Loop Earplugs: Is silence the key to focus?


Faith Nelson

Loop Earplugs claim to reduce noise by up to 27 decibels but can that effectively increase focus?

Despite being a person who frequently carps about their brain being “too loud,” I was unaware of the effects it had on my focus. Having ADHD, this information motivated me to search for a tool that will alleviate some of the common symptoms of audio processing divergences and maintain the integrity of my focus. After countless hours of digging and research, I discovered Loop Earplugs.

Claiming to “enable you to live life at your volume by filtering the noise in style,” Loop has made it their mission to redefine what an earplug should sound, look and feel like while bringing comfort and protection to your ears, ultimately giving you control over how your life sounds. With a statement that strong, it was hard to look past those offerings. Available on both their website and Amazon, the Loop Quiet comes in six different colors and is priced at $14.95 containing a pair of earplugs, four additional sets of silicone earpieces (XS to L)  and a compact carrying case.

A product that comes with such strong claims is always subject to harsh criticism and as someone who acknowledges the importance of this product’s effectiveness and overall rating, there are five diverse categories I used when determining my likeness of the Loop Quiet: functionality, comfort, design, convenience and brand ethics. While some criteria were far exceeded, others fell short in performance.

Due to the nature of the product, functionality plays a vital role in the evaluation. On the Loop website, it states that the Quiet line is designed to “reduce noise by 25 to 27 decibels, which most describe as medium noise reduction.” Although my desires were to alleviate audio processing difficulties and increase focus, I feared too much noise reduction and the anxiety-inducing effects that can have.

Being designed with the ability to provide medium noise reduction had left me under the assumption that with the earplugs, I would be able to clearly hear the people around me while still being able to filter out all of the white noise that prevented me from being able to focus on my own thoughts. Understanding that this may be a tall order, I had low expectations but was pleasantly surprised when they provided just that. Tested from both five feet and 15 feet, voices were both clear and audible while any atmospheric humming was completely muted.

Loop’s performance, in terms of functionality, left me with a strong first impression drawing excitement out of me when I found an opportunity to use them. With a successful transcendence of expectations of the first and arguably most important category, the earplugs were off to a great start.

In conjunction with functionality, comfortability is also incredibly vital when evaluating this product. Made with silicone rather than low-quality foam, Loop Quiet is made with the intention of the user’s comfort and perfect fit. Because ears tend to be a more sensitive area and discomfort can often perpetuate headaches, I placed a significant amount of value on how they felt.

Ergonomically designed in Europe and comes with 6 different sets of ear tips, so you can easily find your perfect fit.”

— Loop Earplugs

Considering the intermission I’ve had with rubber earbuds due to my Airpod usage, I was unsure of how I would feel wearing any earplugs of such kind. Using just the standard size they come as, I found that they did not hurt but I was not completely complaint-free. Because the material is made of a slick silicone, there was no way air could pass through, causing them to occasionally create a vacuum seal within my ear which became rather uncomfortable.

Assessing how the earplugs felt, I did not enjoy the occasional suction cup feeling but understood that it was inevitable. Seeing that I was able to wear them for several hours and also successfully slept while wearing them, my complaints only slightly infringed my overall evaluation considering the impeccable functionality.

Going hand-in-hand with comfort, the product design was also something I took into account. The product, being something that has a tendency to go unnoticed, should exemplify a silhouette that is sleek and discreet in design and be able to complement one’s aesthetic regardless of its overarching themes. Loop Quiet features a simple shape reflecting its name: a loop.

I personally really enjoy the minimalist structure and look that the product produces and as a person with several ear piercings, I feel that the product is incredibly stylish. While style generally has very little to do with overall performance, being visually appealing was a quality that made the overall experience far more enjoyable and caused me to want to put the product to use.

As an educated consumer, I do tend to only purchase products that I intend on frequently using, but having ADHD, that doesn’t always happen accordingly. This product, heavily advertised to a neurodivergent audience, must be fairly convenient and accessible even in the presence of executive dysfunction.

Loop Quiet Earplugs are fairly small and very easy to be misplaced; however, the compact carrying case about the size of a half dollar, is intended to alleviate the possibility of losing the earplugs. While I do enjoy the ability to clip the case on my keys and always have the earplugs within reach, I’ve found that occasionally it does not click and stay closed causing the earplugs to fall out. This left me quite alarmed about how often I am opening and closing the case as well as bringing it with me when I leave the house in fear of losing the earplugs.

This has a direct impact on the frequency in which I actively use the product which heavily dampens the convenience and accessibility of the product. That is a heavily weighted downside considering it affects how often I reach for the product.

No matter how exceedingly well a product does in terms of performance, a poor brand image can greatly hinder the overall review. To Loop’s misfortune, that is their reality. An Instagram post that has since been deleted showed the brand’s true colors as they spread blatantly harmful ideology regarding autism, a disability they claim to directly cater to.

While the image can easily be assumed to not be posted with malice, the message portrayed a very clearly offensive narrative. Similar to the “Famous People with ADHD post, the removed feature of people with autism included quotes perpetuating a negative connotation surrounding autism. The brand has since been making an effort to take steps in a more mindful direction that is more conscious and considerate, but that did not stop users from voicing their own opinion.


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A post shared by Loop Earplugs (@loopearplugs)

Comments left on another unrelated Instagram post made by Loop ignored the content of the video and overwhelmingly expressed disdain towards the brand’s actions. Loop responded to a comment saying, “We do not discriminate. Never. We might make communication mistakes, for which we apologize, but it has nothing to do with ableism. At Loop we value each and every individual, autistic and allistic, and we would never intentionally mistreat or take advantage of anyone.”

Despite their efforts to undo the damage, myself and others are still left with heavy criticism. While I do not condone supporting companies with problematic behavior, I realize that often it is inevitable but do heavily factor brand morality into my rating which is why I give the Loop Quiet a 3/5. The product performed exactly how they claimed to, but there were occasions where comfort was not present and of course, neither was respect.

If you are like me and feel that your brain is just sometimes too loud, Loop Quiet is a great product for you but there are also several other products on the market that can also cater to that ailment without the exploitative and problematic behavior which is why I encourage you to go out and do some extensive research on the product and the company before making your purchase.