Navigating the gauntlet of the skiwear accessories aisle can feel daunting. So we asked the experts for their tips on finding the gear that’s right for you…
The experts at Precision have selected their pick of this year’s accessories. Precision have 40 stores across the Tarentaise with knowledgable staff waiting to guide you through the gauntlet of gear.
Go for a built-in visor helmet if you struggle to get your goggles to fit right. The Diezz Vikky (lens category 2-3) boasts a visor with foam base to keep out rising wind or snow, and an upper seal to stop melted snow getting in. €149.
A quality base layer can make or break your ski holiday. Icebreaker’s 100% merino wool base layers are warm, gentle on the skin and breathable with flat seams that won’t cause discomfort in ski boots. Merino sheep are some of the world’s toughest animals, producing the softest, strongest, longest wool fibres. Eco-friendly and high performance, Icebreaker merino will see you through, from blizzard to après, warm, dry and smelling fresh. What’s not to love? Top €139.95, leggings €99.95.
Light conditions can change quickly on the hill, and stopping to change your goggle lenses can be tricky. So Oakley have developed the new Prizm range, which promises to dramatically enhance contrast and visibility in varying brightness, giving you optimum vision without lens swapping. It works by choosing and tuning into wavelengths of colour when needed, for example those lost in flat light. €169
SKI GOGGLES ADVICE
Patrick Martin, qualified optician and owner of the Val Optic shop in Val d’Isere, takes us through what we need to know when choosing ski goggles.
Lenses are categorized 0-4 to a European standard according to their density. Four is the darkest, used to deflect brightness and protect the eyes on sunny days. A category 1 lens is the clearest used in daytime, letting in maximum light. Ski goggles are rarely found in category 4 – in sunny weather, I suggest go for a 3. If you ski whatever the weather, look for goggles with interchangeable lenses and be prepared for anything the mountain throws at you.
Different coloured lenses filter light in different ways. For example, yellow lenses block blue light, which reduces glare in the sun and enhances shadows in flat light – making them a great all-round option. As a rule, lighter tints allow in more light so they’re better for cloudy conditions. Darker tints block more light for extra sun protection, and if you want to see true colours instead of a tinted view go for a grey lens. Look out for a lens’s Visible Light Transmission (VLT) percentage to check the amount of light it lets in. Photocromic lenses become slightly darker or lighter as the light changes, giving you optimum vision in a wider variety of conditions.
It’s important your goggles are compatible with your helmet. They need to meet the top of the helmet without leaving a gap – giving you an ice cream headache or attractive stripe of sunburn – or being too tight. If they’re too small they can reduce your field of vision, increasing your risk of collisions.
You can stop goggles fogging up by avoiding getting moisture in the mask. Around 90% of my clients leave in the morning with wet hair or a wet hat, the helmet covered with snow, and they put the goggles on top. That way, they start off wet and fog up. If you need to take the mask off, take it off completely and put it in its protective bag. Most goggles have vents – make sure these aren’t blocked by your headgear. Almost all masks now have a pretty effective anti-fog coating but it is ultra-delicate when wet so be careful not to rub it off. And you can now buy masks with fans built in – very useful for people who wear their glasses underneath.