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Musician's Earplugs

I got some non-fitted musicians' earplugs a while ago, but I haven't used them much because they hurt :(. I got the small ones, because I've always found in-ear headphones to be very sore, so I guess I have small ears.

I'd never felt I needed ear plugs for playing music until I started playing in a soul band - standing next to the drummer (who has two levels - loud and VERY LOUD), I find my right ear goes kind of numb compared to the left and I start to get a bit dizzy. I also dislike overly loud gigs, and struggle to hear people over a lot of noise even in pubs. So I got these ear plugs. But they're going to be too sore to use I think.

I tried them again in the car today - turns out they're very good for damping the road noise, which can be very wearing at motorways speeds. It meant I was also able to turn up the CD a couple of notches, so I could hear it much more clearly without half deafening myself trying to hear it over the road noise. It was very good. But after only about 15min, my right ear started to get very sore right at the base of the ear. The left ear was OK (although it hurt when I took them out) - I think the right is smaller.

This is most disappointing. I'm thinking I should probably get fitted ones, but they're not cheap, at around £100. Ahd what if they still hurt? That's a lot of money to take a chance on...

Have any of you tried fitted ones? Are they any good, in terms of comfort?

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