Best Kids Headphones
Okay, so what really makes a pair of kids headphones different from an adult pair? Is it just the size or are there other factors involved? Well, you should already know the answer to that question. The reality is that your five or six-year-old child is not going to care too much about picture-perfect sound quality and unbelievable features. Instead, all they really want to do is listen to some tunes on the road or at home. But, it is up to you to provide them with a high-quality experience regardless. For the record, the options below and this entire guide (quite frankly) are tailored to be suitable for all types of children and kids (from 1st graders to teens).
In a Hurry? The test winner after 2.5 hrs of research
Has a battery life of up to 18 hours
Quite a few style options are available
Features 40-millimeter dynamic drivers
- PURO SOUND LABS BT2200
- BUDDYPHONES WAVE
- LILGADGETS PREMIUM
- JBL JR 300BT
- JLAB JBUDDIES
- JVC HAKD6Y
- BUDDYPHONES EXPLORE
- FSL PROTEC
- KIDZ GEAR
- KIDROX WIRED
- Criteria Used for Evaluation
- Frequently Asked Questions
OUR TOP PICKS FOR THE BEST KIDS HEADPHONES
1. PURO SOUND LABS BT2200
Has a battery life of up to 18 hours
Quite a few style options are available
Features 40-millimeter dynamic drivers
The ear cups are a little small
In a way, this type of technology is really watered down for children but the BT2200 model is about as good as it is going to get. It is also fully wireless and sports a battery life of up to 18 hours.Read more
Even though the ear cups themselves are on the smaller side, they are designed with soft and supple material that does make them comfortable to wear.
While some models are simply made of cheap plastic, that is not the issue here as durable and lightweight aluminum is utilized for the ear cups and the headband.
Not only do these prevent the volume from going past 85 decibels for safety but they are also equipped with 40-millimeter dynamic drivers. Oh yeah, there is also an integrated microphone for your kids to answer phone calls.
Due to the fact that Bluetooth technology is utilized here, these are wireless. As for the battery, it can last for up to 18 hours and also up to 200 hours on standby mode.
For both boys and girls alike, there are a few different color options to choose from and most of them are quite stylish.
Very few models on the market will be as convenient and clear-sounding as this option. It is not too difficult to see why these are universally recognized as one of the best designs out there.
2. BUDDYPHONES WAVE
The volume level can be manually set
Designed to be waterproof
Comes with an optional 3.5-millimeter cable
A few buyers have noted that the ear cups can fall off too easily
Very few models on the market will match the BuddyPhones Wave Headphones when it comes to quality. Of course, they are also waterproof to IP67 standards so that is really, really nice.Read more
In addition to the soft hypo-allergenic cushions that are utilized, the headband itself is adjustable to fit many different sized heads.
Okay, so a few buyers have noted that the ear cups can fall off a bit too easily. On the flipside, as mentioned, these are fully waterproof with a waterproof rating of IP67.
First off, two-way calling is enabled here thanks to the built-in microphone. Also, there are three different volume limits that you can set for certain ages and situations.
Looking past the fact that Bluetooth technology is utilized here, an included 3.5-millimeter gold-plated cable is included and this allows for up to four children to listen simultaneously. Oh, and as for the battery life, the battery is rated to last up to 24 hours.
Each of the different color and style options definitely tailor to younger users so that is really nice.
If you really want to spoil your child or children then you should definitely consider this option. After all, only one other pair of kids headphones are better than these.
3. LILGADGETS PREMIUM
Comes with a microfiber travel bag
Ideal for kids of all ages
There are color options suitable for both girls and boys
The maximum volume is pretty limited for airplane travel
If this was a popularity contest then here would be your unanimous winner right here. Then again, for the most part, these really do live up to the hype that they have garnered from consumers.Read more
One of the benefits of this option is the utilized material for the ear cups is not only comfortable but it is also highly breathable.
To ensure maximum durability, these were tested with kids in mind. Also, the ear pads were specially engineered to not fall off.
Thanks to the SharePort feature your children and their friends can daisy-chain without being tethered to the device. As for the volume, it does not go very high which is nice for safety but also limited during airline travel.
Even if the battery dies, a headphone jack is included with the purchase. However, indeed, these are wireless and powered with Bluetooth technology. Also, the battery lasts up to 12 hours on a single charge.
Some bright and colorful style options are available and it should not be hard to find one that your little one will be appealed to.
In a way, you could almost consider this a semi-watered down version of the previous two options. Then again, your children are not going to notice this at all.
4. JBL JR 300BT
There is no cord to manage
Features the quality you would expect from JBL
Will not damage your children’s ears
One user noted that these were too small for their 10-year-old
This is really the first top-name brand to make an appearance on this list. While JBL is known for its technology that tailors toward adults, they also prove their hand well with this technology.Read more
Yes, these are sized for the younger generation but one user did note that they were a bit too small for their 10-year-old.
Really, the quality here is what you would expect from JBL. Let’s just say that your little ones will not break these too easily.
Thanks to the child-friendly buttons, these are really optimized for children. Also, the maximum volume is intentionally limited to protect the ears of your children.
There are no cords to manage here as these are designed with Bluetooth technology. As for the battery that is integrated, it is rated to last up to 12 hours on a single charge.
In addition to the different color options, there are also stickers that come with this purchase. This allows your children to really personalize these.
Hey, if you enjoy buying headphones from top-name brands then why should your kids be any different? That pretty much says it all, does it not?
5. JLAB JBUDDIES
Designed with an adjustable headband
The headband is made of plush leather
A Bluetooth model is available
The maximum volume level is a bit low
From kids ages 6 to 16, these next pair of headphones will be fantastic. Then again, your teenagers may be to the point where they require something a bit more advanced than these.Read more
The combination of the headband that is made of plush leather and the ear pads that are made of eco-leather is extremely ideal for comfort. Plus, the headband is adjustable.
Do not worry; your children will not be able to break the connected wire very easily. Additionally, these are built pretty well in other areas.
The good news is the built-in volume regulators will prevent the volume from exceeding 85 decibels. Yet, at the same time, your kids may complain that these are not quite loud enough for them.
Though there is a Bluetooth model available, this option is wired. And, the braided-nylon cord actually has a built-in in-line mic for taking calls and controlling music.
While there are only two color options available, they are both incredibly stylish and ideal for children. For the record, the two are gray and light blue and gray and purple.
If money is really tight for you but you still want to spoil your kid or kids a little bit then these are going to be extremely compelling. And, do not forget that a Bluetooth model is available.
6. JVC HAKD6Y
They are built very well
Designed with padded ear cups
Stickers are supplied for decoration
Not ideal for airline travel due to the volume
Unlike some of the other models, this option is wired so keep that in mind. One nice aspect about these headphones, though, is they will stay on your children’s’ heads quite well.Read more
Not only are the padded ear cups nice but the fact that these will actually stay on your children’s heads is just as nice.
It seems to be the general consensus among previous buyers that these are well built. Granted you kids do not chuck them around and try to break them, they should last over time.
The volume itself is limited but there is no way for your child to control the volume which is a bit of a limitation with these.
Unlike other options on this list, these are actually wired and come with a standard 3.5-millimeter headphone jack. This will be compatible with most audio devices out there.
The bright colors would be good enough but decorative stickers also come with your purchase. With these, your child can personalize these to their liking.
Sure, the maximum volume is limited for airline travel but this is not exactly an uncommon feature with kids headphones. Everything else is very well-designed and well-done, however.
7. BUDDYPHONES EXPLORE
Comes with six sets of vinyl stickers
Designed with a durable and bendable headband
Includes a patented built-in audio splitter
A few buyers have had longevity issues
No matter if you are buying for toddlers or kids or for girls or boys, this next option is going to be a hit. For the record, these are a different version of the BuddyPhones and are known as the Explore Headphones.Read more
The soft and comfortable hypoallergenic padding that is integrated here is a nice touch. Additionally, these are ideal for kids aged 3 to 10.
The headband that is equipped here is bendable and durable, though one user claimed it was just cheap plastic. Also, a few other buyers have had longevity issues.
In addition to the inline mic that allows for calls, the maximum volume is set to 85 decibels. Oh, and the included cable is flat to prevent tangling.
Adding on to what was just said about the cable, it is gold-plated and the standard 3.5-millimeter size. As a bit of a bonus, also, a built-in audio splitter allows multiple people to listen in on the same device.
A good variety of color options are available and also six sets of decorative vinyl stickers will come with this purchase.
The vinyl stickers and the built-in audio splitter really make this option stand out. While durability can be a concern, they are definitely well-designed as a whole.
8. FSL PROTEC
You can set volume limits
Six different color options are available
Comes equipped with a standard headphone jack
The volume adjustment knob is finicky
Not the best for older kids
For this price, how could you possibly go wrong? What is nice here is due to the implemented volume control, you can protect the ears of any of your children that use these.Read more
These are more so optimized for children under 10 years old and while a ton of padding is not integrated, the comfort is not unbearable.
In spite of the price, these really are built to withstand the abuse of kids and their rough play.
So, here is the deal. An adjustment knob is built-in and this allows you to set the volume limit to three different levels. However, various buyers have noted that this knob is not well-designed and very finicky to operate.
These will virtually work with all audio devices as it is connected via a standard headphone jack. Yes, this includes both Android and Apple devices.
It is a subtle sort of nuisance but there are enough color options available to account for just about every single kid out there, which is nice.
It almost feels like stealing with this option as the price is literally that amazing. Then again, the adjustment knob could be a little less finicky to work with.
9. KIDZ GEAR
Available in brand-new colors
Backed by a lifetime warranty
Comes with a stylish carrying bag
Longevity issues have been documented
There is no top padding
It is noted that the same high-quality components utilized in adult headphones are utilized here and while some users have had longevity concerns, these are pretty good overall.Read more
Now, these are adjustable and comfortable for the most part. But, the thing is, there is not any padding on the top so be aware of that.
This is where these struggle the most. One buyer even went on to report that their child went through four pairs of these. The build quality needs to be a bit better.
Though the build quality is disappointing, your child can actually control the volume themselves here (though it is still limited to protect their ears). Also, a carrying bag is included.
At this point, you are starting to get the idea as these are another wired option. So, they are going to work with many audio devices including those from Apple.
All the bright and colorful style options are appealing. Choosing the right one will simply come down to your child’s preferences.
Even though some of you may not believe that these should be justified to be on this list due to their build quality, there is a lot to love about them.
10. KIDROX WIRED
Comes with an extension pad
Works with all sorts of audio devices
Made of soft and bendable EVA foam
Durability issues have been common
If you are looking for an option for your toddlers, then this may be for you as these are ideal for children three years old and up. Plus, the sound is limited for protection.Read more
These are designed to fit kids aged three to nine and are also designed with comfortable and soft ear cups. Also, an extension pad is included for smaller heads.
Soft and non-toxic EVA foam is utilized for the construction here but the problem is many previous buyers have noted that their children have broken these.
Though limited in its features, the volume is limited to 85 decibels to protect all listening ears from damage.
Equipped with these headphones is a 3.5-millimeter headphone jack. Even though this means a cable must be contended with, these are going to be compatible with a boatload of audio devices.
With pink and purple options available, you could say that this option is really ideal and optimized for girls. That is not to say that boys can’t enjoy the nature of these, however.
You do not see very many models made out of EVA foam and while this enhances the comfort, the durability can be a bit of an issue. If your child is generally rough with equipment then you may want to look another way.
Criteria Used for Evaluation
Just as you would prioritize comfort, you need to do so for your little ones.
If you were in the market for a new pair of headphones, would you not want them to be comfortable? Sure you would so why should it be any different for your kids? And, you know this better than anyone, if your child or children find the pair you buy them uncomfortable they will tell you about it (over and over again). So, do your children (and yourself, quite frankly) a favor and prioritize the comfort. When doing so you need to assess the design of both the ear cups and the headband.
For the ear cups, they not only need to be padded with comfortable material but also need to be large enough to comfortably fit over your children’s ears. Pretty much the same concept applies with the headband in that it is best if it is padded not digging into their heads. Oh yeah, and you may also want to look for adjustable headbands to account for different head sizes. Lastly, most models will be tailored to a specific age range so it is wise to buy according to the age of your children.
Did you know that children can be destructive? You did? That is good as you then know why this section is crucial.
Without question, one of the biggest worries, when you buy a pair of headphones for your kids, is that they will ultimately end up breaking them. As you know, children can be quite aggressive with toys and devices so this is to be expected. They simply do not possess the ability to comprehend what they are doing and the consequences of their actions. So, while they can even find a way to break the best of models, it is still recommended to look for models that are well-built to withstand such abuse.
Some models are made of cheap plastic and are almost destined to break and snap in half. Then again, they all will not be like this and some may be made of higher quality materials (such as aluminum). In addition, look for options that have secure ear cups as this can be a common issue. You can also find waterproof models on the market, though this is not mandatory by any stretch of the imagination. Oh yeah, and if you do opt for a wired pair of headphones, ensure that the wire connection is durable enough to withstand some abuse.
While there are a few features at play here, the main one is the volume.
At the end of the day, there really is one feature that makes these devices unique for kids. In case you did not already know, the ears of children are more susceptible to hearing damage as they have not been exposed to loud noises for years on end like adults. What this means is the maximum volume level needs to be monitored because the ears of children can very easily be damaged if not. This is why virtually every single model on the market will implement volume-reducing features. Now, there are some designs on the market that will allow you to set the maximum volume based on a few different presets. Of course, nearly every option will be set to never go above 85 decibels.
Adding on to this, you may want to allow your child control of the volume (with the maximum volume still at play). Not all models will come equipped with this functionality so look for it if it matters to you. Outside of this, there are also a few other features to look for. First off, while kids headphones are not exactly optimized for sound quality, some options will be better than others in this regard. Lastly, you will commonly see built-in microphones and this can allow for two-way calling.
Here, you need to decide if you want to go with wired or wireless.
Okay, so this all comes down to whether you want to buy your children wired or wireless headphones. Let’s start with what sets apart wireless models as they are arguably the more popular of the two types. For starters, wireless models are great but it also means you will need to contend with limited battery life. Most kids models will range from 12 to 24 hours on a single charge, for the record. Now, in regard to what wireless protocol is used (in order to connect them to specific audio devices), it will be Bluetooth 99 percent of the time. And, one of the best aspects of Bluetooth is even the newer versions (both 4.0 and 5.0) are backward compatible. This means most Bluetooth-enabled devices will be able to sync to other Bluetooth-enabled devices.
Turning the page, what about wired models? With the convenience of wireless designs, are they even worth it? Well, yes, and the main reason is their runtime will be unlimited. Most of the time, as well, wired options will work with an accompanying 3.5-millimeter headphone jack (which is standard). What this means is you need to ensure that the device your children will be using to play audio from has this specific jack to be compatible. Oh, and one last note, some options will even be wireless and will come with a cable to work even when the battery dies.
Though simple, this section can make all the difference in the world for your kids.
If you want to be brutally honest for a second, this is where children are better than us (adults). You see, they see the world a lot differently and they tend to appreciate the smaller features. In all actuality, your kids may not even like a particular pair of headphones no matter their quality if they do not like the way they look. After all, they will not really care about functionality or build quality. And, it usually is as simple as buying a pair that are designed with some of your children’s favorite colors.
This is precisely why you will see most sellers engineer their model in a variety of different styles and colors. In addition to this, as a sort of a bonus, there will be some sellers who will include decorative stickers with your purchase. While this may seem like a mundane addition, this allows the headphones to be personalized by your kids. Of course, you could always buy this sort of thing separately if you really wanted to.
Expert Interviews & Opinions
How about we reiterate something that as a parent or parental figure, you already know? If a particular child wears a pair of headphones that they find uncomfortable, do you honestly believe that they will just deal with it and not complain about it? Not likely; so look for models that are the exact opposite. Of course, you also need to ensure that the option you get will properly fit your children.
This just in, kids can be destructive. No, we are not calling out anyone’s parental skills as this is just the reality of the situation. Now, it is never a bad idea to just expect that the model you buy is going to break. Yet, at the same time, this does not mean you should gloss over this section. Instead, search for models that are built with high-quality materials.
It is documented in-length here but the main feature that separates this technology from that that is tailored to adults is volume-reducing. In short, children’s ears are much more sensitive and are more susceptible to damage if they are exposed to loud noises. This is why most models will be programmed to adjust to a certain maximum volume level. And, past this, there are some other features to look out for.
Frequently Asked Questions
q: Are headphones safe for children?
In a way, this question was already touched on and documented earlier. But, it may just be the question that gets asked the most as everyone wants to do what is best for their kids. Due to many of the technologies that were already alluded to, headphones can be safe for them to use. At the same time, if you allow them to listen to your high-quality Bose model then that will be another story. Also, it is not like one song that plays at a high volume is going to damage your child’s hearing.
q: Can one-year-olds wear them?
While there really is not a ton of research out there in regard to how old you can be to use this type of technology, there are baby models that are on the market. However, they can be a bit more difficult to find as the market for them is not exactly high. In theory, though, granted a kids pair is going to be able to fit them comfortably and securely, there is no reason why you could not make it work.
q: What is the range of Bluetooth?
Okay, so let’s dive in a little bit into the technical side of Bluetooth technology. Earlier, the basics were covered to explain that this technology is used to allow two or more devices to wirelessly communicate and sync with each other. But, what kind of range can you expect to get? Well, the answer is 30 feet. However, this is not always going to be the case. Most of the time, this type of technology will utilize Class 2 Bluetooth which allows for a maximum range of 30 to 33 feet. If it utilizes Class 1 Bluetooth, which will probably not be the case, this can jump to 328 feet. It also depends on the version of Bluetooth that is being utilized as 5.0 made a significant jump in the range department.
q: Will these work with laptops?
No matter if you end up going with a wired or wireless option for your kids, they should be able to use them on a laptop. Yet, some specifications need to be addressed. Starting with wired models, most laptops will have 3.5-millimeter headphone jacks built-in. For wireless models, though, it gets a bit more complicated. You see, some laptops will not have Bluetooth enabled. But, this can be bypassed with the purchase of a Bluetooth adapter (which can work for many different versions of Windows). And, typically, this type of adapter will not be too much money (just make sure it is compatible with the laptop’s operating system).
q: Can adults wear them?
All this depends on the size of the model you buy, quite frankly. Some models out there will be designed to fit several head sizes from children to teenagers. Meanwhile, others will be optimized for much younger users. Even with some of the options presented on this list, there have been reports of previous buyers comfortably wearing them. In all reality, these types of headphones are not going to be optimized for sound quality and functionality, though. So, unless you literally could care less about that kind of stuff, it would be wise to shop for your own pair anyway.
q: What do you do if your pair breaks?
This is a tough one and your best bet is to see if your model is covered with any warranty. Some sellers and manufacturers will back their models with limited lifetime warranties. If you are so lucky that the damage falls under the boundaries set by the warranty, you could end up getting a replacement. You can’t simply assume this is going to be the case, however, so do some research beforehand.