Some people may associate earplugs with concerts and other loud events, but the best earplugs for sleeping with a snorer are comfortable enough to wear in a much more peaceful environment — your bedroom. You just need to find the right pair for the amount of sound you're trying to reduce and the material you feel most comfortable with. Whether the source in question is a partner or a pet, loud snoring can be effectively blocked out.
First, we need to talk about sound volume, which is measured in decibels. Snoring starts at 40 decibels (considered mild) and can go up to more than 60 decibels, which is categorized as severe. The noise reduction rate (or NRR) is how effective a particular tool is at blocking out sounds. The higher the number, the less you'll hear. The highest NRR rating for earplugs is 33, and most of the pairs on my list below come close to that number, but I've also included a 20-to-25-decibel option for those who don't necessarily want to block out all sounds (for example: your alarm clock or a crying baby).
Next, you'll want to consider the material. Silicone is the most popular because it comes in both solid and putty forms and is flexible, comfortable, hygienic, and effective. Foam may not be as versatile or durable, but it's often the most budget-friendly option and can still block out more than 30 decibels, but you'll have to replace them more often.
If you just can't take another terrible night's sleep, these earplugs for noise reduction could change everything — one pair is even designed to be comfortable and secure for side sleepers.
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1. The reusable silicone ones
There are several reasons why ANBOW's earplugs a great pick for most sleepers. First, they're made from BPA-free silicone that's flexible, comfortable, and itch-free while still blocking out an impressive 32 decibels of noise for a good night's sleep. Second, they're washable, reusable, and easy to put in. Third, each order comes with three pairs with storage boxes and a waterproof carrying pouch. One pair is even corded to prevent you from losing them. Finally, this pick has over 1,800 reviews and a 4.4-star rating, so it comes backed by buyers.
- Noise reduction rate: 32 decibels
- Number of pairs: 3
One reviewer says: "They really work! Just had the best night of sleep I’ve had in a good while. Woke up feeling so refreshed. My husband keeps me up most nights with his snoring."
2. The budget ones
If you're looking for a budget-friendly fix (or if you're known to lose your earplugs left and right), Mack's foam earplugs are likely the best pick for you. Each value jar costs just $10, but comes with 50 pairs of disposable plugs. They're made from an extra-soft foam, which creates minimal pressure in your ear canal while still blocking out 33 decibels of sound. But since the material isn't easy to thoroughly clean, you'll want to replace these earplugs every few days — or even every day — to avoid irritation or infections. These plugs only come in one size, so if your canals are particularly small, these probably won't be the best fit.
- Noise reduction rate: 33 decibels
- Number of pairs: 50
One reviewer says: "Excellent sound reducers and comfortable too. I often have to wear earplugs to sleep soundly - I like these because they are cheap and effective at blocking almost all noise."
3. The ones for side sleepers
Unlike foam and traditional silicone options, silicone putty earplugs are entirely moldable, so they're often the best choice for those whose ear canals are especially small or large. Since nothing sticks out and they're less likely to fall out or get in the way, making them the best pick for most side sleepers. Kuyax's plugs are made from silicone putty, and they're BPA-free, hypoallergenic, and well-suited for all ear sizes — especially since you can adjust the size by tearing off a bit. Each order comes with four reusable, washable pairs and a storage case.
- Noise reduction rate: 32 decibels
- Number of pairs: 4
One reviewer says: "Most ear plugs are too big and uncomfortable for me because of my small ear canals. After splitting one plug in half, it [fit] my ear perfectly. And of course, they are effective and comfortable."
4. The versatile ones that reduce a little less sound
When it comes to versatility, BRISON noise-canceling earplugs are well-rounded enough for a wide variety of activities. You get two styles of reusable silicone earplugs with each set — one basic pair and one with an acoustic filter built in. With a noise reduction rate of 20 to 25 decibels, they're helpful in blocking out small disruptions while ensuring that you're still aware of your alarm. This also makes them suitable for households with kids, and you could wear them to concerts or other loud environments, too. Finally, each order comes with a metal keychain carrying case, which is great for travel.
- Noise reduction rate: 20 to 25 decibels
- Number of pairs: 2
One reviewer says: "They don’t eliminate noise 100%, but enough to get a good night’s sleep and then be able to wake to your alarm in the morning [... The clear pair is] made for you to be able to hear and enjoy sounds without hurting your ears."
Hanly, P. J., Maimon, N. (2010) Does Snoring Intensity Correlate with the Severity of Obstructive Sleep Apnea? J Clin Sleep Med, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2952752/