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How to Wear On Ear Headphones

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There is a right way to do just about anything if you are wondering how to wear on-ear headphones, Many of the best headphones available, after all, feature an on-ear design. So why use on-ear headphones in the first place and how do you wear them correctly? Keep reading to find out.


  • On-ear headphones resemble over-ear headphones, but there are some key differences.
  • For one, on-ear models rest on top of the ear, making for comfortable headphones, whereas over-ear pads envelop the ear.
  • Comfortably wear a pair of headphones by correctly identifying the right and left earcups and adjusting for head size.

What are On-Ear Headphones?

It is easy to confuse on-ear headphones with over-the-ear headphones, as they are quite similar unless you learn how to wrap headphones in embroidery floss to tell them apart. But, they’re a bit easier to wear than behind-the-neck headphones. As a matter of fact, they look nearly identical. So how do you tell the difference? Over-the-ear headphones wrap around your ears whereas on-ear headphones, as the name implies, simply rest on your ears.

Why Choose On-Ear Headphones?

So why choose on-ear headphones over learning how to use in-ear headphones, among other types? There are many benefits to going with on-ear models.

Light and Portable

On-ear phones are extremely light and portable, especially when compared to bulky and cumbersome over-the-ear headphones. They also tend to feature folding designs, making them easy to pack away when not in use. Of course, no on-ear headphones will be quite as portable as, say, earbuds, but the difference is negligible.

Insider Tip

If possible, try on any pair of headphones before making a purchase to ensure a comfortable fit and decent sound quality.

Increased Comfort

If you want some of the sonic benefits of over-the-ear headphones without the (literal) headaches of wearing something that bulky on your head for long periods of time, check out this type of headphone. They are considered a happy medium between the comfort provided by earbuds and the sonic fidelity provided by high-end studio monitor headphones. They do not apply too much pressure during use and do not prevent circulation, decreasing the chances of sweating.

Good Battery Life

Wireless on-ear headphones that use Bluetooth to wirelessly transmit audio tend to boast decent battery life, coming in at around 25 to 30 hours of use per charge.

How to Wear On-Ear Headphones Comfortably

The process here is simple but may vary according to the design of your specific headphones. With that in mind, here are some universal guidelines worth considering.

Find Right and Left

Make sure you wear the headphones correctly by finding the right cup and the left cup before donning the unit.

Adjust the Band

Maybe headphones allow for size adjustments via the headphone band. Slide the headphones over your head and adjust the band until you find the correct setting for your head.


How to reduce discomfort when wearing headphones?

Go for headphones made from softer materials, such as memory foam, and pay attention to your ear lobes, checking for potential discomfort at regular intervals.

Different kinds of headphones: Which is best for you?

It truly depends on your needs. Over-ear models produce the best sound quality and reduce ambient noise, but at the expense of size and comfort. There are so many types of headphones out there, so choose wisely.

Why should you wear headphones the proper way?

Wearing headphones the proper way, no matter the type of headphone makes for comfortable headphones during extended periods of use and increases the overall sound quality and audio quality.

STAT: By the 1890s the first device that is unmistakably a headphone was made by a British company called Electrophone, which created a system allowing their customers to connect to live feeds of performances at theaters and opera houses across London. (source)

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