What Is A Thermal Lens

Paintball players rely on clear vision to see the opponents.

A thermal lens is a type of lens that uses two lenses to trap air and prevent fogging. Thermal lenses are used in paintball masks, skiing masks and scuba diving goggles that often fog up, hindering the wearer’s vision. High quality sports masks often come with thermal lenses or can be fitted with thermal lenses.


Thermal lenses come in several colors that are used in different situations. Clear is used for dusk or night games when a tint is not necessary to protect from the sun’s glare. A light amber tint can be used in sunny or shady conditions to enhance contrast. Smoky or gray tints, best for very sunny conditions, protect the wearer’s eyes from glare.

Replacement lenses

As a safety precaution thermal lenses should be replaced annually or if a crack is found. High end mask brands sell replacement lenses to fit their masks.


Avoid cleaning a mask with anything other than a microfiber cloth, which is often included with the mask. Lenses can scratch when continually rubbed with harsh materials. Clean a lens after each use with warm water and a gentle soap. Let the lens air dry.

Special case lenses

Some high end retailers provide thermal lenses with corrective vision for people who wear glasses. These come in several colors and match your custom prescription.