best earplugs for sleeping

Best Earplugs for Sleeping

A guide to the best nighttime earplugs

Do you find yourself waking up in the middle of the night? Loud neighbors, heavy outside traffic or snoring partner? Earplugs for sleeping can help make your life a lot easier.

Your quality of life can be drastically impacted by your sleep, or lack of. If you need a goodnight’s sleep, utilizing earplugs may be the best option. Below are our best earplugs for sleeping.

Howard Leight MAX-1 Ear Plugs

Best earplugs for sleeping - Howard Leight MAX-1

Howard Leight is a household name for earplugs, and make one of the most popular polyurethane foam earplugs. We’ve found that these MAX-1 earplugs are ideal for sleeping (especially side sleepers) and do an incredible job blocking out noise to get you a good night’s sleep. If you have to sleep in a loud environment, such as along a busy road, they can help you fall asleep much quicker.

MAX-1 earplugs have a noise reduction rating of 33, the highest industry standard. They are also bell-shaped, which are commonly preferred by earplug users. The shape of these earplugs are overall easier to insert than run-of-the-mill earplugs. The material is a soft foam, making them comfortable and they fit snugly during sleep. Many people find that they even forget they’re wearing earplugs when wearing these.

These Max-1 earplugs are disposable, so you don’t need to worry about washing them for reuse or possible ear infections from dirty earplugs. These are also individually wrapped to keep them clean. Simply roll them between your fingers to compress, then insert into your ear. The foam will then slowly expand to fill the shape of your ear and block out annoying nighttime sounds, making sleep comfortable again.

The bright colour of the MAX-1 earplugs (usually red) make them easy to see so you’ll never lose them in your bed again.

Overall, a great earplug for sleeping!

Mack’s Pillow Soft Silicone Earplugs

Best earplugs for sleeping - Mack's Pillow Soft Silicone Earplugs

Mack’s is another well known name in earplugs, and for good reason. Their Pillow Soft silicone earplugs are just that – incredibly soft. These are great for sleeping and eliminate any discomfort or irritation you might experience from other earplugs.

These moldable silicone earplugs are also a great choice for sleeping, including side sleepers. Many reviewers have also noted that they can finally sleep through the night with these earplugs.

These are different from traditional foam earplugs as these will mould to the shape of the ear. They also cover the ear opening, rather than being fully inserted into the ear canal. Because these don’t fill the inner ear, the noise reduction isn’t as high as some other types. Pillow Soft earplugs come with a Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of 22, which is fairly common for silicone earplugs.

These are also a great option for those who are looking for reusable earplugs, rather than disposables. Because you can use these multiple times, it’s important to follow the cleaning instructions to avoid ear infections. We also recommend these earplugs for swimming, as well!

Mack’s Pillow Soft earplugs are also an alternative to traditional bell-shaped or cylinder earplugs. Some people prefer not to have an earplug fully inserted into the ear canal, which is where the Pillow Soft earplugs come in.

Moldex 6800 Pura-Fit Soft-Foam Earplugs

Best earplugs for sleeping - Moldex 6800 Pura-Fit Soft-Foam Earplugs

Another fantastic earplug for sleeping is the Moldex 6800 Pura-Fit. Moldex is another trusted brand for earplugs and their Pura-Fit earplugs are a great choice. These are created with a soft, smooth foam, which make them incredibly comfortable for sleeping. Oftentimes when you see a bright green earplug, it’s likely a Moldex.

This model is also a bit long, so it’s easier to you to hold them and insert properly, as well as taking them out easily. This is a great element for those who are new to earplugs and may be a bit unsure about inserting them. However, these may not be ideal for side-sleepers as the end of the earplug may protrude.

Rather than bell-shaped, these are more cylindrical shaped but are extremely squishy.

Pura-Fit have a Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) of 33. This is the highest rating for earplugs, so you know your getting solid hearing protection as well as better sleep. These type of earplugs can also be extremely effective in preventing hearing loss from loud noises. So while they’re great for sleeping, they can still be used in loud environments.

Like the MAX-1 product, these are also disposable earplugs and should not be reworn.

Flents Quiet Contour Ear Plugs

Best earplugs for sleeping - Flents Quiet Contour Ear Plugs

Still need a good pair of earplugs for sleeping? Quiet Contour provides great noise reduction, with a NRR of 33. Loud sounds will not longer wake you up in the middle of the night.

These earplugs are another bell-shaped foam earplug, which are incredibly smooth and soft. This special contour-shape means they create a snug fit in the ear and will be comfortable for long periods of time, even for sleeping. These are also great because they don’t put too much pressure on your ear, making it easier for sleeping.

You might recognize these bright green earplugs. While they’re distributed by Flents, they are manufactured by Moldex. Like Moldex Pura-Fit, these earplugs are not reusable and will need to be thrown away after use.

These are also incredibly affordable, which is a great aspect of a reusable earplug.

The Ear Buddy Premium Soft Foam Ear Plugs

Best earplugs for sleeping - The Ear Buddy Premium Soft Foam Ear Plugs

Finally, we recommend The Ear Buddy earplugs for sleeping. These soft foam earplugs are comfortable and soft, great for wearing for long periods of time. With a noise reduction rating of 32, these are solid earplugs. While these don’t have a perfect rating of 33, they’re still a great product.

These are made of Polyurethane foam, like the Howard Leight Max-1 earplugs. These are squishy and fit comfortably in the ear to help block out a large degree of noise. Once inserted in the ear, they quickly fill up the ear canal and stay in place throughout the night.

Earplugs to avoid for sleeping

Silicone or foam tend to be the best material for earplugs for sleeping. We would recommend getting earplugs made out of these materials if you’re looking for earplugs for sleeping.

However, there are a few other materials for earplugs. While these are valid materials for earplugs, they’re not ideal for sleeping.

You might see high fidelity earplugs on the market, but these are not suitable for sleeping. High fidelity mean that the earplugs will protect your hearing from loud sounds without totally eliminating the sound. These are great for concerts or live music gigs, so you can still enjoy the music without damaging your hearing. However, if you’re looking to block out the sounds of a snoring partner, these types of earplugs won’t be effective.

Another option may be to use wax earplugs. These have to be softened manually and shaped into a cone, before being inserted into the ear. Some earplug users prefer wax earplugs, but not many. While they are extremely mouldable, they don’t always block out noise to a high degree. Because they are not fully in the ear, it’s common for the wax to be dislodged and fall out in the night.

If you suffer from the condition tinnitus, it’s important not to wear earplugs for sleeping with tinnitus. This can actually make the situation worse, so it’s important to avoid earplugs.

Earplugs for Sleeping

Whatever you end up choosing, using earplugs when you have trouble sleeping can make a huge positive impact. Whether it’s a snoring partner or living near a busy road, noises and sounds can keep you from getting a good nights sleep.

Once you find the ideal earplugs for you, there’s nothing stopping you from getting a good rest every night.

HearStoppers is a blog dedicated to raising awareness about the importance of hearing protection.  Many people don’t realise how easily it can be to lose your hearing. Keep your hearing alive with proper protection.

More Stories
Radians custom molded earplugs
Radians Custom Molded Earplugs Review | Worth the hassle?