What earplug should you get for a music festival?

When the days are getting longer, the weather is getting warmer and the drinks are getting colder you know that festival season is upon us. Whether your ticket was booked seven months ago or just yesterday, there’s nothing more that gets your heart beating than the thrill of a festival. Camping spots are reserved and your bag is almost packed. But there are a few important things you can’t forget before leaving to those holy green grounds. If you’ve landed on this page you’re already one step ahead of the game. How? By getting yourself a great set of earplugs for festivals!

Best Earplugs for festivals - Loop

What makes an earplug great for festivals?

There are lots of different earplugs on the market. While they all serve the same purpose (protecting your ears), not all of them are suited for music festivals. And that's because a good earplug for festivals has to meet certain requirements: it should offer enough sound reduction without distorting the sound, be comfortable to wear all day and in the ideal case must compliment your looks.

1. Enough Sound reduction

There's a pretty good chance you once woke up in your tent with a muffled or ringing sound in your ears. Unlike hangovers, a pain killer or beer won't help it go away. If you're lucky the ringing fades within hours or days. If you're unlucky you could be waking up with it for years to come.

Hearing damage can occur over time but can just as easily be caused by one show at a festival. Irreversible hearing damage occurs as low as 85 decibels. Most festivals reach up to 100-105 decibels. Without protection, your ears can only endure such a sound level for less than 15 minutes. Conclusion? You need to bring back sound to a safe level of 85dB. You can do so by choosing an earplug that reduces at least 15 decibels. An earplug with a sound reduction of 20 decibels is ideal for festivals.

Decibel Scale - Hearing Damage

2. Maintain music quality

Artists, bands, and DJ's fine-tune their music to give it a specific sound. When seeing your favorite artists at a festival, you want to hear the music like they intend it to sound. You want as little distortion as possible.

So, how do we translate this to earplug-terms?

What you need to look for is a festival earplug with an equal attenuation over the entire hearing spectrum. An equal attenuation across all frequencies will result in a natural sounding experience without distortions. In other words: you'll hear the sound as it was intended to sound. To achieve this, an earplug must have a resonance chamber. A resonance chamber replaces the natural resonance your ears normally make, but can't when you're wearing earplugs. That's because they block your ear canal, including its function.

Loop Earplugs - Acoustic Resonance for natural sound

A resonance chamber can take many forms. At Loop, we went for an innovative approach and designed a hollow acoustic channel that acts as a resonance chamber. Sound waves enter Loop via a small opening and travel through the hollow channel on the inside of Loop. This acoustic resonator has the same length as your ear canal and mimics its function, with a natural sound experience as a result.

3. Be able to talk to friends (and order beer)

Festival Earplugs - should be able to order beer

An earplug with a resonance chamber does not only guarantee a great music experience, but it also allows you to have a conversation. So you won't have to take out your earplugs every time you want to order a beer, have a pizza or flirt with the guy or girl standing next to you on the festival ground.

4. Comfort throughout the day (and night)

Earplugs for festivals - comfort day and night

A festival can take its toll and the last thing you want to do is worry about inserting your earplugs, them falling out or itchy ears. So treat yourself (and your ears) to an earplug that sits comfortably all day and night - especially if you're staying at the festival's camping ground and do appreciate a few hours of sleep.

Comfortable earplugs have four things in common:

  • Are easy to insert and remove
  • Have a soft contact and tailored fit
  • Stay put all day
  • Don't stick out (if you'll be using them for sleeping)

In order to check off all the above, it's important to evaluate the earplug's ear tip. This is the part of an earplug that sits directly in your ear canal and determines a lot of the earplug's comfort level.

Your ears are as unique as your fingerprints. So there's not one ear tip (or earplug) that fits everyone. Some people have smaller ear canals, others have larger ones. Some people prefer foam tips, others like silicone tips. Maybe you already know which size or/and material you like if you're a frequent user of earbuds. If you're not, we'd suggest to try out the different materials and sizes in order to find your perfect fit.

More and more earplugs don't offer a universal fit anymore but include multiple ear tips with their earplugs. These vary in sizes and (sometimes) in materials. At Loop we offer six different pairs of ear tips: foam and silicone in both small, medium and large. By choosing an earplug that offers different ear tips you get the chance to try them out at home and then pack your favorite pair for the festival. Bonus? You'll always have plenty of spare sets.

Why should you invest so much time in finding the perfect fit?

Earplugs only protect your hearing when they fill up your ear canal completely. Doing so, you make sure that all sound that enters your ear passes through the earplug's acoustic chamber and the sound reducing filter. The result? Music is brought back to an enjoyable (and safe) level without distortion.

An earplug with a tailored fit is above all, way more comfortable to wear than a universal one. And stays put, so you don't have to reinsert them from time to time. Especially at festivals, where you're seeing one artist after another, you should able to completely lose yourself in the atmosphere (and booze) without worries. It's summer after all right?

5. Festival outfit on point

Outift at festivals

Last but not least, we have looks.

Maybe you're one of those people who has a gazillion of pins on his/her Pinterest board with outfit inspiration, maybe you're not. It doesn't really matter, because who doesn't like to look good at festivals? Everyone appreciates a good looking earplug, like Loop that has a round shaped design and comes in 5 different colors for Midnight Black to Glorious Gold. 

It can go two ways: either you prefer an earplug that's really discreet or you'll want one that stands out. The choice is up to you. But know that not all earplugs look boring or goofy.

Too long didn't read? Well, here's a short recap:

1. Enough Sound reduction
Festivals tend to reach decibels levels of 100-105. Irreversible hearing damage can occur as low as 85dB. To protect your ears you need an earplug that offers a sound reduction of minimum 15 decibels. One with a 20dB sound reduction is even better.

2. Maintain music quality
It's not because you're wearing earplugs that you should compromise on sound. A good earplug lowers the volume without distorting the sound. Look for an earplug that has an equal attenuation over the entire hearing spectrum.

3. Be able to talk with friends (and order beer)
An earplug with a resonance chamber does not only guarantee a great music experience, but it also allows you to have a conversation. So you won't have to take out your earplugs to talk to someone.

4. Comfort throughout the day (and night)
One-size-fits-all earplugs don't exist. That's because our ears are as uniques as our fingerprints. An earplug that comes with multiple ear tips can help you find your tailored fit. A perfect fit will not only improve the comfort level of the earplug but will also offer better protection and improve sound quality.

5. Festival Outfit on point
Everyone wants to look good at a festival. This can go two ways: either you prefer an earplug that's really discreet or you'll want one that stands out and is the talk of the festival.

The 7 best-selling earplugs for Music

Now that you know the most important features of an earplug for festivals, it's time to check out the 7 best-selling music earplugs of 2018.

We did the research for you and listed 7 different earplugs, their pro's & con's and prices. All you need to do is leave your e-mail and we'll send the goodies straight to your inbox!