How to clean your Headphones to prevent an ear infection?

Remember what would happen if you came across a slice of unwrapping gum in these locations. Many people with common sense will stop chewing gum like that. What makes you think it’ll be any better for Headphones? Amid a hectic day, it’s easy to forget this detail.

Headphones are also sold with a charging case, making getting dust and bacteria off of them a bit simpler. They are, though, pulled out of the ears with the fingertips. Hands aren’t necessarily sanitized. Our hands, as we all know, have covered with millions of bacteria today more than ever

We have told not to contact our faces in today’s case. We have recommended using hand sanitizer and wash our hands as soon as possible as much as possible, particularly after going to the grocery store or gas station. When we get inside, we should strip down, wash dirty clothes, and take a shower.

Remember the infection that finds its way from your hands to your Headphones. According to Healthline, headphones have 2,708 times the amount of bacteria like a typical cutting surface. They produce six times the amount of bacteria present in a kitchen sink.

Finally, they have 330 times the amount of bacteria found on a kitchen sink. Dirty Headphones and headphones, on the other hand, may induce allergic reactions, rashes, and infections.

Why should you clean your headphones?

How to clean your Headphones to prevent an ear infection?

Before going to elaborate on your answer to how to clean your Headphones to prevent an ear infection? We need to consider this that Why you should clean your headphones?

There are many explanations for this, and the reasoning is evident if you’re sharing headphones with someone. You have no idea where their ears have been (jokes aside, they may have an ear infection and spread it).

Even if you do not share your headphones, leaving them on floors, picking them up by the cups with filthy hands, or simply leaving them anywhere that somebody could cough or sneeze on them by mistake will expose you to germs that can cause infection.

These germs will seep into the sponge, wreaking havoc and inducing recurrent infections, depending on your ear cups’ cover material.

So, how do you keep your headphones clean? It would help if you either used a wet soapy cloth or some isopropyl alcohol (be careful not to damage the electronics with too much moisture. Wipe it dry afterward).

To eliminate the bacteria in the sponges, you’ll need to scrape them and thoroughly wash them. After that, put them out to dry in the sun.

According to a 2021 report, after you’ve done so a few times, it’s a brilliant idea to repair the ear cup covers since any scratched cover substance will cut the ears, leading to outer ear infections. If you are vulnerable to infections, you can swap the Headphones on your headphones every 2 to 3 years.

Causes of headphones air infections

Sharing of headphones with others

Individuals who lend their headphones to others usually do so to assist a peer or express their newfound love of music or podcasts. The act of sharing allows staphylococcus (a form of skin bacteria) to spread from one person’s ear to another.

We grow accustomed to our skin bacteria and those with whom we have direct skin-to-skin contact. A new strain of staphylococcus may cause severe skin infections and other complications if it reaches a wound or hair follicle.

Wearing headphones for sport

Headphones trap heat and moisture in the ears, creating the ideal environment for bacteria to thrive. Suppose you wear headphones after swimming or working out. In that case, you could get ear infections, ear mites, bumps, or otitis media, a middle ear infection that triggers inflammation (redness and swelling), and the development of fluid behind the eardrum

Headphones carry dirt and infectious bacteria’s

Based on the kind of headphones you use, they could be more resistant to picking up and carrying soil and bacteria. In-ear headphones rest directly on the ear canal, enabling transmission; they are often exposed, allowing the sponge to accumulate more dirt and pathogens

You want one that’s easy to clean and won’t get too close to the ear canal. Over-ear headphones are typically made of durable materials, with leather and pleather being the most easily cleaned, and the cups are replaceable.

The worst are Headphones, which go right into the ear. Take out your earphones and check inside the silicone tips as a favor to yourself. It’s not going to be pretty, so brace you. Fortunately, they’re easy to scrub.

You usually throw them in your purse, trouser pockets, or something else you have with you when you take them out of your head, right? And, without ever worrying about it, we put them back in our heads. Your delicate ear community is being exposed to a brand new biome.

Instead, please do not do this; instead, disinfect them periodically and store them in a dedicated safe casing when not in service. It’s easy to clean them, and you’d be shocked by how much gunk comes out. Go to the end of the article for simple instructions

How to clean your Headphones to prevent an ear infection?

After knowing why your headphones get dirty now we are going to elaborate that how to clean your Headphones to prevent an ear infection?

How to clean Over-the-Ear Headphones?

Cleaning your over-the-ear headphones can be done in a variety of ways. Many brands have interchangeable ear cups and cables that can be unplugged on both sides, making them easy to clean.

Some labels are more difficult to disinfect, so be careful not to hurt them when doing so. If at all practicable, refer to the cleaning instructions given by the manufacturer. Basic cleaning instructions are available from Apple, Beats, and Bose, to name a few.

To clean your over-the-ear headphones, take these steps:

  • Remove the ear cups from the headphones if necessary to gain more accessible access to the mesh below.
  • Wipe away any stuck-on grime or debris from both the ear cups and the primary headphone device with your soft, moist rag. As much soil as possible should be extracted, as bacteria and other nasties will cling to it.
  • Using rubbing alcohol, dampen a paper towel or clean linen. Clean the ear cups and the rest of the headphones from top to bottom.
  • Clean some nooks and crannies with rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball or Q-tip. Do this on both the ear cups and the primary headset device (in places like cloth folds).
  • Extend the headphones to their full length, clean them well with rubbing alcohol and a towel or rag. You should wipe all keys, volume dials, or remotes you use. Give the place where you hold the headphones as you put them on and take them off some extra focus.
  • Wipe the mesh on the critical speakers with an alcohol-soaked paper towel or Q-tip. Be that you don’t lose any opportunities.
  • If your headphones have a microphone (for say, a gaming headset), clean the mesh and flexible arm with alcohol as well.

Finally, use a paper towel and some alcohol to scrub off all wires, including the rubber grip near the jack.

Before reassembling and using your headphones, let the alcohol dry absolutely (it should evaporate quickly). It does not leave any streaky traces or residue if you allow the isopropyl alcohol to disappears.

How to clean cleaning In-Ear Headphones?

Since you place them inside your ear, in-ear headphones are potentially much less hygienic than over-the-ear headphones. Silicon tips on some earphones enable them to sit very deep in your ear canal and create a seal. Although the sound level has unrivalled, the chance of ear injury is higher.

Remove and clean the rubber ear-tips separately if your in-ear headphones have them. The easiest way to do this is with a bar of soap and warm water. When doing so, be careful not to tear the silicone. After that, place them somewhere safe to dry while you clean the drivers.

You may also remove and clean the plastic covers on your earphones with warm water and soap. Alternatively, saturate the foam with isopropyl alcohol and allow it to evaporate. Any bacteria or fungi that may be present will be killed.

To clean your in-ear headphones follow these steps:

  • With a warm wet towel, clean off both of the drivers. Remove any grime, wax, or dirt that has stuck to the floor.
  • Through your wooden toothpick, gently scrape any ear wax or other debris from the speaker mesh. Take note not to damage the mesh in the process.
  • Warm up a Blu-Tack (or a similar adhesive) in your hands before pressing it into the speaker mesh softly. Remove any dirt or wax with a short pull, and then repeat until the speaker mesh is transparent. It’s also possible that a clean speaker mesh would improve the sound quality!
  • Using rubbing alcohol, dampen a paper towel or clean linen. Clean the whole driver, paying particular attention to any sensors (like the ear-detection sensors on Apple AirPods).
  • Using a Q-tip soaked in rubbing alcohol, clean the speaker mesh thoroughly. This should help loosen any persistent grime that has persisted.
  • Wipe off any wires, in-line remotes, or the rubber grip near the jack with an alcohol-soaked paper towel or clean rag.
  • Enable the alcohol to completely evaporate before sticking the headphones or their case into your face.
  • Other tips for cleaning your Headphones to prevent an ear infection

How to clean earphone tips or Headphone ear covers?

Many headphones have detachable ear pads, which are excellent for cleaning. They can be a little stinky (is it just me?), but this is a good alternative:

  • Pop the headphone off your headphones whether they’re removable.
  • Prepare a tub of soapy water (half a spoon of soap in 250ml lukewarm water).
  • Soak the earphone pad sponges for 15 minutes with the padding side down and the rubber (or velour, leather, whatever) facing up. It’s preferable if you can stop being soaked.
  • After the 15 minutes are up, gently press the cushion with your fingers to release the water, and then soak it up again.
  • Clean the material with a small amount of water and a soft cloth.
  • Cover the bowl with lukewarm clean water and remove the polluted water.
  • Using distilled water, repeat steps 4 and 5.
  • To extract any extra sweat, cover the ear pads in a dry cloth and press them against a hard surface.
  • Please enable them to air dry for a few hours in front of a heater or fan before re-wearing. You got some new, odor-free ear pads for your headphones.

While it is possible to get an ear infection and spread it through headphones, taking these precautions can help you avoid this in the future. And if you don’t share headphones, washing them daily and keeping your ears clear can help you avoid recurrent infections.


We have explained our best ways of How to clean your Headphones to prevent an ear infection? With the details of why your headphones cause ear infections.

It would help if you considered these things during the usage of your headphones. It would help if you tried to make your headphone restricted to only one user. Then you will never face the problem of ear infection due to headphones.

You may also want to read about: How to clean beats headphones cushion?

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