Some Tips and Alternative Earbud Options – If Airpods Hurt your Ears

Airpods Hurt your Ears
Written by Hassan Abbas

Though Apple has designed the AirPods and the AirPods Pro to be as comfortable as possible for most people, there are still some ‌AirPods‌ and ‌AirPods Pro‌ owners who find the earbuds to be uncomfortable and even painful. In this article, we are going to talk about Some Tips and Alternative Earbud Options – If Airpods Hurt your Ears. Let’s begin!

In this guide, we’ve gathered up some helpful tips and tricks for fit. Along with some alternatives for when the adjusting fit just is not an option.

AirPods‌ Fit Problems

Apple’s standard ‌AirPods‌ are not adjustable and do not have removable tips, which leaves little you can do if they cause ear pain.

Getting Used to ‌AirPods‌ Over Time | Airpods Hurt your Ears

Some users on the MacRumors forums have said that their ears adjusted to the ‌AirPods‌ size after powering through wearing them for a few days to a few weeks. So attempting to get used to them is one possible solution.

When using this method, you should try to use the ‌AirPods‌ for a few hours each day, giving your ears time to rest in between.

Wearing One AirPod at a Time

To get your ears to adjust, you can also try wearing one AirPod at a time, giving each ear a break from the ‌AirPods‌ while still being able to use them with a connected device. Alternating the ear wearing the AirPod can prevent an overwhelming amount of pain when you need to use the ‌AirPods‌ for longer periods of time, and it allows for longer battery life.

AirPods‌ Placement Adjustment

‌AirPods‌ are not to fit deep in the ear and sit in the contours of the ear. So making sure they are not placed too far into the ear can also potentially help with discomfort. You do not want to put pressure on the tragus of the ear. And sometimes placing the ‌AirPods‌ too deep is the problem.

‌AirPods‌ That Fall Out | Airpods Hurt your Ears

If your problem isn’t pain but rather keeping them in place, slightly modifying the ‌AirPods‌ with a thick tape can help to hold them in place. This technique, demonstrated by a MacRumors reader, uses Nexcare waterproof tape and will require some experimentation on placement of padding to see if it works to adjust fit.

You can also get thin silicone covers for the ‌AirPods‌ from a site like Amazon that can also help them to feel more secure in the ear, as well as tips that are similar to silicone tips but modified to attach to the ‌AirPods‌. Note that these kinds of tips do not fit in the ‌AirPods‌ case and need to be removed before charging. And they may not be comfortable for people who already find the ‌AirPods‌ to be too large in their ears.

Returning ‌AirPods‌

Ears come in all shapes and sizes, and in some cases. ‌AirPods‌ are not a good fit no matter the adjustment period. In this situation, the best option is to go with an alternative earbud or headphone option.

Apple has a two-week return policy, which should give users enough time to test them out to make sure they’re a comfortable fit before deciding whether to keep them. Many other third-party retailers also have similar return policies, but make sure to check before making a purchase from a non-Apple retail store.

‌AirPods Pro-Fit Problems | Airpods Hurt your Ears

If you’re having fit problems with the ‌AirPods Pro‌, which is rather common if you check out the MacRumors forums and Apple communities, there are a few more options than you have with the standard ‌AirPods‌.

First and foremost, ‌AirPods Pro‌ comes with tips in three sizes: small, medium, and large. You should try each of the three sizes to see which feels best in the ear. Surprisingly, some people with smaller ears have found larger tips to be a more comfortable option. So experimentation is best.

You can also modify the ‌AirPods Pro‌ tips to add in foam, which can make for a tighter and more comfortable fit. MacStories‘ Federico Viticci demoed the technique in December, which involves removing the foam from an existing set of foam ear tips and then adding them to the existing ‌AirPods Pro‌ tips. Full instructions are available on the MacStories website.

Some companies are also working on ‌AirPods Pro‌ foam tips that you can purchase, such as Comply, but these are not yet widely available from reliable sources.

Alternatives to ‌AirPods‌ | Airpods Hurt your Ears

There are quite a few alternatives to ‌AirPods‌ on the market at this point in time, and if you’re having trouble with the standard ‌AirPods‌, you’re probably going to want to go with something that has the option of silicone or foam tips or an earbud that has a smaller body.

You might even want to forego in-ear earbuds all together, opting instead for more comfortable on-ear or over-ear headphones. Below, we’ve listed some popular options that people often consider or recommend instead of ‌AirPods‌. Most of what we’re listing is wire-free, but we do have a few wire options like the Powerbeats, and where possible, we’ve linked the retailer with the lowest prices.

Have a Look

  • AirPods Pro ($235 from Amazon). ‌AirPods Pro‌ is an obvious alternative to the ‌AirPods. That is more comfortable for some people. Because of the adjustable silicone tips that fit tighter into the ear canal. The body of the ‌AirPods Pro‌ is also smaller in the ear and can result in less ear pain. ‌AirPods Pro‌ is more expensive than ‌AirPods‌but offers noise-canceling technology.
  • Powerbeats Pro ($200 from Amazon) – Powerbeats Pro are also a suitable ‌AirPods‌ alternative. Because of the silicone tips and the ear hooks that wrap around the ears to hold them in place. These have the potential to be more comfortable than ‌AirPods. But may not be the best option for those with small ears because of the fit of the ear hooks.
  • Sony WF-1000XM3 ($190 from Amazon) – Sony’s WF-1000XM3 earbuds are a popular ‌AirPods‌ alternative. Because they offer noise-canceling technology. Like all of the earbuds on our list, these are wire-free earbuds that reviews have claimed are comfortable, with adjustable silicone tips.
  • Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 ($300 from Amazon). A step up from ‌AirPods‌, the Sennheiser Momentum True Wireless 2 headphones promise excellent sound and active noise cancellation. These are smaller and lighter weight than Sennheiser’s original Momentums. And while not all reviewers found these to be comfortable for long periods of time. There were some who found these to be a more comfortable option than other wire-free earbuds.

More about Airpods Hurt your Ears

  • Jabra Elite 75t ($180 from Amazon) – The Jabra Elite 75t’s are Wirecutter’s top pick for wire-free headphones. Due to their comfortable fit in the ear. Compared to prior versions of the Elite earbuds, the new 75t model is smaller and with a lighter weight. That makes them more comfortable to wear for longer periods of time. The design is to fit tight in the ear for use during vigorous activity. And there are adjustable tips.
  • Samsung Galaxy Buds Plus ($140 from Amazon). These are made by Apple competitor Samsung and are for Samsung phones. But they work like any Bluetooth earbuds with an iPhone. The Galaxy Buds Plus have praised for their lightweight. That can go a long way toward easing ear discomfort. They also have super long battery life and you can choose which ear tips fit best.

These are, of course, just a handful of other earbud options on the market. There are tons to choose from, and if you have a difficult time finding the right size at the right price point. You may need to experiment and take advantage of some manufacturers’ return policies.


Alright, That was all Folks! I hope you guys like this Airpods Hurt your Ears article and find it helpful to you. Give us your feedback on it. Also if you guys have further queries related to this article. Then let us know in the comments section below. We will get back to you shortly.

Have a Great Day!

Also See: Meeting Timing out in Zoom – Why?

About the author

Hassan Abbas

Tech enthusiast with too many items on his wish-list and not nearly enough money! Specializing in all things tech, with a slight Apple bent he has been writing for various blogs for the best part of (too many) years

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