A face mask is a great way to stay prepared for any type of weather that might come your way when skiing or snowboarding. It’s also a solid line of defense against harmful UV rays and sunburn.
I’m a snowboarding instructor who has been on the snow for most of my life. I’ve used many different brands and models of face masks over the years, and I know how to find a great option.
The Blackstrap The Tube is my pick for the best face mask for snowboarding and skiing. This is a simple but highly effective model that is very comfortable. It also comes in a variety of colors to match your on-snow style.
In this post, I’ll show you a handful of my other favorite face masks so you can choose an option that works for your winter needs. You can’t go wrong with any of the options found here.
Time to bundle up and get rolling.
- Quick Summary
- Who Should Get This
- Top Face Masks for Skiing & Snowboarding
- How to Choose a Ski or Snowboard Face Mask: Buying Guide
- My Verdict
- Best Overall: Blackstrap The Tube
- Best for Cold Weather: Dakine Ninja Balaclava
- Best Budget Pick: Tough Hardwear Half Face Mask
- Best Fit: Exio Winter Neck Warmer Gaiter/Balaclava
Who Should Get This
Face masks are best for skiers and snowboarders who ride in extreme conditions but can also be worn any time of year for protection against the sun.
They add a lot of insulation to your ensemble, which is handy both when the temperatures drop and when the snow starts pouring down.
If you’re someone who constantly pushes down icy peaks, a face mask makes for a great addition to your warm-weather arsenal.
The items are also good for people who run cold. Sometimes, you just need an extra bit of warmth on a typical snow day.
They may not always fix that issue, but they help. Face masks are perfect for those who can’t seem to keep themselves warm no matter what they do.
Top Face Masks for Skiing & Snowboarding
Here are my picks for the top face masks for skiing and snowboarding.
- Best for: Overall
- Key features: Dual-layer, warm, comfortable, UPF 50+ protection, one size fits most, breathable, fast-drying
- Style: Gaiter
- Material: Synthetic
- Cost: $$
My top overall pick for the best face mask for all winter sports and activities is the Blackstrap The Tube. This is an awesome option that provides you with serious protection from the elements and a ton of comfort.
A dual-layer design works to block out the snow and cold effectively. This adds another layer of insulation that works far better than a single-layer option. It’s also made of a synthetic material that results in UPF 50+ protection so you won’t get burnt.
It is a gaiter-style face mask that is comfortable and easy to wear. You can easily slip this one around your neck and only pull it up if and when you need it. A 4-way stretch fabric adds another dimension of comfort.
The mask is also very quick-drying and breathable. It won’t build up moisture from your breath and will quickly dry off at lunch if you are out skiing or riding in deep powder.
I don’t really have anything negative to say for this option, but being a gaiter-style, it might not be the best option for colder weather.
- Best for: Cold Weather
- Key features: Comfortable, warm, easier to wear under helmet, quick-drying, hinged design
- Style: Balaclava
- Material: Polyester
- Cost: $$
A full-head, balaclava-style face mask is a good option to use in cold weather, and the Dakine Ninja Balaclava will keep you warm when the weather takes a turn for the worst.
It features a pull-up over your head design that will stay in place all day long, even if you wear it under a helmet. This added layer over your head works to keep body heat in and adds to comfort when you ski or ride.
It is made from a synthetic polyester material that is very strong and durable while also offering quick-drying properties. It’s also very breathable, so you won’t need to worry about gasping for air when bundled up tight.
The Ninja might be a little too warm if you aren’t out in very cold weather.
- Best for: Budget Pick
- Key features: Affordable, one size fits most, warm, moisture-wicking, hook and loop closure
- Style: Half-face balaclava
- Material: Fleece
- Cost: $
If you want a face mask that will cost you almost less than a cup of coffee on the mountain, check out the Tough Hardwear Half Face Mask.
This is a half-face balaclava style option that will give you solid protection from the elements to keep you warm.
It features a fleece material that is soft and comfortable. A hook and loop closure at the back allows you to adjust the mask to fit your head correctly.
A dual-layer design offers added warmth and insulation and also helps provide moisture-wicking properties.
This one doesn’t have an elastic band, so the fit can get loose if you are riding hard during the day.
- Best for: Fit
- Key features: Great fit, seamless design, comfortable, quick-drying, multiple color options
- Style: Gaiter
- Material: Nylon, polyester, spandex
- Cost: $$
The Exio Winter Neck Warmer Gaiter/Balaclava is the best-fitting facemask around. This one will sit snuggly around your face all day long without causing any noticeable discomfort.
It’s made of a blend of synthetic materials that help to create a very comfortable experience. Nylon and polyester keep it strong and durable, while Spandex allows it to stretch and contour around your face.
A seamless design means you won’t have to worry about any loose ends itching or rubbing your skin as you ride.
It’s also very warm and does a great job of wicking away moisture. It will dry quickly if you do happen to get it wet.
It’s not the warmest option on the list but will still provide you with good protection from the elements.
How to Choose a Ski or Snowboard Face Mask: Buying Guide
Here are some important considerations to keep in mind when shopping for a face mask for skiing or snowboarding.
There are many different face masks, and they all come in different styles. Some cover part of your face, some cover your face and neck, and others can be moved or adjusted as you see fit.
The one you end up going with largely depends on your skiing style, as well as how much insulation you need. Choose the model that you find the most comfortable.
When it comes to masks, the material they are made of matters. Some of them use nylon or cotton, while others use neoprene, acrylic, or wool.
As every material comes with its pros and cons, get the one that fits your preferences. Nylon is popular because it is light and cheap, while wool is soft and warm.
Neoprene is very elastic, and that can be extended by materials like polyester or spandex. Figure out what you need to prioritize and go that route.
Face masks are extremely warm. While that’s useful, it can also cause you to overheat or sweat. A face mask with solid ventilation prevents that issue.
Always look for models that let you breathe, especially if you’re a snowboarder who works hard during their runs.
Lighter materials are great for this, but they can also offer less protection than heavier options.
Here are a few quick answers to some common questions relating to face masks.
How do you cover your face when skiing?
All you need to do is place some sort of material over your face when you are skiing. The face masks listed here make this a breeze because you don’t have to worry about wrapping or securing anything like you would with a scarf.
Do you have to wear a mask while snowboarding?
No, you don’t. I don’t always wear a mask and usually only do so when it is freezing outside, or there is heavy sun. Masks can help keep your face warmer by blocking out wind and snow. They can also block UV rays to help you prevent sunburn.
What kind of face mask is best for skiing?
My recommended best face mask for skiing or snowboarding is the Blackstrap The Tube. This is an excellent option that will work well and provide you plenty of protection and comfort. It’s affordable and does the job.
How do you wear a snowboarding mask?
I usually wear a mask around my neck until I need to pull it up. You can keep your neck warm this way and then quickly pull up the snowboarding mask if conditions get colder. There isn’t a right or wrong way to wear a mask. It just depends on your preferences.
My choice for the best face mask for skiing and snowboarding is the Blackstrap The Tube. I like this option quite a bit because it provides you with good protection from the cold and sun while also allowing for a comfortable fit that will stay in place.
A good face mask keeps you warm in all conditions regardless of where you like to ski or board.
You can’t go wrong with the above models, and each of them will give you protection from the elements you need out of a mask.About Lorraine