Sports goggles

Mountain Bike Goggles Vs Ski Goggles – What Is The Difference?

There are many differences between mountain bike (MTB) goggles and ski goggles. MTB goggles are flat while ski goggles are convex. They are designed for two different types of conditions. A flat shape allows MTB goggles to use tear-offs for rough patches of their ride such as through muddy and bushy terrain.

Ski goggles are designed to work in areas that are completely covered with snow. The sun’s rays reflect on the snow and create illusions.

The ski goggles have double-glazed lenses to work more efficiently in these conditions. MTB goggles and replacement lenses are relatively cheaper than Ski goggles and lenses. 

Similarities between MTB Goggles and Ski Goggles

Despite many differences, there are some similarities as well between these two types of protective eye gears. Both types of goggles are large and designed to cover the eyes and surrounding areas. Both intend to protect the eyes at high speed. 

In the case of mountain biking, the eyes can get hurt by insects, leaves, bushes, dust, mud, rains, splashing of water on the road, etc. Therefore, mountain bike goggles use clear lenses. Similarly, ski goggles are meant to protect the eyes from the cold air, snow dust, and any other sundry elements that can hurt the eyes.

At the same time, it’s designed to offer better protection from UV rays. The sunlight in snowy mountains can be very flippant – sunny at one moment and darkish the next moment. Ski goggles are designed to work in all these conditions. 

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Because of these similarities, new mountain bikers often tend to reach out for their ski goggles. Although a pair of ski goggles can serve the purpose of protecting your eyes during your bike ride to the mountainous terrains, they can’t to the full extent.

Ski goggles will not fit in with a full-face helmet that you must wear when riding in the mountains. Besides, ski goggles are more expensive and even the replacement lenses are very expensive. During your mountain bike ride, you may end up getting scratches on their soft coatings. That might render it useless.  

Distinctive Features of MTB Goggles 

Mountain bike (MTB) goggles serve a different set of needs than ski goggles. That’s why they use clear and single-layer lenses. They also use tear-off lenses to protect the rider from rain and mud.MTB goggles have a cheaper quality and the price is also lower compared to Ski goggles.

Replacing the lens of MTB goggles is also cheaper. These goggles are flat in shape so that tear-offs can be used on them. The provision of tear-off lenses is a big advantage with MTB goggles.

Using a cheaper variety of lenses works well with MTB bikes as they have to deal with mud, debris, leaves, etc, which leave more scratches on the lens. 

Distinctive Features of Ski Goggles

Ski goggles use doubled-layered lenses to avoid fogging in snowy conditions. For the lenses to work effectively, higher quality coating or material is used.

These goggles are designed to work in the snow with sun lights ranging from bright to dim. This makes it necessary for them to be optically better quality. A replacement lens is pricier for ski goggles than that of an MTB lens.

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Some ski goggles are very large and convex so that water and snow can bead and move to the edges. The double glazing of ski goggles works as insulation that prevents the inside from fogging up.

Typically, ski goggles will have more effective UV protection. Their strap does not have grippers to fasten with the helmet. 

Ski Goggles and Mountain Biking  

Can you use a pair of ski goggles in place of MTB goggles?

Technically, you can use a pair of ski goggles in your for mountain biking expedition. But there are some major differences between mountain biking goggles and ski goggles that make ski goggles unfit for mountain biking.

For example, the ventilation in ski goggles is designed to blow out cold air while the same in a pair of mountain bike goggles can be just the opposite. Mountain biking is more popular in the warm season. 

Ski goggles are designed to work with open-face helmets while most MTB goggles have shapes that work with full-face helmets. Some people think snow goggles are warmer than Mountain biking goggles.

It may be because of the double-lens used in ski goggles to prevent fogging in cold and snowy conditions. However, you may use the clear lens of ski goggles in mountain biking. Ski goggles can also be used while riding downhill to avoid exposure to mud and debris. 

Mountain Bike Goggles while Skiing

If you wear Mountain bike goggles while skiing, they will fog up because of the cold. And, if you wear ski goggles during mountain-biking, the soft coating of your expensive ski goggles will be ruined because of the dirt and other elements. 

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Mountain bikers are among the top in receiving eye injuries. However, most of these injuries can be avoided by wearing suitable goggles or riding glasses. Similarly, without proper goggles, it is impossible to ski in the icy cold environment of the skiing resort. 

Mountain Biking Goggles: Pros

  • Cheaper unit price
  • Clear Lens
  • Can work with a full-face helmet
  • Designed to use tear-offs
  • Replacement lens comes cheaper
  • Ventilation designed for the warmer season

Mountain Biking Goggles: Cons

  • Uses a cheaper variety of lens
  • Can’t be used for skiing 

Ski Goggles: Pros

  • High-quality double-layered lens 
  • Prevents fogging 
  • Better visuals in white snow 
  • Ventilation designed to drive away cold air
  • More effective UV protection

Ski Goggles: Cons

  • Expensive unit price
  • Replacement lens also expensive
  • Can’t be used with a full-face helmet

Mountain bike goggles and ski goggles are designed for two different sports and they should be worn for the purpose they are made. That said we must admit that they are made to offer protection to your eyes during two outdoor sports that involve high speed.

Mountain bikes can’t be used during skiing while ski goggles can be used during mountain biking. 

However, ski goggles are not substitutes for mountain bike goggles. There are major differences between these two types of goggles.

If you use ski goggles in mountain biking, you will be ruining an expensive pair of goggles while you could have bought much cheaper mountain bike goggles.