Choosing A Paintball MaskChoosing A Paintball Mask

If you are going to play paintball at all, whether seriously or just for fun, you will absolutely need a good quality paintball mask. The biggest risk in playing paintball comes from not wearing the proper eye protection while on the paintball field. Sun glasses, ski masks, safety goggles, and shooting glasses are all completely inappropriate for playing paintball safely. The sport of paintball has been around for a little while now, and there are paintball masks that are manufactured appropriately to strict industry standards to adequately protect your eyes and face. Do not settle for anything that wasn't manufactured to withstand the force and speed of a paintball pellet.

When choosing a good paintball mask, make sure that the mask you are looking at has a wide field of vision. You need to be able to use your peripheral vision appropriately on the field to protect against corner and sneak attacks. Without your peripheral vision, you will be toast. The other thing to check with the mask on is to make sure that you can see comfortably through your gun sight. If not, you probably won't be able to hit the broad side of a barn. If you wear glasses, make sure to find a mask that fits comfortably over top of them.

The best material you will find for a paintball mask is thermal. A thermal mask protects against fogging up. These masks are actually make out of a dual layer mask with a small cushion of air in between them. These thermal masks will always perform superiorly to a single layer mask with an anti-fog film added to it. This is because the anti-fog film of the second type of mask will wear away after a short time. Save yourself the money of continually replacing your mask by buying a higher grade mask to begin with. In the end, your eyes will thank you.

Keep in mind the type of stress that you will be putting on your paintball mask. Most players will be running, jumping, sliding, and crawling through goodness knows what out on the paintball field. In order to keep up with you, your mask needs to fit both comfortably and securely. If it doesn't stay on while you are maneuvering around through the brambles, it won't be able to provide the protection you need to keep your eyes safe. There should be adequate cushioning around the outer areas of the mask to keep the mask on your face as well as to keep in comfortable when you go for that bone jarring dive.

On the paintball field, you mask is your number one piece of equipment - not your gun. Your mask is the only thing standing between you and what is a potentially life threatening injury. Skimping on eye protection is never a good idea. Keep these tips in mind when shopping for your first or next paintball mask. You will hopefully never know how glad you are that your mask functions exactly as it should.
by Layne Emerson
References and Bibliography
Layne regularly writes for ProlificPaintball.com, they carry such paintball equipment as the Invert Mini Paintball Gun and the Freak Barrel Kit, as well as many other items from a variety of manufacturers.
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