Festival Style’s Must Have? Good Hearing Health

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Festival season is well and truly underway. Across the globe, the best artists across a multitude of genres are putting together the final pieces of their contributions to the summer circuit.

At the same time, fans are racking their brains to begin cultivating their ‘fits – finding the right bucket hat, making sure they’ve got enough crossbody bags to rotate, and planning out which sneakers they’ll let take a beating. Oh, sunglasses too. But have you ever considered earplugs or AirPods Pro?

Most of all, we should all be making considerations for the most important accessory of all; our hearing health.

When you’re hopping across the globe, spinning around the festival calendar in different cities and settings, your ears can take a beating.

While some of the world’s most powerful sound systems are put to work and turned to the max to ensure that thousands of attendees share an experience to remember, we often neglect to remember that our ears aren’t built for the sustained impact, with as many as a third of young people experiencing the effects of tinnitus.

Further to this, the World Health Organization estimates more than 700 million people globally will experience profound hearing loss by 2050.

Fortunately, there’s a preventative fix that we can work into our festival accessorisation. Earplugs. Even our AirPods Pros.

Now, I know what you’re thinking – “who the hell wears AirPods to a festival?” While I’m inclined to agree that someone sporting their earbuds while bass music rips through the crowd would spin me out somewhat, hear me out.

The key to protecting your hearing through the use of earplugs, or in this case, the Air Pods Pro (2nd Generation), is the amount of noise reduction or attenuation that they offer.

As per Apple’s Health App, which includes articles on hearing health, ‘listening at 80 decibels (dB) for more than 40 hours in a one-week period increases your risk of hearing loss. Raise it 10 dB to 90 and damage can begin after only 4 hours a week. Turn it up over 100 dB, and listening for just a few minutes a week can cause damage.”

Generally, EDM (electronic dance music) festivals can sit between 100-120 dB, which, over several days at a festival like Glastonbury or Boomtown, can have adverse effects on our hearing.

Using the AirPods Pro, you can reduce sound by 23 dB, making loud environments much safer for extended periods through the use of Active Noise Cancelling. Moreover, couple this with an Apple Watch, and you can receive alerts when you’re in damagingly loud environments.

As someone that extends several festivals throughout the summer, I’ve become more attuned to the risks to our hearing health, as such, I’ve put the Air PodsPro to the test against a heavy sound system akin to a needle against the eardrum and can safety safe it makes a huge difference.

While the AirPods Pro (2nd Generation) or alternative earbuds with ANC are a great choice as you likely already own them, they may feel strange or attract unwanted attention at a festival. For a more lowkey, cost-effective option, there are plenty of stylish earplug options on the market.

Loop, D’Addario, Fender, Blox, Eargasm, and Earpeace all offer great options for a fraction of the price of ANC earbuds, some even offering adjustable protection to suit your needs.

Now, while you dig into our festival guide and prepare yourself for a summer of madness, consider your ears while you’re accessorizing your festival looks – while you might find those Health App sound notifications annoying, it could save your hearing.

  • apple
  • Apple Air Pods
  • music festivals


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