Do people make fun of you for your ear protection?

I haven't played in a band for a few years due to various personal and professional changes. Recently I sat down to practice, put on my ear protection, and thinking back I realized that in every single band I ever played with, someone made fun of me for wearing ear protection.

At the time I always just shrugged and ignored it - I'm not going to damage my ears because someone thinks my molded earplugs are funny or uncool or whatever - but thinking back, it strikes me as odd.

I don't recall ever having an issue hearing anything going on in any of the bands, with one exception: I auditioned for a funk band and they had a huge rehearsal room so I was a long way away from where the lead singer was setup. He made fun of my earplugs from the minute I put them in. One time I took them out between songs for discussion and for him to call the next song, and as soon as I put them back in he quietly called a different song. I don't know if this was a mistake or my own personal end scene of Whiplash.

But it just seems so weird. Am I the only one who has experienced this?


Junior Member
Nothing wrong with hearing protection.
As a musician I kinda wanna keep my hearing.
I go through the same thing with motorcycle equipment.
I never ride without all my protective gear on.
I cringe every time I see someone riding in sneakers, shorts and a tank top.
I am AGATT = All Gear All The Time and some laugh or snicker.
But..... common sense is not that common and you can’t fix stupid.

C.M. Jones

Diamond Member
"Do people make fun of you for your ear protection?"

Not to my knowledge, but if they did, I'd make fun of them for being imbeciles. I've been using ear plugs/muffs since I got my first drum set. I use ear protection for every practice session, every recording session, and every performance. That's why my hearing is mostly intact after all these years. If anyone expressed contempt for such precautions, I'd challenge him or her to an IQ test. I'm pretty sure I'd win.
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Silver Member
when i was younger (10 to 15 years ago) some locals made fun of it calling me names and such saying it wasnt metal or "cool" to use hearing protection, now some of the same poeple cant play or attend shows any more due to crippling tinnitus and hearing loss, and some of those who do still play have apologised to me and now use hearing protection themselves.


Junior Member
I wore earplugs religiously to gigs and concerts when I was younger. Most of my friends were musicians so they got it. I always said that I
wanted to be playing music when I'm in my 50s and I didn't want hearing loss. Now....I'm in my 50's and I'm SO thankful that I
did it.


New Member
It’s never occurred to me to use hearing protection when playing (especially in a rehearsal space). I’ve gone to gigs & brought ear plugs, however (Motörhead, Ramones etc).
But this is interesting. My 16 year old plays on my kit as well. The other day I went to play my kit, put a beer in my rack-mount beer holder & it didn’t quite fit.
I looked in the bottom & had a bunch of earplugs in it! I asked my son about this… He said he found them in the garage, and could not believe that I didn’t use them when I played drums.
We have never talked about this… Funny how they are smarter than us.

pocket player

Junior Member
give them a you tube on Disabling Tinnitus , then when you see them suffering in a few years you can say i guess the jokes on you !!


New Member
I don’t understand your reply… I was commenting about how my kid is smarter than me when it comes to hearing protection.


Platinum Member
I will NEVER poke fun at anyone who wears protection (for volume!). I never have and I've played in dangerous high volume situations. I just feel to separated from being totally sonically involved. Two weeks ago I had an ear test/examination and had a slight loss of certain frequencies. At my age it happens naturally and my chances of playing WHO tunes louder than should be publically legal are better than slim. I beat the not at all recommending you roll the dice.


Silver Member
I used to think only dweebs wore earplugs, now I'm 37 with the hearing of an 80-year-old war vet, and I really wish I started wearing earplugs sooner! In my defense, there weren't a lot of options in the late 90s/early 2000s other than foam plugs that make everything sound like mumbled shit. If I'd have had access to high-fidelity earplugs back then I'd have used them all the time as I do now.

Jeremy Bender

Platinum Member
Me asking younger arrogant guys: Doesn't that loud sound hurt your ears?
They respond snickering : "No, why?"
My response: That's a shame, because it should.
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Pioneer Member
Yes, there are people out there who will make fun of us while we protect ourselves.

Ignore them.

Sure, I miss some high end frequencies while wearing earplugs, but maintaining what’s left of my hearing over the long term is vastly more important than caring what some dweeb thinks for the duration of a rehearsal.

And the funk singer guy who pulled that childish song switch? You don’t want to be in that band anyway.


Gold Member
A lot of people like that are going to deride people for any and all types of personal protection...Eye protection, ear plugs, masks, condoms...
Eventually, you might end up walking up to them, turning down the oxygen flow on their ventilator, so they can hear you telling them that their doctor said that that itch and those lesions will never completely go away...and they'll think, Hmmm...didn't see that coming...and they will sign the paperwork using their two fingered hand, because, who needs that guard on the table saw anyway.

^^Edit: I think earlier I was channeling my inner GetAgrippa.^^
or maybe my outer...can't be sure.
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Jeff Almeyda

Senior Consultant
That was much more prevalent back in the 80's. You were somehow not as tough or cool if you wore plugs.
So stupid, nowadays even the "most brutal"(lol) death metal guys wear plugs or in-ears,