The 6 Best Earwax Removal Kits—And Not a Cotton Swab in Sight (2024)

  • What to Buy

We researched home earwax removal kits to bring you our top picks for ease, effectiveness, and safety.


Isabella Ubaldi

The 6 Best Earwax Removal Kits—And Not a Cotton Swab in Sight (1)

Isabella Ubaldi

Isabella has 10 years’ research and writing experience covering topics that range from how ‘femtech’ helps to fill the gap in our medical understanding of women’s bodies to the best moisturizing body washes. Her curiosity about the world feeds her keen interest in helping people reduce the shopping noise and simply make better decisions.

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Published on February 2, 2024

Medically reviewed by

Michael Menna, DO

The 6 Best Earwax Removal Kits—And Not a Cotton Swab in Sight (2)

Medically reviewed byMichael Menna, DO

Michael Menna, DO, is currently an attending emergency medicine physician at White Plains Hospital in White Plains, New York, with nearly 10 years of experience.

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Fact checked by

Richard Scherr

The 6 Best Earwax Removal Kits—And Not a Cotton Swab in Sight (3)

Fact checked byRichard Scherr

Rich Scherr is an updates strategist and fact checker for Dotdash Meredith brands, including Health and Verywell. He is a seasoned financial and technology journalist who served as editor-in-chief of the Potomac Tech Wire for nearly two decades, and is a regular contributor to the sports pages of The Baltimore Sun. He has also been a news editor for America Online and has contributed to the Associated Press and The Washington Post.

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The 6 Best Earwax Removal Kits—And Not a Cotton Swab in Sight (4)

For the most part, your ears are self-cleaning, and earwax protects them from debris and bacteria. Chewing keeps the wax moving, and showering and washing your hair prevent buildup. But in some cases, excess amounts of hardened wax can affect your hearing and cause discomfort. Using a home earwax removal tool is one simple way to help you hear clearly again.

We contacted otolaryngologists Linda Dahl, MD, and Inna Husain, MD, to get their advice on selecting a home earwax removal kit. They both advise that the safest way to remove ear wax is to visit a doctor’s office. This is non-negotiable if you have a severe blockage, pain, or significant hearing loss. However, with your doctor’s approval, a home removal kit can also be a safe and effective way to soften ear wax and release minor blockages.

Social media has been abuzz with trending earwax removal tools, but not all of them are safe or effective. To help you find the best products, we’ve researched and consulted experts to bring you our top six home earwax removal kits. We also had a doctor from our Medical Expert Board review this article for scientific and medical accuracy.

Why We Like It

The Lengin Otoscope Ear Cleaner is our best overall pick because it comes with a camera and light on the end, which makes it a safer approach. You an see exactly what your ear canal looks like as you clean it by connecting the cleaner to your phone via the Soulear app, which is compatible with Android and iOS devices. Once you’re all set up, you’ll get high-quality 1080p HD visibility in photo or video format.

The ear cleaner kit also comes with interchangeable silicone tip ear spoons to keep things as sanitary as possible. The soft tips are designed with comfort and cleanliness in mind, and washing them with the included cleaning brush is a simple process. The battery lasts about 70 minutes on a full charge.

It’s Worth Noting

  • The camera helps with visibility, but extra care should always be taken when inserting small items into your ear. Be sure to start with slow, gentle movements.

Product Details

  • Type of Removal: Manual
  • Disposable Tips Included: 5

Why We Like It

The dual-ended design of Clinere Ear Cleaners makes them ideal for relieving itch and removing wax. The twirled fin end on one side is useful for cleaning the outer part of your ear, while the scoop side helps you reach slightly deeper.

The scoop has clearly marked lines that indicate how far to insert it into your ear. Use them as a guide, as the ideal depth will vary based on the size of your ear. We love that the cleaners come in a pack of 10 and are easy to wash and reuse, which makes the price hard to beat.

It’s Worth Noting

  • The scoop is made from a soft plastic, which is safe and easy to clean, but some may find it isn’t sturdy enough.

Product Details

  • Type of Removal: Manual
  • Disposable Tips Included: 10

Why We Like It

Some irrigation ear cleaners come with a long spout that is inserted directly into your ear. This type of design makes it easy to push the tube too far into your ear canal. We like the Elephant Ear Washer Bottle System because the protective splashback means you can place the tip into your ear without overdoing it.

Dr. Dahl warns against using home irrigation without first seeing a physician as it can trigger episodes of vertigo. If your doctor has cleared you to use home irrigation, this system is an easy way to eliminate excess wax buildup. The set comes with three ear tips, so it will last a while. We also appreciate the quality of the spray handle, which makes it easy to adjust the intensity of the stream.

It’s Worth Noting

  • Follow the instructions carefully, especially if you’ve never used an irrigation system before. Also, make sure the solution you use is at room temperature.

Product Details

  • Type of Removal: Irrigation
  • Disposable Tips Included: 3

Why We Like It

The oogiebear-brite helps you get into the littlest ears and noses. The angled loops make it easy to enter from either side, and the soft plastic is flexible but sturdy.

It’s designed to be just long enough to reach into the ears without going too deep. There’s also a handy light on the end to help you easily see what you’re doing, even at night.

We love that this gadget also doubles as a cleaner for your baby’s nose. The attachments are also easy to clean, and the set comes with a convenient storage case, so it’s easy to throw in your diaper bag for use during travel.

It’s Worth Noting

  • The gadget doesn’t come with any disposable tips, so it’s important to sterilize it properly before and after use.

Product Details

  • Type of Removal: Manual
  • Disposable Tips Included: None

Why We Like It

Technically this product isn’t an earwax removal kit, but WaxOut Organic Ear Oil has similar effects and works so well that we had to add it to our list. The tincture is made from a combination of oils that soften ear wax, soothe itching, and relieve ear aches. Mullein extract oil, which is known to soothe inflammation and loosen mucus, is one of the main ingredients.

This oil is one of the safest options on our list, and it’s also easy to use. Simply place a few drops in each ear, then let it sit for 20 minutes while the oil softens your ear wax. You can soak up any excess oil with a cotton ball. We recommend following the oil treatment with a shower to encourage greater wax removal.

It’s Worth Noting

  • You might need to use it a few times to see results.

Product Details

  • Type of Removal: Irrigation
  • Disposable Tips Included: None

Why We Like It

KDO's Q-Grips Earwax Removal Spirals are designed with soft, silicone tips that are sized for a range of ear sizes and age groups. They’re safer than both their metal counterparts and cotton swabs and have a simple, ergonomic design that’s easy to grip. Insert the spiral into your ear canal and gently twist to clear earwax.

The kit also includes a spiral hard head, silicone brush, and three-ring cleaning tips for a thorough clean. The attachments are easy to wash and sanitize, and the set comes with 16 spiral tips that can be used for adults and children, making it a great choice for larger households.

It’s Worth Noting

  • This product might not be as effective at removing hardened wax as some of the other kits on our list.

Product Details

  • Type of Removal: Manual
  • Disposable Tips Included: 16

How We Selected

To select the best ear wax removal kits, we asked doctors which types they recommend and got their insights on what shoppers should look for and avoid. Our experts also provided advice about the potential dangers of some kits and how to remove earwax safely at home.

Based on their recommendations, we researched the most effective ear wax removal kits that will relieve itching and buildup when used with care. We were sure to include a variety of kits to meet a range of needs, including irrigation, manual removal, and ear drops

Where We Stand

The Lengin Otoscope Ear Cleaner impressed us with its quality camera capabilities and simple but functional design. We love that the user-friendly app is compatible with both Android and iOS. The kit comes with five ear tip spoons that are easy to clean and comfortable in your ear. We’ll continue to review new earwax removal kits, so keep an eye on this list for the most updated information.

What to Know About Earwax Removal Kits

  • How to Use an Earwax Removal Kit: Earwax removal kits should always be used with care and approval from a doctor. Your healthcare provider can help you determine the cause of your earwax buildup and figure out which removal method is the best investment for you. Once you have found the best kit for you, be sure to follow instructions carefully.
  • Method of Removal: fMost of the kits on our list feature manual tools and silicone tips to remove earwax. We recommend avoiding metal tips, which can damage the ear canal. The irrigation method is usually conducted by a medical professional, but the irrigation-based product we’ve included here (the Elephant Ear Washer Bottle System) was designed by a doctor for home use. Ideally, you should have a second person there to help when you use any kind of earwax remover kit, unless the kit includes video like our Best Overall choice.
  • Ingredients: Oils are commonly used to soften ear wax. The organic ear oil included in this list uses a combination of herbal oils that are designed to help with inflammation and pain, which makes it a great option if you suffer from frequent ear aches. For other products that use irrigation, we recommend filling the irrigation bottle with distilled water.
  • Safety: Inserting anything into your ear can injure your eardrum, increase earwax compaction, and cause irritation or bleeding, so it’s important to use products that are designed with safety in mind. Dr. Husain says to avoid any method that uses heat, such as ear candleing, which can burn your ear or the surrounding skin. Water flushes can also trigger vertigo episodes, so consult your doctor before you try irrigation removal kits.

The Experts

  • Linda Dahl, MD, an otolaryngologist based in New York City, New York
  • Inna Husain, MD, an otolaryngologist based in Munster, Indiana

Your Questions, Answered

Do earwax removal kits really work?

Earwax removal kits work as long as they’re used carefully and according to instructions. The best way to know if it’s worth going down the path of home removal is to check in with your doctor, who can also provide guidance about the best type of kit to choose.

Are earwax removal kits safe to use?

Dr. Dahl says most home removal kits are safe, but complications may arise if you don’t know how much wax buildup you have or don’t follow manufacturer recommendations. All the kits we recommend are safe for home use, but some trending removal tools are not safe, so ask your doctor before deciding to invest. Specifically, use caution with kits that use heat to melt earwax, as well as Debrox ear drops, which contain a form of hydrogen peroxide and have been trending on social media. Dr. Husain suggests using these drops only when recommended by a medical professional and to avoid them altogether if you’re concerned about a perforated eardrum.

Which earwax removal kits do doctors recommend?

Both doctors we interviewed recommend seeing an ENT specialist/otolaryngologist or general practitioner if your earwax is bothering you. They also suggest using a device that comes with a light and ideally, a camera, so you can see clearly, like our Best Overall choice, the Lengin Otoscope Ear Cleaner.

Who We Are

Isabella Ubaldi has 10 years of research and writing experience that includes covering how to shop for the best personal products online. Her curiosity about the world feeds her keen interest in helping people reduce the shopping noise and simply make better decisions. As someone who has tinnitus, she is often on a personal hunt for different ways to look after her ears.

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The 6 Best Earwax Removal Kits—And Not a Cotton Swab in Sight (2024)


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