12 Best Workout Headphones in 2017

Headphones geared towards sporty consumers are a dime a dozen these days. In fact, in-ear headphones can be found everywhere from gas stations and retail shops to online e-tailers. If you want something that can withstand the rigors of your exercise regime, you may quickly realize that the best workout headphones can be hard to find.

Whether you are on the track, going down the slopes or just slamming iron at the gym, you will want a headphone that is small and easy to deal with. That may mean going wireless for some although if you are a cross country or marathon runner, you may prefer wires over battery life. There are several things to consider, but first, let’s take a look at our top picks.

Top 12 Workout Headphones Comparison Chart

Design Name Wireless Sweat Resistant Rating (1-5)
   1. SENSO Bluetooth Headphones, Best Wireless Sports Earphones  Yes  IPX7  4.5
   2. Phaiser BHS-530 Bluetooth Headphones, Wireless Earbuds Stereo Earphones  Yes  Yes  4.5
   3. Wireless Bluetooth Headphones, ZEUS OUTDOOR Noise Cancelling Wireless Earbuds  Yes  IPX7  4.5
   4. Phaiser BHS-730 Bluetooth Headphones Headset Sport Earphones  No  Yes  4.4
   5. ROVKING Over Ear In Ear Noise Isolating Sweatproof Sport Headphones Earbuds Earphones  No  Yes  4.4
6. Wireless Bluetooth Running Headphones  Yes  Yes  4.4
7. Joyful Heart JH-800 Waterproof Noise Cancelling Wireless Bluetooth Earbuds  Yes  Yes  4.4
8. TaoTronics Bluetooth Headphones Wireless In Ear Earbuds  Yes  Yes  4.3
   9. SoundPEATS Bluetooth Earbuds Wireless  Yes  Yes  4.3
   10. Anlo Bluetooth Headphones Wireless In Ear Earbuds  Yes  Yes  4.3
   11. Bose SoundSport in-ear headphones  No  Yes  4.2
   12. TREBLAB XR100 Sports Bluetooth Earbuds  Yes  Yes  4.2

What to Look for When Shopping for Workout Headphones

Everyone’s routine is different, so a pair of headphones that works for one may not work nearly as well for others. If you are a swimmer, none of these will make the cut, but all do have a measure of water resistance.

  • Comfort  You may think that price or audio quality would come first in most buyers’ minds, but that isn’t the case. If you are going to have something crammed into your canal for extended periods of time, you want to make sure it will be comfortable. Unfortunately, you may have to sacrifice style for comfort with some of the wireless models.

Most of the best workout headphones to make our list come with additional foam or silicone earpieces. That’s a good thing if you lose them frequently and as they tend to wear out and become dingy over time. If you have sensitive skin, you may want to check out the materials used on the inserts. Also, make sure there will be multiple sizes out of the box.

  • Audio Quality  Just like with comfort, your earphones are essentially expensive earplugs if they don’t sound good. As with many things in life, you get what you pay for in most cases. In other words, a pair of earbuds off the rack aren’t going to sound as nice as something from Bose. There are exceptions to that rule however as there is only so far you can take tech on in-ear headphones.

How Water-Resistant Are They?

Are you a heavy sweater? It’s okay if you are as sweating is a surefire way to get impurities out of your system during exercise. Even if you aren’t in the middle of a hard workout, the summer heat can send sweat trickling downhill and into your eardrums. Even with in-ear headphones, it can be an issue at times.

This is where water resistance comes into play. Some headphones will have a special certification that promises protection. On the other hand, some of the cheaper models will fry at the first drop of sweat. It won’t pop your eardrums, but slick plugs can easily pop out when damp. Depending on the type of earbud,  the sound quality can go downhill rather quickly as well once the foam gets wet.

Do You Want Wireless or Wired?

While not a deal breaker, going wireless is something most consumers will want to consider. On the positive side, you won’t have to deal with tangled wires or accidentally unplugging your headphones dozens of times. If you exercise, it has likely happened to you and can quickly take you out of the zone. Not good when you’re jogging down the road. Wireless earbuds have also come down in price considerably and are no longer considered as exotic as they were a few years ago.

On the downside, you’re going to have to deal with battery life although it probably won’t be an issue for most. Unless you are in training or a gym nut, most wireless sports headphones will offer up enough juice for several sessions. Due to the tech involved, they usually aren’t the most stylish as only a few companies have managed to keep things small and truly wireless.

Top 5 Best Workout Headphones Reviews

1. SENSO Bluetooth Headphones

Simple is the first word to come to mind when you get a glimpse of the SENSO Bluetooth Headphones. Don’t let the looks and somewhat awkward design fool you, however. These little marvels offer up everything you could want from a wired set and have a range of up to 30 feet thanks to its wireless sensibilities. That said, take the range with a dose of salt as those numbers rarely hold up.

The SENSO headphones may not be the sleekest earbuds on the market, but they are full of features. You can make and take calls through the integrated microphone and control media playback without reaching for your handset. As it’s “sporty” you will also get the IPX7 tag which means they can withstand more than most headphones in its class when it comes to sweat and water. They are not fully waterproof, so don’t get these in the pool or shower.

Like perks? Well, the SENSO earphones come with more than most. You will get the usual extra tips, but also get a carrying case, an Android/Lightning connector, and a dual port USB car charger. It is definitely one of your better options across the board, and the IPX tag is tough to beat.

2. Phaiser BHS-530 Bluetooth Headphones

Phaiser isn’t a name most audiophiles will know although a few of their products will look very familiar. The Phaiser BHS-530 is not one of them as it has what we will refer to as an interesting style. They are wireless, ergonomically designed and can be rolled up and tucked away when you’re not on the track or treadmill. They aren’t as small as some wireless headphones on our list, but will not take up much space in a pocket.

When it comes to features, these wireless earbuds have the same basic functions as the rest. That means they play music and allow you a measure of control over your handset with incoming calls. They are sweatproof but have no IPX rating. They do have Bluetooth 4.1 connectivity and a nifty visual battery gauge that can warn you with a beep when it nears its end.

The BHS-530’s are also said to have “powerful bass” and are more compact than most as they snug up against your head to a degree. In terms of extras, these earbuds come with a carrying case, charger and several sets of foam tips.

3. ZEUS Outdoor Bluetooth Headphones

Remember that part where we talked about how you may have to sacrifice style for going wireless? The ZEUS Outdoor HD headphones are another example of that. They have the “over the ear” style and are not necessarily what we would refer to as svelte. That said, they are built for almost any type of outdoor activity you can throw at them and are rated with a range of 33 feet.

Style aside, the ZEUS headphones let you take phone calls while remaining hands-free. There is a simple control setup on the top of one earpiece while the LED light and MFB on the side take care of the rest. The ZEUS Outdoor HD headphones come with a case, extra cones and charging cable in Black and Red or White and Black.

4. Phaiser BHS-730 Bluetooth Headphones

Phaiser may not have taken the top spot, but they are the only company to land two pairs of workout earbuds in the Top 5 of our list. The Phaiser BHS-730 also have the distinction of being the most stylish by a long shot. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention the fact they are magnetic. While there isn’t much “wire” to deal with, this ensures your earbuds will stay locked together in your pocket or around your neck.

There is nothing new to see with the BHS-730’s when it comes to features. They will perform admirably in the audio department, and their “liquipel” tech will keep they safe from sweat. In fact, the company says it has a lifetime warranty against sweat – a bonus for heavy sweaters. Another advantage would be comfort. These headphones have a different type of insert which may stay in your ear compared to ones with earhooks.

The Phaiser BHS-730 Bluetooth Headphones are available in a wide variety of colors and come with the usual extras. You will also receive cable clips and two styles of inserts.

5. ROVKING Over Ear Sport Headphones

The ROVKING Over-Ear Sport Headphones are a popular pick for several reasons. One would be the price as they are among the cheapest workout headphones you can buy. The company claims they are also smaller in diameter, which means they should not stretch your eardrums out.  On the downside, these are wired although their wire is smarter than most.

The company has used “memory wire” in their earbuds, which is said to hold it shape as they hook over your ear. Not ideal for everyone, but this does allow for some cable management. Other features include an in-line control and microphone, a cable clip and six different sized foam tips. As they are wired, they will only work with smartphones or media players sporting a 3.5mm headphone jack. That means the no hook up to USB Type-C ports or Lightning connections unless you have an adapter.

So, Our Final Thoughts Are…

Regardless of which sport you play or how you work out, the headphones on our list are all fine choices. Some will perform better than others in key areas, but the best workout headphones we chose all have a few things in common. None of them will break the bank, and all can withstand a measure of dampness so they won’t fry your eardrums if they get a little moist.