The 3 Best Earplugs For Studying

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As anyone who has ever crammed for a test would know, focusing — and staying focused — is not easy. And when trying keep on top of a lot of new material, silence is paramount. That's why the best earplugs for studying can change your study habits for the better.

To eliminate the most noise, you'll need to look for one measurement on any set of earplugs: their noise reduction rating (NRR). This is measured in decibels, or dBs, and will refer to the amount of noise a pair of earplugs blocks out — the higher the NRR rating, the less noise you'll hear. Generally, you'll find most earplugs have NRRs that hover between 20 and 45 dBs, for reference.

Also, word to the wise: Material matters. Most foam earplugs will be disposable, while silicone options will be reusable. Think about which material will feel best in your ears, and also whether or not you want to throw your earplugs away after using them once, or have a reliable pair that you reuse frequently.

Beyond that, scan the reviews. (I've got you covered there.) If earplugs actually live up to their hype, reviewers will come in droves to talk about them on a site like Amazon.

But, you've got work to do. Let's get to it. Here are the best earplugs for studying.

1. The Best Foam Earplugs

Noise reduction rating (NRR): 32 decibels

With nearly 3,000 reviewers backing this choice, these earplugs are a fan-favorite that students far and wide love. These boast an NRR of 32 decibels, so they'll block out most of the background noise so you can focus on your test, essay, midterm, what have you. For just $8, these foam earplugs come in a pack of 50, so you'll get a lot of use out of these. Something to note: These aren't meant to be used repeatedly (most reviewers say you'll want to swap these once a week for hygiene purposes), but with 50 pairs of earplugs in this affordable pack, you won't run out for a really long time.

What fans say: "This product was a lifesaver when it came to studying for the boards! It blocks out a lot of the additional noises in the background. I would recommend this!"

2. The Best Silicone Earplugs

Noise reduction rating (NRR): 22 decibels

These silicone earplugs are a bit more pricey (you'll get 12 pairs for $10 with this set), but they're a lot more versatile. Not only do fans love these earplugs for studying, but since they're waterproof, they can be used while you're swimming and are that much more sweat-proof if you live in a warm climate. They're also moldable to shape to your individual ears for maximum comfort and noise reduction. While the NRR on this pair doesn't quite match that of the foam earplugs above, they'll block out enough noise for you to properly focus on your homework or studying.

What fans say: "They don't block out ALL the sound, because no ear plugs can... But I like to use them when I'm doing my HW. We have a big noisy house and it's always been impossible to study at home. Now, instead of finding driving to campus for my quiet study space, I plug in these baby's right at home. They work VERY WELL!!!"

3. The Best Splurge

Noise reduction rating (NRR): 23 and 29 decibels

If you're willing to invest more money upfront, a reusable silicone pair of earplugs like these are the way to go. Not only do they block out enough noise to help you get your work done, but they will last you a really long time. Reviewers have had these earplugs for years (yes, years!) without needing to replace them. That makes them the most eco-friendly pair on this list, as well. Even better, they come with a handy carrying case you can clip onto your backpack or bag. This set comes with two pairs that each have a different noise reduction ratings, so you'll be able to adjust which pair you wear based on the noise around you. With over 1,400 reviewers weighing in on Amazon, these are tried, true, and loved by students and non-students alike.

What fans say: "Can absolutely tell that I've made a difference for myself since I purchased my first pair almost a year ago. I also wear these to the gym, to study in the school library, for test-taking, and for air travel. I recommend LiveMus!c earplugs at every opportunity.You only get one set of ears, but I will buy as many pairs as I need."

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