The Best Earplugs for Swimming

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Professional swimmers all know about the importance of having the proper swimming equipment at all times. In addition, it is often vital to find swimming equipment that provides a custom fit and comfort so that you can have the best experience possible while you swim and perform your best in the pool. 

Aside from Speedo suits and goggles, one of the most critical factors that swimmers should consider are swimming earplugs.

Not all swimmers choose to wear swimming earplugs, which can be acceptable. However, if you find that water gets into your ear canal a lot when you swim, that could be reason enough to consider getting a pair. 

To provide people with more information about choosing the best earplugs, we have compiled a list of the best earplugs for swimming on the market based on features such as material, high quality, custom fit, soft design, use, price and more.

Check out our list of the best swimming earplugs, and also check out some of the features that you should keep an eye on when you choose a set of the best earplugs.

Swimmer’s ear is an infection caused by the water becoming trapped in the outer ear and irritating it, eventually leading to an infection, swelling, and pus. In the worst cases, it can lead to extreme pain.

Prevention is vital with swimmer’s ear. The best water earplugs will completely block water from entering the ear canal by stopping the source of the irritation. As a result, you avoid the infection from ever occurring.

So, let’s take a look at some of the best swimming ear plugs on the market. No matter who in your family needs earplugs for swimming, you’ll find a product on this list that will meet your needs and keep you healthy while still letting you relax and swim in the pool this summer.

Read about all earplugs here:

Our Top Picks for Swimming Earplugs:

The Speedo swimming earplugs have an ergonomic design with a dual flange system that keeps water out. The major advantage of these compared to some of the other moldable solutions we’ll look at below in the best swimming ear plugs reviews is that they tend to stay in place better.

This means you don’t have to worry about readjusting them constantly since they are designed to have the closest, most secure fit possible.

These also come with a handy carrying case that can be attached to a beach or pool bag or a set of boat keys, so you always have them handy whenever you need them. This is good because they are made from a reusable material, which means you should be able to keep them on hand for a long time.

PuttyBuddies aren’t the best swimming earplugs for adults, but they are perfect for your kids. They come in bright colors that appeal to children and have a tacky texture that should hold them in place no matter how active your little one is. One unique feature between PuttyBuddies and the other products on our best swimmers earplugs list is that they float.

These silicone putty earplugs are suitable for anyone who is looking to get a custom fit out of their swimming earplugs to make the user feel comfortable while keeping water out of their ears at the same time. Although these are not the best for kids due to their small size, many people thought they were great because they provided a seal that prevented water from getting in.

At the same time, with these swimming earplugs, you can still hear what’s going on around you because they still let the noise get in, making them a good option for kids when they want to have some fun by the pool. This especially comes in handy if you have your pool and are worried about the earplugs falling out and clogging a filter, or if you have a limited supply and don’t want a lost earplug to ruin a day of fun.

These were invented by an Ear, Nose and Throat physician so you can feel comfortable that they will work well for your child no matter what water environment they will be in. In addition, the earplugs come as a set of six, giving you three pairs to work with in case one of them gets lost.

Mack’s is one of the best brands on the market for earplugs. Many people like what the brand offers, primarily because it produces soft earplugs at a fraction of the high quality and durable materials. In addition, Mack’s can assure people that they will protect their hearing and ears because of how well the brand makes all the earplugs.

Therefore, it is no surprise that a set of Mack’s earplugs also made our list of the best earplugs for swimming. In addition, these are the best-selling silicone earplugs in America and one of the highest ratings on Amazon.

These are the most basic silicone earplugs on the market but don’t mean ineffective. On the contrary, they mold well to the outer ear and for those of us concerned about the noise reduction effectiveness and waterproofing.

They come with an NRR of 22, making them effective hearing protection as well. These are also great earplugs for sleeping and will block out any noise coming from a snoring partner. 

The downside is that these are very tacky and will tend to pick up dust and dirt, so they are not reusable over the long term, but you should be able to get at least a couple of uses out of each pair. In addition, these might not be the best choice for kids since we all know that kids are good at getting dirt and dust everywhere.

However, with that being said, you can still rely on these earplugs because of their ability to keep water out of your ears, and they are an excellent option for anyone looking for a comfortable design. In addition, the set comes in eight pairs, making it a great value pack for the price.

Read about how Mack’s earplugs compare against Hearos earplugs:

4. Alpine Swim Safe Earplugs

These next soft silicone earplugs are designed to keep water out of your ears while still being comfortable enough to wear for long periods as you swim. The soft material is what makes these among the best products on the market. People especially prefer soft silicone material because it is strong and durable without losing its comfortable qualities.

What about if you still want to hear conversations well and interact with those around you, though? Alpine has solved that problem with their Swim Safe earplugs. The earplugs prevent water from entering the ear canal while at the same time having a unique sound filtering technology that allows sound through. In addition, they have special water filters that make them easy to use and help you still hear noise and sound when you get in the pool.

This technology is typically used for earplugs designed for musicians, and this is a very cool application that I think most swimmers will appreciate. It is very different compared to many competing options, and many people like the design of this silicone product.

Another great feature of these earplugs is that they come with a case, making the earplugs easier to find every time you want to go for a swim without having to worry about them getting lost.

We’ve said before that soft silicone Putty earplugs are among the most popular on the market. People like having the ability to have the earplugs mold to their ear canal because not everyone comes with the same size ears.

In addition, it is good to have a high-quality pair of moldable earplugs because they are comfortable enough for all swimmers to wear. While swimming, you don’t want to feel limited or held back because of how uncomfortable your earplugs are, which is why many people like these in particular.

One common feature among the best waterproof earplugs is moldability. The ability to customize the shape of the earplug to the shape of the outer ear to form a watertight bond is critical to the best swimmer earplugs. Most other earplugs in this swimming earplugs review use silicone as the base ingredient to achieving this functionality.

What about if you are looking for an all-natural solution, though? That is where Quies Pure Wax earplugs come in. They are made from a mix of hypoallergenic beeswax and cotton that forms to your inner ear when heated by your body for a snug fit. They are so comfortable that you can also sleep with them, and they’ll block out any noise coming from a snoring partner

The result is an earplug that is just as effective as silicone but with all-natural materials. Quies is one of the few brands on the market that has earplugs made of all-natural materials. So it is now easy to find a great pair of earplugs that are not only good for you because of the purpose, but the materials, too.

The big difference you’ll notice between the other items on our best waterproof earplugs list and this one is that Mack’s Ear Band isn’t a pair of earplugs. But, given that this is a unique product that works with your earplugs to help in waterproofing, I thought it would be great to go ahead and give it a mention. Even the best earplugs for swimming will fall out sometimes or allow a small amount of water in.

If swimmers’ ear is a significant concern for you, then you may want to double your protection by purchasing a Mack’s Ear Band. The band covers the ears preventing water from directly impacting your hearing protection, giving you one more layer between your ears and the water.

If you are concerned about your child in the bathtub, or they can’t keep ear plugs in for some reason, this band may be all the protection you need. So if you need some extra protection or earplugs just haven’t worked for you for some reason, definitely take a look at the Ear Band.

Swimming Earplug FAQ

Although using swimming earplugs is pretty straightforward, there are still some features that you should keep an eye on and some questions that might come up for people choosing the best swimming earplugs.

The fact of the matter is that getting water in your ears can cause problems, even though it happens to virtually all of us whenever we get into the pool. One of the biggest problems that can occur to both kids and adults is swimmer’s ear.

Swimmers ear can be extremely painful. Those of you that have had a swimmer’s ear infection will probably do anything you can to prevent it from recurring. In addition, if you are a parent with small kids who are prone to ear infections, then you’ll want to avoid it from ever occurring in the first place. 

That is why it is a good idea to consider getting a set of swimming earplugs, which are meant to keep water from getting into your ears while keeping the swimmer comfortable at the same time.

Do I have to wear earplugs when I swim?

The short answer is no; you don’t. But, unfortunately, many people, especially those who only enjoy swimming for fun and not as a professional career or team sport, find that wearing earplugs is a nuisance and just one more thing they need to worry about when they go to the pool. 

However, many people, including professional swimmers, prefer to do so because it helps to prevent water from getting in your ears. For example, Mack’s earplugs are the Official Earplugs of USA Swimming (see below).

As we mentioned, getting too much water in your ears could lead to an ear infection and swimmer’s ear, which is not a pleasant experience for anyone and could lead to problems down the line.

So, to prevent this, many swimmers opt to use swimming earplugs. But, contrary to popular belief, there are plenty of comfortable options on the market that everyone will like.

What material should I look out for?

Many popular options are made of all different materials. The most popular are foam earplugs, silicone, and putty (wax). All of these will work great to protect your ears and prevent water from getting into your ear canals.

One of the most popular materials is silicone because not only are they comfortable, but they stay in your ear, and they last a long time in comparison to some of the other types.

However, some people also prefer foam earplugs because of their soft material. Putty Earplugs are another popular option because they fit well and fit conform to the shape of your ear, making them a good choice for both adults and children.

You can use any of them to keep water out of your ears, however. Just be sure to check if you have any allergies.

What are some other features to consider?

For the most part, swimming earplugs are pretty straightforward, and there is not too much that you should worry about. For example, these are not noise canceling earplugs where you need to worry about factors such as the NRR, although some of the options on our list did have an NRR rating if you also want to protect your hearing.

However, you will still hear with many of these. Aside from material, you may want to consider how well they seal out water, how many pairs you will get per set, whether or not they come with a carrying case (this is incredibly convenient for people who are on the swim team because you won’t have to worry about the earplugs getting lost in your bag), price, and how well they fit.

How long do they last?

This will depend on the material and the brand. You don’t want to use them more than five times due to hygienic reasons unless they are silicone, which you might get away with using a little more.

Keep in mind that these do go in your ears, and they get chlorine water on them. The water, sun, and material will all impact how long the earplugs will last. Many of these options come in multiple pairs, so you don’t have to buy new ones constantly.


You have a few different style options when looking for the best swim earplugs for you. Moldable, silicone or wax are the most popular options.

After careful research, our number one recommendation is the Speedo Unisex-Adult Swim Training Ergo Ear Plugs. They have an ergonomic design and provide the closest, most secure fit possible. In addition, they are made from soft TPR material, which is comfortable and lightweight. 

No matter how much protection you need to get yourself out and have fun in the water, I think you’ll find a solution on this list that will allow you to get your body active while keeping your ears dry.