Home For Divers Classroom How to Pre-Treat a Dive Mask

How to Pre-Treat a Dive Mask

By Tec Clark
© ScubaGuru.com

Summary: New dive masks have a residue on the lenses, which needs to be removed prior to first use. We will explore the best agents and the best techniques to use for safely getting rid of this residue as we prep or pre-treat the dive mask.

DEAR TEC: I recently bought a new mask. I love it but it keeps fogging. I used a really good de-fog product I purchased at the dive shop, but it still fogs. During a dive another diver asked if I prepped my mask? He told me one way and another person told me another. Can you "clear this up"? (pun intended) Joe G., Portland, OR.

DEAR JOE: I will be happy to "clear this up" (nice one) for you and others as this is an area of diving that has not really been standardized very well. Besides, there is some bad information out there too. Let's look in detail at how to prep or pre-treat your dive mask.





I have seen it countless times; a diver with a new mask so fogged you can't even see his eyes – even after repeated applications of a defog solution! This can be extremely frustrating and even dangerous. What is happening here with new masks is that during the manufacturing process a thin film of silicone accumulates on the mask lens. This silicone is resistant to any of the conventional de-fogging measures. The solution is to "pre-treat" or "prep" the mask by removing this film prior to its use.

1. To remove the film, use a slightly abrasive agent like toothpaste. Avoid gel type toothpaste and go for common white toothpaste. NOTE: THIS IS FOR GLASS LENSES ONLY, NOT PLASTIC (POLYCARBONATE) LENSES. Plastic lens masks, such as the freediving favorite AquaSphere Sphera mask, scratch easily and may even come with an anti-fog agent already applied to the lens. Toothpaste, or other abrasive agents, as well as fingernails may scratch and ruin plastic lenses! If you decide to pre-treat your plastic (polycarbonate) lens with toothpaste, do so at your own risk. One way to minimize scratching plastic (polycarbonate) lenses is to use a soft, wet washcloth and rub lightly in a circular motion.
2. Take a thimble-sized amount of toothpaste and rub it on both sides of the DRY lenses. Give it a good circular rubbing with your CLEAN fingers.
3. Rinse the lens while rubbing away the toothpaste. Note that toothpaste may accumulate in the edges, so use a little more water pressure if needed to remove it, or you may use a soft, wet washcloth.
4. Once the toothpaste is rinsed away, DRY the lens with a clean towel or rag.
5. Repeat these steps, drying the lens in between each application, 5 to 7 times.

A couple items for you to note: Some instructors say not to use mint toothpaste as it will sting the eyes. This may be true, but a very thorough rinsing after each application should be fine.

A note on SoftScrub®: Also, many instructors say to use an abrasive cleanser like SoftScrub® to remove the film. SoftScrub® claims it is safe to use on glass but I am not a fan of abrasive cleansers for treating a mask. They have several chemicals that may be harsh on the silicone skirt and harsh on the skin. And, if a mint flavoring can sting the eyes if a little is left in the edges, imagine a cleanser – that could really be problematic. If you decide to go with a SoftScrub® cleanser to pre-treat your mask, follow the method above and in the video, using a very sparing amount, rinsing and drying thoroughly. DO NOT use SoftScrub® products that contain BLEACH! And DO NOT use SoftScrub® on plastic (polycarbonate) lenses! Again, it is best to avoid the abrasive cleanser and go with plain ole toothpaste.

A note on Fire: Floating around in the cyber-expert world is a technique of using fire to burn off the residue coating on a lens. DO NOT DO THIS! There is no need for this procedure as there are simply too many things that can go wrong and could easily ruin your mask.

Be safe, gentle and conservative when pre-treating your mask. And use some good common sense – like no fire, nor bleach. Following these steps and the instructions in the videos should get your mask ready to go! Remember, that pre-treating the mask does not prevent it from fogging on every dive. You will still need to de-fog your mask properly before each and every dive. For more information on that, see my article How to Defog a Diving Mask.



#17 Martina 2014-08-29 02:50
Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any issues with hackers?
My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing many months of hard work due to no data backup.
Do you have any solutions to prevent hackers?

Check out my blog post :: stocks: http://stocksbuyorsell.com/archive/f-4.html
#16 Celia 2014-08-27 18:10
Thanks for sharing sucҺ a nicе thoսght,ƿߋst is good, thatѕ why i
have read it entirely

My blog; cheɑp forex vps: http://www.forexvps24.com
#15 Krystle 2014-08-27 12:47
Ӊowdy terrific blog! Doeѕ running a blog such aas this rеquirе a large amount օof work?
I have absolutely no expertise in computer programming Ƅut I was hoping too stаrt my own blog soon. Anywayѕ, should yoou have any recommendations
or techniques for new blog owners please share. I understand this is
off subject nevertheless I simply neeԀed to аsk. Many thanks!

Feel free tto surf to my blog post free Hacking tools: http://www.facebook.com/pages/FB-Account-Hack-2014/261622460688527
#14 Kathleen 2014-08-27 08:59
Іf you desire to improve yοur experience only keep visiting this ѕite and be սpdateɗ witth the hottest gossip posted here.

Feel fеe to visit myy homepage: clash of clans hack download
no survey: http://docs.google.com/document/d/1pnZs7VgfzYTkt1C-htNyqiOAfT0o7BOzNJjqCUWkuyY/preview
#13 Shannon 2014-08-27 06:48
We pedrform with well planned, because starting your own home bassed business in this video, simply start it, and
business happiness.

Also visit my website; own your own business: http://www.23hq.com/cochranwysu/story/16701087
#12 Eugenio 2014-08-25 10:55
yahoo is the best website for all of your internet needs!

My webpage; yahoo.com (Eugenio: http://www.Yahoo.com/)
#11 Ashton 2014-08-25 10:23
Hеllpo mates, ցood post and good aгguments commented at this рlace, Ӏ am truly
enjoying by these.

Haаve a look at my Ьlog: cialis
generique 5mց: http://www.ucmt.org/cialis-generique/
#10 Darell 2014-08-23 18:52
Hello, Neat post. There is a problem together with your
web site in web explorer, may check this?
IE still is the market leader and a huge section of other people will pass over youur excellnt
writing due to this problem.

my page - vedic maths videos: http://vedicmathsvideos.wordpress.com/2014/08/12/vedic-maths-easy-trick-to-find-multiplication-nearest-100200300-900/
#9 ScubaGuru 2014-07-21 01:12
Quoting Josh:
The tooth paste method did not work for me and my wife. I just receive our masks like a week ago and yesterday did the tooth paste 5 times on both the masks. We went to the beach yesterday and they still fogged please help cause next week we are going on a cruise and bring our masks for our excursion. Thanks

Hello Josh, I'm sorry you are having fog in your masks. However, may I ask if you are using a defog solution immediately before each time using the masks? Remember, you must pre-treat the mask prior to first use (which you have done), but then you must also defog your mask prior to use. Here is the article on how to defog a mask http://www.scubaguru.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=57:how-to-defog-a-diving-mask&catid=41:open-water&Itemid=54

I hope this helps you for your trip!
#8 Josh 2014-07-20 13:04
The tooth paste method did not work for me and my wife. I just receive our masks like a week ago and yesterday did the tooth paste 5 times on both the masks. We went to the beach yesterday and they still fogged please help cause next week we are going on a cruise and bring our masks for our excursion. Thanks

Add comment

Please be respectful to others when commenting. Thanks!

Security code