Why Do Kids Need Headphones These Days?
We are living in a 2021 world, where, whether the parents like it or not, the need for children to have screen time has increased for several unavoidable reasons. The kids are stuck at home these days with online schooling as their only way to pursue academics thanks to the widespread pandemic. Right from the virtual learning sessions, to gaming or the increasing number of age-appropriate media, the need for having a headphone for your kids is seemingly increasing.
Why Has It Become a Staple in Every Household?
Some schools today are also incorporating e-learning and along with textbooks, notebooks, and stationery, they also need the children to carry a pair of headphones. Sometimes, despite the unwillingness to expose their kids to the media, many parents find it necessary and useful to have them sit with a kid’s show streaming on TV or tablet. This helps to keep them busy while they finish their daily chores which otherwise may seem impossible with the little ones running around the house.
More so, have you ever been subjected to the loud bam coming from your kid’s favorite superhero show while you are trying to focus in a virtual meeting? Or, more so the shrill whining of George from one of the Peppa Pig episodes? Well, if you have, then you know what it means to walk around the house peacefully without those ear-rattling sounds from the shows that amuse your little ones.
These days many people even choose to give kids headphones wirelessly or wired as gifts because some children are very selective about the toys or games, and some people also believe that gifting clothes makes no sense as kids outgrow them with the blink of an eye. The headphones for kids are also a much-needed accessory if you are traveling and you need to keep your kids from being restless from the long hauling flights. The essentiality of these audio gears is never-ending, right?
What Should You Keep in Mind When Exposing Your Kids to Headphones?
Now that you know that at some point in time, you cannot help but let your little ones have their screen time for a what-so-ever reason, and you need to get a decent pair of audio gear, it becomes a dire necessity to understand a few important aspects.
First of all, the headphones for kids are different from that of the ones that adults use. In case you are wondering what’s the difference as both serve the same purpose, then you should know that the use of adult headphones may expose them to greater risks of ear problems or hearing loss.
Even though younger people have the ability to hear more than an adult or an aged person, it is important to safeguard their ears because they are more delicate than adults. This means that taking into account both comfort and safe hearing is extremely important if you are planning to buy kid’s headphones for school or for any purpose for that matter.
Safety Concerns Regarding Kids Headphones
Keeping the safety aspect in mind the manufacturers build headphones for kids with what is called an ‘output limiter’ as a part of the parental controls. Most pediatricians, child specialists, or other medical specialists advise that if at all the kids are exposed to the headphones, they should be using them with a volume limit of 85 decibels or below for a safe hearing. It is also important to ensure that they do not use the headphones for more than 60 minutes at a time with a total time not exceeding 2 hours a day. That is the limit every parent must keep in mind to protect their little ones from falling victim to hearing loss.
We all know that headphones are not really a healthy gear for children as they have some negative effects on them which we will discuss a bit later. However, if you’re reading this article, clearly you really need one for your munchkin, and we totally understand that. Considering all the factors, we have rounded up some of the best kid’s headphones you will get in the market today.
Best Kids Headphones: List of Some of the Best-rated Kids’ Headphones Wireless and Wired, Their Features, Pros, and Cons:
When it comes to the headphones for kids, it is a lot more beyond just the attractive and colorful design. In fact, it is crucial to go for a kids-friendly headphone that has all the safety features and parental controls you will need for safe use. While there are many options when it comes to kids’ headphones for school or for casual use, you need to beware of some manufacturers who offer super cool designed headphones that your kids may just fall for but lack the essential safety features.
Given the fact that there are many manufacturers and numerous products emerging in the market these days, it is not easy to choose a good toddler-friendly headphone. You may be worried about several things like the authenticity of the product, the safety aspect, volume limit, quality, durability, functionality, and most importantly whether it is the right product for your child. Don’t worry! We are here to help you with your selection process.
The list below covers some of the best kids’ headsets that you can feel safe with and your little ones can have a comfortable and safe exposure. They are of different price ranges, useful features and most importantly, they have been highly rated and widely recommended by the users and experts, so you can pick them up without a worry.
JBL JR 300BT on-ear-headphones: (Overall best kids headphones wireless)
JBL, one of the leading brands when it comes to headphones, and JR300BT from JBL is a kid’s wireless headphone that is supported by Bluetooth technology. The headphone’s volume maxed out at exactly 85 dB and will not cross beyond that limit. This way you can stay relaxed while your child can use the headphones safely.
You can adjust the volume in the settings menu of the main audio device, and you can also protect it with a passcode. But while it is hard to measure the levels constantly, you can just stay worry-free because these headphones for kids specifically engineered in such a way that they will not get louder than the 85 dB limit.
Now, even though the sound output has been limited as a measure of safety, what makes it one of the best kids headphones wireless is its amazingly rich sound with prominent bass, well-balanced mids, and crisp highs. The audio is clear and can give your kid a great listening experience. All of the controls are located on the ear cups including the power button and the Bluetooth pairing button.
The headphone’s battery life is about 12 hours when charged fully, which means that these audio gears will last for days if your child’s screen time is limited to 2 hours a day as recommended by the doctors and health experts. The headphone will cost you around $44.99 to $49.95 depending on the color you choose.
- Designed with a soft ear cup and headband padding for superior comfort.
- There are bright and beautiful color variants to choose from.
- Volume limit is extremely effective and reliable despite being wireless.
- You can customize the headphones with stickers of the kids’ liking.
- Great sound with powerful and we defined frequency mix.
- It may be a bit messy initially with the controls but it should be fine once you get used to it.
- The touch may turn down the power of the headphone so you need to be careful with that.
- The bass may sometimes get distorted at a higher volume in some tracks.
Puro JuniorJams Volume Limiting Headphones for Kids: (Best Bluetooth kids headphones for school)
One of the best kids headphones wireless, this pair from Puro Sound Labs is a complete package of design, features, safety measures, and quality. The headphones are ideal for kids from the age group 2 to 12 years.
These headsets made to top out the volume limit at 85 dB which gives way to safe listening for your kids. The best part is that the design of these audio gear helps block out most of the ambient noise giving a quieter listening environment. This means that your kids do not have to turn up that volume to the max at all because they can hear clearly even at that moderate loudness. Thanks to the noise isolation, they make great kid’s headphones for school as well as for flights.
The Bluetooth 4.0 technology offers strong connectivity with a long range of 30 feet allowing your kid to move around freely while keeping the mobile device in one place. The battery life is impressive with a good 22 hours of playback time which again makes it school and travel-friendly. The headphones come bundled with a connecting cable that allows uninterrupted use when the Bluetooth connection is shaky or your headphones are out of charge.
These headphones for kids have a price tag of $79.99.
- Great sound.
- Reliable output limit for safe hearing.
- Effective noise-canceling for better hearing.
- Incredible battery life.
- Retractable design for easy storage and portability.
- Four bright colors to choose from.
- Premium finish with thick ear-cup and neckband padding.
- With the daisy-chain system, the headphone can be connected to another one so both the kids can listen together at the same time.
- None as such.
Puro Sound Labs BT2200: (Another best kids headphones from Puro Sound Labs)
If you have slightly bigger kids or teenagers who have outgrown the fantasy world fandom or do not like the extra-bright sparkling designs anymore, then these headphones are perfect for them. BT2200 is great if you, as a parent, still need to protect them from the adverse effects of extra loud sound bursts but need a little more grownup-looking headsets. There are about 9 color variants available so your child can select what appeals to them the most.
The best part about the headphones is that they look sophisticated despite having a volume limit of 85 dB. Another interesting thing about this pair is that the volume control is located on the earcup itself along with the other controls buttons for ease of use.
Although the headphone comes with Bluetooth technology for seamless wireless pairing offering a signal range of up to 30 feet, you will also get a cable to connect to the audio device if needed. The battery performance is good but is a little lesser than the previous model listed in the list. You will get about 18 to 20 hours of runtime here. The headphone will cost about $99.00.
- Studio-grade sound profile that gives an amazing listening experience even at low volume.
- Perfectly designed for both comfort and impressive noise isolation, so the kids do not have to turn up the volume.
- Available in both wired and wireless specs.
- Good battery life.
- Aesthetic looks.
- Folding of the headphones is not possible.
- The headphone size is slightly bigger, so it may not fit well for younger kids.
- They have shorter battery life than Puro JuniorJams listed above.
Philips SHK2000BL/27 Kids Headphones: (Best kids headphones for school under $25)
Looking for good kids’ headphones for school? Well, you can never go wrong with these coming from one of the well-reputed and established brands, Philips. These headphones for kids feature an ergonomic design that offers extra comfort and is a perfect option for super active kids! Yes, these headphones are lightweight but can take in a lot of pressure.
The well-cushioned ear cups adjust well to any size and shape of the head. This offers superior noise reduction allowing your kid to have uninterrupted screen time whether they are using them for e-learning in school or watching their favorite superpower in action. As for the sound, it’s pretty impressive despite the maximum volume being limited to 85 dB.
You will get this headphone at $24.99 which is competitively priced for its performance.
- Excellent build quality ideal for active kids.
- Great performance.
- Limited top volume.
- Great value for money.
- Only wired. Doesn’t have a wireless option.
JLAB JBuddies Folding headphones for kids: (Best kids headphones for smaller kids)
Your kids would love this pair for their style, performance, as well as comfortable fit and you, are sure to like them for their volume limiting technology. Great kids headphones for school, they offer a snug fit that prevents them from slipping off the head.
These JBuddies headphones feature a volume control knob that allows you to control the loudness, so the kids never get exposed to a volume higher than the recommended 85 dB. While the sound is fairly decent, it is not of that high grade as that of Puro (as per some users) but at $11.00, this is definitely a great option for your little one.
The braided wire saves you from the untangling session and the foldable design is easy to take along or slip in the school bag.
- Great for 2 to 8 years old kids.
- Compact headphones with effective noise reduction.
- Available in 8 attractive colors.
- Volume regulators for parental control.
- Super affordable price.
- The sound performance could have been better.
JLab Audio Studio On-Ear Headphones: (Great kids headphones for school)
Yet another good pair from JLab, this one is for a little older kids as the company recommends this for ages 6 to 16-year-olds. With 40 mm neodymium drivers, the headphones deliver incredible studio-grade audio with a well-balanced sound profile. Also engineered with a volume limiter of 85 dB which helps protect the kids years from getting exposed to high volumes.
The sliding metal frame adjustments and the high-quality leather finished cloud foam ear-cups are great for all-day listening. The design and audio are great for virtual learning making it ideal kids’ headphones for school. The headphone comes with a connecting cable with in-line control and a mic that picks up the voice clearly. The C3 technology ensures crystal clear clarity offering punchy bass and clean mids and highs. You will get these headphones at a price tag of $19.88.
- Excellent audio.
- Reliable volume limiter.
- Great mic ideal for phone calls.
- Surprisingly cheap for offering studio-grade comfort and sound.
- Not wireless
iClever BTH03 Kids headphones wireless: (Best kids headphones wireless for traveling)
Here’s an attractive pair of headphones that offers top-notch features along with a stunning look. The headphone features Bluetooth 5.0 technology for seamless pairing and uninterrupted audio streaming without a sound drop. The long-range offered by Bluetooth allows your kid to walk around freely without having to hold the device or stick around close to the audio device.
To make the headphone more interesting to your child, you can customize the LED ring lights on the ear cups and can turn them off as well when not needed. The well-cushioned ear pads and super comfortable to wear, and the headband is twistable making it a travel-friendly option that can slide into your backpack easily.
You get about 25 hours of non-stop playtime and when the charge goes down, the audio cable will save you and your little one from getting distracted. While the volume limit of these headphones for kids is 94dB which is a little above the standard 87dB, it is still within the safe limits and is useful where there is too much noise outside like the flight sound or other vehicles rumbling. You will get this at $29.99 which is definitely a great price point considering all the features.
- A classy look with fun LED lighting options.
- Incredible and immersive sound.
- Latest Bluetooth technology.
- Foldable design.
- Adjustable headband for comfortable design.
- Volume control is 94 dB which is higher than the recommended 85 dB. This can be harmful to a kid’s ears if used for long hours.
iClever BTH12 Bluetooth headphones: (Best kids headphones wireless with outstanding battery life)
Another one from iClever that is pretty similar to that of the previous one listed with a few significant differences that can be of huge benefit. While the company has retained the LED lighting system in these audio gears, in this case, it is the lighting strips rather than the rings, unlike the BTH03 model.
The main highlight that makes this one of the best kids headphones is it has three different volume limits for the parents to choose from. You can choose between 74 dB, 85 dB, and 94 dB depending on the need. You need to set these levels through button combinations so your kid doesn’t change the setting unknowingly while fiddling with them.
Another impressive feature that makes this wireless headphone stand out is the massive battery life of 40 hours. Additionally, with just 10 minutes of power charge, you can achieve 4 hours of back up-an undeniably helpful thing when you are in a hurry. This makes them ideal kids’ headphones for school.
The headphone is available in 4 different colors and they will cost you $36.99 which is definitely worth what the headphone brings to the table.
- Exceptional sound signature with customizable volume limit.
- Very reliable.
- Stellar battery performance.
- Customizable LED lights for a stylish look.
- Superior comfort.
- Volume adjustment via combination-key to prevent the kids from changing the setting.
- Bluetooth 5.0 technology.
- In-built mic for school use or phone calls.
- The light show works only when the headphones are used in the wired mode.
LilGadgets Untangled PRO kids headphones for school: (Premium kids headphones wireless for superior comfort)
These wireless Bluetooth-supported headphones are for kids above 4 years. The ear cups and the headband of these headsets made with perforated fabric that prevents the accumulation of heat, so the kids don’t feel warm while using them.
The main features that make these headphones score are the seamless Bluetooth connectivity, comfortable design made with premium materials, and a volume output limit. Now while these headphones for kids do not stick to the 85 dB recommended limit, this is still within a decently safe limit. More so, it is also a great way to train your adolescents to be more responsible and control the listening volume. Even though the company has made this suitable for kids from 4 years onwards, it is better that you give them if you have older kids because the volume limit exceeds 85 dB. The headphone has a price tag of $49.99 with a wide range of color options including solid colors and printed designs.
- Attractive colors and designs.
- Good sound.
- Integrated Share port allows connecting with multiple other headphones.
- Comfortable build.
- Comes with a built-in mic for virtual learning, or chatting with family/ friends.
- Average battery life of 12 hours when compared with other similar products.
- Volume limit exceeds the recommended output limit.
- Not recommended for kids under 8 years as they have more delicate ears.
ONANOFF BuddyPhones Wave: (Best kids headphones wireless for poolside use)
If you have been changing headphones for your kids because they frequently get damaged due to water or liquid spills, then your worry ends here. These wireless headphones are rated IP67 with complete waterproofing and dust proofing capabilities. This means that you not only have to worry about liquid spills but the children can also happily use them while playing around the poolside.
Buddyphones Wave has a splendid battery life of 24 hours which means that the headphones do not have to be out to charge time and again. One of the most prominent features of these kid’s headphones for school is the 4 different volume modes to choose from. The Toddler Mode (75 dB), Kid Mode (85 dB), Travel Mode (94 dB), and Study Mode. This way you can control the volume as per your preference.
The headphones have a sturdy build to hold up against any kind of pressure that comes from the most active kid possible. The headphones retail at $64.40.
- Great battery performance.
- Durable make.
- Different sound limit options for more versatile use.
- Available in attractive colors.
- Excellent sound.
- None found.
Headphones worth keeping an eye on:
Factors You Need to Consider Before Buying Headphones for Kids:
If you are looking for good headphones for your little one and do not know where to start from, then the following guide will help you to get started. There are a few crucial parameters you need to keep in mind when buying the right pair of headphones for your child.
Comfort and Accurate Fit:
Not all headphones may fit your little ones because some headphones are relatively bigger to fit bigger kids while some are smaller. Your kid will not be able to use the headset properly if it keeps falling off from the head or if it is too tight for him. Therefore, checking the comfort and size is important.
Your young one has delicate ears and needs to be taken care of. If at all you find a need to buy a headphone for your kid, make sure that it has a sound output limiter or the volume control. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration, doctors and audiologists worldwide, 85 dB is the maximum safe hearing limit for an adult and anything above that may cause potential damage to the ear. When it comes to your little one, the volume limit must be less than 85 dB. So ensure that the headphones that you buy have the volume limited to this number. The lesser, the better for your child.
Wired or Wireless?:
Other than the volume limiter, it is also important to consider what would be ideal for your kids. If you want to go with less expensive ones, then you will find headphones that have wired connectivity. However, it is recommended to go for wireless ones if your kid is too young, as wires in the headphones always have their own associated risks like tangling around the neck causing hazards. If you have a bigger child who can handle headphones on their own and are mature, then you can consider wired headsets if you wish to.
If you are planning on a road trip or taking a long-haul flight, and you need to keep your kid busy, so they do not turn restless, you need to go for one that gives an excellent playback time on a single full charge. While it is not recommended for the little ones to be using the headphones for hours, long battery life can still be beneficial in many ways. Most of the wireless headphones we have listed in this article have decent to excellent battery performance- do check them out.
Children break things easily. If you have a super active child who has terrible ways of handling things, then you sure want a headphone to be less on the style and more on the tough build. This way it can hold up well against any amount of wear and tear. Waterproof headphones are another aspect you may want to consider if there are too many liquid spills around your house.
Look for headphones that have good noise isolation ability or have noise-canceling features. This ensures that your kid has a quiet environment to listen to; this way they do not have to increase the volume of the headphones at all.
What Are Some of the Common Negative Effects That Children Might Have With Long-term Headphone’s Usage?
While headphones have proven to be of great help for most of the parents these days as they try to keep their kids engaged, it also has several harmful effects with long term use that every parent should be aware of. The kids have delicate ears and the younger they are the more susceptible they are to the underlying ill effects of using headphones inappropriately.
Using headphones for several hours during the day and at high volume leads to hearing loss among both adults and children. And once the damage is done, you cannot reverse it. Keeping headphones for hours on your ears may also cause other types of infections due to lack of proper ventilation that becomes a home for numerous bacteria that cause the infection.
Now, while there is no concrete research or specification on how young can a kid started using the headphone or the earphones, it is always recommended to hold on to that for as long as possible. The older the kids get before they start using a headphone the better it is.
How to Avoid These Common Negative Effects?
The most important thing you should note is that if you have to let your child use headphones ensure that volume does not exceed 85 dB or better, 75 dB for better protection. Additionally, listening to a moderate volume for long durations is not a healthy practice. Several doctors and health administrations also recommend that the hours of listening should be limited to not more than 2 hours a day.
Other than the internal damages that the headphones may cause for the above reasons, it is also important to ensure that the kid is able to wear the headphones comfortably. Over-the-ear headphones are always the best option to go for. Speaking of which, these are the best over ear Bluetooth headphones in the market today. This helps in distributing the pressure around the ears instead of pressing on the ear that may lead to inflammation. If the headphone has on-ear ear cups, then you need to make sure the clamping pressure is right, so it fits well without hurting your little one’s ears.
What Type of Headphones Should You Avoid?
It is best to avoid in-ear headphones for kids because, firstly, they need to go inside the ear canal which is not recommended for younger people as the sound directly pumps into the eardrum and the inner ear. Secondly, the ear tips may come off while putting them in or out which can be hazardous. Lastly, kinds have small and delicate ear-canal and the in-ear headphones may cause discomfort to their ears when used for a long time.
You might also want to check out our other article – closed back studio headphones.
Also, as mentioned earlier, getting a noise-canceling headphone is best for the little ones as then, they will not be in need to increase the volume thus listening at a safe lower volume.
From the design perspective, be advised that wired headphones can be hazardous in the case of younger kids as they might get tangled around the neck while playing or handling them. Therefore, until your kids are grown up enough to handle the wired headphones safely, it is best to go wireless. Similarly, the foldable headphones have hinges and the little ones may accidentally place the fingers between them and hurt themselves.
Honestly, there is no such thing as the best when it is the headphones for the kids as the best thing is to avoid them till you can. If you do have to get them, make sure that they have all the safety features incorporated in them, so your child doesn’t fall victim to the ill effects of what these audio gears can cause. The health and safety of your child are paramount, so the best way is to restrict the headphone usage time and the screen time as much as possible and engage them in other kinds of developmental activities that are fun to do. You might also want to check out our best headphones for mixing from here.
Yes! Noise-canceling headphones are completely safe for your child plus they help with controlling the volume as well. The noise-canceling headphones block out the ambient noise thus offering clear and good audibility even at low-volume levels. This way, your child will not need to increase the volume of the headphones.
The only problem with noise-canceling headphones is that when you need your kid’s attention, they may not be able to hear you. So you will have to go near your child if you need to talk to him.
There are quite a few in-ear headphones for kids available in the market, but it is best to avoid them. The earbuds going inside the ear can pose hazards if the ear tip comes off when pulling the headphones out. Apart from that, it is more harmful than the over-ear headphone as the sound vibrations directly hit inside the inner ear which can cause damage to the inner ear/ the eardrum leading to a high risk of loss of hearing.
If you are buying headphones for your kids, then you must make sure to check for the factors such as comfort, accurate fit, noise-canceling ability, wired or wireless, battery life, sturdy construction, etc. These factors help you find the best headphones that have fewer negative effects on the kids compared to others.