The MXstore Goggle Buying Guide
Although the modern day motocross goggle could almost be classed as a fashion accessory, the true purpose for your goggles is to protect your eyes from flying rocks, mud, dirt, dust and debris. Up until recently there had been no major changes to the design or structure of motocross goggles for a number of years. But with the introduction of the Oakley Airbrake the industry awakened and soon a number of brands released goggles with tougher lenses and larger eye ports to improve safety and ease of vision.
With over 500 different pairs of goggles currently in stock at MXstore, the task of finding the perfect goggle could be a daunting one. That is why we have pulled together all of the key things to consider before making a goggle purchase and compiled them for you in this simple goggle buyer's guide. Check out the industry leading Airbrake in the video below and see for yourself the levels of technology that can go into something as simple as a motocross goggle.
All Motocross Goggles are not the same!
Although the majority of goggles on the market look similar, there are some key differences which set some apart from others which explains the dramatic differences in pricing. And believe me when I say that the old saying holds true; you really do get what you pay for.
A basic adult motocross goggle can set you back a little as $30 AUD. These will be relatively comfortable, colourful to look the part and will do their job in covering your eyes with a layer of lexan (clear plastic lens) which will keep all of the nasties out. Rider comfort is paramount for any piece of motocross gear. For goggles, this begins with the foam rim which seals against your face. Entry level goggles usually have a single layer of foam, while high-end goggles have 3-4 layers of varying density. These are layered to draw sweat away from the face which can then evaporate and dry once it reaches the outer layers. This reduces the chances of sweat falling down into the rider's eyes which causes discomfort and impaired vision, the last thing you want when you are mid-moto!
If you take your riding more seriously you may want to spend a little more money and get into something with performance in mind. There are numerous brands that cater to this market, and we've definitely got you covered here at MXstore if you're chasing some premium motocross goggles. In the section below we'll cover some of the more technical features available in your top of the line motocross goggles.
Lens Lock Technology
The majority of your high-end goggles nowadays feature the ability to rapidly switch out your goggle lenses. Oakley uses innovative technologies such a Switchlock and Ridgelock to ensure riders with their premium goggles can switch their lenses in a matter of seconds. Scott Prospect Goggles feature a lens lock system that offers secure positioning of the lens whilst still being able to quickly switch between different lenses. Fox Air Defence Goggles offer an 8-pin lens retention system that offers much of the same. With so many different lens options available today for varying conditions, it's crucial that your goggles offer the ability to switch your lenses with ease.
Triple/Quad Layer Face Foam
For the ultimate, your top level goggles will usually offer 3 or 4 layer molded face foam, offering a superior comfort to a lot of the cheaper goggles on the market. This stuff is also extremely useful in terms of sweat and moisture management, a must-have for a premium motocross goggle. 100% Percent Racecraft Goggles utilise a thirsty triple layer face foam that offers some of the best moisture wicking properties on the market.
Extended Frame Outriggers
Offering the very best in peripheral vision, outriggers allow the goggle to hold a wider stance and more comfortable fit in the helmet while not taking away any of your vision. Often replaceable and interchangeable with different colours frames, extended outriggers are a key component of a decent goggle. The Oakley Front Line MX goggles have got the outriggers nailed, offering easily one of the most comfortable fits on the market.
Widened Goggle Strap
Typically your high-end goggles will offer a thicker goggle strap than your cheaper options. Combined with the no-slip silicone lines, the wider strap offers a superior grip on your helmet, ensuring your goggles stay exactly where they need to be when you need them to, but still allowing for easy removal if you need to ditch them in a hurry. Dragon Goggles were one of the first lines to move towards a wider strap in today's market, and their popularity clearly reflects that.
Motocross Goggle Lenses
The window to the finish line! Most lenses on the market these days feature an anti-fog treatment and protection against UV rays. Traditionally goggle lenses were made from Lexan glass which is a malleable plastic that can be tinted and coated with a colour mirror finish. Alternatively, some goggle brands are offering an Injection-moulded Plutonite lens which is thicker, stronger and safer than Lexan. These have all the same features being anti-fog, tinting, UV protection and exceed impact safety standards for eye protection.
Recent times have seen technologies such as the Oakley Prizm lens, SPY Happy Lens and Dragon Lumalens & Transitions lenses change the game yet again. When it comes to motocross racing, these lenses offer a whole new level of optical clarity, ensuring the terrain in front of you is as clear as it can possibly be. Riders like Toby Price and Ryan Villopoto swear by the effectiveness of this technology, and we've certainly jumped on the bandwagon.
Anti Fog Lenses
Most goggle lenses are treated with an anti fog solution to help reduce the chance of your goggles fogging up. If you are experiencing issues with your goggles fogging there are products available to help such as Anti Fog Goggle Spray. There are a number of different goggle lenses to suit a range of environments and light conditions. Below is a list of the different lens colours and the light conditions they are most suited to:
- Clear Lens: Night - Low Light Conditions
- Grey/ Smoke Lens: Sun - Bright sunny days with excessive glare
- Yellow Lens: Dust, Fog, Overcast, Haze, Dusk, Dawn. Yellow increases depth perception
- Blue Lens: Mud - Blue provides improved contrast in muddy conditions
- Mirrored/ Iridium Lens: Bright Sun - Reduction in glare in strong light conditions.. + Makes you look cool!
- Amber/ Orange Lens: Overcast - Brightens while reducing glare, enhances detail
- Brown Lens: Sun - Improved contrast, glare reduction
Tear Offs Vs Roll Offs:
With the amount of flying mud and debris being launched at you during a race a nice clear window of vision can quickly become impaired. Fortunately the development of a range of goggle accessories known as Tear offs and Roll offs have given riders the opportunity to clear a dirty lens in a second.
Tear Offs are a set of thin clear plastic lens covers which have a pull tab at one end. These are applied to the outside of the goggle before a race and attached by the goggles tear off lugs. You can stack up a number of tear offs and when a layer is dirty you simply reach up and tear the dirty layer away leaving a lens with clear vision.
Roll Offs are a similar idea only that there are not multiple layers of film which you apply to your goggles. But a roll of film which is rolled out across your goggle lens. On one end there is a spring loaded pull string and when you want to clear your vision you pull the string to roll out some clean film.
As the industry is becoming more environmentally friendly, tracks are growing increasingly more strict with their acceptance of the use of tear offs. Plastic lenses being thrown all over the ground is deemed littering and the fact they can be ingested by cattle is not a pleasant idea. It may not be long before tear offs are banned and a thing of the past!
Kids Motocross Goggle Sizing:
Although goggles vary slightly in shape and size, they do not have a sizing break (S,M,L,XL). There are only 2 sizes to consider, and to decide what is the right goggle for you all you need to do is look at what helmet you wear.
All kids (youth) sized helmets will only work with a kids (youth) sized goggle. An adults goggle will not fit inside the eye port, at best it may sit on the outside of the helmet but the foam will not come in contact with the riders face allowing dirt and dust to work its way into the riders eyes.
If you have an adults size helmet and have a set of kids goggles you will probably struggle to get the strap over the helmet for starters. On top of this the foam will end up touching your eyes as the frame will be far too small for your face. Remember you want a goggle where the foam sits evenly on your face and creates a seal to prevent dirt from seeping into your eyes!
Choose the Right Fitting Goggle for you:
Just like any piece of motocross gear every goggle will fit slightly different depending on the brand and the shape of your face.
When deciding on a new pair of goggles check the fitment and feel by holding the goggles against your face. You want the foam to be touching evenly against your face all the way around the frame and have the smallest amount of frame in your peripheral vision as possible.
If you wear prescription glasses there are also "OTG" goggles which have a deeper frame to allow room for your spectacles too!
See if you can try them on with the current helmet you are riding in as some brand goggles are more difficult to fit in certain helmet eye ports than others.
Stop Changing Goggle Brands!
The amount of Motocross Goggle brands on the market can be exciting and overwhelming. While there are pros and cons for all, it is important that you find a brand that meets your needs and fits your face and stick to it. If you're changing mx goggle brands more often than your engine oil then you need to STOP!
Every goggle brand on the market, supports their goggles with a range of aftermarket accessories. These accessories are not only brand specific but can also be model specific. A smart rider realises that it is important to carry a range of goggle accessories to suit any occasion. Coloured/mirrored lenses for those sunny days, clear lenses for cloudy/night time riding and tear offs to suit. With tear-offs quickly becoming banned in many locations in Australia, a roll-off kit is also important for clear vision on those rainy days. When you double your dirt bike goggle brands, you also double the necessary accessories. Stick to one brand/model, a familiar fit every-time you ride, and you will save yourself space and money in the long run.
100% Goggles are the new Motocross goggle brand taking the world by storm. Their aggressive pricing structure and simplistic design allow customers to easily replace lenses & goggle accessories as their entire range consists of only 3 lens shapes! Continuing to recruit some of the biggest names in the sport, with the likes of Cooper Webb, Marvin Musquin and Aaron Plessinger on board, the 100% freight train continues to roll forward. Check out the full ranges of 100 Percent here!
With such strong connection with the snowboarding industry Dragon Goggles have always produced goggles with plenty of steeze. But not to be left behind Dragon have now also developed a quick release Injection-molded lense to capture riders chasing a premium goggle. The classic NFX, along with the NFXs and the newer NFX2 have the Dragon brand held in good stead by the majority of the industry, and it's easy to see why. Check out Dragon Here!
The most dominant goggle brand in the industry. Oakley goggles have always been known as the leader in Motocross goggle technology. With the largest range and some of the biggest athletes in the game, there aren't many people who have never owned a set of Oakleys! The Airbrake continues to dominate the industry, and the new Front Line MX goggles are sure to take the mid-range price point market by storm. With names like Ken Roczen, Ryan Dungey, Eli Tomac, Chad Reed and Jeffrey Herlings on deck, it's easy to see why Oakley is the most popular name in the game. Check out Oakley Here!
Scott goggles have always been the choice for more privateer riders than any other brand! Scott are known to produce a high quality, functional and non flashy goggle with loads of adjustment for all face shapes and sizes. With the introduction of the new Scott Prospect Goggles, however, they truly brought their A-game against brands like Oakley and 100%. Young guns around the world are taking the Prospect goggles to the top step of World Championship podiums, and if they're good enough for Joey Savatgy, Austin Forkner, Jorge Prado and Pauls Jonass, you know these things are the real dal. Scott was also the first brand to produce the "OTG" goggle to be worn over prescription glasses. Check out Scott Here!
Spy goggles are another brand which oozes style.. And with its founding father being Jeremy McGrath it is no surprise. Spy have also developed a quick release Injection-molded lense to capture riders chasing a premium goggle. Cole Seely continues to fly the SPY flag, and with some premium features and epic colourways you can't go wrong with the SPY range. Check out Spy Here!
One of the most popular Thor products of all time is the Thor Enemy goggle in black. The reason being a functional, simple and affordable goggle manufactured by one of the biggest brands in MX. Check out Thor Goggles Here!
The largest brand in MX has also produced a range of Motocross goggles people on any budget. Fox is known for making some of the best quality MX gear on the planet and their goggles are no exception. Check out Fox Goggles Here!
EKS goggles are known for their range of stylish, comfortable, functional and affordable goggles. EKS have goggles similar to other brands high end range but for a fraction of the cost. Check out EKS Here!
If you have any further questions about choosing the right goggle brand don't hesitate to contact the friendly team at MXstore
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