The 5 Best Snorkels for Swimmers

7 Best Swim Snorkels for Better Technique and Faster Swimming

Ready to throw down on a new swimmer’s snorkel? Here are reviews of the best swim snorkels for improving form and speed in the water.

The swim snorkel has become one of the most popular pieces of swimming gear on the pool deck over the last decade or so and with good reason.

Swim snorkels are an excellent tool for balancing out your stroke, addressing muscle imbalances, improving head position, doing kick without a kickboard, and even alleviating neck and trap pain from turning your head over and over to breathe.

This guide will look at the top swim snorkels on the pool deck for improving swim performance. From snorkels for elite swimmers to young swimmers aiming to master stroke fundamentals, there is a swim snorkel in this list for you and your goals.

Let’s dive right in.

The Best Snorkels for Swimmers 

Having tested and reviewed dozens of swim snorkels over the years, here are our top picks:

Next, we will examine each snorkel in-depth, highlighting key features, pros, and cons, as well as what to look for when choosing the perfect snorkel for your swim workouts.

Best Swim Snorkels for Swimming Laps

1. FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel

⭐ Best overall swimmer’s snorkel for laps

FINIS Swimmer's Snorkel

The classic. The O.G. The FINIS Original Swimmer’s Snorkel.

FINIS co-founders John Mix and Olympic butterfly champion Pablo Morales developed the first center-mounted snorkel for swimming laps back in 1994. It would take some time for them to catch on, but once they did, they did so with gusto.

Nowadays, the swimming snorkel use has exploded among competitive and even recreational swimmers.

The FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel is the original, and is still the most popular of the bunch, and hence why it ranks at the top of the list of best swim snorkels.

The swimmers snorkel has a one-way purge valve to quickly rid water from the snorkel, an adjustable head strap, and the bracket can be moved up and down the tube for a proper fit.

They are available in the customary FINIS-yellow as well as in pink.

PROSCONS
The original (and still the best) swim snorkelBracket has broken on me a couple of times
Lots of color options 
Easy to adjust 
Silicone mouthpiece to reduce jaw fatigue 

2. FINIS Freestyle Snorkel

⭐ Best snorkel for improving freestyle technique

FINIS Freestyle Swim Snorkel (1)

In the same way that FINIS developed a set of swim paddles designed specifically for freestylers, they have also produced a snorkel that is meant for the freestyle enthusiast.

The FINIS Freestyle Snorkel takes the FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel and wraps the top half of the tube around the back of your head so that the top of the tube faces back behind you instead of straight up.

The main reason I like this swim snorkel is that it encourages you to swim with better body position while doing freestyle. Because of the curvature of the snorkel, if you pick up your head while swimming, the top of the tube will dip into the water behind you.

The FINIS Freestyle Snorkel helps you keep your head down, neck and spine straight, and improves overall body position in the water. A great choice for the freestyle swimmer trying to break the habit of snow-plowing the water with their forehead when swimming.

PROSCONS
Hydrodynamic design; perfect for freestylersLimited utility with other strokes
Silicone mouthpiece for long sets and swim workoutsOnly available in one color
Perfect snorkel for mastering proper head position when swimming 
Made by FINIS, the leading brand for snorkels 

3. Speedo Bullethead Swimming Snorkel

⭐ Best swim snorkel for comfort

Speedo Bullet Head Swim Snorkel

Speedo was a little late to the swimming snorkel game, but the Bullethead is an excellent snorkel in its own right.

It has a minimalist design that reduces drag and friction in the water (the slim profile also means that it doesn’t wobble like some thicker snorkels). A consistent fit is made possible by notches on the tube (so you don’t lose track of the head strap bracket position). And the headband is padded so that the bracket isn’t digging into your head during extended use.

Speedo Bullethead Swimming Snorkel

I really like the bright colors of the Speedo Bullet Head Swim Training Snorkel, along with the silicone head strap that ensures a comfortable and slip-free fit every time you slip it on.

The head strap is also thicker than the other snorkels on this list, which gives you a feeling of greater stability when hitting faster speeds in the water.

Available in five different colors and color combinations, the Speedo Snorkel is fast, looks great, and is comfortable for those long main sets at the pool.

PROSCONS
Exceptionally comfortableMouthpiece does not twist
Padded head mount for longer swims 
Lots of color and print options 
Drag-reducing breathing tube 

4. FINIS Stability Swimmer’s Snorkel

⭐ Best snorkel for competitive swimmers who like to go fast

FINIS Stability Swimmer's Snorkel

The FINIS Stability Swimmer’s Snorkel takes all of the things that I love about the original snorkel and adds a couple of key, game-changing features.

First, it has a swiveling mouthpiece that makes it easy to turn so that you can breathe with your full mouth between reps in the pool.

Best Snorkels for Swimming - FINIS Stability Swimmers Snorkel

This allows you to communicate more easily with your coach (“I’m going as fast as I can!”). The swiveling mouthpiece means you don’t have to twist the whole snorkel to gulp down more air.

A simple but highly functional feature!

The FINIS Stability Swimmer’s Snorkel also has a smaller head bracket.

Compared to the FINIS Original Swim Snorkel, and most of the other snorkels on this list, the Stability Snorkel has a smaller head bracket, with strap adjustment being made at the back of the snorkel (like swim goggles).

Swimmers Snorkel

This makes for fewer moving pieces and longer durability.

And finally, the dual head straps allow for a more stable snorkel position and less wobbling when swimming at high speeds. Put on fins and paddles and hit those blistering speeds with this thing on. It’s made for it.

The main downside of the FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel is that your head feels “busy” with the dual straps and your swim goggle straps.

PROSCONS
Best swim snorkel for sprintingMultiple head straps can feel “busy” when combined with goggle straps
Swiveling mouthpiece for mid-set conversations 
Easy-to-track positioning on mouth piece 
Slimmer head bracket compared to FINIS Original Snorkel 

5. FINIS Junior Swimmer’s Snorkel

⭐ Best junior swim snorkel

FINIS Swimmer's Snorkel Junior

Yup—another snorkel by the folks at FINIS!

The FINIS Swim Snorkel Jr, an excellent swim snorkel for beginners, is designed specifically for junior age group swimmers.

The FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel Junior has the same performance features as the regular snorkel, with an easily adjustable head strap, one-way purge valve for easily getting water out of the tube, and the center-mount design that is perfect for swimming laps.

The tube on the Jr model is two-inches shorter, which means that swimmers have to “push” less with their lungs to purge the tube, and makes it a better choice for smaller swimmers with smaller lungs.

FINIS recommends the Jr version of their swimmers snorkel for kids aged 10-13 years.

PROSCONS
Top swim snorkel for younger age group swimmersToo big for smaller age groupers
Purge valve 
Silicone mouthpiece 
Smaller tub and mouth piece 

6. FINIS Stability Snorkel Jr

⭐ Best snorkel for younger kids

FINIS Stability Swim Snorkel Junior

The FINIS Stability Snorkel Jr is a snorkel designed for younger swimmers, aged 6-10 years of age. It combines the same easy-to-adjust height on the mouthpiece as the Adult version, with a shorter tube and soft, silicone head mount for smaller faces.

The dual-strap design on the Junior model is different from the adult version in that the strap splits into two halfway, just past the ears. The smaller mouthpiece is also designed for younger swimmers.

The FINIS Stability Snorkel Jr is the perfect snorkel for swimmers who want to increase confidence in the water and focus on mastering technique and proper stroke fundamentals.

Easy to adjust, comfortable enough for extended wear, and made by the leading swim snorkel brand on the pool deck, the FINIS Stability Snorkel Jr is the perfect “first” snorkel for your swimmers.

PROSCONS
Best “first” snorkel for younger swimmersLimited color options
Comfortable head mount that won’t leave marks 
Made by the leading swim snorkel brand 
Smaller mouthpiece and shorter tube for smaller swimmers 

7. TYR Ultralite 2.0 Snorkel

⭐ Best swim snorkel for building lung strength

TYR 2.0 Ultralite Swimmer's Snorkel

As the name would suggest, the TYR Ultralite 2.0 snorkel’s distinctive feature is its weight—or rather, its lack of it. At just 175g, it’s a featherweight, which comes in handy when having to stuff your mesh bag on the way to practice.

The mouthpiece is made of a soft silicone (helpful for those long swims to avoid jaw fatigue from biting down on the mouthpiece), a hydrodynamic tube and a distinct boomerang shape.

TYR Ultralite 2.0 Swimming Snorkel

The head strap is tightened on the back of your head, unlike the other snorkels on this list whose straps are adjusted where the headpiece meets the snorkel tube.

The best part about the Ultralite 2.0 is that it comes with two additional tube caps that restrict airflow into the tube.

Snorkels for Lap Swimming - Arena Ultralite 2.0 Swim Snorkel - Caps

The caps essentially make your lungs work harder to inhale and exhale, like weight lifting for your lungs. (This type of training is obviously for more experienced swimmers.)

The TYR Ultralite 2.0 is available in black as well as in pink.

PROSCONS
Multiple air valves for strengthening respiratory musclesNo purge valve
Two head straps for custom snorkel placement 
Easy to clean mouthpiece 
Several color options 

How to Choose the Perfect Snorkel for Swimming

The swim snorkel is one of my favorite all-time tools for getting faster and more efficient in the water.

They come in a wide range of colors, shapes, and sizes. They also have varying features, including purge valves, spot size, and a whole bunch more.

Suddenly, shopping for this simple-looking tool can get overwhelming.

Here are the key things to look out for when picking up your next snorkel for swimming laps.

✅ Head straps.

Straps are your best friend for keeping the snorkel in place when swimming. A wobbly swim snorkel is a pain in the chlorinated butt, and the last thing you want to do mid-length while you are crushing a swim practice is having to stop and straighten the snorkel.

Head straps come in a variety of forms. There is a single strap that breaks off into two at the back of the head to give the snorkel more “grip” on your head. Some snorkels now have two straps (like the FINIS Stability Snorkel). And others have one adjustable strap.

How to Choose the Perfect Swimming Snorkel
Image credit: @kaatedouglass

Head straps keep the snorkel stable while you are swimming, so make sure to choose a swim snorkel with a strap that will keep it in place.

✅ Head padding.

I’ve long been a fan of doing extended, unbroken swims with a snorkel on. There’s something meditative about staring at the bottom of the pool for long stretches of time.

But after these swims, I found that my forehead was sore from the headpiece. Most snorkel makers have updated their swim snorkels to add padding to the headpiece.

Snorkels are great tools, but they are even better when they can be worn comfortably.

✅ Snorkel tube shape.

The shape of the tube is another key thing to think about when trying to find the right swimmer’s snorkel for you. A majority of snorkels have a slight bend backwards in the tube to keep water from entering the tube.

The FINIS Freestyler has a more bent tube that frees up more room to perform a flipturn without the snorkel crashing into your legs.

If you plan on swimming in open water, look for a tube that has a straighter construction, giving you more clearance and decreasing the odds an errant wave will tumble down the purge valve and tube.

How to Choose the Best Swim Snorkel
Image credit: @regansmith4

✅ Colors and price.

Lastly, there are the other factors of cost and price. Cost-wise, swim snorkels range in the $30-40 range, with the specialized snorkels costing a little more.

Colors are a choice of preference and style, but a brighter swim snorkel can be a safety win. For swimmers who like to take their snorkel to the lake or ocean, a brightly colored swim snorkel can help increase their visibility on the open water.

What are the benefits of swimming with a snorkel?

The benefits of swim snorkels include developing a more balanced stroke, improving body position, maintaining a straight head when swimming, and reducing neck and trap tightness from extended swimming.

Snorkels are also excellent for doing kick sets without a kickboard and for sculling to improve your feel for the water.

How to Use a Swimming Snorkel
Using a swimmer’s snorkel is a great way to nail that “head down” and straight bodyline in the water.

Can a swimmer’s snorkel help improve cardio?

Yes, swim snorkels can help you build cardiovascular endurance by strengthening your breathing muscles.

Swimmer’s snorkels have a range of different tube widths. A narrower tube width means your lungs must work harder to push air in and out of the tube.

The effects are similar to wearing a training mask while doing dryland or land-based cardio.

FINIS also offers a cardio cap to add to their Jr and regular swim snorkels that narrow the tube width by 40%, encouraging you to really work your pulmonary muscles. (They are only around $6 over at Amazon.)

Why do some pools not allow swimmer’s snorkels?

Swim snorkels create a safety concern because they restrict your ability to see forward, increasing the likelihood of colliding with fellow lap swimmers.

Between the straighter head position that a snorkel encourages and the headpiece and mount blocking forward view, snorkels reduce forward-facing vision.

In the name of bubble-wrapping society, err, safety, some pools have decided that this makes them unsafe for open lap swim sessions when multiple users share a lane.

It’s always worth checking with your local swimming pool to ensure snorkels are okay to use during your next lap swim.

How do I make my swimmer’s snorkel last?

In terms of maintenance, there are two things that you will need to be aware of when using your snorkel.

First, you should be washing your snorkel every so often. Mold will accumulate in the tube and in the mouthpiece. (Fun fact: you can do this easily by throwing it in the dishwasher.)

Secondly, the snaps on the headpiece will snap on you. Sometimes, it’s after a couple of months, sometimes after a year or so, but inevitably, the snap that tightens or loosens the head strap has broken on every snorkel I’ve ever owned. I’ve “solved” this by simply tying the snorkel’s plastic strap once I’ve settled on a tightness I am happy with.

Where is the best place to buy swimmer’s snorkels?

Most local swim shops feature a decent selection of swimming snorkels.

Swim Outlet has the most extensive collection of swimming snorkels online. They also support many competitive swimming teams and organizations and are competitive in pricing with other big online retailers.

View Swim Outlet’s full collection of swim snorkels by clicking here.

Wrapping Things Up

The swim snorkel is one of the best tools you can add to your swim training to improve technique, become a more efficient swimmer, and increase overall speed. Snorkels are also a great way to help you focus on executing drills like sculling with full concentration.

To recap our top picks:

⭐ The FINIS Swimmer’s Snorkel is the original and still the best. It’s available in a ton of colors and also comes in junior sizes for smaller faces.

⭐ Swimmers who don’t love the FINIS options should opt for Speedo’s Bullethead Snorkel. It combines a minimalist design and a padded head mount.

⭐ Younger swimmers will love the comfortable fit and slim profile of the FINIS Stability Snorkel Jr, which has a soft silicone head mount and a to-adjust mouthpiece.

Choose the swim snorkel that matches your goals in the pool and take your swimming to the next level.


More Stuff Like This:

3 Sneaky Ways You Can Use Your Snorkel. Here are some different things you can do with your new snorkel in the pool to help supercharge your training.

The 9 Best Goggles for Swimming. Confused about what kind of goggles to get? Here’s a breakdown on the best swimming goggles for fast swimming.

The Best 6 Swim Fins for Swimmers. Looking to get a new set of fins? Here are reviews of the best swim fins available for competitive swimmers.

Get Daily Tips on How to Swim Faster

Subscribe to the YourSwimLog.com newsletter and get tips and advice on how to swim faster every weekday morning, straight to your inbox. 

Join 33,000+ swimmers, coaches, and swim parents learning what it takes to swim like a boss.

Unsubscribe anytime. Email will never be shared or sold.

Olivier Poirier-Leroy Olivier Poirier-Leroy is the founder of YourSwimLog.com. He is an author, former national level swimmer, two-time Olympic Trials qualifier, and swim coach.

Related Articles

How Often Should I Test My Pool Water
Swim Gear Guide

How Often Should I Test My Pool Water?

Wondering how often you should be testing the water in your pool or spa? Here’s a detailed look at how frequently you should test your pool. Your swimming pool and spa relies on being properly balanced to keep the water clean and safe for swimming. As a pool owner, you

Read More »