Before you dive in, you might want to think seriously about the gear that’s going to get you there. For most divers, a decent mask is an absolute must, and these days there are some sweet options – low volume, soft-as-butter-neoprene, and snazzy colour options.

But don’t just pluck the first one that takes your fancy, you need to make sure it properly fits your face. Follow these five steps to find the perfect mask for you:

  1. Flip the mask strap over, in front of the lens or lenses, leaving the skirt clear.
  2. Brush any hair away from your face.
  3. Place the mask skirt gently over your face, looking through the lenses with your nose in the nose pocket (seems obvious, but you’d be amazed at how many people don’t twig that their nose needs to be involved in the process…).
  4. Inhale through your nose. This should create a vacuum seal, sucking the mask against your face.
  5. Start breathing through your mouth only (this might take a bit of practice!). If you make sure not to breathe out at all through your nose, and the mask is a good fit, it should stay suctioned to your face. Waggle your head a bit to make sure it’s not going anywhere. When you exhale through your nose it should pop off.

Once you’ve found the most comfortable fit for your face, then find the one that makes you feel like a dive don.

For a run-down of the best masks on the market right now, click HERE to get your copy of SDAA’s 2016 Diveaholic Buyer’s Guide