks that you need to be aware of before you commit to buying one for your kids. In this article we look at the two top brands of full face snorkel masks available for children in Australia.

Keep scrolling to find out whether or not these will suit your kid's swimming style. 

Snorkeling made Easier

The design of new full face masks overcome many of the down-sides of snorkeling, especially for children.

As these gather in popularity, even the best quality full face masks are becoming more affordable. 

Children who love spending time in the water are finding it easier to stay in longer as properly fitting full face masks won't fog or leak. There's also no snorkel tube to bite down on or gag on. 

The Good Things

Below are some of the benefits full face masks have over a traditional snorkel and mask set.

No leaking

As long as you buy the correct size mask for your child, these will not leak. Hair (especially fringes) must be kept out of the way when putting on or it will cause slow leaking.

No Gagging

Many kids gag on snorkel mouth pieces that are too big for them. Others need to continually stop to empty out water which that find frustrating. 

No sore jaw or teeth

Clamping down on a snorkel tube for only a short time gives many people sore teeth or a sore jaw. There's no snorkel tube to bite down on, so no sore jaw. 

Big Elastic Straps

Hair can get tangled in the straps of traditional swimming masks and goggles. Full face snorkels have big wide elastic straps that are comfortable and won't get tangled in hair. 

No Fogging

The masks have 2 separate chambers, one for viewing and one for breathing. The mask fogs in the bottom section of the mask only. The top viewing section remains fog-free. 

Dry Top Snorkel

All full face masks have a Dry-Top Snorkel system. This has either one or two balls in the tube that float up as your child goes underwater, blocking water from entering the tube. Once they resurface, they can breathe normally again without having to blow water out of the tube. 

Features of Full Face Snorkel Masks

Easybreath Back of Mask

Nice big wide elastic straps make this mask very comfortable to wear.

Easy to adjust elastic straps. 

Ninja Kids Mask Longer Tube - Breathing Flow

These provide a very natural way of breathing. 

Ninja Shark Masks - High Quality Liquid Silicone

Both brands have quality, soft silicone inserts in their mask.

What are Dry Top Snorkels?

Full face masks use what's known as a dry top snorkel. It's not just full face masks that have these, many traditional snorkels have these incorporated into them as well.

A Dry Top Snorkel uses a ball float system inside the snorkel. It stops water from entering the snorkel. As you lower your head into the water and the end of the snorkel submerge, the float rises up and blocks the tube. This effectively stops water from getting inside the snorkel tube. 

If a small amount of water does go in, full face masks are designed to channel this to the chin area of the mask, and away from the face. The water then drains out through a valve located on bottom of the the chin as soon as the head is raised above water level.

After diving below the surface, there's no need to blow water out of the snorkel when you resurface - just breathe normally again.

Dry Top Snorkel

The Not So Good Things

Below are the drawbacks to full face masks.

No Duck Diving

These masks are designed for leisurely snorkeling. If your child loves deep diving, or duck diving, then this won't work with this type of mask. 

No swimming laps

The snorkel tube is not wide enough to provide enough air for vigorous exercise such as swimming laps. If you want a snorkel for laps, then look at a centre-mounted snorkel.

Not for very small children

There is a size restriction to the smallest of these masks. It doesn't go by age, it goes by measurement. If you have a small child, then this may be too big for them. 

Aside from the pros and cons, some kids will just prefer one sort over the other for no particular reason. Kids will be kids.

Video - Kids Using Full Face Snorkel Masks

This short video shows how easy it really is for children to put on, adjust and use a full face snorkel mask.

Ready to find our more?

The two top brands that I recommend you buy in Australia are the Ninja Shark and the Subea Easybreath.

Ninja Shark are a small family business making quality snorkeling gear in Sydney, NSW. 

Subea masks were originally branded as Tribord. These are known as the Easybreath mask and were the first full face masks released in 2014. 

Ninja Shark Snorkel Mask Equalizer in Pink

Ninja Shark Full Face Mask

Ninja Shark have 2 different XS sizes for children. They also have a lot of accessories such as fins as well as traditional style of snorkels. 

Find out more.

Subea Easybreath Adults and Kids sizes

Subea Easybreath Full Face Mask

Subea have an XS size that comes in 2 colours designed especially for children.  

Find out more.

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About the Author

I'm Sharon McKenzie, and I’ve always loved spending time at the beach and in the water. I'm a very keen snorkeler, Scuba Diver, and Stand-up Paddle Boarder, and being lucky enough to live in the tropics means I get to do this for most of the year. 

Hopefully, you’ll find some really useful information so that your beach and holiday adventures stay fun, safe and enjoyable.

You can read read more about Sharon on the About Us page.

Sharon McKenzie - Stand Up Paddle Boarding, Snorkeling