New: Hearwave B2 custom earplugs

Is this the end for fluff-covered disposable earplugs?

WHILE I like to think I’ve been put together fairly well, my ears are definitely from the parts bin. I had grommets for years as a kid, had perforated ear drums and have a father who in another life, long ago, was a drummer and now, in this life, he has tinnitus. So I try my best to look after my ears and have always worn earplugs.

10 years ago I used to make a pair of disposable earplugs last at least a month, by which time what I was stuffing into my ear was 50% earplug, 25% ear wax and 25% fluff. Still, I only suffered the odd ear infection..

I never went for custom moulded earplugs because I’m the sort of person who loses anything that isn’t attached to me. Sunglasses and watches are my speciality. However, just recently I decided to bite the bullet and get a custom set of earplugs made. I think I’m responsible enough these days…

I opted for a set of Hearwave B2 Custom Silicone Blockers. Hearwave is a relatively new company, founded by former musician Lewie Trott who himself learned the value of earplugs just as he developed tinnitus. He’s a young guy who learnt his trade while working for another hearing protection company but formed his own company so he could offer a wider range of products to the market. He’s really passionate about his brand and has worked hard to get his hearing protection CE-approved to meet the European standard EN352-2. Hearwave also offer custom-moulded earplugs with tiny speakers included, so if you like to listen to music on the go or connect up your phone or sat-nav, then you might opt for them instead.

The fitting process is simple and takes just a few minutes. Lewie placed a small plug into my ear canal, then injected a resin into my ear canal and around my outer ear to form the crude earplug shape. I then had to sit still for a few minutes while the resin set in place. Lewie then removes the whole thing which looks like a large blob of Blu-Tack. These are the moulds that the earplug is then made from. A couple of weeks later, my custom hearing protection drops through the letterbox.

They just arrived and I’ve not yet worn them on the bike but I’ll report back with a full review shortly. Fitting them in place is a completely different experience to the the roll-and-poke method of a disposable earplug, where the expansion of the foam is the sign you look for to know you’ve got a good seal. The Hearwave B2s don’t require any rolling (obviously) but while they're in my ear, they feel like they're sat on the outside of my ear and that's obviously something I’ll have to get used to.

If you’re interested in getting a set made, Hearwave visit lots of motorcycle shows across the country or you can arrange for a personal fitting. Just give them a call on 020 8320 1145.

I’ll report back in a couple of weeks and let you know how I’m getting on. Let’s hope I don’t lose them.

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