Finding the best swim goggles can be tricky. Swimming goggles seem like such a simple piece of gear, but to find a pair that feels good, works well, and doesn’t fog up or slide off during a tough workout can be a tall order.
Whether you’re hoping to race a triathlon or make it onto the swim team, race swimming goggles that can perform under pressure and at high speeds are critical. But even a casual lap swimmer wants goggles that stay in place during a flip turn.
Research has found that ill-fitting goggles aren’t just uncomfortable, but they can also cause an increase in fluid pressure in your eye (yuck). But when goggles are too loose, harmful chemicals found in pool water can get in and wreak havoc on your eyeballs as well. Most goggle options are one-size-fits-most, and it can take some trial and error before you find the pair that’s right for your facial structure.
There’s good news and bad news when it comes to goggle shopping. The bad news is that you may need to test a few pairs before you find the ones that fit the best on you. Even if the lenses are great, the strap configuration is smart, and the goggles look good, they still might not fit your facial structure.
The good news is that, unlike a pricier piece of gear like a bike saddle or running shoes, you can afford to switch out goggles regularly, as most pairs are under $25. And you can always give old pairs to friends.
Whether you’re an IRONMAN triathlete, a masters swimmer, a parent with a tween on the swim team, or just made a resolution to learn to swim this year, we’ve got a pair of goggles that will work for you.
Scroll through to see all of our recommended buys, or jump to the category you’re looking for:
The Best Swimming Goggles of 2021
Best Overall: Speedo Mirrored Vanquisher 2.0
The Speedo Mirrored Vanquisher 2.0 ($22) consistently tops charts for best swim goggles. And with nearly 9,000 positive ratings on Amazon, they’re arguably the most popular goggles on the market. That’s because they’re the most universal in terms of fit and style — and at $22, they’re reasonably priced for the level of performance they offer.
The Speedo Mirrored Vanquisher 2.0 goggles can be used indoors or outdoors thanks to their mirrored lenses. For open-water swimmers, mirrored goggles are a great way to avoid blinding yourself as you try to sight a buoy on a sunny day. (On an overcast day, consider swapping mirrored goggles for a polarized set instead, U.S. Masters Swimming recommends.)
You can get these goggles with non-mirrored lenses for a slightly cheaper price point ($19). But even if your indoor swimming pool has windows that beam in daylight, mirrored lenses are going to be helpful.
Highly adjustable with two bands and a simple adjustment system, these goggles can easily stay in place on any head shape. The goggles themselves are designed to be low-profile and fit snugly around your eye sockets with soft plastic grips. And while the nose piece isn’t adjustable (very few higher-quality goggles offer that kind of adjustment), it fits most facial structures.
Bonus: If you prefer your goggles to match your swimsuit, these are one of the few pairs of higher-end goggles available in a wide variety of colors from basic black to rainbow.
- Lens: Mirror
- Anti-fog: Yes
- Most universally fitted and comfortable option for high-performance goggles
- Mirrored lens may be overkill for swimmers who exclusively swim indoors
Best Budget: Aegend Swim Goggles
At $13 and with over 35,000 positive Amazon reviews, the Aegend Swim Goggles are easily the best budget swim goggles on the market. They’re the perfect family goggle because they’re easy to adjust and can be worn by most adults and most children. They’re available in 14 different lens and color configurations, so you can get a different set for every member of the family.
These are the top-rated goggles on Amazon, outranking Speedo and TYR largely thanks to their budget-friendly nature. But they’re well-made, with an adjustable strap that’s easy to handle even when you’re out of breath from doing a fast lap, thanks to the large clip in the back (unlike many higher-end goggles, which may take more work to adjust in a pinch).
The goggles themselves have a slightly more rectangular, wide fit compared to Speedos and aren’t as optimized for a race, but they’re plenty for a casual swimmer.
Are they perfect? Of course not. The main reported downside is that some reviewers found the lenses tended to get blurry in the pool — a common problem with goggles, but worth noting, especially if you already tend to have blurry vision or wear contact lenses.
- Lens: Mirrored or clear
- Anti-fog: Yes
- Easy to adjust
- Great for kids and adults
- Some reviewers found these goggles were blurry
Best Anti-Fog Goggles: ROKA R1 Anti-Fog Swim Goggles
The ROKA R1 Anti-Fog Swim Goggles ($33-38) are best when used outside, though they can handle pool swims with ease. Triathletes need goggles that can go from pool to lake, as you don’t want to race in untested goggles. These ROKAs are great for that transition.
Thanks to their larger lens size, some people may find their goggle lines post-swim are less prominent — ideal for when you finish your swim and have to hop on a video call.
The ROKAs are designed specifically with visibility in mind, both in terms of a tough anti-fog coating as well as an added hard coat on the exterior to prevent scratches when you’re tossing them in your swim gear bag. And with RapidSight technology, they’re top-notch for being able to clearly see what’s in front of you (or below you) on race day.
At $38 for the mirrored option and $33 for the clear lenses, they’re comparable to TYR or higher-end Speedo options. Don’t automatically go for the cheaper ones: You may want to opt for mirrored lenses because these goggles are best used out in open water, and mirrored lenses can handle sun glare better than clear lenses.
- Lens: Mirrored or clear
- Anti-fog: Yes
- Excellent visibility in open water
- Some people may not like the larger lens shape
Best Polarized Swim Goggles: TYR Sport Special Ops 2.0 Polarized Swimming Goggle
When it comes to triathlon, TYR is arguably as well-known as Speedo. And the Sport Special Ops 2.0 Polarized goggles ($30) are among the most popular used by triathletes. These polarized goggles are best suited for outdoor swimming, though if you don’t mind feeling like you’re wearing sunglasses indoors, they work in a pool setting as well.
The goggle profile is fairly wide and flat — broader than more pool-specific goggles. Their purpose is a wider range of vision underwater when swimming in a lake or ocean compared to simply following the markings on the pool’s floor while doing laps.
The silicone “gaskets” that keep the lenses firmly in place on your face are less intrusive than others on the market and will leave less of the dreaded goggle marks than smaller goggles tend to.
With a wide strap that has a divide in the back, they stay in place better than many other options on the market — key for triathletes racing into the water with a huge pack of people and potentially getting knocked around.
The strap is also optimal for adjusting around a ponytail or bun under a swim cap. At $30, they’re not the cheapest goggles available, but they’re highly durable and will last for years.
- Lens: Polarized
- Anti-fog: Yes
- Soft silicone grippers fit comfortably while staying snug
- May be dark for pool swimming
Best Swim Goggles for Kids: Speedo Skoogles Swim Goggles
Good for small swimmers from ages 3 to 8 years old, the Speedo Skoogles Swim Goggles ($11) come in fun colors and are designed to be comfortable for little faces. Goggles can be a tough sell for small children, as pressing them into place can feel uncomfortable. But the Skoogles are made with soft silicone and wide straps to maximize comfort while still providing a solid swimming experience.
At $11, the Skoogles are a great deal. Parents with kids prone to losing things could order two in bright color options to avoid frequent losses. The easy-adjust straps mean that the goggles should grow with your child as they get through their first years in the pool or the lake. And after they outgrow the Skoogles, they should be ready to upgrade to an adult pair.
If your kids can’t stand having standard goggles pressing on their eye sockets, an easier alternative is the Aqua Sphere Swim Kid 2.0, which has a more full-face feel (without covering the child’s nose).
- Lens: Clear
- Anti-fog: Yes
- Easy adjustment and fits most faces
- Kids may not like the goggle style and may prefer a wider, less-fitted option
Best Swim Goggles for People Who Hate Swim Goggles: Aqua Sphere Seal 2.0 Swim Goggle
Tried dozens of standard goggles and found that you got headaches or goggle indents? Or have you struggled to find a pair that actually stayed sealed around your eye sockets? The Aqua Sphere Seal 2.0 goggles ($35) are different from your average goggle, with a much wider profile that covers more of your eye area instead of pressing in on your eye sockets.
They’re technically more of a mask than a goggle, though they won’t cover your nose the way a snorkel mask would. Easy adjustment of thick straps, smooth and comfortable silicone that stays in place and won’t leak during your swim, and 180 degrees of vision make these bulky-but-powerful goggles ideal for goggle-haters.
At $35, the Aqua Sphere Seal 2.0 are the priciest regular goggles in this roundup. But if you find that most regular goggles simply aren’t comfortable or you end up with intense goggle marks for hours after a swim and need a solution (no one likes going from masters swim to the boardroom looking like they have two black eyes!), these might be the solution to your problem.
- Lens: Clear
- Anti-fog: Yes
- Comfortable, wide fit for people who hate goggle marks
- Not the most aerodynamic if you’re looking for a speed-focused model
Best Swim Goggles for Data-Lovers: FORM Swim Goggles
If you love to swim but hate counting laps or paying close attention to mileage during your open-water adventure, but you wish you did pay attention to those metrics, you might want to consider FORM Swim Goggles ($199).
That’s right, a smart goggle does exist. Think Google Glass but for the pool. The FORM Smart Swim Goggles have a see-through display that shows real-time metrics as you paddle.
That means you don’t have to stop to check your watch halfway through that 800m hard swim, and you’ll always know how far you are from shore in open water.
You can check split times, stroke rate, pace per 100 m, and even heart rate when paired with Polar sensors. And of course, post-swim, your goggles can sync to your smartphone to upload your workout to Training Peaks, Strava, Apple Health, or Google Fit. And you get to feel like Iron Man in the process.
At $199, they’re obviously a big spend compared to other goggles. But if you truly hate counting laps in the pool but love having the data, these are going to make you the envy of your masters swim group.
Like any goggle, depending on your facial structure, you may not love the fit. But there’s a 45-day fit guarantee, so you’re not on the hook for $199 if they’re super uncomfortable.
And they do come with seven different nose piece sizes, so they’re more customizable than your average goggle and should fit most faces.
- Lens: Mirrored
- Anti-fog: Yes
- No more looking at your watch to see how many laps you’ve done
Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose Swimming Goggles
There are three main goggle lens styles: clear, mirrored, and polarized. As Speedo explains, clear lenses are optimal for swimming indoors, and mirrored lenses are designed to reflect light and are optimal for outdoor conditions.
Polarized lenses are arguably the best for outdoor swimming, though, as they decrease glare but aren’t dim on overcast days.
Other colored lenses are available, and they aren’t just for show. An orange lens, for example, can offer more contrast. Smoke lenses, or darkened clear lenses (think sunglasses), are ideal for bright indoor pools but not dimly lit areas.
Lens size largely depends on comfort. Competitive swimmers tend to prefer smaller goggles that fit closely to their faces, while open-water swimmers tend to prefer larger lenses for a wider field of vision, according to U.S. Masters Swimming.
But whatever kind of swimming you’re planning to do, the best lens size for you is the size that feels comfortable and doesn’t leak while paddling!
Generally, your focus should be on the comfort of the goggles themselves. Whatever head strap comes with the lenses that fit your face comfortably should work fine. But your best head strap choice largely depends on your hair’s style and length.
If you have long hair that you keep in a bun or ponytail under a swim cap, a strap that has a slit in the middle back and is adjusted on the sides is ideal, as it can go over and under the bun to stay in place. For those with shorter hair, this matters much less — it’s all about comfort.
What Are the Best Swimming Goggles for Racing?
The best swim goggles for racing are the ones that fit and feel the best for your facial structure. That means what the guy in the lane next to you is wearing might not work well for you, and vice versa.
As you try different goggles, you’re searching for a pair that feels comfortable, and that — when adjusted properly — doesn’t get knocked off just because you’ve picked up speed or made a fast flip turn.
What Is the Best Way to Clean Goggles?
Simply rinse them with clean water after each use. Using harsh soap or detergent may affect the lenses or the anti-fog coating, according to Speedo.
Make sure you leave the goggles out to dry, though: Keeping them in a damp, warm bag with your towel and suit for a few days can breed bacteria and mold.
How Do I Keep My Swim Goggles From Fogging?
Unfortunately, no matter how good anti-fog technology gets, most swimmers will still suffer from fogged-up goggles, often at inopportune times.
You can buy an anti-fog spray for the inside of your goggles, like Jaws Quick Spit Anti-Fog Spray. Or you can opt for the tried-and-true method that even U.S. Masters Swimming recommends: Get a bit of saliva and rub it on the inside of your goggles. It’s gross, but it creates a barrier that helps keep fog at bay.
Should I Wear Goggles Over or Under My Swim Cap?
It depends. If you’re racing, it’s more aerodynamic to wear goggles under your swim cap, and they’re less likely to get pulled off (important if you’re in a mass start swim). But for adjustability and ease of taking them on and off at swim practice, over the swim cap is just fine.
Can You Get Prescription Swim Goggles?
Yes, you can absolutely get prescription swim goggles, though your options will be more limited. Luckily, the best overall swim goggles on our list — the Speedo Vanquishers 2.0 — have prescription options ranging from -1.5 to -8.
If you have a more specific prescription, like needing bifocals, SportEyes.com has a full array of goggles that can be tailored to your exact needs.
Why Do My Swim Goggles Keep Leaking?
You may simply need to tighten your straps or adjust your nose piece to keep them firmly in place.
The faster or more aggressively you swim (for instance, if you dive off the blocks versus simply push off the wall), the more difficult it will be to keep them in place. But if tightening doesn’t solve your problem, those goggles simply may not be the right ones for you.
The problem with commercial swim goggles is that they don’t take into account everyone’s unique bone structure and facial features, researchers note. That means even when a pair is touted as “the best,” as we’ve done here, it still may not be the best for you.
Which Swim Goggles Do Olympians Wear?
There’s no specific “swim goggle of Olympians,” unfortunately. Each swimmer has to find the goggles that work best for them. Some chose more custom options while others use off-the-rack options.
Michael Phelps reportedly wore Speedo Speed Sockets for the 2004 and 2008 Olympics and raced in his namesake MP XCEEDswim goggles, from his sponsor Aqua Sphere, in 2016. He managed to rack up gold medals in all three Olympics, so clearly, goggles weren’t an issue for him.
Why You Should Trust Us
This list of recommendations was compiled by Molly Hurford, who’s been swimming in pools, ponds, oceans, and lakes since 2008 when she first got into triathlon.
As someone who’s struggled to find goggles that fit well and didn’t leave her with raccoon eyes for hours after finishing her laps, she’s tried a lot of different goggle types in every shape and size in her quest for the perfect fit. Since starting with laps in the pool and slogging her way through two IRONMAN triathlons, she’s tested a lot of goggles in the process.
In addition to testing goggles on her own — as no one facial structure should be responsible for determining which goggles can be considered “the best” — she polled fellow swimmers of all types, from busy parents who swim in the bay at sunrise to a few who never miss a masters swim indoors.
Her No. 1 pick if she’s choosing goggles for herself? The TYR Sport Special Ops 2.0 Polarized goggles have seen her through dozens of races, including both of her full IRONMANs.
Have a favorite pair of swimming goggles? Let us know in the comments, and we’ll check it out for future updates to this article.