Noise Education

How to Put in Foam Earplugs and Test Their Fit for Optimal Noise Reduction

Learning how to put in earplugs isn’t rocket science, or is it? Sadly, in multiple studies, fitted earplugs did not even provide half the noise reduction that was printed on the package. The striking difference between the noise reduction ...

Are Earplugs Good for You? Side Effects of Using Earplugs and How to Overcome Them

I have worn earplugs for a few years’ worth of nights and while there was nothing major, I have had to deal with a few side effects. The most prominent one was ear pain—mainly when I had gotten earplugs that weren’t a good fit for my ears or ...

Are There Any Earplugs or Earmuffs That Block All Sound?

This post is about what amount of noise blocking you can expect from the best earplugs and earmuffs, and what you can do to push the boundaries. Are you trying to sleep while the folks next door are having a party or concentrate while your ...

Earplugs vs Earmuffs: Which Type of Protector Is Better?

Earmuffs and earplugs both have a place in my hearing protector arsenal because they offer unique benefits. With good earmuffs you generally get good, reliable noise reduction. You put on the muffs, adjust the headband, and can expect decent ...

Using a Lubricant to Insert Earplugs: The Secret Sauce to Getting the Perfect Seal

No two ears are the same. For example, I find it much easier to insert earplugs into my left ear than my right ear. Somehow my right ear canal is slightly twisted. I consider myself an experienced earplug user; I have used them for ...

What Is the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) and How to Use It?

When buying earplugs, earmuffs, and some noise-isolating earbuds, you will notice a label Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) together with a number. For example, 3M’s Peltor X5A earmuffs have an NRR of 31, while Howard Leight’s Max Lite earplugs have a ...