I'm looking to get another pair of glasses for winter commuting. I currently use simple ski googles with my snowboard helmet...the problem is they are tinted. Since it's quite dark for the return, i would like to find some clear googles. Also, the temperature is around -15 to -30 degree celsius...I need something to prevent my eyes from crying and freezing or the other way around ;)

any suggestion?

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    If you're happy with ski googles, they do sell ski goggles with clear lenses. They also sell googles with removeable lenses which can be switched out based on the conditions.
    – Kibbee
    Commented Jan 9, 2014 at 17:29
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    Ski goggles are a terrible choice for cycling, clear or otherwise, because they limit peripheral vision. Commented Jan 10, 2014 at 4:30
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    I've thought about this, and if I were to get back into winter cycling I'd try some inexpensive lab goggles and cut out the screens in the vent areas, to allow more air movement. Commented Jan 13, 2014 at 12:03
  • In addition to tinting, another major problem is fogging up, particularly if you're using a balaclava (or even if you're not).
    – amcnabb
    Commented Jan 13, 2014 at 15:53
  • @DanielRHicks - thanks for the reminder! I had some of these: amazon.co.uk/Bolle-CONTPSI-Contour-Safety-Glasses/dp/B007ADREL8/… for soldering in my last job and thought they'd be good for winter cycling. I've just ordered some. Spray and other sources of muck may be an issue, and for those in really cold conditions they'll only stop wind chill, not insulate.
    – Chris H
    Commented Feb 3, 2014 at 11:38

5 Answers 5


Look for downhill MTB goggles. These will be made to fit with a standard bike helmet and will have sticky plastic on the straps so that they will stay in place on your helmet. I rode with a pair last winter and was very happy with them. Kept my eyes warm and didn't fog even under heavy riding. Many also come standard with clear lens so visibility won't be an issue.

MTB goggles

Link - Note these arn't the pair I have - just did a quick search and posted the first pair I found. I am not endorsing these goggles or the company selling them.

  • What's the peripheral vision like? I don't get the impression looking over your shoulder is a big deal in downhill, unlike commuting.
    – Chris H
    Commented Feb 3, 2014 at 11:39
  • @ChrisH, goggles are the best thing that I have found. They do block peripheral vision to some extent but in Ottawa our roads are so cold and sloppy that turning your head further to check your blind spot is a reasonable compromise. I find with regular glasses my eyes tear up the point of blindness. Commented Feb 3, 2014 at 18:44
  • Your winters are rather different to ours, so I can understand that, but on the narrow twisty roads here in the UK to twist round far enough for goggles would mean standing up on the pedals and turning your whole body - so I'm glad it doesn't get so cold (-6 C is OK for me without any glasses)
    – Chris H
    Commented Feb 4, 2014 at 9:03
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    One advantage ski goggles have over downhill mtb goggles is that ski goggles are typically double pane with an air gap between lenses. So if moisture gets in to the goggle (when you cover your face), it's less likely to condense and possibly freeze on the inside of the lens.
    – Benzo
    Commented Feb 27, 2014 at 18:46
  • @Benzo Never had that problem with my downhill goggles (in winter or summer). Commented Feb 27, 2014 at 19:40

Ski goggles are a good option, but the main problem with ski goggles is that they block your peripheral vision, even if you have clear lenses. You should augment them with a helmet mounted mirror. These work well with balaclavas (which are nice in the winter, depending on where you live).

Regular old clear safety glasses like you use in high school chemistry such as the 3M 91252-80025T are another good option especially if you wear glasses. They don't impair your peripheral vision, but they do leave an imprint under your eyes due to the band tension. Sometimes you have problems with the nose area if you're wearing a balaclava. There are a bit more stylish ones like the Uvex Ignite series, but those don't work well for people who wear glasses (You may want something bigger than these in area as well, but in the same style). These are similar in style to the cycling glasses Fox and other companies sell, but cost a fraction of the price. I've found in general safety glasses to fog less than ski goggles at the tradeoff of slightly less isolation. At -30C, I'd probably be inclined to use the ski goggles, especially if there was significant wind.

You may also want to consider a full face cycling helmet with visor but these have the most severe peripheral vision penalties and you may get hot. Mirrors are a must with this.

Note that you may want tinted lenses at times as well as clear lenses due to the same reasons as skiers (glare, etc.).

As for fogging, you can try things like cat crap, depending your lens material.

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    peripheral vision...this is the main reason why i'm trying to find another option. I found motorcycle glasses that comes with a foam that prevent from wind and cold...still looking. Thanks I'll probably order a pair of RX clear goggles through zennioptical and add a mirror :(
    – user8994
    Commented Jan 9, 2014 at 18:17
  • @user8994 Peripheral vision is an excellent reason to reject ski goggles. Skiers don't need peripheral vision much but it's absolutely crucial for cyclists. Google "sports goggles" and you'll find a wealth of choices that offer clear lenses, full coverage of the eyes to prevent your eyes from tearing, etc. I like some of the ones made for basketball. Commented Jan 10, 2014 at 4:28
  • Thanks..but the problem is the temperature. Glasses made for motorcycling looks awesome, as well as basketball protection glasses..but they got to many air events and when temperature with wind factor is about -30, -35 celsius...plus: I'm a girl, so i'm always freezing! Yesterday, I found a very good option. I retrieved my old pair of yellow ski googles and I passed by the bicycle shop to buy a medium size mirror. My new morning kit works fine! Final test will be tonight! Otherwise, when the temperature is over -15, i can just wear my régular lenses without freezing!Thanks for your suggestions
    – user8994
    Commented Jan 10, 2014 at 14:28
  • @user8994 There has to be some ventilation or they will fog quickly. Commented Jan 10, 2014 at 16:13
  • +1 on safety glasses. I ordered a few pairs from an online safety glass store; they are a lot cheaper than clear glasses in the cycling store. Commented Jan 13, 2014 at 4:29

I use regular "safety" glasses for my clear riding pair (anytime it isn't sunny):

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They work really well since they cover a large area and keep the wind out of my eyes. Great for myself with my contacts. The only downside I have with these are that they will fog up when I'm sitting still, but moving clears them off. If it is at a light, not enough to be a problem, but a longer break might be a concern. I don't wear a baklava, but I do wear a toboggan hat and helmet, but still no interference.

Best part is that they tend to be cheap. I bought these for less than 5 bucks at a local fair.


Sorry, I only discovered this great site and i am very late for answering that, but here are my thoughts if anybody comes across that question. I had the exact problem described here.

Did you ever ask yourself why often the tint of a skiing goggle will not be only a shade of grey but color? That is not just a matter of fashion but very important. Goggles with greyscale tint will reduce vision dramatically at night. The right color hue will almost not affect your vision when it gets dark. Good goggles have a tint similar to orange. Get one of those. They are almost as good as clear ones. I know it is hard to believe, I was amazed when I found out by chance.

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    I was surprised by the effectiveness of yellow-tinted lenses at night - they aren't night vision but do help the contrast noticeably.
    – Criggie
    Commented Mar 16, 2018 at 23:28

When it's really cold and especially blustery and blowing snow I throw on a pair of Spoggles. They come in clear and most tint and mirrored lenses. They are our company standard for safety glasses on site so I have a ready supply. Great for commuting as they have a vented foam inner ring for each eye socket. Bolle and Uvex also make their versions. Although they are safety glasses they fit like sport specific shades. Some are definitely more stylish if that's part of your selection criteria.

I work in an industrial area and commute 30km daily in traffic mixed with cars to transports, heavy equipment and gravel trucks. These Spoggles do a fantastic job of keeping debris out of my eyes offer great visibility and end up being a great alternative to a ski goggle for winter riding.

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