How To Properly Clean Your AirPods

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If you're the owner of Apple AirPods, it's more than likely you dropped a pretty penny on those crisp white wireless earphones that have become all the rage in recent years. Even on Amazon, you'll be hard-pressed to purchase the famous earphones for less than $100. You can always find cheaper alternatives to AirPods, but there's no rule that says you can't splurge and go with the brand you know and love when your budget allows it.

At such a steep price, keeping your AirPods in pristine playing condition is important — you don't want to have to replace them within months. With proper care, AirPods can last at least two years before needing a major battery replacement (via DeviceMag). During their lifespan, you can keep your AirPods playing at their very best by maintaining their cleanliness. Luckily, properly cleaning your AirPods is a lot easier than keeping up with the small earphones.

Use an alcohol wipe to clean your AirPods

No one likes dull bass and muffled lyrics when they're trying to get in the zone at the gym or trying to drown out the noise of an airplane, but less than immersive sounds might be exactly what you get when earwax and sweat begin to build up on your AirPods.

Apple suggests using a 70% isopropyl alcohol wipe, 75% ethyl alcohol wipe, or disinfecting wipes to gently clean your AirPods, avoiding the metallic speaker area. By incorporating a gentle alcohol product into your cleaning routine, you're not only polishing your AirPods to look good as new, but also fighting away any bacteria likely to grow on their surfaces. It's safe to say that, just like with your phone, submerging your AirPods in water to clean them isn't a good idea. This could cause irreparable damage.

Having no luck in cleaning the speaker mesh? CNET recommends combining Fun-Tak Mounting Putty and wooden toothpicks to get at those hard-to-reach places.

Prevent earwax buildup for cleaner AirPods

Unfortunately, the more you use your AirPods, the more earwax you're likely to have on them, as one of the causes of earwax buildup is frequent use of earphones (via Healthline). When your ears are blocked by earphones, earwax doesn't come out of your ear canals but instead builds up, potentially causing harm to your headphones and discomfort to your ears.

In an interview with Well+Good, Dr. Sujana Chandrasekhar explained the waxy situation by saying, "Our ear canals are open to air, and they're open to air for a reason." That reason boils down to the natural flow of oxygen into and out of our ears. By carrying out any dirt that reaches the inner parts of our ears, the airflow is in fact acting as a cleaning mechanism. When earphones cut into that flow, the blockage causes dirt buildup, a.k.a. sound-muffling earwax on our AirPods. Spending less time plugged in — plus regularly cleaning your ears – can lessen the amount of earwax you transfer to your AirPods.