Your children have sensitive ears that need protection if you’re planning to take them to a loud event such as a music festival or Formula 1 race. Prevention is better than cure, so you should take action to protect your kids’ hearing now rather than letting them damage their hearing at an early age.
Both adults and kids are recommended to wear ear protection in environments where the noise is 90 decibels or above. Here are just a few environments where you might want to think about protecting your child’s hearing with ear defenders:
- Music festivals and gigs
- Large cinemas
- Football matches, Formula 1 races and other sporting events
- Fireworks displays
- Air shows
Best Ear Defenders for Kids (UK 2017)
|Image||Name||Age Range||SNR Rating||Weight||Price|
|Edz Kidz Ear Defenders||6 months+||26||190 g||£9.95|
|Snug Safe n Sound Kids Ear Defenders||6 months+||25||180 g||£9.95|
|Banz Mini Earmuffs||3 months+||26||142 g||£16.40|
|Vanderfields Ear Defenders for Kids||6 months+||26 (NRR)||180 g||£9.99|
|3M Peltor Kids Ear Muffs||27||259 g||£13.99|
Below you can read our reviews of what we consider to be the top 5 ear defenders for children available in the UK in 2017.
1. Edz Kidz Ear Defenders
|£9.95||26 dB||190 grams||Children aged 6 months and over|
These ear defenders come in a huge choice of colours and designs, meaning there’s bound to be a pair your child will love. They’re very light at just 190 grams, and have an SNR of 26 dB, which provides a good level of protection. These ear defenders are suitable for children from 6 months and above.
- Adjustable and should fit most children comfortably
- Large choice of colours and designs
- Break easily
2. Snug Safe n Sound Kids Ear Defenders
|£9.95||25 dB||180 grams||Children aged 6 months and over|
These ear defenders come in a choice of four colours: green, pink, red and yellow. They fit both kids and adults, meaning you can wear them yourself when your child doesn’t need them. They only weigh 180 grams and can be easily folded for carrying them around.
Snug Safe n Sound Kids Ear Defenders meet the European Safety Standard EN 352-1 and have an SNR of 25 dB.
These ear defenders are recommended for children and babies from the age of 6 months and upwards.
- Fun design with a large choice of colours available
- Adjustable, and can be worn by adults as well children
- Comfortable for most people
- Relatively low level of noise reduction (SNR of 25 dB)
- Too large for some kids
3. Banz Mini Earmuffs
|£16.40||26 dB||142 grams||Children aged 3 months and over|
These earmuffs are designed for children and babies from 3 months upwards. They’re available in pink or blue, and offer comfortable protection against loud noises. Banz Mini Earmuffs have an adjustable headband and soft-cushioned ear cups to provide maximum comfort. They’re ideal for taking your baby or toddler to watch the fireworks.
These ear defenders weigh 142 grams, making them the lightest product reviewed here. The Banz Mini Earmuffs have an SNR of 26 dB, which means they offer a decent amount of volume reduction.
- Good for babies
- Very light
- Good at reducing the volume of fireworks
- Not ideal for older kids
4. Vanderfields Ear Defenders for Kids
|£9.99||26 dB||180 g||Children aged 6 months and older|
These ear defenders from Vanderfields are another highly-adjustable pair. Much like the Snug pair, they should comfortably fit all the way into adulthood. They also come in a range of colours, much like the other ear defenders on this list.
Portability is a major selling point of these ear defenders. They can be folded up and slipped into a handbag or rucksack with no problems. This is especially useful for when your toddler doesn’t want to wear them.
If comfort is an issue, these ear defenders have reasonably thick padding on both the cups and the headband. They should give a reasonable seal without compromising on comfort, which is excellent for long concerts or a lengthy day in town.
- Should fit children as they get older
- Easy to fold up and carry
- Can be fiddly to put on
5. 3M Peltor Kids Ear Muffs
|£13.99||27 dB||175 grams||Children aged 5 and over|
3M have brought their expertise in manufacturing professional hearing protection to these ear defenders for kids. The 3M Peltor Kids Ear Muffs are designed for children aged 5 and over.
They have an SNR rating of 27 dB, which is higher than most ear defenders for children. Despite offering serious protection, the 3M Peltor Kids Ear Muffs have a fun design and are available in a choice of colours (neon green or pink).
These ear defenders have soft plastic cushions and an adjustable headphone to help your child get the right fit.
- Adjustable, and should fit most children
- Sturdy and well made
- Made by a reputable brand
- Too tight for some children
- Relatively expensive
Best Ear Defenders for Babies (UK 2017)
Raising children is tough. In their youngest years, they’re extremely sensitive to the world around them and it’s nearly impossible to completely avoid loud noises on a day-to-day basis. Noises like fireworks, loud music, and traffic can be particularly distressing for your little one.
To help your baby cope with noise on a daily basis, there are many hearing protection products on the market specifically for babies.
These products are very similar to conventional earmuffs, but are smaller, use a lighter spring on the headband, and are far lighter. These ear defenders are very useful if you’ve got a young one that doesn’t like loud noise.
It’s important to note that due to the softness of a newborn’s skull, it’s not advised to use any of these products on a children aged 0-3 months.
Anyway, to soothe your baby’s ears, we’ve rounded up a few of the best ear defenders for babies on the market.
1. Banz Mini Earmuffs
These Mini Earmuffs by Banz are designed to be put over your child’s head like a conventional pair of earmuffs. They’re recommended for use with children between three months and two years of age, though you may find that they last longer than that depending on head size.
Like most other hearing protection products available, these earmuffs are adjustable. Unfortunately, they lack individual pivoting on the ear cups. Whilst the flexibility of the headband makes up for some of this lost adaptability, some wearers may find them less comfortable than other products.
On the topic of comfort, these earmuffs are certainly comfortable enough for your little one. The ear cups are well-cushioned and the lightness of the headband reduces the amount of pressure on the ears.
These earmuffs are surprisingly effective at deadening sound. Of course, they’re not going to beat a pair of heavy-duty earmuffs, but users have reported success taking their young children to view fireworks with no discomfort thanks to these earmuffs.
Overall, these earmuffs are a solid choice. They’re comfortable and effective. If you’re looking for a way to help your child cope with unavoidable noise throughout their young lives, these earmuffs might be for you. The only downside is that these earmuffs are slightly more expensive than the others on this list.
2. Edz Kidz Ear Defenders
These ear defenders from Edz Kidz are a very popular choice amongst parents, and for good reason. The key feature of these ear defenders is clearly the vast range of colours and styles available.
The ear defenders themselves come in a range of colours and then you can purchase additional covers that have patterns and designs printed on them. Whilst many may overlook this as a simple aesthetic feature, it can prove quite useful in convincing your little one to actually keep the ear defenders on their head.
Aesthetics aside, this product is a solid solution to the unavoidable noise that may plague your child’s early life. They’re comfortable, featuring individually adjustable cups as well as individual pivoting on the cups to ensure they fit the head of your child perfectly.
Compared to the Banz Earmuffs, these ear defenders are manufacturer recommended for a slightly higher age. These ear defenders are suggested for use on children six months and up, compared to the Banz product which can be used from three months of age.
Though three months may not seem like a huge difference, a baby’s skull is still soft in their early life and it’s highly inadvisable to put undue pressure on their head.
All-in-all, these ear defenders offer excellent relief from unavoidable loud noises. They’re comfortable and highly customisable.
3. Silverline 315357 Junior Ear Defenders
By Silverline, we have these Junior Ear Defenders. These ear defenders are the budget option of this list, coming in just under the Edz Kidz product. However, these ear defenders are still great quality considering the price.
If you’re after a no-frills hearing protection product for your child, then these might be the ear defenders for you.
These ear defenders are well-padded, featuring fairly thick padding on the ear cups as well as a comfortable head band. In fact, these ear defenders are remarkably similar in design to the Edz Kidz product, though lacking the extensive customisability.
Performance-wise, these ear defenders are fully adjustable, offering a great fit on most heads. Users have reported using them on their children at particularly noisy events, so they should be more than sufficient for day-to-day use.
In short, these are a particularly compelling budget option. If you’re looking for a plain and simple way to protect your child’s hearing on a budget, these ear defenders are ideal.
Can Baby Ear Defenders Be Worn From Birth?
If you’re taking a baby under 6 months old to a noisy event such as a wedding or music festival, you will want to protect their delicate ears. This means using some hearing protection, such as ear plugs or ear defenders.
There are several pairs of baby and children’s ear defenders on the market, but manufacturers generally only recommend them for babies aged 3 months old or more. While some people choose to use them on younger babies, you might be worried about them being too tight on your baby’s head.
So can baby ear defenders be worn from birth? After researching this question, here’s what we’ve found:
- It’s generally not advised to use ear defenders on babies under the age of 3 months as their skulls are still quite soft.
- We couldn’t find any baby ear defenders with a recommended age of less than 3 months available in the UK.
- Babies can often sleep well through noise, so unless your exposing them to very loud noise ear defenders may not be necessary.
How to Choose Ear Defenders for Kids
Kids’ ear defenders are essentially the same as adults’ ear defenders, only smaller and with more fun, colourful designs. However, buying ear defenders for your children is a bit different to buying them for yourself. Here are the three keys to choosing the best ear defenders for your kids:
- Look for a high SNR rating
Ear defenders usually have an SNR rating, which is an estimate of the reduction in sound offered by the ear defenders measured in decibels. An SNR of 25 is equivalent to a 25 decibel reduction in the volume of the sound hitting your ear drums. It’s important to note that the SNR rating applies to loud sounds only – quieter sounds won’t be reduced in volume by as much as the SNR rating. The best ear defenders for children have SNR ratings of 25 dB or above.
2. Let your child choose the colour
Children can be very picky about colours and designs, so it’s a good idea to let them choose the colour of their ear defenders. Getting ear defenders with a design your child likes will make it much easier to persuade them to wear them.
3. Make sure they’re made for the right age group
Some ear defenders for children are suitable for babies and toddlers, while others are only suitable for older children over the age of 5. You should check that the ear defenders you’re looking at will fit children of your child’s age before buying them.
To summarise, look for age-appropriate ear defenders with a design your child will like and an SNR rating of 25 or above.
Why ear defenders and not ear plugs?
There are two main choices of ear protection: in-ear ear plugs and over-ear ear defenders. Young children usually don’t like ear plugs, so ear defenders are a better option. They’re also safer as they go over the ear rather than in it.
In addition to safeguarding your child’s ears against hearing loss and tinnitus, ear defenders are also great for noise-sensitive children including children with autism.