Tired of a foggy face mask, I set out to find a cure. I checked out a few different forums and read advice from motorcycle enthusiasts, SCUBA divers, other hockey players, and more. Several different materials were recommended; everything from your own saliva to expensive commercial products. I decided to run my own experiment based off something I saw in another review. Using a tea kettle to provide steam perfectly simulated a foggy environment. I also considered leaving the mask in the shower with me, but that would have taken longer.
I took each substance and squirted a small drop on the mask approximately the size of a dime. I then spread the liquid on one half of the mask using a microfiber cloth. I chose microfiber because it is not coarse like other rags that may leave my mask susceptible to scratches. By spreading each liquid on on side of the mask only, I was able to compare them side-by-side for effectiveness.
Here are the rankings in order of performance:
- Murphy’s Oil Soap
- Baby Oil
- Shampoo, Dish Soap, Baby Wash (3-way tie)
- Shaving Foam
- Lemon Pledge
It seems like the oil based substances work best, and that came as no surprise. If the water is unable to condense on the mask, it won’t build up and cause fog. The key is finding a good balance between an oil that is dense enough to repel water, but light enough to be completely transparent. If spread to thick the mask blurs, defeating the purpose of coating it. In addition, you may also see small halos around bright lights when looking through it. You’ll just have to experiment with different amounts until you find a good compromise.
Lastly, I was unable to test all of these liquids for endurance. Some may work well to resist steam from the tea kettle, but may not last through three periods. What have you found works best to combat fog? Share your results in the comments.