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April 2024,  EXTRA,  GEAR,  July 2023,  Product Reviews

Best open water goggles

Polarising lenses with UVA/UVB filters for open water, anti-fog protection or a soft cushioned fit: whatever your priority when choosing a new pair of goggles, we’ve got you covered.

There aren’t many items of kit that are truly essential for open water swimming but goggles come close. You can do without them but it’s usually much more pleasant to swim with them: you can see better, they reduce the risk of infection from dirty water and they eliminate eye soreness. But their use isn’t always trouble free. Here is our in-depth feature on dealing with goggle troubles. Read on for our review of the latest open water goggles – whether your priority when choosing a new pair of goggles is a soft cushioned fit, anti-fog protection or polarising lenses, we’ve got you covered.

Best open water goggles for training | The Magic5 Custom Goggle Indoor Outdoor Bundle, £119
Best open water mask | Aquasphere Defy.Ultra Swim Mask, £129.99
Most comfortable open water goggles | ORCA Killa Comfort, £24
Best open water goggles for racing | SWANS Valkyrie, £44.99

ORCA Killa Comfort


They say: The Killa Comfort are ergonomic goggles, perfect for different applications. Designed with a soft, comfortable silicone, they seal to the eye contour very well without creating too much tension. In addition, their optimal fit and wide field of vision help you orient yourself in the sea, giving you the confidence to enjoy open water swimming. The different lenses allow you to use these goggles in all kinds of weather conditions.

We say: The Orca Killa Comfort has a wide field of vision, which is handy for peripheral sighting and spotting other swimmers. One of the bulkier goggles tested (comparable with the Zone3 Vapour), these goggles feel robust and they have an exceptionally comfortable fit, providing a good suction and seal without putting noticeable pressure on the face. We tested the smoke/black lens, which darkens vision enough to eliminate glare on bright sunny days, while still having good visibility in the pool.

SPEEDO Biofuse 2.0 Polarised


They say: Our Biofuse goggle just got better. Featuring our best-selling Speedo Biofuse® technology, the new Biofuse 2.0 Polarised goggle takes comfort and fit to the next level with our patent-pending push-button mechanism and super-soft seals with a new groove design. Available for the first time in a polarised lens to reduce light reflections and glare indoors and outside, it’s everything you love about Biofuse – now even better.

We say: It’s the first time this best-selling goggle style has been available in a polarised lens. Blocking the sun’s glare on an early morning dip without being too dark for lengths in our local pool, they didn’t disappoint. The soft seals and flexible frame fit well to the contours of our tester’s face and provide barely there comfort, while the push-button mechanism made them easy to adjust even with cold hands. A really decent pair of goggles, just with slightly less peripheral vision than some others on test.

ZONE3 Vapour


They say: Comfort or vision and functionality, indoors or outdoors, these used to be the questions that you had to ask yourself when buying new goggles. The Zone3 Vapour goggles have been designed to meet all of your needs, no more choosing or compromising. Featuring large curved anti-fog lenses, 100% UVA/UVB protection and ultra-soft silicone gaskets.

We say: A little bulky but so comfortable, the Zone3 Vapour goggles sat well and the velvety soft gaskets didn’t add too much pressure or leave imprints. The large curved lens gave fantastic peripheral vision in open water and we liked the warm tint, which suited bright conditions but equally wasn’t too dark for the pool. We tested the polarised lenses with a mirrored finish, but they also come in a clear/blue or photochromatic lens. We really liked the stylish teal and copper.

SWANS Valkyrie


They say: SWANS Valkyrie goggles are for pool and open water swimming and racing. The Valkyrie has low profile, curved lenses to give a wide-angle view and enhance your streamline. The anti-bacterial silicone improves comfort and prevents deterioration of the silicone gasket. A traditional double silicone strap ensures a secure, comfortable fit. FINA approved, with 100% UVA and UVB protection.

We say: These neat, Japanese style, FINA-approved goggles fit securely within the eye socket and are ideal for racing outdoors. The mirror lens had a warm tint, which suited bright conditions while transitioning well between the pool and open water. The anti-fog lens is crystal clear and the premium lens technology is proven to be four times more durable and three times more absorbent than other anti-fog systems. They came in a smart slide-lid box, with five interchangeable nose bridges for a custom fit.

HUUB Mirage


They say: Aphotic, our most popular goggle, inspires the Mirage swim goggle. It is designed to fit the face perfectly with a precision fit and feather-like feel. The low-pressure fit is secure even for the most adventurous open water swim. Ideal for bright pool swims or in the open water, the mirrored lens reflects light, giving a darker view. On bright sunny days, this gives you a shaded, more comfortable view. With anti-fog and scratch resistant lenses.

We say: We were immediately drawn to these red Mirage goggles with a gold, mirrored lens. The silicone gasket and straps were comfortable against the delicate skin around the eyes and the sweeping frame shape ensured good visibility but also efficacy in the water. The lens is designed to reflect light, which meant there was a darker view when the sun wasn’t out, but it didn’t take away from the visibility. They will be a preference on long-sunny swims. We really liked the quick-release adjustment design.

ORCA Killa 180


They say: The Killa 180º Goggle is high performance, multipurpose and ergonomic, which will enhance your comfort and speed through the water. It offers exceptional optical clarity, making it suitable for both racing and training. With a range of different lenses, it performs equally well in all weather conditions. An added bonus is the silicone strap, which can be quickly and easily adjusted, giving you all the confidence you need.

We say: These smart mirrored goggles have a lower profile than the Killa Comfort, but the soft silicone gaskets felt no less comfortable around the eye. Clip adjusters at the side meant we could easily get the fit just right. The curved oval lens gave a good breadth of vision, clarity and visibility were excellent, and the cool coloured lens eliminated surface glare, but was a touch dark for the pool. They only came with a cloth bag, but for the price that still seems reasonable.



They say: The Hydra Vision goggle is built with the latest soft frame technology with emphasis on visibility. It features improved hydrodynamics with an integrated strap adjustment and a unibody nose bridge that keeps the curved lenses close to the face. A great cross-over goggle for pool to open water, it features a curved wide lens for unparalleled vision with a low profile and feature fitting frame.

We say: The light-enhancing blue tinted lenses we tested were great in gloomy conditions, and the hydrodynamic, low-profile fit gave a wide field of vision and minimised the chance of them being knocked off. The soft frame was reminiscent of jelly shoes we wore as a kid, but the fit was comfy and the low profile meant they felt secure. These goggles were among the lightest we tested, which gave them a barely-there feel. Adjustment was simple using neat integrated buttons in the goggle frame.

YONDA Hydro Glides


They say: Designed for comfort and ease of use, with soft silicone gasket and curved polarised lenses. Yonda Hydro Glides have been designed to sit comfortably against your face during swim sessions and be easy to adjust. The curved lenses ensure exceptional 180-degree visibility and feature anti-fog technology so that you can focus on your swim. Polarised lenses are great to used in sunny or cloudy conditions and work as a great bit of kit to have in your swim bag.

We say: Although the polarised lenses were a bit dark for a gloomy Cumbrian morning, these will be a good option for sunny summer swims and brighter conditions. If you find swim masks too big and racing-style goggles too small, the Hydro Glides are a good compromise when it comes to size. The silicone gaskets were soft and comfortable with no water ingress. Strap adjustment was easy. A decent pair of goggles.



They say: Our second generation FotoFlex Plus goggles are designed to be the only open water swimming goggles you will need. The photochromatic lenses adjust to all light conditions – clear in low light and darker in bright conditions –and are extra wide to give a panoramic field of vision. The straps are easy to adjust even with cold fingers thanks to larger buttons. The new ‘x-flex’ nose bridge adjusts to the contours of your face.

We say: If you’re going to buy one pair of goggles for the pool and open water, we would definitely recommend the FotoFlex Plus. The photochromatic lenses look bright and clear in the pool and adjust to block glare in open water. The soft silicone gaskets created a comfortable seal while the extra wide-angle lenses had fantastic breadth of vision. The goggles came with the most robust storage case and feel like a solid all-rounder at a good price.

ZOGGS Predator Flex Titanium


They say: Get ready to experience our best fit yet, with our Predator Flex Titanium swimming goggles. Offering unrivalled comfort and fit, thanks to the use of four unique flexpoints for enhanced frame flexibility and a customised fit. As no two faces are the same, we have introduced two different sizes into the Predator Flex range of goggles; regular profile fit, and smaller profile fit. Coupled with the new Advanced Ultra Fit™ gasket, for exceptional comfort, Predator Flex goggles now fit more faces than ever before.

We say: The Predator Flex is a favourite of ours for open water racing and swimrun. The most noticeable difference between the Predator (reviewed below) and the Predator Flex is the strap adjustment mechanism. On the ‘Flex’, there are ratchets on either side of the eye-pieces, making it super easy to tighten the fit while wearing them, although it’s slightly bulkier. The curved lenses, which offer excellent peripheral vision, are impregnated with anti-fog and they haven’t misted up on us yet. Super flexible, they’ve got a forget you’re wearing them level of comfort, and we’re confident they won’t leak and will stay in place in race conditions. While the all-in-one construction means you can’t change the nose piece as you can in some other goggles, they do come in two sizes – regular fit and smaller profile fit for smaller faces or inner eye socket fit – and you can use Zoggs’ clever fitting tool to find the best fit for your face.

THEMAGIC5 Custom Goggle Indoor Outdoor Bundle


They say: This is the world’s first made-to-order custom-fit goggles. Our innovative and technically advanced goggles feature UV-protected lenses with a unique shape and superior peripheral vision. Our goggles are crafted using best-in-class materials and our innovative Optimal Fitting Technology (OFT) which shapes the goggles to your unique facial structure. This exclusive set of 2 x goggles is everything you need as a multipurpose swimmer. 

We say: I was sceptical of the claim that these goggles would be the ‘perfect fit’ – even after completing a face scan using the app – but they really were! Wearing these made me realise just how often I’m spent fiddling with and fixing goggles during swims – there was none of that with this pair. A big investment, but a complete game-changer.

SPEEDO Futura Biofuse Flexiseal Tri


They say: The Futura Biofuse Flexiseal Triathlon goggles offers the ultimate in Speedo goggle comfort. The new super soft flexible seal offers greater flexibility versus previous Biofuse goggles for an even softer and more cushioned fit around the eye. Designed using super soft, gel-like materials and featuring Speedo Biofuse® technology, this goggle makes your comfort top priority. The Polarised lenses make this goggle ideal for open water swimming and triathlons.

We say: These goggles score top points for comfort, with the flexible seal preventing water ingress, without feeling too tight around my eyes. There was a great field of vision too. I did feel these goggles didn’t protect my eyes as much from the sun as other polarised lenses, so I would be inclined to use these more in cloudy conditions or indoors.

ZONE3 Attack


They say: Built for the ultimate flexibility, the Attack goggle is designed to conform to a wide variety of face shapes and sizes. Featuring a curved lens for enhanced vision, and your choice of Polarized or Photochromatic lenses, they are ideal for both open water and pool swims. Anti-Fog treated lenses and 100% UVA/UVB protection.

We say: The goggles offer an incredible range of vision, and the polarised lenses work well, even in very sunny conditions. The goggles also claim to have Anti-Fog lens protection, and while time will tell for how long that will last, throughout my swim the goggles didn’t mist up, allowing me to concentrate solely on my swimming.

AQUASPHERE Defy.Ultra Swim Mask


They say: Experience infinite vision and conquer open waters with the Defy. Ultra. Our new swim mask features an all-new DuoCurve lens, offering panoramic vision both laterally and vertically, ultra-thin silicone Precision Fit technology skirt for a comfortable, leak-free seal and a groundbreaking ultra-light frameless design thanks to our Cool Inject Technology for reduced drag in the water. 

We say: The style might look a bit futuristic and we felt a bit self-conscious at our local lake – but my goodness what a pair of goggles! Super comfortable, brilliant view, excellent in bright sunshine or dark clouds. Once on they stayed on, no leaks or faff. Expensive, but worth it. If you use the included case, which is also brilliant, and take care of them they will last.

ZOGGS Predator


They say: Predator goggles are ideal for the versatile swimmer. Excelling indoors, these goggles can also hold their own outside with UV protection and anti-fog equipped. The pair are also sporting a pulley adjust system on the double strap, so there won’t be any time wasted fitting your goggles when you can quickly adjust the fit and jump straight in. Featuring the iconic WIRO frame look and original predator colours, they undisputedly look great too. That’s always a bonus.

We say: We love the superhero look of the new predator range (the “titanium” lens is a favourite) but these goggles do more than look good. They are comfortable, low profile and secure, and equally at home in the pool or the ocean. Our only (very minor) quibble with the Zoggs Predator is that the profile is so low that you can feel your eye lashes brushing against the lens.



They say: Whether you’re racing or training, the Kayenne is designed to help you reach your goals in the water using a unique, oversized lens design with expanded vision and a low-profile micro-frame. Save valuable seconds with our Quick Fit Buckle offering easy one-touch strap adjustments, and guarantee your perfect position thanks to the Stabilising BiMaterial Nose Bridge for a secure and comfortable fit.

We say: Comfortable, secure, and with an eye-catching design, there’s lots to like about these goggles. The triangular shaped lenses look a bit unusual but actually fit nicely around your nose. The “Quick Fit Buckle” makes the strap easy to adjust as promised. The strap feels more heavy duty than it needs to be but it’s very secure.

Last updated March 2024. If you buy a product through a link on this page we may receive a commission.

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Outdoor Swimmer is the magazine for outdoor swimmers by outdoor swimmers. We write about fabulous wild swimming locations, amazing swim challenges, swim training advice and swimming gear reviews.