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If you are one of those people who can’t fall asleep without listening to your favorite melodies, our article about the best noise cancelling earbuds for sleeping in 2020 is great opportunity for you to learn something new about this problem and find out how to find the best pair of earbuds and what to pay attention to when buying them.
Devices that Can Help Us Get Some Quality Sleep
It’s not a secret that many people have sleeping problems. For some of them, sleeping problems are caused by insomnia, but most of them can’t sleep because they live in noisy streets, they have noisy neighbors, noisy pets, snoring partner or they simply can’t fall asleep if they hear any sound.
As you can see, the problems are different and so are the solutions. Researches have proven that constant noise with the same dB value during your sleep is better and less harmful than many different noises that can wake you up and make you even more tired.
The first thing that comes to our minds are ear plugs that can isolate great amount of noise (sometimes more than headphones). They provide silence, but they can be uncomfortable and they aren’t the good choice for people who can’t stand complete silence because, with ear plugs, you can only hear your thoughts and heart beats.
If you prefer falling asleep accompanied by some pleasant sounds, there are plenty of options for you. The most common way is to buy headphones and enjoy your favorite melodies while trying to fall asleep. The problem is that there are so many models of headphones on the market and many of them are qualified as “sleeping headphones”, although they really aren’t. However, comfort is relative term, but there’s something for everyone on the market.
One of the frequently bought types of headphones are sleeping headphones, made especially for sleeping. They are wired and their earpieces are really thin. They are wrapped in a piece of soft fabric that you put around your head and sleep with it. These headphones may be the most comfortable choice, but they certainly don’t offer satisfying sound or decent sound isolation quality.
Anyhow, some people prefer to buy regular headphones and because over-ear headphones (which are usually found most comfortable for everyday use) are too big and sturdy for bed, they usually decide to buy earbuds mostly because of their size. These are less comfortable than sleeping headphones, but they offer better sound quality and even active or passive noise cancellation.
Of course, you can also buy a white noise generator, which is also often used to put babies asleep, but in case your partner prefers peaceful and quiet bedroom, this is not the right thing for you.
Best Noise Cancelling Earbuds For Sleeping In 2020 – Top 5
|Noise Cancelling Earbuds||Model||Rating||Review|
|Bose QuietComfort 20||4.4||Read Review|
|Senzer S10||4.2||Read Review|
The Advantages of Wearing Noise Cancelling Earbuds when Sleeping
Like we have already said, earbuds are probably the most popular type of headphones for sleeping. They may not be the most comfortable option because they can be too sturdy, or they can go too deep into your ears if they are too small, but they have many advantages that make them so popular for activities during the day as well as night.
Here are some of the most important benefits of sleeping with earbuds:
- Earbuds are lightweight and they put less pressure on your head than bigger headphones;
- Earbuds sound better than sleeping headphones;
- Noise cancellation enables you to completely isolate from outside noise;
- Earbuds can be found in wireless versions for those who hate cables;
- The same pair of earbuds can be used in many everyday situations.
One of the factors that can improve comfort level is the quality and softness of your pillow, as well as the sleeping position because earbuds aren't the best choice for side sleepers and we will discuss that later.
The List of 5 Best Noise Cancelling Earbuds for Sleeping in 2020
Bose QuietComfort 20 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones
Bose QuietComfort 20 are the best and the most expensive product on our list of 5 best noise cancelling earbuds for sleeping. Many people will probably say that they are too expensive for a pair of earbuds for sleeping. We agree that the price is very high, but if you take into consideration that Bose QC 20 offer real quality for the price you pay and that they don’t have to be used just in bed, but also in everyday situations like working out, walking, studying or commuting, you will realize that they are worth the price.
For many years now, Bose has been one of the leading companies, which produces noise cancelling equipment for pilots who work in noisy cabins. We can say that they are even unbeatable in the field of active noise cancelling technology and these headphones are one of the best results of their hard work. QS 20 aren’t as comfortable for sleeping as sleeping headphones are, but they offer active noise cancelling, great sound quality and they won’t heat your head like sleeping headphones do.
Bose QuietComfort 20 don’t come in many shine colors, but their design is simple and elegant, so you can wear them wherever you want. They come in black and white colors, the ear tips are silver and the audio cable is in black/blue and white/blue color combinations. These headphones have 132 cm long Y-shaped audio cable. On the joint of the two cables that are connected to the earpieces is inline mic as well as three buttons that help you control the volume, play/pause music, and answer/end calls without taking your phone out of your pocket. The noise cancellation regulator is on the lower part of the audio cable. It is flat and light, and it has blue button that is used to turn ANC on or off. When active noise cancellation mode is on, the small indicator on the regulator will turn green. Next to this one, there is the battery status indicator. The cable ends with L-shaped 3.5 mm gold-plated corrosion-free connector.
When it comes to build quality, we can say that Bose QC 20 are pretty durable earbuds. They are made from durable quality plastic that can survive long-term severe usage. The audio cable is thin but durable. It is rounded and rubberized, and it should be resistant to tangling and pulling. At the first look, the noise cancellation regulator might stand out, but it is actually quite thin and flat and it is easily worn in pockets. It is covered with latex, which looks and feels nice, but it can collect great amount of dust.
Bose QC 20 come in a nice package with all the necessary equipment for normal functioning. Besides this black carrying case, you will get USB charging cable, two spare pairs of ear tips in different sizes so you can adjust them to the size of your ears and one user manual that you should read carefully because it explains to you how to put earpieces in ears in the right way. If you follow the instructions, you will reach maximum capacity of Bose QC 20, but if you don't, active noise cancelling technology might not perform at its best.
One of the most important features of Bose QC 20 that are related to our topic is comfort and we assure you that these headphones are great in that department. The ear tips are made from silicone that is very soft and comfortable. If you choose the right size of the tips and make sure that they have been inserted in your ears correctly, you will be able to sleep with these headphones and get as much rest as you need. The tips snug nicely into your ears and block outside noise physically (they seal your ear canal so that no sound can go in) and electronically (with the help of noise cancelling technology). These earbuds are really light and they won’t put pressure on your ears, which makes them good choice even for side sleepers. The mic is good as well as the cable, so they won’t produce any sound when moved during the night. QC 20 are very stable earbuds, especially because of the small wings on the tips. Because of that, they are good not only for sleeping but also for different physical activities.
When we speak about sound quality, these headphones are great, as it could be expected from Bose product. They have balanced sound, mostly because of equalizer, the bass is powerful, mids are a bit suspended and there are some inconsistencies when it comes to treble. You won’t get real soundstage atmosphere when listening to music through these earbuds and the sound quality decreases when active noise cancelling is on, but QC 20 sound pretty great for a pair of earbuds. In the area of noise cancellation, you will be thrilled no matter if you are on the street or in bed. These earbuds will definitely help you relax and get some quality sleep. The only problem you might encounter is the cable because it can wrap around your neck or cause some other minor problems, but otherwise, we strongly recommend Bose QC 20.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Great sound quality
Great passive and active noise cancellation
Very durable earbuds
Tips in different sizes included in the package
Battery can last up to 16 hours
Earbuds can work with ANC turned off
Not available in wireless option
TaoTronics In Ear Active Noise Cancelling Earphones
There are many models of earbuds made by TaoTronics that are more popular among customers, but, in our opinion, TT-EP002 are the best model with active noise cancelling technology that is comfortable enough for sleeping. We will present to you the pair of earbuds that can be used for many purposes and in many situations, not only in bed. Their design makes them great for outside activities and their sound quality and active noise cancellation technology along with some other features make them great for listening to music or talking on the phone even in noisy environment. The price of $45 is really nothing compared to all the possibilities you get with these earbuds. They definitely won’t sound the same as Bose QC 20, but it will be completely satisfying for that price.
TT-EP002 are available in only black color and they have very nice and attractive design so you can wear them outside, not just at home. They are wired earbuds with Y-shaped cable. The mic is on the right side near user’s mouth and the cable is divided into upper and lower part by noise cancelling regulator. On the other side of the small box where the mic is placed, there are three buttons that enable you to control the volume, play/pause music, and answer/end calls. The noise cancellation regulator is rectangular and it is quite small and thin, so you shouldn't have any problems wearing it in your pocket. On the regulator, you will find two buttons that enable you to switch between active noise cancelling and monitoring modes. Next to the active noise cancellation switch, there is small indicator that will turn green every time active noise cancellation is on. The cable ends with regular straight 3.5 mm connector, compatible with most of modern portable devices such as phones, players, tablets, even notebooks.
TT-EP002 come in a nice and elegant package. The earbuds are nicely snugged into some kind of foam and there are also really short USB charging cable, airplane adapter, user manual, textile carrying bag and many pairs of spare ear tips in different sizes that will help you get perfect fit and snug, in order to achieve the best comfort and best sound quality. There are 3 pairs of silicone ear tips and 2 pairs of spare ear hooks that provide extra stability in your ears and prevent falling out caused by head movements.
When it comes to build quality, TT-EP002 are pretty durable for such a cheap pair of earbuds and there were practically no complaints about that feature. The housings were made mostly from aluminum with nice matte finish that makes the earbuds so appealing. Cable construction is also very satisfying concerning the price of these earbuds. It can survive some pulling, but not severe usage.
As far as comfort is concerned, TT-EP002 are pretty satisfying for the price. Ear tips are made from very soft silicone and they snug nicely into your ear canal. You also get spare tips and hooks so there’s practically no way to miss the right size. These earbuds weigh only 0.8 ounces and although they are made from metal and sturdy plastic, they are lightweight and they put no pressure on your ears. Also, you have the possibility to buy separately memory foam ear tips and replace these silicone tips and make the earbuds even more comfortable. The earbuds are also quite small and they won’t cause you major troubles no matter if you sleep on your back or on a side. The only problem might cause the cable, but as these are wired earbuds, you should be ready for occasional wrapping and pulling.
TT-EP002 have average sound quality when compared to more expensive earbuds, but in their category, they are perfectly fine. They have a bit emphasized and mudded bass, the sound isn’t clean and detailed enough. It wouldn’t be good rated by an audiophile, but for an average user, these earbuds do the job quite well. As we are speaking about sleeping earbuds, active noise cancellation is the most important thing and it works fine. You shouldn’t expect these earbuds to shut out every sound, but even advertised 25 dBs are pretty good. In case you don’t want ANC, just press the button for turning on the monitoring mode, the volume will decrease and you will become more aware of everything that’s going on around you.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Good durability for the price
Good sound quality for the price
Relatively cheap earbuds
TT-EP002 cancel up to 25 dB of external noise
Sound quality is only average
The audio cable might cause minor problems in bed
Otium Wireless Noise Cancelling Earphones
Otium Wireless Earbuds are one of the Amazon best sellers and they are in that group for a reason. These earbuds are quite cheap and for the price of $20, you can afford to even lose them or damage them and don’t be sorry about that. However, they do offer a lot for a pair of 20-dollar earbuds. They are wireless, so they will keep you far from long cables dangling around and disturbing you. These were originally made to be used in gyms or for outside jogs, but because of their stability and the level of comfort they offer, they are great choice for sleeping.
These earbuds have very attractive design and they don’t seem cheap at all. Just by looking at them, you would think that they cost much more than 20 dollars. They come in black color and you can choose whether you want to buy earbuds with red or black audio cable. That’s pretty much the only difference between the models. The cable is flat and rubberized, so it is very soft and comfortable, but some people might find it too long. If you don’t like the cable dangling behind your neck, you can always shorten it with the clip. As far as the earpieces are concerned, they have ergonomic design. All the controls are placed on the right earbud and you can find there one big power button on the front side, volume controls on the top (they can be also used to skip tracks if pressed and held for a few seconds) and micro USB connector on the bottom. Ear tips are very soft and they snug nicely into your ear canal, so they can block great amount of outside noise physically. Ear hooks are also very pleasant for wearing. They are rubberized, soft and flexible and their purpose is to provide extra stability so that the earbuds can stay in your ears no matter what you are doing.
Otium Wireless Sports Earbuds come in a simple box with short USB to micro USB charging cable, one clip, two spare ear tips in different sizes (one pair is already on the earpieces) and one sturdy carrying case, which can be attached to your keys or a backpack. They also come with user manual, one year warranty and 30-day return policy. These earbuds are quite stable in ears, even without hooks and they are also quite durable for cheap earbuds. They are made mostly from plastic, which makes them so light (0.6 ounces). Some parts like the cable and ear hooks are covered with rubber, which makes them extra soft and comfortable. They also have IPX7 waterproof rating, so they will survive sweating, raining or small splashes of water. Thanks to the ergonomic design and comfort they provide, these are safe for sleeping. They might seem a bit large, especially for side sleepers, but they are actually really pleasant and they don’t put pressure on your ears. In our opinion, with a good pillow, you will be able to sleep tightly listening to relaxing melodies through Otium earbuds. These earbuds have rechargeable battery (it takes 1-2 hours to fully recharge) and it lasts for 8 hours per charge, which is more than enough for working out, but if you often sleep more than 8 hours, you should look for different earbuds.
When it comes to sound quality, we can't say that these offer the best sound ever. The sound, in general, is quite good for the price you pay, but it is a bit muddy and it is far from the sound quality that Bose offers, for example. However, they are decent and they manage to block great amount of ambient noise, so you will be able to shut out most of noises in your room and the noises coming from the street. You will also be able to talk on the phone in the street without worrying that you won’t hear somebody or that the other person won’t hear you. The mic will definitely pick up some sounds, but they won’t make your conversation less understandable.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Good sound quality and noise cancellation for the price
Very stable in ears
Compatible with iOS, Android, and other Bluetooth enabled devices
Bluetooth 4.1 technology
8 hours of battery life might be short for sleeping
Sound is not very clear
Senzer S10 Noise-isolating Earphones
Senzer S10 are actually very similar to Advanced AcousticWerkers’ Q in-ear headphones that are much more expensive and S10 are considered to be their cheaper version. The design of S10 is very simple and very attractive. The earbuds are so small that we got the impression that the sound quality would be damaged in case these were a bit smaller. However, many people have been completely satisfied with the job these earbuds do, especially for sleeping purposes.
Senzer S10 come only in black color with silver elements. The earpieces length is only 9.8 mm, so they will be practically invisible to everybody around you. If the audio cable wasn’t there, even you wouldn’t be completely aware of their presence. On the right side of Y-shaped audio cable, very close to your mouth, are located small mic and three buttons that help you control the volume, skip tracks and play/pause music or answer/end calls. The main difference between the controls on these and the other earbuds is the play/pause button. The button is usually in the middle of volume controls, but in this case, the button is below the other two. The cable ends with straight 3.5 mm connector.
S10 come in a very stylish black box with only silver Senzer logo on it. Inside the box there are the earbuds, nicely snugged in a piece of foam, along with one textile carrying bag, one user manual and 7 spare pairs of ear tips (6 silicone and one foam) in different sizes, so that you can adjust the buds to the size and shape of your ears. When you choose the right size of tips, you should make sure that you have placed the earbuds in your ears correctly. If you do that, the earbuds will stay in your ears without falling out no matter what you do and provide the best possible noise isolation. Because of their size and shape, many people use these when they want to solve their problems with insomnia. They block great amount of external noise and provide great comfort, without putting any pressure on your ears. As all wired earbuds, S10 also have problem with the cable that can easily wrap around your neck. Besides that, these are completely safe to wear during sleeping.
S10 are relatively cheap earbuds, but for the price, they offer great durability. The earpieces are made from metal, ear tips from durable but gentle silicone/foam and the audio cable is half rubber, half fabric, but it seems able to survive some pulling. You can sometimes hear strange sounds when the cable is touched or moved, but that’s not so alarming.
When it comes to sound quality, we must say that these earbuds aren’t perfect. The sound is a bit mudded and blurred, the bass is quite strong but it is the one to blame for mudded mids, especially when male vocals are considered. However, these earbuds are quite great at isolating ambient noise, so we assume that if you have to choose between great sound quality and not being able to hear cars, noisy neighbors or snoring, you would decide to pick the earbuds with good noise isolation.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Simple and attractive design
Extremely small earbuds
Very light earbuds (0.6 ounces)
Great at noise isolation
Very comfortable for sleeping
These earbuds come in rich package (7 spare ear tips in different sizes)
Durable earbuds for this price range
The audio cable might cause problems while sleeping
The sound quality isn’t great
Maxrock Unique Total Soft Silicon Super Comfortable Sleeping Headphones
Maxrock EL-273707 are really unique earbuds that weigh only 0.3 ounces. They are also very small and that makes them practically invisible when put in your ears. They may not be the most durable earbuds on the market and they don’t offer excellent sound quality, but for sleeping earbuds, they are very comfortable and very stable in ears and that should be the most important characteristic. These are also compatible with most of Android, iOS and other portable devices (because of 3.5 mm connector and 16 Ohm impedance), so you can be sure that they will work just fine when connected to practically any modern audio device. All in all, you can’t expect too much from 12-dollar earbuds.
EL-273707 have very simple design and they come in three colors (black, green and pink). Housings are extremely small, and inside the housings, there are super-small 5mm speakers (drivers). They are so small that the ear tips cover them entirely. These earbuds are wired, their 120cm audio cable is Y-shaped and it has universal straight connector, as we have already said. The inline mic and controls are on the cable. When these earbuds are connected to most of Android devices, you can use them to play/pause music and answer/end calls. More options come up when they are connected to iOS devices because you can also skip tracks.
These earbuds come in a poor package with only earbuds and silicone carrying case included. This is not the best option because although these are proved to be very comfortable for wearing, especially for sleeping, human ears are different and these may not fit perfectly everybody's ears. As the matter of fact, there were some complaints about the size of the earbuds, because some customers found them too small. So, if you don’t want to push these earbuds too deep in your ear canal, the best option would be to try them on somewhere and see how they fit your ears.
EL-273707 can’t brag about extreme durability, but we wouldn’t expect that from such a cheap pair of earbuds. Some customers reported tips wearing off and speakers falling off, so we advise you to be careful and check their condition before inserting them into ears. The earpieces really consist only of tiny speakers and antibacterial silicone ear tips that prevent inching and skin irritation. The audio cable is rounded and really soft because it is covered with rubber.
The most important feature of these earbuds is their comfort because as the manufacturer claims, these were made for sleeping. Many customers complained about the durability of these earbuds, but there were really no complaints regarding comfort. EL-273707 ensure perfect seal of your ear canal, they block great amount of external noise, even snoring, and you can be sure that tight sleep is guaranteed with these earbuds. Because of their size and shape, you don’t have to worry if you are going to sleep on a side or on your back because EL-273707 won’t put any pressure on your ears or cause any pain. There is always the cable, which may cause some problems, but otherwise these are perfect for sleeping.
When it comes to sound quality, we must say that these earbuds don’t deliver excellent sound. They don’t produce strong bass or anything like that. These are decent earbuds made mostly for sleeping and they will deliver sound that is good enough for that purpose. They work nicely with all genres, as well as white noise, so if you like that, you can download white noise application and play it. In addition, the earbuds block ambient noise very well, they leave you alone with your music and you might even need a shake to wake up.
Advantages and Disadvantages
Nice simple design
Ear tips are made from antibacterial soft silicone
Inline mic provided
Compatible with Android and iOS devices
Decent sound quality for the price
Very cheap earbuds
Great noise isolation
Extremely comfortable for regular wearing and sleeping
The audio cable might cause problems
No extra ear tips provided in the package
Things You Should Pay Attention to Before Buying Earbuds for Sleeping?
Choosing the best pair of noise cancelling earbuds for sleeping is not as easy task as some might think. Sleeping is very important for our general health and the more effort we make to sleep properly the more our body will be grateful someday. We have to be serious about all the things that affect our health and that’s the reason why we have given you this list of things everyone should consider when searching for this kind of earbuds.
The most important thing about a pair of headphones that will be in your ears during your sleep is comfort. During sleep, your ears will forgive you slightly distorted sound, lack of bass and other sound quality flaws, but they won’t be able to forgive you constant torture caused by uncomfortable earbuds. You should make sure that the earbuds are comfortable enough for extended wearing, but they also should be small enough for you to be able to sleep on a side in case you have that sleeping routine.
One of the things that affect comfort level is your pillow. If it is too soft, it will force you to put your head lower than it should be and the earbuds will go deep into your ear canals and hurt your ears. In case the pillow is too hard, the first thing you will experience is neck pain and pain in your ears, so don’t forget to find quality pillow.
- Sound quality (noise cancellation/noise isolation/sound leakage)
When we speak about sound quality, we don’t specifically think of lows, mids, and highs. Earbuds that are used for sleeping should have some other qualities rather than deep punchy bass.
Earbuds are constructed in a way that enables them to be inserted in your ear canal and their nature makes them noise isolating headphones, which means they will physically isolate great portion of ambient noise and ensure pleasant and uninterrupted sleep. However, that passive sound cancellation might not be powerful enough to isolate snoring of the person that lies next to you or some other loud sounds. That’s why we recommend earbuds with active noise cancellation technology that electronically isolates all the ambient noise and leaves you alone with your music. Along with noise cancellation, sound leakage shouldn’t be forgotten, because you should think about your partner. You don’t want to disturb him/her and wake him/her up, especially if your partner prefers to sleep in perfectly silent room.
- Wired or wireless
It is true that cables make mess, especially in a place like bed. If you have wired earbuds for sleeping, you have certainly involuntarily hooked the cable and knocked down the phone or player or you have simply woken up with audio cable wrapped around your neck, which can be quite disturbing.
In order to prevent situations like these, we advise buying wireless earbuds, especially because that kind of earbuds can be rigorously used for other activities, such as working out, walking, travelling, etc.
Money is always important and the price depends on the type of earbuds that you want to buy. For example, earbuds with ANC are always much more expensive than earbuds with passive noise cancellation. However, we advise you to put the price aside if you manage to find perfect earbuds for you. If you can afford them, don’t be cheap and buy them – they will be beneficial to your health and that’s the most important thing.
Is Sleeping with Earbuds Dangerous?
To start from the physical side of the story – it is not natural for anything to be inside your ear canal. That means that earbuds certainly aren’t the healthiest way of listening to music.
When speaking about problems that might pop up because of wearing noise cancellation earbuds while sleeping, we can say that people come up with many different stories. The most frequent stories say that a person who wears these headphones is unable to hear smoke or fire alarms in case his/her house is caught on fire. Some other stories say that the cable can choke you during the night.
In our opinion, one of the most serious problems that might occur is the increase of bacteria level in your ears, which is expected in case you wear the same pair of earbuds every night for so many hours straight. In order to prevent something like that from happening and protect yourself from some kind of infection, we advise you to take a break and skip a night every now and then and let your ears rest.
To conclude, wearing earbuds is not the perfect and the healthiest way to fall asleep, but it is certainly not as dangerous and disturbing as some say. There is no product that can be called perfect and that can be good in every aspect. We advise you to go through our list of 5 best noise cancelling earbuds for sleeping in 2020 and find product that suits best your sleeping habits, buy earbuds and enjoy your favorite music while falling asleep.
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Hello, my name is Danny Brown.
I am writer and editor at HeadphonesEncyclopedia, I’ve been reviewing all kinds of electronic devices, audio and video equipment for almost a decade. My specialty is audio equipment and I have a strong passion for headphones, speakers, and home theater systems. I spend hours and hours testing and evaluating audio equipment in order to offer you unbiased reviews. Since we all have different tastes when it comes to sound, don’t take my reviews for granted. They can offer you a lot of useful info but you should definitely test (hear) the headphones/speakers before making the purchase.