Have you filmed or photographed a wedding during the Covid pandemic? If so, I’m willing to bet that you encountered your camera’s viewfinder fogging up throughout the day.
Am I right? Why? Due to wearing your face mask of course.
OK, so wearing the mask is important for obvious reasons. But surely it is possible to wear the mask without it fogging up the camera. Life as a wedding vendor is already challenging enough as it is!
As a wedding videographer, this annoyance happened to me during the first wedding I filmed since restrictions eased to allow weddings to proceed.
In the middle of the shoot, the viewfinder fogged up so bad that I couldn’t see anything through it. Then it happened later when I was covering the couple’s sparkler wedding send off exit in the evening.
It was stressful at the time because I felt I would miss important shots unless I came up with a quick solution.
Thankfully, I did come up with an answer and I’ll share this below along with other anti-camera viewfinder fogging up tips that I’ve learned since.
A camera’s viewfinder can be protected against fogging up by replacing the standard oval eyepiece with a larger rubber eyecup. The replacement rubber eyecup forms a tight seal between the viewfinder and the person’s eye socket. Warm air escaping from the top of the face mask will be prevented from entering the viewfinder and causing condensation to form.
How To Fix the Camera Viewfinder Fogging Up While Wearing a Mask Issue
Returning back to the story of the first wedding I was filming while wearing a face mask. When I experienced the viewfinder fogging up problem, I remembered that I had a backup rubber eyecup in my camera bag.
The eyepiece that was attached to the camera at the time was the standard one that came supplied with my Sony camera. So I decided to swap it out with this Eyecup Eyepiece (affiliate link) that I had purchased from Amazon. It worked a treat!
This eyecup below makes it much easier for glasses wearers to use viewfinders.
Hoodman Camera Eyecup Eye Cup Viewfinder Eye Piece
- Designed specifically for use with glasses
- Oversize eyecup comfortably seals out ambient light
- Hypoallergenic silicon rubber comfortable eyecup
- Specifically designed to replace oem sony eyepieces
- Eyecup rotates to accommodate right or left eyed shooters
What types of Eyecups for Sony, Canon, and Nikon cameras prevent the viewfinders from fogging up?
A quick look on Amazon reveals that the following models can be obtained. I own the one for the Sony A7III and it works really well. No more fogging problems when I wear my face mask!
- JJC Eyepiece Viewfinder for Sony a6300 a6100 a6000 NEX-6 NEX-7 and FDA-EV1S Electronic Viewfinder Replaces Sony FDA-EP10 Eye Cup
- JJC Eye Cup Eyepiece Viewfinder for Sony a7 a7 II a7 III a7R a7R II a7R III a7R IV a7S a7S II a9 a58 a99 II Replaces Sony FDA-EP18
- JJC Soft Silicone 360º Rotatable Ergonomic Oval Shape Camera Viewfinder Eyecup Eyepiece for Sony ILCE A6300 A6000 NEX-6 NEX-7 Replace Sony FDA-EP10
- JJC 2 Types Camera Eyecup Eye Cup Eyepiece Viewfinder for Canon T7 T6 T5 T6i T5i T6s T3 T2 XS T7i T4i T3i T2i T1i XSi XTi XT SL1 SL2 Ti 77D K2
- JJC Eye Cup Eyepiece Viewfinder for Nikon D5600 D5500 D5300 D5200 D5100 D5000 D3500 D3400 D3300 D3200 D3100 D3000
- JJC Eye Cup Eyepiece Viewfinder for Canon 6D Mark II 6D 5D Mark II 5D 90D 80D 70D 60D 60Da 50D 40D 30D 20Da 20D 10D
- Oval Rotatable Camera Eyecup Eyepiece Viewfinder Eyeshade for Sony A9II A7RIV A7RIII A7III A7RII A7SII A7II A7 A7S A7R Mark IV III II A7M3 A9 A58 A99II Replaces Sony FDA-EP18 FDA-EP16 FDA-EP15 Eye Cup
- Hoodman Glasses Model HEYESG HoodEYE Camera Eyecup Eye Cup Viewfinder Eye Piece for Sony Alpha7 Alpha7II Alpha7III Alpha7R Alpha7RII Alpha7RIII Alpha7S Alpha7SII Alpha9II A58 A57 A65
Take a look on B&H’s website. They have a ton of fog-free kit.
Alternative solutions to the camera viewfinder fogging up from wearing a mask problem
Apart from holding your breath all day, there are other options for helping deal with a problematic camera viewfinder fogging up situation.
There are various commercial anti-fog lens cleaning wipes available that will help.
Some people have also reported that if you get a small bit of ordinary soap and rinse it into a lather and gently wipe that onto the viewfinder surface. It will leave a tiny layer of invisible protection on the viewfinder that should prevent it from fogging up when you really need to see through it.
Another tip to prevent the viewfinder fogging up is to twist the straps of the facemask so that it is tighter on the face and slows down the amount of air leakage.
What about trying alternative masks? This could also help to alleviate any condensation from forming on the viewfinder due to warm exhaled air leaking from the mask as you breathe out. We all have to breathe, right?!
Try using masks that have a thin strip of metal that runs along the top edge. These strips can be manipulated to fold around your nose to make them more comfortable and sit tighter on your face to reduce the amount of warm airflow.
Allowing your camera to acclimatize is another suggestion. So, if the camera has just come from a cold bag in the trunk of the car, let it warm up first in the air for a few minutes before you start shooting.
The idea is to minimize the difference in air temperature between the environment the camera body came from and the temperature of the air in the new environment.
This next suggestion doesn’t look great but it reportedly does work! If you take a thin piece of tissue and fold it along the edge of the mask. It will absorb the moisture from your breath as it passes over it.
If you wear glasses, it’s ideal if you can wear your glasses over your mask to prevent them from fogging.
Wearing the right face mask is important to blend into the background just like the advice we give about what to wear as a wedding photographer or videographer.
And there you have it. Plenty of practical suggestions to help with the problem of your viewfinder fogging up when wearing a mask due to the Covid pandemic.