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10 best kids' headphones for learning, screen time and beyond

We’ve explored the world of kids’ headphones to help you find the right pair for your child. Here’s our pick of the best.

By Laura Martin | Last updated Oct 27, 2021

child wearing headphones and playing on tablet

Headphones that your children can use with their devices are extremely handy, whether for school work, gaming, long car journeys or to stop them from making lots of noise that might disturb the people around them. But if you’re looking to buy headphones for your kids to use, it’s important you find a pair specifically designed for little ears. 

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Ideally, you should look for headphones that limit noise levels and most will do this to a level of 85dB which is the safe recommended limit according to the World Health Organisation. While it might be tempting to buy cheap and cheerful headphones on the assumption that they’ll soon be broken or lost, it’s of vital importance that you protect your child’s hearing to avoid any issues in future. 

Another feature you may wish to look out for is Bluetooth technology which can be a lifesaver when you have a wriggly toddler and you want to keep hazardous wires out of the equation. Comfort is also a factor to be taken into account, so you should consider the type of headband, the weight of the headphones and the padding on the ear cups. 

We’ve consulted consumer reviews as well as testimonials from Mumsnet parents to bring you tried-and-tested recommendations that are sure to be a hit with children of all ages.  

Here are the best kids’ headphones to buy right now.

1. Best overall kids’ headphones: JuniorJams Volume Limiting Headphones for Kids

JuniorJams headphones

Price: £69 | Buy now from Amazon

“Puro Sound Labs are great - DD has the JuniorJams. They are also decibel restricted but are noise-cancelling and plenty loud enough for an aircraft. I know because I have a tiny head and used them when she was asleep.” Limpshade

The JuniorJams headphones from experts Puro feature noise-limiting technology which restricts harmful volumes over 85dB so you never have to worry about your child’s hearing.

They also have crystal clear acoustics thanks to their fancy tech which isolates almost 90% of ambient noise. What’s more, they’re super comfortable and the ear cups are covered in soft vegan leather which is both durable and flexible.

Pros

  • Noise-limiting technology
  • Ambient noise reducer

Cons

  • Expensive

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: Yes
  • Connection type: Bluetooth
  • Weight: 369g
  • Battery life: 22 hours 

2. Best budget kids’ headphones: KidMoments Brown Bear Headphones

KidsMoments headphones

Price: £11.99 | Buy now from Amazon

These adorable teddy bear kids’ headphones will be a big hit with little ones and parents alike thanks to their bargain price. Despite the amazing cost, they still feature  essential noise-limiting technology which will restrict volumes to 85dB, plus they’re soft and adjustable making them super comfortable when worn on little heads. 

We especially like that the teddy bear casing can be removed as your child get older and aren’t into such cutesy features. And we can see that added thought has gone into using a durable nylon braided cord which will prevent tangling and add to the durability of the cable.

Pros

  • Noise-limiting technology 
  • Durable 
  • Great value for money
  • Fun design

Cons 

  • Wires may get in the way

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: No
  • Connection type: N/A
  • Weight: 260g
  • Battery life: N/A

3. Best lightweight kids’ headphones: JVC Tinyphones Kids’ Stereo Headphones

Tinyphones headphones

Price: £12.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“I bought JVC kids’ ones as the volume is limited so can't hurt their ears.” user14809873

While at the lower end of the price scale, JVC’s Tinyphones Kids’ Stereo Headphones still carry many of the features that parents will be looking for. Although they’re wired and therefore more unwieldy than a wireless pair, this does give them the added benefit of not requiring charging, so they are permanently available and ready for use at a moment’s notice. 

They feature the all-important volume limiter to protect tiny ears, are available in a choice of five different colours and come with stickers so your child can personalise the pair to their heart's content. Weighing in at just 133g, they’re also a super lightweight option for children who might feel restricted with a heavier pair. 

Pros 

  • Noise-limiting technology
  • Lightweight
  • Budget-friendly

Cons 

  • Wires may be a hassle

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: No
  • Connection type: N/A
  • Weight: 133g
  • Battery life: N/A

4. Best kids’ headphones for younger children: Snug Play+ Kids Headphones

SnugPlay+ headphones

Price: From £14.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“The Snug Play+ ones are very comfy (I’ll happily wear them at times, I have quite a small head!)” minipie

Children will love the huge selection of headphone designs on offer from Snug. Whether it’s dinosaurs, robots, monster trucks, pineapples or even llamas, there’s bound to be a pair to suit your child. 

Not only are the Snug Play+ headphones highly recommended by thousands of happy parents, but they also feature a unique design: a sharing port so you can connect one side of the headphones to a device then attach the other side to another pair of headphones. This allows more than one child to listen to the same audio at once - great for car journeys where the kids are watching the same film. 

Pros 

  • Noise-limiting technology
  • Huge range of designs
  • Audio-sharing tech

Cons 

  • Wires may prove annoying

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: No
  • Connection type: N/A
  • Weight: 200g
  • Battery life: N/A

5. Best wireless kids’ headphones: PowerLocus Noise Cancelling Bluetooth Headphones

PowerLocus headphones

Price: £16.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“I have a set of PowerLocus. Had them nearly three years and have been happy with them. Both kids have the same.” gigglingHyena

These sleek headphones from PowerLocus are a great wireless option for older kids and teens. They don’t have noise-limiting technology so you probably won’t want to let younger children use them. Instead, they feature active noise cancellation which will result in a superior sound quality and an impressive audio experience.

They have an in-built microphone which enables them to be used in combination with a mobile phone as well as the flexibility of being both wired and wireless. Finally, all purchases are covered with a 24-month warranty to give you peace of mind.

Pros 

  • Active noise cancellation
  • Ability to be used wirelessly or with a cable

Cons 

  • No noise-limiting technology

Key specs

  • Sound limit: N/A
  • Wireless: Yes
  • Connection type: Bluetooth or 3.5mm audio jack
  • Weight: 172g
  • Battery life: 14 hours

6. Best noise-cancelling kids’ headphones: Puro Quiet Noise Cancelling Headphones

Puro Quiet Noise Cancelling Headphones

Price: £99 | Buy now from Amazon

These top-of-the-range headphones from Puro also feature active noise cancellation technology. What this means is that ambient noise is actively blocked out, which enhances the user experience by helping a child focus purely on the audio they’re listening to. This helps to maximise the sounds your child will hear through the headphones even though the noise limit of 85dB is in place. 

The headphones also feature Bluetooth wireless technology but can also be used with a 3.5 mm audio jack cable, which is handy if they have run out of battery.

Pros 

  • Active noise cancellation
  • Can be used wired or wirelessly
  • Noise-limiting technology

Cons 

  • Pricey

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: Yes
  • Connection type: Bluetooth or 3.5mm audio jack
  • Weight: 167g
  • Battery life: 22 hours

7. Best comfortable kids’ headphones: Snuggly Rascals Headband Headphones

Snuggly Rascals headphones

Price: From £14.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“Snuggly Rascals. They wrap round the child’s head and are adjustable with Velcro. I find that they won't fall off or break as easily as normal headphones. They’re super comfortable, and you can’t feel the flat speakers through the material. The speakers can be removed and the headband popped into the washing machine.” Ricekrispie22

These innovative, award-winning headphones from Snuggly Rascals sit tucked within a soft, stretchy headband. This makes them an outstanding option for kids who hate having anything on their heads or find traditional headphones uncomfortable. They come in a choice of two fabrics: either a fleece material or a soft cotton so you can choose the most appropriate depending on when and where the headphones will be used. 

Many parents have succeeded in getting their child to wear headphones for the first time thanks to this clever design, and the headband may be useful for children with autism or those who wear glasses. One thing to note - these are wired headphones so it’s not recommended that they are used in bed as the cable may be a hazard.

Pros 

  • Noise-limiting technology
  • Soft, comfortable design
  • A good alternative to traditional headphones

Cons 

  • No wireless option 

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: No
  • Connection type: N/A
  • Weight: 50g
  • Battery life: N/A

8. Most innovative kids’ headphones: imoo Ear-Care Headset

imoo Ear-Care Headset

Price: £59 | Buy now from Amazon

These clever wireless headphones have a completely unique design. They don’t go anywhere near the eardrum, instead relying on sound-beaming speaker technology which sends sound to the ear. This also ensures better hygiene as there is no chance of pollutants entering your child’s ears via their headphones. 

The headphones are also a great option if your child would prefer not to have a band across their head as they sit comfortably on a loose strap that sits around the back of the head. There’s also a sensor that can be tapped for automatic play and pause. 

At 30g, these are the lightest kids’ headphones featured in our list, making them another good choice for children who don’t like feeling too restricted on their heads. 

Pros 

  • Noise-limiting technology
  • Unique ear-care design
  • Extremely lightweight 

Cons 

  • Relatively short battery life 

Key specs

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: Yes
  • Connection type: Bluetooth
  • Weight: 30g
  • Battery life: 8 hours

9. Best kids’ headphones for homeschooling or school work: BuddyPhones School+ Headphones

Buddyphones headphones

Price: £27.99 | Buy now from Amazon

Homeschooling was once an alien concept to most of us, with only a few hardy parents choosing the route of educating their children themselves. Alas, the pandemic has made homeschooling a daily reality for many over the past two years. And there’s always the possibility that we may be required to help our children learn from home again in the future. 

These headphones by Icelandic company Onanoff are designed specifically to protect a child's delicate hearing while minimising background noise and clearly picking up your child's voice on the removable beam microphone - an essential feature when using shared learning platforms. They also feature an extra audio cable which allows multiple listeners to share audio from a single device which is particularly useful in an educational setting.

Pros 

  • Noise-limiting technology
  • Removable beam microphone
  • Passive noise cancellation
  • Audio-sharing tech

Cons 

  • No wireless option 

Key specs:

  • Sound limit: 85db
  • Wireless: No
  • Connection type: N/A
  • Weight: 295g
  • Battery life: N/A

10. Best gaming headphones for kids: Turtle Beach Recon 500 Gaming Headset

Turtle Beach 500 headphones

Price: £49.99 | Buy now from Amazon

“Look at the Turtle Beach ones on Amazon. Decent prices and they've lasted best out of all the ones DS has had. He’s 13 and knows what he’s talking about and would tell me if they were rubbish.” CurlyCat

 “Turtle Beach is good. I wouldn't go any cheaper to be honest. I have done before and they never last that long.” Morgan12

This Turtle Beach headset looks great and is sure to be a hit with children who want a decent headset for gaming.  It has incredible sound quality, as well as noise-cancelling technology which delivers perfect speech between teammates. It also has a handy glasses-friendly design which reduces pressure on specs-wearers for prolonged play.

Pros 

  • One headset compatible with all game platforms 
  • Noise-cancelling tech
  • Simple-to-use volume control

Cons

  • Not wireless
  • No noise limiter

Key specs

  • Sound limit: No
  • Wireless: No
  • Connection type: N/A
  • Weight: 454g
  • Battery life: N/A

How do I choose good headphones for kids?

There are four main considerations when buying headphones for kids:

  • Wireless headphones are a great choice for children, because little ones can often become tangled up in wires, which is potentially dangerous. Over time, wires can also become damaged rendering the headphones useless. However, wireless headphones are usually more expensive, plus you need to remember to charge them or they can’t be used. The battery life of wireless headphones can vary greatly, but is usually around 15-20 hours. Some headphones have the option to be both wired and wireless such as the Puro Quiet Noise Cancelling Kids Headphones. 
  • Noise-limiting technology is a must-have for kids’ headphones. This means that sound is limited to a level of 85dB which is the safe recommended limit according to the World Health Organisation. This is an important way of reducing the risk of hearing damage in children.
  • Cost is another factor to take into account. While sound quality will undoubtedly be better in more expensive headphones, it’s possible to get a decent pair of kids’ headphones with all the important features without breaking the bank. If you’re on a tight budget, we recommend the KidsMoments Brown Bear Headphones which are durable and well-priced and have noise-limiting technology.
  • Fit is particularly important when buying for fussy kids. Most headphones have an adjustable headband to help fit small heads, and most kids’ headphones have large cups which sit over the ear (kids don’t typically like using earbuds and these aren’t recommended for young children). However, other options are available such as these Snuggly Rascals Headband Headphones which are super comfortable.

Is noise-cancelling bad for ears?

Some headphones feature active or passive noise-cancelling features. This is technology that reduces ambient sound, helping you to focus specifically on the audio you’re listening to. It’s a good feature to look for if you live in a particularly noisy environment or if you struggle to concentrate due to outside distractions. 

Active noise cancellation makes use of specific technology including microphones which actually analyse the noise in your environment and then counter it by producing its own mirrored sounds, thus eliminating the distracting effect. Passive noise cancellation is little more than physically blocking out a noise by placing a physical obstruction in or around the ear.

While most people experience no particular change when using active noise-cancelling headphones, some report a slight hissing sound or perhaps temporary dizziness. However, overall noise-cancelling is a good option if it causes you to reduce the overall volume of the sounds you’re listening to. What’s more, by reducing ambient noise, noise-cancelling headphones may contribute to an overall lowering of stress hormones, which can have a positive effect on health.

What is a good brand of headphones for kids? 

We believe the best headphones you can buy for your kids are the JuniorJams Volume Limiting Kids’ Headphones from Puro. For the ultimate in durability and clear sound quality, these headphones really pack a punch, while combining all the essential elements needed for safe listening for kids.

How we chose our recommendations

Because we know that there’s nothing like a real recommendation from a real parent, we first headed to the Mumsnet forums to find out which headphones discerning Mumsnet users had bought for their families. 

We then did some research across the wider web, looking at which kids' headphones had won accolades or been featured in ‘best buy’ lists across websites and print media, and what customers' reviews said about them. Having collated all that information, we picked the kids' headphones we thought would make the best buys in several interest categories.

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Why you should trust us

We work hard to provide unbiased, independent advice you can trust. We do sometimes earn revenue through affiliate (click-to-buy) links in our articles. This helps us fund more helpful articles like this one.