The Pros and Cons of Different Lens Tints

Paintball player

Lens tint on a paintball mask plays a large role in the effectiveness of how you adapt to the game or competition. Serious players acquire multiple lenses in a variety of colors when choosing a mask for versatility in playing options. This ensures the player always has an appropriate lens option depending on the specific style of play. When deciding on tint colors, consider the benefits and drawbacks of each hue.

Clear

Considered an everyday lens, all paintballers should carry at least one clear lens. Paintball masks with this lens offer optimal viewing indoors or outdoors, during daylight or nighttime hours. This is an extremely multipurpose lens that every player should possess.

Amber

This tint of a paintball mask may vary from yellow to orange. The color offers a number of benefits that include greater clarity in foggy, hazy or other low-light environments. Wear these lenses in dense forests, on rainy days or indoors in dimly lit conditions. Amber typically inhibits blue lights that hinder focus while red elements of the color enhance depth perception. Additionally, the amount of light allowed through this lens tint helps distinguish between low, medium and high lights and shadows, which means even if camouflaged, the movements of competitors becomes more visible.

Blue

When used on a paintball mask, a blue lens offers a number of benefits similar to amber colored lenses, though not quite as effectively. The color reduces glare, which is not only important on sunny days or under bright lights, but glare reduction is especially needed when competing on a luminous, winter day after a snowfall. Blue also helps accentuate contours and heightens color perception. Many prefer blue lenses for foggy or misty days in the field.

Red

A red lens absorbs some green light and offers the visual acuity and sharpness offered by amber lenses. However, the hue is not as effective outdoors in the early morning or late afternoon hours. This color also generally filters out light that is considered harsh and harmful to the eyes.

Green

A green lens sufficiently blocks red and infrared light waves that are produced by the sun. The color also serves well for fighting glare in an extremely bright environment.

Smoke

Smoke lenses come in tint variations that range from lightly gray to almost completely black. The color transmits all of the other colors of the spectrum, so the viewer gets full, true-color perception without distortions. In addition to providing adequate protection on sunny days, smoky tones help combat eye fatigue. The grayish hues are also the best tint for reducing the high glare often encountered when near bodies of water. While a paintball mask equipped with a smoked lens is often used daily, the color is not recommended when engaged in battle in a dense forest, while indoors or at night.

Mirrored

While most are familiar with a basic silver chrome mirrored lens, this tint style comes in virtually every color of the rainbow. Mirrored lenses offer the darkest level of tint available and provide the ultimate protection on a bright sunny day or in the snow while simultaneously providing excellent visibility.

Hybrid

Similar to the varied tint on an automotive windshield, a hybrid lens has smoke or other dark color tinting on the uppermost portion of the lens that fades to clear or a lighter hue toward the bottom of the lens. The gradation provides the best of both worlds by offering clear viewing while inhibiting harsh light from above.

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