Are you concerned about your baby’s hearing? There may be good reason – in today’s world young children are regularly exposed to all kinds of loud noises, and statistics show that 1 child out of 8 will suffer permanent hearing loss.
Luckily it is so easy to protect your child’s hearing, with noise-attenuating headphones specially designed for babies, infants and toddlers, and in this article I will recommend the 6 best noise protection headphones for babies.
If you’re in a hurry, and just want the top choice, here is my number one recommendation:
- Best Baby Headphones for Noise Cancelling Overall: Alpine Muffy Baby Ear Protection for Babies and Toddlers up to 36 Months
Extremely effective, super comfortable and specially designed for a baby’s sensitive head – not just the best baby headphones you can get but, more importantly, the safest!
Is It Important to Protect Your Baby’s Hearing?
Absolutely – when you consider the many different situations and environments that have excessively loud noises – places and situations we encounter every single day – a pair of protective headphones for babies is a wonderful and important thing to have on hand all the time.
Some of the places and situations which can be painful or damaging for babies’ hearing include:
- Sporting Events / Races
- Heavy Traffic / Honking / Sirens
- Construction Sites
Even busy restaurants and malls can be too loud for a baby, which helps us remember that what may seem normal for us may well be uncomfortably, or even dangerously, high in volume, for our precious little ones.
Keep in mind that babies have much smaller ear canals, making noises more loud and uncomfortable than they are for us, and so we’re not just helping protect our baby’s hearing, we’re making them happier and more comfortable, and even avoiding pain.
A simple rule of thumb is that if we even raise our voices, to be heard, we might well want to consider putting protective noise-cancelling headphones on our baby, and if we have to shout, that inner parenting voice should be shouting at us to do so immediately!
Because in environments that are too noisy real hearing damage – even permanent damage – is likely to happen, either over time or, in some cases, right away.
Experts tell us that damage can occur for babies with lower levels of noise than would hurt older kids or adults:
- 80 DB – or the noise made by vacuums or inside an airplane – usually safe, but can be uncomfortable for babies
- 90 DB – or the noise level of a hair dryer, a food processor or a motorcycle – extended exposure can damage a baby’s hearing
- 100 DB – this can include chainsaws and leaf blowers louder motorcycles, bars, even school dances – short-term exposure (even 15 minutes) can be damaging
- 110 DB – concerts or clubs, car stereos, personal audio devices (especially with headphones), even dogs barking – at this level or above hearing loss can happen much quicker, even immediately
- 120 DB or above – gunfire, police sirens, jet airplanes, concerts and loud clubs, jack hammers, close-range fireworks – babies should never be exposed to these noise levels without hearing protection.
In fact, it should clearly be said that it’s not just the most extreme noises – many doctors and hearing experts would say that babies should not be exposed to anything over 100 DB even for a short time without adequate hearing protection, and good protective headphones should be considered even for the 80-100 DB range – for long-term exposure especially, but even for short-term comfort.
It can be argued that parents can be too protective, and that babies need to hear what’s going on around them to properly learn and develop. This is definitely true, and we shouldn’t use protective headphones all the time, but given everything we know, and how precious our child’s hearing is, we absolutely should have a pair of the best noise protection headphones on hand and use them when necessary.
Who Makes the Best Noise Protection Headphones for Babies?
There are a lot of choices out there for good noise-protecting headphones for babies, many from a lot of companies most of us have never heard of and many quite cheap.
But there are a few brands and models which are really proven to be effective, comfortable, well made, durable and safe on all levels. We see that the best noise cancelling headphones for newborns and babies come from wonderful companies like Alpine, Snug, Mumba Baby, Alitamei and BBTKCARE.
And since we definitely don’t want to take chances with our baby’s hearing, comfort or safety, the products from these excellent companies are the ones I’m recommending. So unlike other buyer’s guides to the best hearing protection headphones for infants, this ends up being a much more focused, and selective list – not 12 or 15 choices, but the 5 very best you can get – baby hearing protection you know is effective and that you can totally trust.
Please note that for noise reduction ratings I am using the European SNR standards rather than the US NRR system – simply because they are more conservative, and more widely used, and allow us to most effectively compare the different headphones.
So, all that said, let’s go ahead and take a closer look at the 5 best baby headphones for noise cancelling on the market today.
Best Noise Cancelling Headphones for Babies in 2023
Best Inexpensive Hearing Protection Headphones for Babies
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- Noise Attenuation: 23 Decibels SNR
- Recommended Age Range: 0-24 Months
The Snug headphones are the least expensive baby noise cancelling headphones I would consider getting for a baby’s hearing protection. Despite their very low price, they are well made and well designed and attenuate noise really effectively.
They offer a full 23 decibels of noise reduction, which is more than enough for your baby’s hearing protection even in very loud environments, and are certified by both US and European standards to be safe to use.
The Snug baby earmuffs are also very well designed – not just soft and well padded, and just the right size for even the tiniest heads, but with no rough surfaces or sharp edges. In fact, they are smooth and comfortable enough to wear even when your baby is sleeping.
Made of strong and durable materials, the Snug infant headphones will hold up, and won’t break or come apart with use, making them not just totally safe to wear but long lasting as well.
Overall, a great and highly affordable product, and my choice for best affordable baby headphones for noise cancelling.
Keep in mind that if you’re looking for hearing protection for a slightly older child, Snug also makes an excellent noise-attenuating headphone for toddlers – a bit bigger but equally well made, comfortable and effective.
Best Baby Headphones for Extreme Noise
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- Noise Attenuation: 26 Decibels
- Recommended Age Range: 0-36 Months
These inexpensive Alitamei baby headphones are very well made – with a full 3 year warranty – and are very safe as well – in fact, they have been fully tested and certified by both US and European safety standards.
They are also quite comfortable and well designed, and should stay in place even if your baby is active.
But although they can be easily recommended in every way, the real reason to choose the Alitamei baby headphones might well be their superior noise attenuation – in fact, in this respect they are clearly the best on our buyer’s guide for baby headphones, with a full 26 decibels of noise reduction.
If your precious baby is ever exposed to extremely noisy conditions, even for a short time, or very noisy conditions for an extended time, the protection these Alitamei muffs offer may make all the difference.
I think there might possibly be more comfortable choices on the list, or baby earmuffs for noise that are better made or better designed for babies, but the Alitamei baby headphones are actually really great in these respects – and for the ultimate in noise attenuation, and the ultimate in hearing protection for your baby, they’re as good as it gets.
Most Comfortable Baby Headphones
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- Noise Attenuation: 23 Decibels
- Recommended Age Range: 3-24 Months
The Mumba Baby noise protection headphones are certainly effective enough for any situation, with up to 23 decibels of attenuation.
But what I really love about these wonderful headphones is how comfortable they are, with soft, smooth surfaces, plushy earpads and headband and wide ear cups that exert zero pressure on your baby’s ears.
The Mumba Baby noise protection headphones are still plenty snug, to provide maximum noise reduction, but they never bother the baby or cause any pain – not only making your child more comfortable and happier, but much less likely to pull them off.
These are also well made, durable and very safe baby headphones, that are flexible and will not break or come apart, and they are fully size-adjustable and very light weight, making them even more comfortable.
The main reason to get a pair of the best noise cancelling headphones for babies is to protect their precious hearing, and any recommendation on my list is fantastic for that. But we also get them to make our babies more comfortable, and the Mumba Baby headphones are as comfortable as it gets.
Most Effective Noise Cancellation
- PROTECT YOUR BABY’S SENSITIVE EARS FROM...
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- PERFECT FOR NAP-TIME ON THE GO! The BBTKCARE...
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- Noise Attenuation: Not Rated
- Recommended Age Range: 3-24 Months
The BBTKCARE baby headphones are probably the most popular hearing protection headphones on the market today for babies, and are an extremely highly rated product.
That alone would not be enough for me to recommend them, though, and yet I am happy to call them the most effective you can get for noise cutting, because I have a couple of friends who have and use this very product, and they personally attest that even in very loud environments their babies are blithely unaware of the noise all around them, and seem comfortable and happy to wear these headphones.
In fact, I’m choosing the BBTKCARE noise-cancelling headphones as the most effective not just because they offer such extreme noise attenuation, but because they are snug and won’t slip or fall off, and so comfortable that babies won’t fuss or tug at them – after all, they can’t be that effective if they’re not in place!
Well made, safe and durable, these are very nicely designed, with smooth surfaces, rounded edges and very safe padding – they really seem like they are made by people who themselves have babies, and know how best to care for them.
If not my top choice overall – the Alpine Muffy just below takes that honor – these BBTKCARE baby ear protecting muffs might well be the best hearing protection for babies available, and are very highly recommended.
Safest Noise Cancelling Baby Headphones
- PROTECT YOUR BABY FROM NOISE | Loud sounds...
- NO PRESSURE ON FONTANEL | The head of a baby...
- ADJUSTABLE AND SAFE | Alpine Muffy baby and...
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- Noise Attenuation: 23 Decibels SNR
- Recommended Age Range: 3-36 Months
At the beginning of this article on good baby headphones for hearing protection I single out these Alpine Muffy earmuffs, calling them the
Best Baby Headphones for Noise Cancelling Overall
…and there’s no question in my mind that these are the best hearing protectors for babies and the best choice you can make on many levels.
But here I want to especially emphasize their safety, since they are really special in this respect, and different from anything else on the list.
Rather than a hard, padded headband – like all the others here, and like most adult headphones – the cute little Muffy Baby headphones have a soft, double-strap design which never puts pressure on the top of the head, but instead wraps around like a headband.
A baby’s anterior fontanelle, or soft spot, may stay open up to 18 months, and even as soft and well designed as most baby headphones are they can put some pressure on that spot. The Alpine baby muffs, on the other hand, have nothing that goes across or touches the top of the skull, and so are totally safe in this regard.
The straps are soft and won’t slip, so they are comfortable to wear and won’t bother your baby, and the earpads are super-cushy, soft and comfortable as well.
The Alpine Muffy Baby headphones are fully effective, with a noise attenuation rating of 23 decibels, are made from non-allergenic materials, BPA and silicone free, and they are strong, durable and very well made – on every count, the best noise cancelling headphones you can get for your baby, and the safest, and deserving of our highest recommendation.
In fact, Alpine products are all consistently excellent, and I can just as easily and enthusiastically recommend the Alpine Muffy Noise-Protection Headphones for Older Kids (3-16 Years), and well as their Alpine Pluggies Noise-Cancelling Earplugs for kids 5 and older.