Hearing Protection For Bike Riders- The Things Not To Overlook

Hearing Protection For Bike Riders- The Things Not To Overlook

Most people prioritize the safety of their vision over hearing when riding their bikes without realizing how vulnerable their ears could be out there on the road if proper care is not taken.

The sound produced by your helmet when cutting through the air at highway speeds will surely damage your hearing in the long run. Wearing a half helmet or riding open face will only quicken this process.

EarsToday is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.

In A Hurry?

If require the Best Hearing Protection for this item, and do not want to read the entire article, below are my recommended ear protection.

Which are the best Earplugs for riding a Motorbike?

For Riding a motorcycle, the best ear plugs are Eargasm Slide Earplugs for Concerts Musicians Motorcycles Noise Sensitivity .

However, this will depend on several things. If you use them a lot, for example, if it is your principal job, or perhaps just minor use. Also, if you want to use these ear plugs for other things, like listen to music, or Answer Your Phone.

There are earplug options available, for example: Convenient Fitting, Noise Reduction Rating (NRR), Long-Lasting, Flexibility, and if you want earplugs or headphones. As you can see, there is a lot in picking the best fit.

earplugs can actually make you hear better

It is a misconception that by wearing earplugs you won't be able to hear even the slightest sound. Though it's quite true that it might be difficult to hear someone at a stoplight speaking at you in their car, you most certainly will not go deaf. In fact, earplugs can actually make you hear better.

Also, hearing loss doesn't happen overnight. If you keep riding for years without earplugs, your sense of hearing will decrease gradually. Although you will not go deaf completely, your ears will definitely lose the sharpness they have had before.

Advantages of motorcycle earplugs

  1. Reduces the wind noise

Most bikers wear protective gears like helmets, gloves and boots when riding their bikes but overlook ear protection. Even if you wear a helmet, the wind becomes louder when you go faster. Ambient wind noise at highway speeds can be over 100dB. That annoying shrill sound is a distraction and could damage your hearing. Earplugs help minimise the wind noise and protect your hearing when riding.

  1. Wards off temporary deafness

Temporary Threshold Shift (TSS) is a condition that causes temporary hearing loss. Since the wind noise is constant when riding, it could contribute towards TSS. When this happens, it would block out other frequencies posing a risk when you're riding. Wearing earplugs may help you with this.

  1. Picks up particular frequencies

A good pair of earplugs will make you hear better in loud environments. This is because certain frequencies are suppressed compared to others. A fine set of earplugs can enhance sounds you may want to hear while softening harmful ones.

  1. Minimizes fatigue

Some bikers suffer from noise fatigue when they're riding for quite a long time. This could be tiresome and even painful. Wearing earplugs may help you against this condition.

Noises When Riding A Motorcycle

The following infographic shows a list of the various noises when you are out and about. Any noise over 70-80db over a long period of time may cause damage to your hearing. A noise of over 120dB may cuase immediate harm to your ears

General types of earplugs for bikers: disposable, reusable, corded and moulded

There are many types of earplugs available for bikers. The disposable ones made of foam are the most common type of earplugs. They are not expensive yet comfortable when worn. Though foam plugs appear to be cheap, be mindful of their quality since it is something that you will insert into your ear canal. Also, the earplugs will be ineffective if proper insertion doesn't take place, as they would then cannot dampen the sounds evenly.

Reusable earplugs require regular maintenance and cleaning for optimal function, as they can be worn multiple times. With proper care, the earplugs could even last beyond a year. Although they're expensive than the regular disposable earplugs, it is still worth to have them if you're a regular user.

Corded earplugs are convenient for riders as they are hard to misplace unlike the traditional earplugs. These earplugs are easier to remove and can be hung around the neck when not in use.

If you want the exact fit for your ears, it is best to go for custom moulded earplugs. They are quite pricey but totally worth it if you're looking for optimum hearing protection and want to wear them frequently. Moulded earplugs are made to reduce loud sounds significantly while allowing you to hear voices.

What to look for when buying a pair of motorcycle earplugs

Fit is one of the key features to consider when looking to buy a pair of earplugs for bike riding. Although many earplugs come with a free size one-size-fits-all theory, your ear canal could be too wide or too narrow for certain brands to fit. There is a possibility of earplug getting stuck in your ear canal if it's too small or not staying put if it's too large. Therefore, a good fit is always a crucial factor to consider beforehand.

The next thing to look for is the Noise Reduction Rating (NRR) and Single Number Rating (SNR). These ratings give us an idea about the product's potential for noise reduction in terms of decibels (dB). A higher rating means a higher noise suppression.

At times, choosing a comfortable set of earplugs can be a challenge. To avoid the crushing of earplugs by the helmet sides it is better to go for a pair that is low profile and has short stems. The materials used in the making of motorcycle earplugs vary from foam to ceramic. Foam earplugs are squeezed during insertion, which then expands on its own accord to fill up the canal. Earplugs made with soft silicone are very delicate. Certain ceramic earplugs contain filters that offer accurate sound attenuation better than plastic filters.

Frequently asked questions regarding motorcycle earplugs

One of the most frequently asked questions regarding motorcycle earplugs is whether they're legal. In some states, they're considered illegal. Hence it's best to check your state's laws prior to investing. Another concern is whether the noise cancelling feature in the earplugs will block the sounds of sirens and horns. The answer is no. The best earplugs for motorcycling minimise high-pitched sounds. Therefore, you will hear horns and sirens when riding with earplugs on.

Some of them wonder if earplugs are necessary when wearing a full-face helmet. In reality, the wind can creep in through the gaps of your full-face helmet and make a shrill sound. This calls for high-grade earplugs to protect your ears completely. Even if you're traveling a short distance, it is still a better idea to wear earplugs to protect your ears from the wind and engine noise.

Another pressing question is whether the Bluetooth speakers could be heard when earplugs are worn. The answer is most likely yes. Since earplugs eliminate wind noise, it should probably make it easier for you to hear your headset. This is also supported because the best earplugs for motorcycling can soften some frequencies while enhancing the others.

Please Note: Just because an ear defender is marked, for example, "Gunshot" - it will still cover other things, like "explosions"

Best Ear Plugs

The following are the best earplugs  (They go from low price to high price.)

Other Questions

What materials are suitable for ear defenders?

Ear defenders protect your ears by blocking sound waves produced by loud noise or high-frequency sounds that would affect your ears.

These ear defenders are mainly designed with a unique feature that is a cup part and the covering of this cup made from hard thermoplastic. They make the inside of the cup with acoustic foam that helps reduce the amplitudes of waves. Acoustic foam is described as firmer foam. It contains higher ILD that absorb low-frequency sounds and softer foam that absorbs high-frequency sounds that result in sound absorption.

They make ear protection devices of a hard thermoplastic material that softens when heated and hardens when cooled. Polypropylene and polyvinyl chloride protect the outer parts of your ear devices. They also give them a unique appearance and design, making them the best material for ear protectors.

How do you get wind out of your ear?

Wind refers to the natural movement of air that surrounds the planet with a natural horizontal motion. However, wind affects human ears by causing an irritating noise known as tinnitus.
Tinnitus is a medical term known as ringing in the ears. The best way to get rid of the wind in your ears is to use earplugs or earmuffs that prevent the penetration of blowing air into your ears.

They design earplugs and earmuffs for such purposes. There are other ways of getting rid of wind from ears that include wearing a hat, headband, and a ski helmet. It’s not advisable to use cotton wool to protect yourself from wind because it could cause inflammation in your ear’s ear canal.

Can the wind give you an earache?

Wind can cause an irritation to your ear canals that results in pain or commonly known as an earache, since the ears are one of the most exposed delicate parts of a human being. Ears don’t have any protective fat tissue and that leaves the ear canal unprotected, hence leaving your ears vulnerable to any effects exposed to them from the environment.

The earache caused by the wind causes discomfort that would require you to use a method of applying heat onto the body (warm compress) placed on to the ears for a few minutes. It is usually used to ease the pain, but it's advisable to visit a doctor in case the pain persists.

Alpine MotoSafe Tour Reusable Ear Plugs – Motorcycle Ear Plugs –...
  • PREVENT HEARING DAMAGE: Environmental noises can easily reach 100 Decibels at just 75 Miles per hour. This means that chronic hearing damage can be done in just 7 minutes! These Medium attenuation motorcycle earplugs are ideal ear protection for touring on motorways.
  • ENJOY YOUR RIDE: The special AlpineAcousticFilter will ensure that your engine, communication systems and navigation are still Audible. MotoSafe earplugs reduce wind ambient noises, so riding your motorcycle is a much better experience!
  • COMFORTABLE UNDER HELMET: The ultra soft earplugs are perfect match for motorbike helmet! You can take them out easily as well. The unique material adapts to your ear canal for the best fit, also great for longer rides as they do not irritate or give presure.
  • TESTED AND CERTIFIED: Thoroughly tested and proven to reach noise reduction at 17 dB SNR in accordance with US & EU Regulations. The patented AlpineThermoShape material is Hypoallergenic, Sustainable and without silicone; so no allergic reactions!
  • AWARD-WINNING DUTCH DESIGN | Alpine is an innovator and leader in quality hearing protection with 25 years R&D experience. All products are designed and produced in The Netherlands. A wide variety of earplugs ensure that you can do what you love to do without risking ear damage!
Nonoise Motor - New Generation Ear Plugs - Ceramic Filter
  • Precision-tuned, patented ceramic filters ensure maximum protection from dangerous levels of engine, wind & road noise.
  • Hearing protection with the best sound quality thanks to ceramic filter it has the best acoustics, no muffling effect but dampened.
  • Reduces engine and wind noise for racing and touring. Just like adjusting the volume.
  • New generation ear plugs enables you to still hear warning traffic signals (like sirens), phone calls and music.
  • FExtremely comfortable for everyday use, silicone-free, hypoallergenic thermoplastics used.
Eargasm Slide Earplugs for Concerts Musicians Motorcycles Noise...
  • ADJUSTABLE VOLUME CONTROL by moving slider to one of two settings. Reduce noise with an NRR of either 15 dB or 22 dB, all while maintaining crisp, high fidelity sound!
  • GET THE PERFECT FIT with three sizes and two different colors of eartips included with every order. Fits most ear sizes from small to large. Install the eartips of choice and your Eargasm Slide Earplugs are ready for immediate use!
  • NO BATTERIES REQUIRED for these innovative earplugs! Our attenuation filters make use of passive technology to provide the best sound reduction possible, without any electronic components needed.
  • KEEP YOUR EARPLUGS IN REACH at all times with the included connector cord. Built in magnet on each earplug allows them to connect to each other for additional convenience!
  • STORE YOUR EARPLUGS SAFELY with the sturdy, aluminum keychain carrying case included with every unit! An anti-stick interior guarantees earplugs will always be easily removable. Waterproof rubber seal ensures their protection from moisture, dust and debris.

Last update on 2021-04-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


If you require more information, please check these references

To Hell on a Bike: Riding Paris-Roubaix: the Toughest Race in Cycling , article, "books.google.co.uk", retrieved on, Wed 11-November-2020

Just Ride: A radically practical guide to riding your bike , article, "books.google.co.uk", retrieved on, Wed 11-November-2020

Do conventional bicycle helmets provide adequate protection in mountain biking? , article, "www.sciencedirect.com", retrieved on, Wed 11-November-2020

Author: Nick

Hi, I am Nick, and I have suffered with ear problems my whole life, mainly tinnitus. I have tried a lot of products to help protect my ears over this period, and several devices to block out the constant ringing

“Are you having problems hearing? If so, those around you already know it. Hearing loss is no laughing matter, so don’t be a punchline.”

Amazon Affiliate

EarsToday.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.


95 Sunrising, East Looe. Cornwall
PL13 1NG, United Kingdom

Tel: 07593 076598