The best onion goggles: A review of 6 top brands
There are endless tips and tricks for holding back the tears as you chop, mince, slice and dice mouth- (and eye-) watering onions. But there’s also a product that claims to keep you from crying while you cut: onion goggles.
I put onion goggles to the test to answer one burning question, “Do onion goggles really work?” and to give you my pick for the best onion goggles on the market.
Do onion goggles really work?
I tested four brands of onion goggles and put them up against ordinary safety glasses and swim goggles to see if onion goggles do a better job at preventing onion tears than other protective eyewear.
I checked out the claims made by these products while slicing and dicing a bunch of yellow onions, which tend to bring on the tears for me more than any other type of onion.
The verdict: Onion goggles work OK — some better than others. They may make you look a little funny, but they do protect your eyes from getting hit head on with a cloud of onion gas.
At the very least, they do delay or reduce the tears that typically spring to your eyes when you chop an onion.
SEE RELATED: Why do onions make you cry?
Putting onion goggles to the test
I shopped for onion goggles, read reviews and bought four pairs of onion goggles that received good reviews from home cooks. Keep in mind, every brand of onion goggles has some fans and some reviewers claiming they don’t work at all.
Here are the onion goggles I tested and how they worked for me, along with features, pros, cons and cost.
RSVP International Onion Goggles
The RSVP International Onion Goggles seem to be popular, are sold at major retailers and also have the best packaging and marketing. They tout their product as “the original patented onion goggles.”
Features: foam seal, anti-fog lenses, gender neutral design that fits most
Colors: red, black and lime green, white and lime green, tortoise
The bottom line: These fit well, though there was a space at the bridge of my nose. They also worked pretty well to minimize tears while cutting an onion, but my nose stung because I was still breathing onion fumes as I chopped.
Haleems Onion Goggles
Haleems Onion Goggles come in eye-catching colors, and they claim to fit better than other onion goggles due to an adjustable strap that fits around your head. They arrived in a clear plastic bag.
Features: anti-fog, scratch-resistant lenses; UV protection; elastic strap; carrying bag
Colors: black, green, pink, orange
The bottom line: The adjustable elastic strap fit onto the glasses easily and helped hold them snugly against my face to minimize tearing.
Gadget Chef Onion Goggles
Gadget Chef Onion Goggles advertise a lightweight fit and ergonomic construction. They claim to also protect your eyes from other kitchen irritants such as intense heat and smoke and to double as safety glasses. They come with a Gadget Chef microfiber pouch.
Features: anti-fog, scratch-resistant polycarbonate lenses; microfiber cleaning cloth; carrying bag; “vapor-blocking seal”
Colors: lime green, purple, white
The bottom line: These delayed my sob-fest, but I was in tears by the time I finished chopping the onion.
QHQ-Shininglifi Onion Goggles
The QHQ-Shininglifi Onion Goggles were by far the cheapest pair of onion goggles I found, at about a third of the cost of the other styles. They’re lightweight and anti-fog and come with a molded protective carrying case that zips shut. If you’re looking for cheap onion goggles, these are a good pick.
Features: Anti-fog, anti-glare, scratch-resistant lenses; carrying case
Colors: black, blue, red, white
The bottom line: Just like the Gadget Chef onion goggles, these merely postponed the inevitable flood of tears.
NoCry Protective Non-Vented Safety Goggles
While it may be fun to buy a pair of onion goggles for your kitchen, onion goggles can’t be worn with glasses. I wanted to see if safety goggles that fit over my glasses would be a good option.
Some customers even claim they too bought these NoCry Protective Non-Vented Safety Goggles to use as onion goggles. “I chopped purple onions for my morning omelet and did not cry,” one Amazon reviewer wrote.
Features: high-impact, reinforced polycarbonate lenses; ANSI (American National Standards Institute) approved’ 99% UV protection; adjustable elastic headband
The bottom line: These worked OK, and they’re the only onion chopping solution I found that’s glasses-friendly.
Speedo Unisex Adult Swim Goggles
Onion goggles look a lot like swim goggles; plus, swim goggles seal very tightly to the face. Thus, I decided to see if swim goggles would work as well as onion goggles... or perhaps better.
I tested a classic pair of Speedo swim goggles, and it seems I’m not the only one who considered these for tear prevention. “I use these for chopping onions and not for swimming,” one Amazon reviewer wrote. “They work great! No eye burning or tearing and they don’t fog up.”
Features: Hypoallergenic frame; shatter-resistant, anti-fog lenses; 95% UV protection
Colors: black, clear, clear with blue lenses, light blue
The bottom line: These swim goggles did a better job protecting my eyes from fumes than any of the onion goggles, but the tight suction also made them uncomfortable to wear in the kitchen.
The best onion goggles
My choice for the best onion goggles: RSVP International Onion Goggles. Why are these the best onion goggles?
Right out of the box, these onion goggles seemed higher quality than the other brands I tested. They have a layer of rubber in between the hard plastic of the glasses and the foam seal, which gives them a tighter fit around the eyes.
They were also the most comfortable onion goggles I tried. And, most importantly, they worked best (aside from the uncomfortable swim goggles) at keeping the tears at bay.
These glasses also come in a cute box with the slogan: “For tear-free chopping, mincing, slicing and dicing.” The box features art of a man with an onion head wearing a pair of the goggles.
They also have an “Onion Goggles” logo on the arms and would make a fun, useful gift for any self-professed home chef.
Can you wear onion goggles over glasses?
You can’t wear onion goggles over glasses (at least none that I could find), and the RSVP International Onion Goggles even state this on the box.
I wear contact lenses most of the time. But for testing purposes, I put on my glasses, which have frames that are on the smaller side.
I tried all four pairs of onion goggles and couldn’t fit any of them over my glasses. The onion goggles tend to sit on top of the glasses, which prevents them from sealing to your face, therefore rendering them useless against onion fumes.
However, the protective safety goggles I tested fit perfectly over my glasses and did a decent job keeping me tear-free while chopping onions. So if you wear glasses, try safety glasses instead of onion goggles. Just make sure the eyewear you choose forms a tight seal around your eyes.
Onion goggles for dry eye
Onion goggles may help patients who have dry eyes, says Dr. Darryl Glover, an optometrist, author and speaker.
Dry eye syndrome can make your eyes feel gritty and irritated even when you’re not dealing with environmental irritants such as onion fumes. But having dry eyes can make a chore like chopping onions a whole lot more painful, Dr. Glover says.
In reviews for the various onion goggles I tested, I found comments from patients with dry eyes who wrote that wearing onion goggles in the kitchen helps them avoid irritation. In fact, some people with dry eyes also wear onion goggles to protect their eyes from air conditioning, dust and wind.
Where to buy onion goggles
You can find a selection of onion goggles on Amazon, including my pick for best onion goggles: the RSVP International Onion Goggles.
You can also buy onion goggles at Bed, Bath & Beyond and Sur La Table. If you’d rather just pick up a pair of ordinary safety glasses or swim goggles, you can always try discount or home improvement retailers such as Home Depot, Lowe’s, Target or Walmart.
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Page published on Wednesday, September 15, 2021