Turn Regular Earbuds into Noise-Isolating Earbuds

The rubberized tips that come with most modern earbuds may be comfortable, but in most cases, they aren’t the most effective way of cancelling outside noise and getting the best sound possible out of your earbuds. If you want to improve your bargain variety earbuds and turn them into great-sounding, noise-isolating headphones, you’re in luck. You can easily improve the performance of your earbuds by simply making your own foam tips.

Step 1
Collect the materials. To get the job done, you’ll need a pair of memory foam earplugs from your local grocery store, as well as a sharp knife to cut the earplugs, and something to make a circular hole in the earplug that can insert onto the end of your
earbud. Be VERY careful when using knives or other sharp objects.

Step 2
Trim the end of the earplug—the part that will insert into your ear—so that it is only a little longer than the speaker on your earbud. When you place your new earbud caps on the small speakers of your headphones, you don’t want the sound to have to travel through too much foam to reach your ears, but you also don’t want to have the speaker stem sticking out into your ear, either.

Step 3
Next, you will need to make the hole in the side of the earplug that will cover the speaker. The best way to do this is to push a pen shaft—with the actual ink part of the pen removed—slowly through the foam.

Step 4
Slide the new foam earphones into the speaker stems of your earbud headphones. The ends of the speakers should align almost perfectly with the end of the hole you made with the pen. Finally, place the foam earphones in your ear and let the memory foam adjust to the shape of your ear.

Using simple and inexpensive memory foam earplugs, you should be able to turn your inexpensive earbuds into powerful noise-isolating headphones. Best of all, if you mess up the process, or if your foam earphones wear out or get dirty over time, you can simply repeat the process with a new pair of earplugs!