Those who need hearing protection for professional or recreational purposes are always on the lookout for the best ear muffs for noise reduction.
Today we will look at some of the best earmuffs out there in detail. Then, we’ll be taking a look at the top passive and electronic earmuffs on the market.
Read on for information on specific-use earmuffs and individual earmuff reviews.
In This Article:
- The Top 5 Best Rated Earmuffs
- What are the Highest NRR earmuffs?
- What are the best earmuffs for shooting?
- What are the best electronic earmuffs?
- What are the top earmuffs for kids?
- What other situations require earmuffs?
- Individual Earmuff Reviews
- How to Choose the Right Earmuffs to Protect from Noise:
- What Earmuff Hearing Protection Will You Choose?
The Top 5 Best Rated Earmuffs
To narrow down our list, we looked at the highest NRR earmuffs in both categories and selected models with the highest user ratings.
What are the Highest NRR earmuffs?
The highest Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) for earmuffs currently available is 37 dB, provided by the Professional Safety Ear Muffs by Decibel Defense. Please note that the effectiveness of earmuffs in reducing noise exposure also depends on proper fit and usage.
Some other models have the same level of protection, but Decibel Defense is the most well-known brand.
What are the best earmuffs for shooting?
We think the best overall earmuffs for shooting are the Sordin Supreme Pro-X and similar models. There are many options for shooting hearing protection, including in-ear and over-ear protection. Please read our article on the best hearing protection for indoor shooting ranges.
You can also combine earplugs and earmuffs for added protection. The best earmuffs for shooting are ones that provide you with enough protection while meeting your preferences.
What are the best electronic earmuffs?
Here are two of the best electronic earmuffs aside from the Sordin Supreme:
Howard Leight Impact Pro NRR 30 dB – These earmuffs are competitively priced and feature a headphone jack for convenience. They offer a high Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of 30 dB. 
Peltor Sport Tactical 500 – These earmuffs have a high NRR rating of 26 dB and a fast attack time of 3-5 ms. They also feature sound amplification and directional sound capabilities, making them a great overall pick. Sordin Supreme Pro X vs Peltor Tactical 500 is a close battle.
What are the top earmuffs for kids?
There are many options available for children’s earmuffs on the market. Earmuffs are generally better accepted than earplugs for kids as they cover the ears and are much more comfortable to wear for long periods.
The three following earmuffs models are some of the best hearing protection for children;
Alpine – Muffy Baby – Designed for babies aged 3 to 36 months, these earmuffs provide hearing protection for young children. Baby hearing protection
Edz Kidz – These adjustable earmuffs for children offer noise-cancelling capabilities and are suitable for kids of various ages.
Walker’s Youth Earmuffs – These are a bit larger for older youth up to 12 years old, providing good hearing protection. Hearing protection for children 5-15
What other situations require earmuffs?
There are so many situations where hearing protection, especially earmuffs, is required to maintain safety and protect your hearing.
Here is a list of our top articles for earmuffs for specific uses;
Individual Earmuff Reviews
Whether you are looking for electronic or passive protection, you’ll find some of the best products (click here to view all hearing protection) on the market in this review, and you are sure to find a set of outstanding earmuffs that meet your needs.
ClearArmor Safety Earmuffs
The ClearArmor Safety Earmuffs are the #1 bestseller in Amazon’s Safety Ear Protection Accessories category. Fortunately, they also have the highest NRR rating for ear muffs we’ve seen, with an NRR of 34.
For reference, an NRR of 34 is higher than most inner ear hearing protection, such as foam earplugs and is more than enough protection for any environment you want to use them in.
ClearArmor also took comfort into account when designing these earmuffs. The headband has a cushy ½” of padding, more than enough to ensure all-day comfort when working.
Customers have responded overwhelmingly positively to ClearArmor. They have over 6,000 reviews on Amazon, with 86% being 5 stars and an impressive 4.7-star average.
If you are looking for passive earmuffs that will give you the highest level of protection possible, then you won’t be disappointed with ClearArmor.
Howard Leight Impact Sport
Howard Leight Impact Sports are the Amazon #1 Best Seller in the Shooting category. These are the first electronic earmuffs we will be looking at today.
The Impact Sports were designed specifically for the hunter or outdoor shooter. As a result, they only provide an NRR of 22, which is more than adequate for outdoor shooting.
The trade-off for the lower NRR is that they have a slim design that won’t interfere while wearing other equipment or firing a gun.
The electronic portion of these Howard Leight earmuffs captures ambient noise using recessed microphones that are screened to eliminate wind noise. It then replicates that sound on internal microphones. As a result, whenever there is a gunshot, the sound amplification shuts off within milliseconds, protecting your hearing. That means you can have hearing protection when needed while still hearing the non-dangerous ambient noise around you.
In addition to the ambient sound amplification, these include a 3.5mm audio jack so you can play your favorite music or listen to other audio, such as a radio, while wearing them as well.
Pro For Sho Professional Earmuffs
Regarding NRR, Pro For Sho is another of the best noise-blocking earmuffs on the market, with an outstanding 34db of protection. So, whether you wear them while working on a noisy factory floor, need protection mowing the lawn, or when shooting a rifle, these headphones will give you the protection you need.
These are well-padded in both the headband and ear pads for all-day comfort. Overall performance is very similar to the ClearArmor earmuffs we looked at above, although with a slightly slimmer design.
These are extremely well-reviewed by users, with an average rating of 4.6 stars on Amazon out of more than 2,000 reviews.
Howard Leight Impact Pro
The Howard Leight Impact Pros are the beefier cousin to the Impact sport and are among the best range shooting earmuffs available.
They boast an NRR of 30db, which is more than enough for most indoor shooting ranges. However, these don’t need to be limited to shooting ranges. Their high NRR makes them useful in many commercial settings, such as construction, light manufacturing or agricultural work.
The headband is less padded than some of the other commercial earmuffs, such as the ClearArmor, but users don’t report significant comfort issues as a result.
These include the same sound amplification technology you find on Impact Sports, so expect high-quality audio and high NRR protection. You can find a similar model in Howard Leight L3 Earmuffs.
Peltor Optime Behind the Head Earmuffs
Some of us need the protection that earmuffs provide but without the headband. Headbands, such as hard hats, can interfere with cranial protection; for some, it may just be a comfort issue.
This is where behind-the-head earmuff designs come into play. The Peltor Optimes are the best-rated ear muffs on Amazon that feature a behind-the-head design.
The Optimes provide an NRR of 28, which is not quite as much as the other passive earmuffs we’ve looked at today, but still very respectable and suitable for recreational and most commercial activities.
If you want to eliminate the headband, closely examine the Peltor Optime and the behind-the-head design. It will give you the hearing protection you need without interfering with your other protective equipment.
How to Choose the Right Earmuffs to Protect from Noise:
To choose the best earmuffs for you, you must consider some key points before purchasing.
What Will You Use Them For?
Once you’ve honed in on your specific needs, I think you’ll find that some outstanding options on this list meet them.
Different occupations or recreational activities may have specific requirements for hearing protection. For example, workers in construction or manufacturing may need earmuffs that also provide protection against other hazards like impacts or flying debris.
Hunters or shooting enthusiasts may require earmuffs that allow for directional sound or communication while providing noise reduction.
People who fly a lot need special earplugs for flying or could use earmuffs as well.
Identifying the specific needs of your use case will help you select earmuffs with the necessary features and capabilities.
Some people might need the Best Earplugs for Work, in which case earmuffs won’t do.
What are the noise levels of the activity?
Different environments and activities require varying levels of noise reduction. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends using hearing protectors if the noise level exceeds 85 decibels (A-weighted) or dBA. Knowing the noise exposure level you will encounter, you can choose earmuffs with an appropriate NRR to provide adequate protection.
If you are working in a deafening environment, it may be that only the highest NRR earplugs will do. If you are going to be using them for recreational purposes, such as mowing the lawn or hunting, you may require less protection.
Comfort is essential for long wear.
Don’t forget to take comfort into account, either. For example, hearing protection won’t do you any good if it’s too uncomfortable to wear for a long period of time.
The comfort and fit of earmuffs can significantly impact their effectiveness and usability. Consider the duration of use, the physical activity involved, and the user’s preferences. Some earmuffs may be more comfortable for extended wear or suitable for specific head sizes and shapes.
Ensuring a comfortable and secure fit is crucial for noise reduction and user satisfaction.
What Earmuff Hearing Protection Will You Choose?
When determining which of these outstanding products are the best ear muffs for you, remember to start with your protection needs first.
After determining how much protection you need, you can look at other factors. Electronic hearing protection may be the way to go if you want to hear ambient noises, such as while hunting. If you need to wear other cranial protective equipment, look at behind-the-head earmuffs.