Choosing binoculars for women
There are some binoculars on the market that are especially designed for and marketed to women. There are others that are simply better suited to women who generally have narrower faces and smaller hands than men. That’s not to say that women can’t use the same binoculars as men, indeed binoculars are unisex, but some women prefer binoculars which boast certain features that make them more comfortable to use. The binoculars that are best suited to women are also great for older children, teenagers and smaller framed men. In addition, if you’ve got close set eyes then read on…
For now, lets look at the features of a binocular that will make them most suitable for use by women, small framed gents and older kids and teens.
Small and lightweight
People with smaller narrower faces and small hands often find smaller, compact or mid sized binoculars most comfortable to use. They’re not too heavy to hold for a long period of time, you can reach the focus wheel comfortably, and your hands fit comfortably around each lens barrel.
Compact and midsize binoculars have lenses between 20mm and 30mm in diameter, e.g. 10x25 or 7x30, and are ideal for general observations, spectating, sightseeing and nature watching in good lighting conditions. If you’re planning to use your new binoculars for these activities in day time conditions then choosing one of these more lightweight options is a great choice if you’re worried that you’ll find larger binoculars too much like hard work to use! If you’re planning to use your binoculars primarily in low light conditions then you’ll get better performance out of larger, full sized 42mm lensed binoculars, but when you’re choosing them, keep a look out for those which have some of the other features ideal for women that are listed below.
Don't forget, compact and mid size binoculars are also super easy to transport and can tuck easily into a small rucksack, coat pocket or handbag for a day at the races, concert or the theatre.
Small minimum interpupillary distance
When you’re looking through a pair of binoculars it’s important that the lenses near your eyes line up perfectly with your pupils, otherwise you get a dark circle forming around the image and only get to see a small part of the whole image which can be annoying and mean that you miss out on vital parts of the scene. Due to this, almost all binoculars have some sort of way to cater for the different distances that people have between their pupils.
Many binoculars us a hinge system between the two barrels allowing you to bring them, the eyecups and the ocular lenses closer or further apart. Despite this, not all binoculars are able to open or close the same amounts and not all will have the same maximum and minimum interpupillary distance.
If you’re a woman with a narrow face and thus you’re likely to have closer set eyes than someone with a wider face, or you are aware that you have close set eyes, you should look out for binoculars that have a small minimum inter pupillary distance, meaning that their barrels will move as close as possible together to ensure that the ocular lenses line up with your pupils giving you the best view possible from your binoculars.
Easy to reach focus wheel
It’s all very well being able to hold your binoculars, but if you can’t reach the focus wheel easily, then it’s not very likely that you will have a very clear or enjoyable view through them.
Your ability to reach the focus wheel will often depend on the size of the binoculars, with smaller compact or mid sized binoculars being more likely to have a wheel that is in easy reach for small hands, but if you’re opting for larger binoculars then keep your eyes peeled for binoculars which boast an ergonomic design with a well placed focus wheel.
If you’re a man or a woman with a narrow face, small hands of close set eyes then you’ll find binoculars which are on the smaller size and have a small minimum inter pupillary distance, easier and more comfortable to use. Don’t forget to take in to consideration additional factors such as the need for a long eye relief if you wear glasses and a waterproof coating if there’s a chance you’ll get caught in a downpour.
Recommended binoculars for women
Why not take a look at our recommended binoculars for women.