Apple’s AirPods Pro launched back in October of 2019 and since that time, we’ve read anecdotal reports of people getting ear infections or allergic reactions to them.
Well, now it turns out our ears hate them too? A couple of months ago my ears canals were itchy, sore and got crusty from clear fluid drainage. Just an overall gross situation that required prescription ear drops to heal them (I used the Telus Babylon app to see a virtual doctor and have a prescription sent to my local pharmacy).
At first, I figured the problem was caused by my Powerbeats Pro and sweat during Apple Fitness+ cycling workouts, but I’ve now pinpointed them to my AirPods Pro.
I wore AirPods Pro again after taking a month and a half break from them (after being cleaned thoroughly with alcohol) for a good hour, and again, the next day my ears hurt. It’s weird because this never happened since I’ve owned them. I’m not a weirdo that doesn’t shower or clean my ears. Regular AirPods 2 haven’t caused any issues at all.
What I can pinpoint is when I received replacement AirPods Pro that included new silicone ear tips. That was back in November 2020. For some reason, these new silicone tips are reacting differently to my ears. I was using the previous ear tips regularly for over a year.
I’m not alone as there are numerous threads on the internet that also detail AirPods Pro and ear infections and other reactions to the wireless headphones. Apple doesn’t detail the exact material its AirPods Pro ear tips are made from, but it’s some sort of silicone. I’ve never had a history of ear infections and I’ve used various earphones over the years.
What to do if your ears start getting red, itchy and are draining clear fluid due to AirPods Pro? You’ll likely need to see a medical professional for help and get some drops or ointment for them. During COVID-19, this is no easy task, so seeing a virtual doctor will make it easier (the Telus Babylon app is covered under B.C. healthcare).
For now, I’ve resorted to using my regular AirPods 2 and I’m hesitant to use my AirPods Pro again, which is sad because they sound great and active noise cancellation is really useful. I’ll likely try third-party ear tips to see if that solves the problem. But for now, this is a good reminder to clean your AirPods and charging cases regularly, because they can be cesspools full of bacteria and other gross stuff.
Have you had any issues with your AirPods Pro and your ears getting red, itchy and sore?