Best Ski Masks and Balaclava

Cori Gramms
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If you’re an avid snow sport fan, an adventurer, or someone who lives in an area where you face harsh weather conditions, then you probably know that the secret to surviving winter is to stay warm. In order to help you stay nice and toasty on those cold wintry days, we have created a list of our favorite ski masks and balaclavas for large heads in 2019.

NameCategoryProduct
Ergodyne N-Ferno 6823 Balaclava Ski MaskBest OverallErgodyne N-Ferno 6823 Balaclava Ski Mask
Neck Gaiter Face MaskBudget PickNeck Gaiter Face Mask
Smartwool Unisex BalaclavaUpgrade PickSmartwool Unisex Balaclava

1. Ergodyne N-Ferno 6823 Balaclava Ski Mask

Our rating: 9 / 10

Ergodyne N-Ferno 6823 Balaclava Ski Mask

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Pros:

  • Fully windproof and breathable
  • Solid construction and comfortable material
  • UV protective
  • Available at 4 sizes
  • Has vents that let heat escape
  • Suspension headband

Cons:

  • The large size may be somewhat restricting if you have a big head
  • Quite bulky

X Large.

This heat-resistant ski mask is tightly knitted with a breathable fabric to give top-notch protection against the harsh winter elements.

Being safe isn’t restricted to your body, so make sure to cover your head with the N-Ferno balaclava as well. This balaclava is optional size with all the great features including fully windproof knit, mask coverage, suspension headband, and muslin drawstring.

2. ZERDOCEAN Winter Windproof Fleece Thermal Motorcycle Ski Headwear Balaclava

Our rating: 9 / 10

ZERDOCEAN Winter Windproof Fleece Thermal Motorcycle Ski Headwear Balaclava

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Pros:

  • Great for outdoor activities like skiing, snowboarding, hiking, skiing etc.
  • Able to protect the face against wind, cold and sun
  • Great for adults as well as kids and teens
  • Available in a variety of colors
  • Extremely affordable

Cons:

  • The stitching could be better
  • The material is a little thick
  • It doesn’t protect well against sudden cold weather changes (ice cold winds)

This hand-made Motorcycle Ski Balaclava is perfect for protection against cold, wind, snow, sun and many other elements that might cause you harm.

It contains the design of securing to ears to provide you with complete enclosure to your face.

The design is very flexible and stretchy, providing you with a comfortable fit.

3. Neck Gaiter Face Mask

Our rating: 8 / 10

Neck Gaiter Face Mask

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Pros:

  • Comes in a variety of colors
  • Really works against UV sun rays
  • Is breathable
  • Inexpensive
  • Can be used for a variety of purposes
  • Is easy to pack in a bag
  • Wicks away moisture

Cons:

  • Not the softest
  • May not hold up too well in rough conditions

Skiing, Cycling (Black).

4. Smartwool Unisex Balaclava

Our rating: 8 / 10

Smartwool Unisex Balaclava

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Pros:

  • Made with merino wool that provide a natural, odor resistant and thermal regulating base layer
  • 8g of 100% merino wool strategically placed around your face to provide warmth without overheating
  • Machine washable

This wool balaclava offers a whole face protection from the elements. It has a graduated compression design that starts high at your forehead and is lower at your chin and mouth. The material in the face area is thin and soft making it comfortable to wear, but the wool base layer holds it in place.

This balaclava fits most adult faces and has generous room for the nose, mouth, and eyes. It comes in sizes from small to extra large and you can choose from several colors.

If you love staying warm and being protected from harsh winds without overheating, then this could be the balaclava for you. It’s comfortable and breathable, making it perfect for a day on the slopes.

5. Seirus Innovation Unisex Neofleece Combo Scarf

Our rating: 8 / 10

Seirus Innovation Unisex Neofleece Combo Scarf

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Black.

This Unisex Neofleece combo scarf from Seirus Innovation is the ideal devise for those who want to stay warm and comfortable while on the slopes.

It keeps your head and face warm while also protecting it from the cold.

6. Self Pro Face Mask Ultimate Protection from Aerosols

Our rating: 8 / 10

Self Pro Face Mask Ultimate Protection from Aerosols

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Pros:

  • Covers all your face with 6 ways to wear
  • Includes a neck scarf so your face is properly covered
  • You can make masks out of it to fit right over your eyes, create a custom nose piece, or customize it to be worn like a helmet
  • More durable material
  • You can wash it up to 200 times
  • It’s a lot cheaper than other protective balaclavas
  • Includes a clean storage bag

When it comes to protecting your head, face and neck while you ski, snowboard or surf, the selfPro Face Mask Ultimate Protection is an absolutely incredible choice.

Whether you want to lay off the powder, skate or surfboard, this mask is going to be useful for you. It will keep you looking good while you protect your face and neck from the sun, wind, cold and anything that may invade your personal space.

This mask will keep you warm and comfortable. It is also a lot more durable than most of the other covers you can purchase. You can easily wash it up to 200 times, it comes with a storage bag to keep it clean, and you can wear it 6 different ways.

7. Beardski Ski Mask

Our rating: 8 / 10

Beardski Ski Mask

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Pros:

  • For those looking for warmth and comfort, the Beardski Ski Mask will keep your head warm and will allow you to keep your face exposed without worrying about frostbite.

This mask is made with a toasty high-quality material that will block cold air in the winter and keep the hot air in during the summer. Not to mention it’s breathable, doesn’t hold odor or moisture, and doesn’t leave any residue on your face.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is the difference between a balaclava and a ski mask?

A balaclava is a one-piece ski mask made from a single layer of material. It covers a wearer’s entire head, from above the chin to the base of the neck. The word balaclava originates from the Crimean War of 1854. During the war, the Balaclava Regiment found their wool headgear made much warmer and more protective when it was pulled down over their faces. They called their new headgear balaclava, after the small mountain town of Balaclava nearby.

A ski mask, also known as a ski face mask, is a form of headgear with a purpose. Ski masks are made to protect your face and head from the elements during winter sports or snowboarding. The ski mask is a category of clothing that includes ski masks and other headgear, such as face masks and helmets.

What is the best balaclava for skiing?

There are several models of balaclavas that you can choose from, and they each have their own set of features. Factors that you should consider when looking for the ideal balaclava are temperature range, materials, and face shape.

Is a balaclava a ski mask?

Technically, a balaclava is just one example of a ski mask. Therefore the term “ski mask” can be used interchangeably. Other types include bandanas, face-masks, laces, snoods, scarfs and other types of masks.

Can you wear ski masks in public?

While there’s no specific law against wearing a ski mask in public, it may draw more attention to you than you’d like. For instance, you may want to get away with a hoodie, or you’d like to pass unnoticed as you run errands. The ski mask may draw more attention than you anticipated.

Conclusion

When trying to decide on the best ski mask and balaclava for winter sports, you need to consider the type of activity you plan to be doing. Ski masks are designed to protect you from the cold weather and can also help keep your face warm while activities such as biking, hiking, etc. The balaclava is a more versatile version of the ski mask and can be worn with a jacket over top or with other gear like helmets.

Our Recommendation

NameCategoryProduct
Ergodyne N-Ferno 6823 Balaclava Ski MaskBest OverallErgodyne N-Ferno 6823 Balaclava Ski Mask
Neck Gaiter Face MaskBudget PickNeck Gaiter Face Mask
Smartwool Unisex BalaclavaUpgrade PickSmartwool Unisex Balaclava