How to Stop Goggles from Falling Off

Having your goggles fall off is something every swimmer dreads. Especially at a swim meet. But goggles can come off. Usually at the worst time. 

Related article: 7 Reasons to Wear Goggles When you Swim

And while there’s no sure secret to keep your goggles from falling off, there are some things to consider. From prevention to correct goggle selection, try these options to help keep your goggles on.

DISCLAIMER: We will note that any type of goggle has the chance to fall off on a dive or start. Regardless of how they sit on the face or how tight they are. Sometimes goggles fall off simply due to the type of start and entry into the water. 

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Image of a pool with green stripes alongside the picture of the pool. A green box is in the middle with text that reads: How to Stop Goggles from Falling Off

Goggles Too Loose

Most of the time, goggles fall off because they’re too loose. 

Goggle straps are typically kept at a larger size by default. And if you’re not sure how to adjust the straps or didn’t know you needed to adjust them, they’re likely to fall off.

Either when you’re swimming or during a dive.

The good news is that it’s an easy fix. Just tighten the goggle straps some!

The straps that come with the goggles can be difficult to adjust when you’re wearing them. Because of this, it’s best to fix the straps when you’re not wearing them as it’s much easier to adjust that way. 

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We recommend tightening them in small increments to avoid over-tightening. If you tighten them too much on the first try, you might find that they’re too small to even wear!

One thing to consider is switching out your goggle straps with bungee straps. Bungee straps are much easier to tighten and adjust. And you can do so while you’re wearing your goggles!


Bad Seal

Your goggle straps might be tight, but they can still fall off if you don’t have a good seal. The good news is that this is also a simple fix!

Related article: How to Fix Common Swim Goggle Problems

After you put your goggles on and set, make sure you press against the lens to help tighten the seal around your eyes. You can do this with just the tips of your fingers or the palms of your hands. 

Press all sides of the goggles to get the best seal you can. Top and bottom. Along with both sides.

Product on Your Face

This might sound silly, but if you put moisturizer or some type of lotion on your face, it could cause your goggles to fall off. 

Lotion tends to turn slimy in the water. And if you have some on your face, your goggles will slip down if they can’t form a good seal.

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They might stay on instead of falling off completely. But you can feel them slipping as you swim and it can be annoying.

We recommend washing off your face before you get into the water and drying it off well with a towel. This can help remove any moisturizer that might still be on your skin. 

You may find that you need to do this one more time even after you get into the water. If so, just dry your face off and you should be good to go!

However, we’ll note that not all lotion/moisturizer brands will do this.  And it’s a bit of trial and error to find the brand that doesn’t turn slippery or slimy in the water.

For me, Gold Bond lotion is great for dry skin on my body. But it does make my skin slippery when I get in the water. So while I use Gold Bond for my body, I use a different brand for my face.

I’ve found that Oil of Olay works best for my face. But you might find that a different brand works best for you. 

Try out different options and remember to stay patient!

Type of Goggle

Some types of goggles fall off more easily than others. This can come down to the profile of the goggle (how far out it sits on your face) and the type of seal it has.

Related article: How to Pick the Right Swim Goggle

Goggles that sit closer to your eye, such as Swedish goggles have a higher chance of falling off. Especially during a dive. 

Swedish goggles in particular are more prone to falling off due to their lack of a seal around the goggle itself. 

Based on how someone enters the water, goggles with a higher profile have a higher chance of falling off. 

Some swimmers have trouble with Speedo Vanquisher goggles falling off. Myself included! 

Even though Vanquishers sit more on the orbital bone, they have a higher profile. This means that they can catch the water during a dive and may fall off. Or fill with water.

For me, Arena Tracks are the best fit. They sit close to my face without digging into my eyes and tend not to fall off. Best of all options!

Goggle Straps

How you wear your goggle straps can be a reason your goggles fall off. 

If you keep the straps together when you swim, you might want to consider staggering the straps. Put one up higher on the back of your head and another lower. Typically, the straps will bracket your ears.

And if you have long hair, the straps will go above and below any hair bump. 🙂

Wear them split already? Try keeping them together next time. 

You’ll need to adjust where they sit on the back of your head to find the best fit. Once you find it, make sure you remember where they need to go. And with time, it’ll become a habit and you can do it without thinking.

Bungee Straps vs Regular Straps

We mentioned earlier that bungee straps are easier to tighten and adjust. They can also help keep your goggles from falling off. If worn correctly, of course 🙂

If you’re having trouble keeping your goggles on or adjusting the tightness, consider switching to a bungee strap. These straps, in our opinion, hold goggles tighter than regular straps.

One other benefit to bungee straps is that they tend to last longer. Straps that come with goggles can snap or start to tear with time. Especially if you wear them tight. Bungee straps, however, are less likely to break.

In time, they will lose their elasticity. But you can get a good 2-3 years out of a single bungee strap compared to regular ones. 

Dive Entry

Sometimes, how you dive into the water is the cause behind your goggles falling off. Most of this comes down to your head position, as too high or low can cause the goggles to catch.

Then they’ll either fall off or fill up with water.

It takes time, practice, and adjusting of your dive to find what works for you. It might be that you need to switch to a track start. Or try a dive with both feet forward. 

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Also, make sure you’re holding tight streamline when you enter the water. This can help keep your goggles in place as your arms are helping to hold the straps in place.

Have a coach or someone you know watch your dive and then provide feedback. If you can, have them record the dive and then review it to see what can be changed.

Again, stay patient with any changes to your dive. It takes time to find what will work. 

As always, happy swimming!


Bonus Content:

Your Quick Guide to Swim Caps: If you’re searching for the best swim cap, you might ask: what’s the best swim cap? Here’s a quick guide to the various types of swim caps.

What Should You Take When you go Lap Swimming?: It might seem straightforward, but it never fails that you forget something. So what should you bring when you go lap swimming?

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