How Do I Clean My Smelly Headphones?

Technology has made listening to music possible wherever you are. This includes while using public transportation, while showering, while exercising at the gym, while running, or even while swimming.

 These activities all contribute to the dirtiness of our headphones, which leads to a terrible odor. The purpose of this article is to examine in depth how to clean smelly headphones

In this post we will cover:-

1. What Causes Headphones to Smell Bad?

Despite the fact that headphones have become a common part of life due to technology, frequent use leads to them smelling. Some even sleep with their headphones in or over their ears, which causes sweat to accumulate.

While exercising at a gym or running outside, sweat and dust from the environment accumulate. As a result, the headphones or ear buds will become soiled and uncomfortable to wear.

Even though some ear buds are sweat- and dust-proof, continued use without cleaning will lead to musty smelling headphones.

2. How Can I Stop Headphones from Smelling?

In order to prevent headphones from smelling, one thing has to be done: clean them. Furthermore, you might want to clean your headphones with water-detergent solution or wipe them, depending on their type.

Moreover, to avoid damage to your headphones, you should remove an unpleasant odor with extreme caution, just as you would with any other device.

3. How to Clean and Remove Sweat Smell from Headphones or Pads?

You cannot enjoy your music while wearing smelly or dirty headphones because the smell makes you uneasy. It is possible that another passenger may feel uneasy if they are seated next to you when you are traveling due to the unpleasant smell.

In order to prevent all of this, here are some steps you can take to simplify your cleaning

In this article, we will examine two types of headphones and how to clean them

  • In ear Monitors/Ear buds
  • On ear and over the ear headphones

4.In Ear Monitors or Ear buds

The following items that will aid in cleaning must be ready before any cleaning begins.

  • Warm water and soap
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Microfiber cloth
  • Soft sponge or dish rag
  • Cotton swabs

In most cases, the driver unit that produces sound is inserted into the ear. This component must first be removed from its detachable silicon sleeves in order to be cleaned.

Make sure the wire mesh is free of clogged dirt or ear wax by brushing it gently with a soft tooth brush. The dirt can be easily removed by lightly tapping the non-mesh side.

Use a soft cloth to rub hydrogen peroxide or hand sanitizer gently on the wire mesh and wires. It will help to remove any unpleasant odors since both are antibacterial.  

 In a bowl of water that is a little bit warm, soak the silicone sleeves for about five minutes.

Allow the silicon to completely dry and wipe it down before reattaching it.

5. Headphones over the Ear and on ear

In the event that you fail to take sufficient care when washing your headphones, the soft lettering on the on-ear and over-the-ear models can be torn easily.

Cleaning the exterior of the earphones requires gently removing the ear pads and then dampening a soft cloth with warm water and soap. Allow them to air dry after you have dried them with a soft towel.

The exterior of the ear pads should be disinfected with rubbing alcohol or hand sanitizer dampened on a soft cloth.

To aid in the killing of bacteria in the ear pads, thoroughly clean the surface of the foam mesh with alcohol or sanitizer. As a result, the clogged-up dirt on the mesh will be removed as well.

6. Benefits of taking care of headphones

It is beneficial to take appropriate care of headphones for a number of reasons, including

1. It saves money.

The longer you take care of your headphones, the longer they will last and you won’t have to replace them as often.

2. Give comfort

You’ll benefit from keeping your headphones in proper working condition for as long as possible. The result will be a feeling of extreme comfort for you.

3. Hygiene

Over time, sweat, dirt, and bacteria accumulate on ear buds and headphones when they are frequently used. It is possible to reduce and even stop the buildup of odor and dirt on the pads of your headphones by following proper cleaning procedures.

7. How Often Should I clean My Headphones?

No matter where we go, whether to the gym, shop, or simply go for a walk, we use headphones almost daily.

Even though headphones are so important and we use them every day, have you ever wondered how often they should be cleaned?

 This question will be answered differently depending on the way you use your headphones. Cleaning them at least once a week is recommended.

At the gym, some people use their headphones or ear buds once, twice, or three times a week, depending on their schedules. There are some people who only use headphones for leisure purposes.

When exercising or performing other activities that cause sweating, users must clean them frequently.

 If you clean your headphones regularly, you will reduce the risk of ear infections and other health issues associated with ears.

8. How to Prevent My Headphones from Getting Dirty?

Worn, headphones can easily become dirty depending on the environment.

Once you’ve finished using them, store them in a case or bag in order to prevent impacts, scratches, and dirt. By using the case you received with your headphones, you can ensure that the case you choose will fit them.


Regularly cleaning headphones or ear buds will prevent them from developing odors caused by wear and tear.

In the article above, it is mentioned that cleaning them and storing them safely when not in use has its own advantages.

This article should provide you with information on how to clean headphones’ storage so you will be able to complete every step involved.


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How to Keep Headphones From Peeling

In order to clean my headphones, what should I use?

 Use a cotton ball or Q-tip dampened with rubbing alcohol to clean crevices. It can be applied to both the main headphone unit and the ear cups (in places such as fabric folds). After stretching the headphones to their fullest extent, thoroughly clean them with a towel or cloth and some rubbing alcohol.

Is it possible to clean earbuds with rubbing alcohol?

Wipe the mesh of the buds with isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol after dipping a cotton swab in it. Make sure the cotton swab is not soaked in alcohol for too long. Moisture should not seep into the internal workings of the earbud.