Every skier needs goggles, and every pair of goggles needs a good lens. While most modern lenses provide excellent sight, they are typically made for one specific type of light or one specific type of weather. If you want to adapt to different environments, you need a lens that can handle everything nature throws your way.
The following lenses work well in both bright and low light. That makes them perfect for all skiing conditions and keeps you ready for the slopes no matter what the weather looks like outside. Many eyewear models help you adapt to the sun and snow. However, the ones in this guide are more versatile, and come with more premium features, than the rest.
- Smith Optics is a trusted brand, and the unique lenses on the I/O Goggle show why. This model utilizes Smith’s special Chromapop technology, which allows the goggles to adapt to both bright and low-light environments. On top of that, the lens has TLT technology, which provides stunning clarity on the slopes, and is completely fog resistant. In fact, this model provides some of the best ventilation of any skiing lens on the market. The Porex filter stops optical distortion as well.
- If you’re looking for a solid lens capable of holding up through snow, sleet, and sun, the Electric EG3 is the way to go. The darker-tinted versions provide the right VLT range to help you see in any light. In addition, the lense fog resistant, thanks to the interior and exterior coating, and it offers full UV protection. The shatter-resistant polycarbonate construction holds up to all of the elements and the gasket system is a breeze to use. There are even a few different tints to choose from, giving you the option to fully customize the goggles to your style.
- The Oakley Flight Deck lens lives up to the standard set by one of the best eyewear brands on Earth. This model does not just have the perfect VLT for both bright and overcast days, it is also incredibly sturdy. The Flight Deck lens’ construction stands up to all weather during stormy runs but also blocks out 100 percent of all UV radiation when worn in the sun. It also provides fog resistance through its excellent ventilation and offers some of the best peripheral sight on the market.
Who Should Get This?
The following lenses work for skiers who need to see in a lot of different lighting conditions. That typically refers to those who ski in constantly shifting environments or those who like to take long trips through the backcountry. Though you can always swap lenses when the sun comes out, it is easier to have a lens that will automatically adjust.
Skiers who ski at different parts of the day will also enjoy the models in this guide. Shifting light doesn’t always mean sunny to overcast. Sometimes it means skiing from day into night, or morning into the day. If you prefer to use the mountain in that way, be sure to check out all-condition lenses.
Best Ski Goggle Lens for All Conditions: What to Consider?
When it comes to picking out the right lenses, VLT (visual light transmission) is incredibly important. That term refers to how much light a lens lets through, and the amount you want depends on when and how you ski. All-condition models tend to have a VLT that sits somewhere between 17 and 30 percent. That range protects you against bright sunlight but also lets enough light in so you can see on cloudy or stormy days.
All-condition lenses need good ventilation. Though light is a big part of being able to see on the mountain, fog can become a large hindrance as well. That is especially true on backcountry runs or blustery days. Premium lenses prevent fogging and keep your line of sight crystal clear no matter how hard you work or how much powder flies up into your face. You want models with some type of anti-fog technology, such as a coating or ventilation system.
Lenses made for all conditions need to stand up to all conditions. Pick models crafted with premium materials, such as polycarbonate, and look for any extra built-in durability. Scratch-resistant lenses last a long time, as do shatterproof or abrasion resistant ones. Those abilities are a must-have for all-condition lenses because they ensure you’ll be able to see no matter how bad the weather gets outside.
Best Ski Goggle Lens for All Conditions: Our Picks
1. Smith I/O
The Smith I/O lens is first on this list as a result of the excellent ChromaPop technology, which is specially made for sight in both low and bright light. That is then backed by TLT lens technology for extra clarity, a 5X anti-fog inner lens for maximum ventilation, and a wonderful Porex filter that prevents optical distortion as you change altitudes.
What We Like:
- 5X anti-fog inner lens
- Porex filter prevents optical distortion
- TLT lens technology provides excellent vision
- Easy to pop in and out
- ChromaPop works in bright and low light
- Many colors and tints to choose from
What We Don’t Like:
- Can be prone to scratches
2. Electric EG3
When it comes to holding up through many types of light, nothing beats the Electric EG3. This lens uses a spherical, polycarbonate construction that resists all elements with ease. It also offers UV protection, is fog-resistant, and has a solid VLT for every possible condition. There are quite a few tints available as well. Don’t be afraid to pick the exact one you need.
What We Like:
- Anti-fog coating on exterior and interior
- Protects from UV light
- Extremely durable
- Different tints to choose from
What We Don’t Like:
- Could be easier to put in and out
Few goggles have better all-condition lenses than the Oakley Flight Deck. This item utilizes special polycarbonate construction on top of great ventilation and streamlined design. The airflow feels good, and the rimless design provides incredible peripheral vision. It also comes with an F3 anti-fog coating and there are many different colors and tints.
What We Like:
- Dual-pane with F3 anti-fog coating
- Tough, durable construction
- Rimless design
- Prizm technology
- Wide range of available colors and tints
What We Don’t Like:
- On the expensive side
- Not great for extreme cold
Useful Tips and Information
No matter what lens you purchase, it is important to keep the goggles around it in good shape. This video offers information on how to best keep your pair going year after year.
It is also important to be fully informed before making a purchase. Though this article touches on the idea of tints, this piece offers a much more in-depth guide if you want to learn more about each and every lens color.
Finding the right pair of goggles is no easy task. Luckily, the above models provide the sight and durability needed for everything you may encounter out on the mountain. If you want great clarity that won’t shift with the sun, every item in this article will give you amazing results.
Do you have your own favorite pair of all-condition ski goggles? Did we cover them here? Let us know in the comments below.
Joseph Scalise is an avid writer, editor, and snow sports enthusiast who loves to spend his time outdoors. He began his love of writing early on in life and continued to pursue it as he grew older. While his time behind the computer doesn’t get him into the wild unknown as much as he would like, he never misses a chance to head up (or down) a mountain, across a river, or through a lush forest. When he’s not planning new trips, you can always find him typing away on his next project.