Ski Goggles Vs. Sunglasses

Last updated 18. September 2019

Before heading out, it’s best to have the right eyewear in hand to put on while skiing.

Thousands of people end up with the wrong eyewear and this ruins their experience out on the slopes. Instead of letting this get in the way, take the time to understand what each option has to offer and what works best for your needs.

Here’s a direct comparison between ski goggles and sunglasses.

Ski Goggles

Starting with ski goggles or “snow goggles,” these have long been a popular option among skiing enthusiasts. They’re specialized products made to protect a skier’s eyes from the cold, wind, and snow. Anyone that’s been on the slopes understands how frustrating snow and wind can be! Along with keeping snow out, these goggles also provide clearer vision as you head down the slopes.

A well-fitted option sits snugly against the eye socket making sure nothing gets through from the bottom. It also takes up more space on the face and has a “sealing” effect that’s noticeable immediately. To make sure it is safely in place, a strap goes around the head.

Please note, ski goggle is a generic term used for a variety of options sold on the open market. Some goggles are designed to offer basic protection, while others are made for professional use. This includes heightened vision with the use of UV protection that keeps the rays out of your eyeliner while skiing. This is important in sunny conditions where the glare can be annoying.

1) Warmer

Ski goggles keep the face warm because of the sealing effect.

Once the goggles are on, they are going to keep the eyes snug throughout the session. This can be important for those who have watery eyes and don’t like the idea of wiping them all the time. As long as the ski goggles are on, the eyes are fully protected from the cold. Wind will not be able to come in through the sides and that’s why everything feels cozy.

Along with protecting the eyes, ski goggles cover a larger area and that means additional warmth across the face. In many scenarios, half of your face is going to be covered with the goggles and that can help keep it in good shape throughout the session.

2) Ideal for Beginners

Beginners want something that is going to stay in place and keep them safe out on the slopes. This is a fair condition to have and that’s what ski goggles offer as soon as they’re put on.

Whether it is protecting you from the UV rays or making sure cold wind doesn’t get in, they’re perfect for beginners. Anyone that’s learning will want to focus on their form rather than having to fiddle with the eyewear. As a result, many choose to go with traditional ski goggles because they’re useful in a variety of situations and never get in the way.

3) Stay in Place

The final advantage is their ability to stay in place.

This benefit is the reason many professional skiers prefer using ski goggles and stick to this option. They like the idea of not worrying about the goggles or how they’re going to stay in place during specific tricks.


Sunglasses or “ski sunglasses” are designed as simple eyewear solution while heading outdoors. These are made to look like traditional sunglasses with a wider build that sits around a larger area of the face.

Just like ski goggles, these sunglasses will vary in design.

Some sunglasses come with traditional lenses, while others go the extra mile and provide photochromic lenses. These lenses are able to protect you on the slopes and make sure the glare doesn’t get into your eyes.

Remember, polarized lenses are an important part of any solution while skiing as the glares are common in skiing. Without appropriate lenses, it can become impossible to adjust and that’s when accidents happen. A good pair of sunglasses can adjust to these UV rays and will make sure the light is dimmed once it glares off the snow.

1) Lightweight

Sunglasses are a respected option because of their weight.

They are not going to feel as heavy on the face nor will the get in the way during a jump. However, it’s important to note, this comes with the chance of them falling off during a larger jump.

2) Comfortable

This piece of eyewear is ideal for those doing leisurely sessions and want something minimalistic. The sunglasses are going to feel good and will provide an adequate amount of protection in a variety of situations.

This is perfect for those who want something that’s straightforward, efficient, and safe at the same time.

3) Minimal Fogging

Choosing eyewear means understanding how the conditions are going to play out. In several situations, fogging becomes a problem with ski goggles and the same cannot be said for sunglasses.

These do not have the “sealing” effect and are not going to be prone to fogging as the wind can get in from the sides.

Final Thoughts

In the end, it’s all about what you prefer and what you’re going to be doing out on the slopes.

Anyone that’s starting off or looking to do big tricks will need ski goggles. Sunglasses aren’t going to stay in place and will start to fall off in a matter of seconds! Be smart and focus on what you’re going to be doing before making a decision.

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By Jason

Passionate writer, Scooter Dad, Father of two, Super active, Tough Mudder conqueror reviewing the some of the top sports related products me and my sons use and love. If you have any suggestions for improvement of MPS, please ping me a message.

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