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The Best Ski Goggles Under $50 Of 2022 Helpful Guide

best ski goggles under $50
Hard at work testing ski goggles

A good ski or snowboard goggle makes spending the day in cold weather much more comfortable and enjoyable. You don’t need to spend a fortune to get a really good set of ski goggles. There are many excellent cheap goggle choices available for under $50. Fit, VLT, anti-fog performance, and swappable lenses are all things to consider when looking at ski goggles. Let’s take a look at the best ski goggles under $50 available for winter 2020/2021.

Below are our picks for the best ski goggles under $50. For more detailed reviews, guide and FAQ keep reading below.

Top Pick

Editor’s Choice

Best Value

OutdoorMaster Pro

Wildhorn Roca

OutdoorMaster OTG

  • Great performing goggles at an incredible price with magnetic swap lenses and frameless design

  • High quality spherical lenses with magnetic lense swap system and good anti-fog performance
  • Solid basic ski goggles with good lenses and anti fog performance that are OTG compatible

Top 5 Best Ski Goggles Under $50 Reviews

1 – OutdoorMaster Ski Goggles PRO

Top Pick

Use the Coupon Code ERO15 for 15% off at OutdoorMaster.com

Summary

The OutdoorMaster Pro Frameless Goggles are a great low cost full feature goggle. These goggles feature a magnetic swapping spherical lens. They are also OTG compatible for those of us who wear prescription glasses. Only one lens is included with the goggles if you buy from Amazon. A combo with a second lens is available directly from OutdoorMaster. Other lenses can are available separately.

These goggles have dual pane lenses with anti-fog coating and ventilation. Their anti-fog performance is okay but not as good as other higher cost ski goggles. The magnets attaching the lens could be stronger. The lens can be knocked off while adjusting your goggles or during a fall. The spherical lens has high clarity and low distortion. It doesn’t have the great color refraction that the Chromopop/SONAR/Vivid/PRIZM have. For the cost, you still get good performance on bright days.

These goggles are an excellent value. They have most of the performance of more expensive goggles at a much lower price. This makes it our top pick for best under $50 ski goggles and best value in flat light ski goggles.

Who are these for?

Someone who wants excellent value with good performing, really easy to swap lenses.

What we liked

  • Variety of styles and lens tints
  • Low cost
  • Variety of colors and lenses

What we didn’t like

  • Magnets holding lens could be stronger

Full Review

See our detailed review of the OutdoorMaster Pro ski goggles to learn more. See our article OutdoorMaster goggles vs Smith to see how these compare to Smith I/O Mag goggles.


2 – Wildhorn Roca Ski Goggles

Editor’s Choice

Summary

The Wildhorn Roca Snowboard & Ski Goggles are a good low cost goggle option. They have spherical lenses with magnetic interchangeable lens swapping. They have side latches as well for a little extra lens security. They are designed by skiers and snowboarders in Utah and are a sponsor of the US-Ski Team.

These goggles have a dual pane spherical lens with anti-fog and anti-scratch coating. They scratch as easily as any goggles from Smith, Oakley or Giro. Their anti-fog performance is good but not as great as Smith or Oakley. The frame design gives excellent peripheral vision. They are available with a variety of lens tints. For flat light use the Blaze or Amber lenses for best performance.

The Wildhorn Roca goggles are a great value for a swappable lens goggle with high quality lenses and good anti-fog performance. We wish they included 2 lenses with their goggle frame. Extra lenses are not expensive and readily available. This makes them my top pick for best ski goggle under $50.

Who are these for?

Someone looking for high quality lenses at a low price and wants more than magnets holding on to the lens.

What we liked

  • Magnetic lens with side latches
  • Low cost
  • Variety of colors and lenses

What we didn’t like

  • Lenses are not polarized
  • Does not include a 2nd lens

3 – OutdoorMaster OTG Ski Goggles

Best Value

Use the Coupon Code ERO15 for 15% off at OutdoorMaster.com

Summary

The OutdoorMaster OTG Ski Goggles are a good solid low cost OTG goggle options. Outdoor Master is known for making good quality ski goggles at much lower prices then Oakley or Smith.

These goggles run a little smaller with size. They are good for medium sized heads and below. They have published guidelines for glasses size that will fit in them. 5.35inches x 1.65inches. They will not fit larger size prescription glasses.

They have adequate ventilation to keep from fogging up on all but the most humid of ski days. The frames have good foam padding and they are very comfortable to wear. Their anti-fog performance works a bit better without glasses than it does with them.

The OutdoorMaster OTG goggles are one of the best values in cheap ski goggles available today. I saw a lot of OutdoorMaster ski goggles on the local hills last winter. If you are looking for a budget option that will fit over your glasses or to wear without glasses these could be the goggles for you.

See my complete review of OTG ski goggles here.

Who are these for?

Someone looking for a good performing OTG goggle without swappable lenses

What we liked

  • Variety of lens tints and frame colors including mirrored lens
  • Low price
  • Comfortable frame

What we didn’t like

  • Anti-fog performance degrades when used with glasses
  • Many lenses had a small amount of distortion.

Full Review

See our detailed review of the OutdoorMaster OTG ski goggles to learn more.


4 – Smith Squad Ski Goggle

Best Ski Goggle Under $100

Summary

The Smith Squad Snow Goggle is a great performing goggle at a lower price point than their I/O line. The Squad has excellent Chromopop lens technology and great anti-fog venting. The lens swap system is not as slick or easy as goggles with magnetic systems. Their triple layer foam padding is a nice comfort feature.

The Chromopop lens technology from Smith Optics gives high definition light refraction. You can differentiate colors easier and see better than with the naked eye. Squad goggles all include 2 lenses in a variety of combinations. Even though it has a cylindrical lens, it still outperforms many other goggles spherical lense for clarity and distortion. Smith has a large selection of optional lenses including a photochromic lens.

The Smith Squad goggles are the best ski goggle under $100. Their excellent lenses and anti-fog performance make them a great buy.

See our review of other ski goggles under $100 here.

Who are these for?

Someone who wants to spend a little more to get better clarity Chromapop lenses. Someone who doesn’t care about quick easy to swap lenses.

What we liked

  • Good ventilation and anti-fog
  • High definition Chromopop lens
  • Extra lens included

What we didn’t like

  • Lenses scratch easily
  • Lenses take some effort to swap

5 – Giro Moxie Women’s Snow Goggles with Vivid Lens

Best Women’s Ski Goggle Under $50

Summary

The Giro Moxie Women’s Snow Goggles with Vivid lenses are a great value in ski goggles. They include 2 lenses that will cover most ski conditions. The lenses use Giro’s Vivid technology which gives great definition and color clarity.

The size of the frame tends to run on the small side. If you have a larger size face these goggles may not fit well. The frames are designed to work with any Giro helmet to give a good gap free fit.

Anti-fog performance is great when they are new. Some users had moisture get between the double lens layers. This caused fogging to start occurring after the first year. Many people have no problem with this lens design.

The Giro Balance Women’s goggles are a great deal coming with 2 vivid lenses in a stylish ski goggle design. These are our top pick for women’s ski goggle under $50.

Who are these for?

Someone looking for low cost women’s goggles with high quality lenses

What we liked

  • Include a spare lens
  • Comfortable frame
  • Giro Vivid Lens technology

What we didn’t like

  • Anti-fog performance not great after a couple years
  • They size small

How to choose the right ski goggles

The most important things to consider when looking for ski goggles are how they fit and how dark the lens is or VLT. You won’t be comfortable if your goggles don’t fit well and the anti-fog features won’t work well either. You don’t want a really dark lens for night skiing or a light lens for bright sunny days. Other features are nice to have too such as swappable lenses.

Fit and comfort

Ski goggle fit is important. Everyone’s faces are of different shapes. Ski goggles are different shapes also. What is comfortable for one person may not be comfortable for another person. When picking ski goggles, don’t worry if you get them and they don’t feel good. The shape is probably wrong for you. Send them back and try a different pair. Ski goggles should feel snug and secure on your face. You want them to be tight enough they stay in place without bouncing around. They don’t need to be much tighter than that.

Goggles with triple layer foam will be more comfortable than double or single foam. The 3 foam layers are designed to give a firm feel while having a smooth soft layer that feels good against your skin.

Lens tint and VLT

VLT stands for Visible Light Transmission. This is a measurement of how much visible light a goggle lens will let pass through. A VLT of 99% means 99% of light passes through. A VLT of 15% means only 15% of light passes through. Darker lenses with low VLT are best for bright days. Clear lenses with high VLT are best for darker days or night skiing.

VLT for ski goggles table

Orange or yellow tints tend to work a little better on really hazy flat light days. A darker tint with a low VLT is best for really bright days. A clear lens with no color is best for night skiing. Appearance also matters. Mirrored lenses or Gloss black finish are the look a lot of people go for on bright sunny days.

Interchangeable lenses

Different conditions demand different goggle lenses for the best performance. A low 5% VLT lens works great on a really bright sunny day. It will make it hard to see in the evening or at night. The answer to this is interchangeable goggle lenses. If you can do a quick lens change you can always have the right lens for the conditions.

Magnetic systems such as those pioneered by Anon are great. Lens changes take seconds. OutdoorMaster has made a great version of this available for very cheap. If you don’t trust only magnets to hold your lenses there are good options for you too. Wildhorn goggles have 2 latches to supplement the magnets. Oakley and low end Smith goggles pull the lens out of the rubber seal.

Lens shape

There are 2 main shapes used in ski goggle lenses.

  • Cylindrical lenses – They are flat vertical and curved horizontal. This is the shape you get if you cut your lens out of the cylindrical glass.
  • Spherical – They are curved in both horizontal and vertical directions. The shape you would get if you cut your lens out of the glass ball.

Spherical lenses are a closer match to the shape of your eye lens and will have less distortion. They are more expensive. Cheap goggles such as the OutdoorMaster Pro have spherical lenses. There are other factors in lens design that matter too. A cylindrical Smith Chromapop lens will have better clarity than an OutdoorMaster lens. It will have worse distortion too.

Durability

No one wants ski goggles that fall apart on them. Basic ski goggles will last a really long time. I have some cheap plain department store ski goggles still sitting in my bag as backups that are 20 years old now. Low end ski goggles from the popular ski goggle brands are all very durable. You always take a risk if you try the very cheapest thing you can find on Amazon. Sometimes they work. Sometimes they don’t.

shaggy skis on the slopes

Ski Goggle FAQ

Q: What lens color is best for ski goggles?

The best color lens depends on what type of day it is. Orange, Red, and Brown lenses are best for flat light days such as snowy, overcast, or foggy days. Very dark colored lenses or mirrored lenses are best for bright sunny days. Yellow and clear lenses are best for night skiing.

Q: Why are people wearing ski goggles?

Ski goggles make skiing more comfortable. They help keep your face warmer by blogging the wind. They protect your eyes and face from the sun. Being out on the snow gives you twice as much sun exposure. You get all the solar rays coming from the sky and the snow is almost a perfect reflector bouncing the rest back up. You will find your ski or snowboard goggles to be one of your favorite pieces of outdoor gear once you give them a try.

Q: What are the best ski goggles to buy?

The best ski goggles are once that are comfortable, fit your face shape well, have great anti-fog performance and work with your helmet. You really can’t go wrong with goggles from SmithOakleyGiro, and Anon. Those are the 4 most popular brands and they all produce goggles from budget entry level through high end.

Q: Are goggles necessary for skiing?

Goggles aren’t a total necessity for skiing. Many people ski without goggles. Some people like to ski with sunglasses instead. If it’s a warmer day out in the upper 30’s or 40’s it may be more comfortable to ski without ski goggles. On colder days below the mid 30’s it is much more comfortable to wear ski goggles.

Q: Do beginners need ski goggles?

It is a good idea for beginning skiers to get ski goggles. They make your face and eyes much more comfortable. There are enough distractions when you are trying to ski without feeling like your face and eyes are cold. Even a very cheap set of ski goggles is better than no goggles for your time skiing.

For other types of ski goggles please see our complete ski goggle guide here.

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About the author

My name is Doug Ryan. I am an outdoors enthusiast always looking forward to my next adventure. I spend as much time skiing, biking, and paddleboarding as I can. I decided to start Endless Rush Outdoors as a way to share my knowledge and enthusiasm for all things outdoor adventures and to help other people have as much fun as me.

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