How to clean headphones

It's essential to clean your headphones from time to time, getting rid of earwax, dust, hair and anything else that can get inside. Here's how to do it

If you take a look at your earbuds, you'll notice how much dirt they can accumulate over time. We use them everywhere and put them on any surface. Some of the material that builds up in your headphones not only disrupts their function, but also contains a lot of bacteria.

It's therefore essential to clean your headphones, getting rid of earwax, dust, hair and anything else that can stick to them. This is especially important if you use in-ear headphones, where the earbuds are more in contact with the ear. Removing dirt is important to prolonging the life of your headphones, as well as preventing you from getting an ear infection. Headphones, like anything else, can harbor harmful microorganisms. Cleaning your headphones isn't difficult, however. All you need is a little patience and a few simple tools.

Make sure you have 91% isopropyl alcohol, 3% hydrogen peroxide, liquid soap (hand soap is fine), Q-tips, a microfiber cloth (or cotton), distilled water and a toothbrush. In short, nothing so difficult to find. Now we're ready, here's how to clean your headphones.

Plastic, sponge and silicone parts

Not all headphones are made from the same materials, which is something to consider when cleaning. For plastic and silicone parts, such as cables or ear buds, you can use a mixture of alcohol and distilled water. Dampen the microfiber or cotton cloth with a little of the solution and proceed.

Remember to remove the two membranes before continuing with the cleaning, making sure to remove any dirt deposited inside them as well. If the earphones are made of sponge, it is advisable to use only distilled water, excluding alcohol from the composition.

Wood and metal

Some headphones, especially professional and therefore very expensive ones, are built through the use of fine materials. They can have the arch and the earcups made of aluminum or titanium. And that's not all. You can also find headphones made of wood. For those made of metal, it is sufficient to use the previous mix, composed of alcohol and distilled water. In the second case, however, it is better to avoid this solution, opting, instead, for a mixture of liquid soap diluted in warm water.

Headsets made of leather and other delicate fabrics

On the market it is not uncommon to find headsets covered in leather or other delicate fabrics. In these cases, the only way to clean them without damaging them is to use special cleaning agents. Alcohol or other liquids are not recommended. You could try to remove the dirt, however, rubbing a cotton or microfiber cloth on the parts.

If the upholstery is made of velvet or synthetic fiber and is removable here's what to do. Pull the fabric out, scrub it with an old toothbrush and soak it first in a solution of warm water and liquid soap and then in distilled water. Finally, wring it out gently and then set it aside to dry.

Earphones and microphone slots

Much of the dirt settles on the earphones and microphone slots. Here you will need to be very careful. To prevent some of the applied liquid from getting into the circuits, turn the headset downwards. Then, take a cotton swab and lightly moisten it with a little hydrogen peroxide.

Place the swab on the headset - almost touching it - and after a minute, holding the headset in the same position, gently scrub the headset with the brush. Alternatively, you could also use a hearing aid aspirator.