The first item of kit most students purchase is their own diving mask.
Why not? A properly fitting diving mask can be the difference between a bad dive and a good dive experience, and, to be honest, why would you want to wear a mask that’s been worn by many other divers before you… ewww!
Diving masks are available in many different shapes and sizes, and the fit is far more important than the price. If a £30 mask is comfortable and doesn’t leak, why pay out £80?
Available in many colours too, student divers often ask why some masks have clear “skirts” and others have black. Apart from black being ultra cool and butch looking (Navy divers always have black masks don’t they?) the real difference is a solid colour blocks out some side light reflections and is less distracting for serious underwater photographers (hey, another great PADI course!).
Always try on the diving mask before you buy, and buy the one you tried on, not a similar one from the back stock, because even the same model of mask might vary a little.
PS Don’t forget your snorkel… you’re not a diver without one!