People who wear glasses on a daily basis face challenges unknown to their 20/20 brethren. One of those problems is finding a set of headphones that work well with glasses. In our experience, many headphones just aren’t up to the challenge of providing great, immersive sound without cramming the glasses’ earpieces into users’ temples. However, with a little bit of searching, wearing headphones with glasses won’t be much of an issue. With that in mind, we looked for the best headphones for glasses wearers, so you don’t have to.
We checked out headphones in all shapes and forms, but mostly ones with wide, adjustable headbands, lots of cushioning, and enough flexibility to accommodate a wide range of frame sizes. So, whether you’re nearsighted, farsighted, or just rock blue light-blocking lenses, there should be a great fit on this list for you.
The Best Headphones for Glasses Wearers
If you’re looking for the best headphones for glasses wearers who travel or commute a lot, the Beats Solo3 is a great option. These on-ear headphones fold down to a minuscule size, and their padded case and durable build make them easy to throw in a bag without worry. Owing to the Solo3’s wireless connectivity, they pair quickly and easily. But these bad boys also come with a cord, so when the battery dies, you can keep the tunes going.
You’ll hardly ever need it, though — with 40 hours of battery life, you can get a week’s worth of work done before you need to charge it. And with the rapid charging, you can squeeze 3 hours of playback out of a quick five-minute charge. For glasses wearers, the adjustable headband and soft leather ear cups provide a perfect fit, allowing us to wear them for hours on end without any discomfort. After a long workday with glasses on, my ears were a bit sore, but it was a small price to pay for the portability.
And the mic is clear as a bell, too. We’ve used these on video conferences and phone meetings and have never had any complaints from anyone on the receiving end.
The 5-minute charge provides 3 hours of playback
40 hours of battery life
Available in nine colors
Long battery life
On-ear headphones not as comfortable as over-ear
Bose Quiet Comfort 35 II
Bose is a force to be reckoned with in the audiophile world, and the Quiet Comfort 35 II is a great example of why the brand is so well-regarded. One of the most comfortable headphones for glasses, the sound quality coming from these headphones is also outstanding. As well, they’re definitely one of the best choices in their price segment. The audio performance is very balanced, making Bose QC 35 II great headphones for just about any kind of music. What’s more, it remains balanced even if you crank up the volume, which is not true of many headphones on the market.
Comfort-wise, Bose QC 35 II performs equally well when worn by people with and without glasses. The headband would benefit from more padding, but it’s not a huge issue. Since the QC 35 II model connects to devices wirelessly, you don’t have to worry about tangled and damaged cables. Of course, there’s also a headphone out jack in case you want to use the traditional wired connection.
If you commute a lot, you’re probably going to love the Bose QC 35 II’s built-in noise cancellation feature. It is highly effective, canceling out even louder outside noises and allowing you to concentrate on your music. In addition, the QC 35 II model is officially Alexa-certified, which means that you can talk to Alexa when wearing these headphones. Whether you want to find out more about the weather, add bread to your shopping list, or play some smooth jazz, just say it, and Alexa will take care of it for you.
20 hours of wireless use per charge
Dual mic system
Bluetooth or NFC pairing
Model: Quiet Comfort 35 II
If you’re looking for a great pair of headphones for glasses, but don’t want to spend a lot of cheddar, the Audio-Technica ATH-M30 might be a perfect fit. Audio-Technica is a well-established name in the audio world, so you can be sure that these headphones will deliver quality sound. They may not have the same quality as the company’s ATH-M50s, but at less than half the price, you won’t be disappointed.
The ATH-M30’s are full-size over-the-ear headphones under $100, which means they’ll sit comfortably on your head without adding undue pressure on your ears. This means that you can rock any kind of glasses frame with these bad boys for hours without any discomfort.
The only problem you may find with these is that they aren’t overly portable. Since they’re not as solid as the high-end headphones in Audio-Technica’s lineup, you’ll want to take some care when putting them in a bag. The long cable can also be unwieldy during workouts, and there’s no microphone for taking calls or Zoom meetings. If you’re looking for a pair of headphones for working out or meeting online, these may not be the ones for you. But if you just want a good, affordable pair of headphones for working at home, they’re a great choice.
Carry bag included
Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro 80 Ohm
Want studio-quality sound, but don’t want to pay studio-quality prices? Then check out the Beyerdynamic DT 770 Pro model. Built with audio professionals in mind, these German-made headphones are available in multiple impedance options ranging from 32 to 250 Ohm. If you’re actually an audio professional, you may want to go for the higher end of that range. But if you’re an audiophile, we recommend you stick right in the middle with the 80 Ohm option. It’s probably the most versatile entry in the lineup and will put out great sound from just about any source.
As far as comfort goes, the Beyerdynamics are a good option for people with wider and/or larger heads thanks to the extra flexible headband with lots of soft padding. They’re also full-size headphones, so you shouldn’t have any issues with your glasses while wearing them. These headphones may require some time to wear in and adjust to your head, so don’t be disappointed if you don’t get a perfect fit straight out of the box.
If you’re a commuter, the DT 770 Pro studio headphones are not the most portable headphone set imaginable. They can’t be folded, and the non-detachable cable means you need to be extra careful with it. On the bright side, the velour pads are replaceable, so you don’t have to worry too much about damaging those. That said, the Beyerdynamics really shines when being used at home or at the workplace, since we wouldn’t recommend putting them through the daily wear and tear inside a commuter bag.
They don’t fold
Model: DT 770 Pro 80 Ohm
Sennheiser Urbanite XL
If you’ve got a big dome, point that melon at the Sennheiser Urbanite XL. Sennheiser is a German brand with over 100 years of experience in all things audio-related, so it’s pretty safe to say you’d be getting a quality piece of gear with the Urbanite XL. However, they might not be the best option if you’re into classical music or jazz, as they’re pretty bass-heavy and thus more suitable for people who want some thump to their music.
Wearing the Urbanite XL with glasses should be no problem at all, as they have a wide, adjustable headband and big, cushy earpads. Such thick padding provides a very comfortable fit for people with larger heads. Covered in durable denim, the headband can take a lot of wear and tear before something goes wrong with it. Plus, the denim headband gets style points for distinctiveness.
Since these headphones were designed for portable use, you get a nice travel pouch to protect them from scratches and physical damage, so they make great headphones for travel and commuting. The cable is detachable, and you can choose from several cable options, including cables with customized controls for iOS and Android devices.
Stainless steel hinges
Model: Urbanite XL
Sony is widely known for its wide array of electronics, not the least of which is its iconic PlayStation console family. However, Sony is also a strong player in the audio field, with a countless number of top-notch headphones and speakers. The MDR-1AM2 model is a great example of why Sony is well-respected among audiophiles. These headphones sound almost neutral, with a slight emphasis on the lower mids and heavy bass. This allows the MDR-1AM2 to sound warm but not distorted and makes them a great option for everyday listening as well as for hearing every nuance on your favorite vinyl.
These headphones sport padding that looks slight but is extremely cushy and may be the most comfortable model for people with glasses. The ergonomic headband design allows the weight of the headphones to be distributed evenly without creating points of pressure on your head or ears. And thanks to the 6.6-ounce weight, you may even forget that you’re wearing them.
They don’t fold, but their ear cups do rotate toward the inside of the headband for more convenient storage and transportation. Sony MDR1AM2 headphones come with a travel pouch, so you can take them with you everywhere you go without taking up a lot of space in your backpack. They’re on the pricier side of headphones, but their comfort and sound quality will make them feel like a bargain.
Swivel ear cups for portability
In-line remote control cord
No wireless connection
Samson SR850 Studio Reference
If you’re stoked on all these headphones, but they’re all out of your price range, you’ll be stoked to see the Samson SR850 Studio Reference, a truly budget-friendly set of headphones, on our list. At just a fraction of what most of our previous entries cost, these budget headphones still manage to deliver good-quality audio and feel surprisingly comfortable for glasses wearers.
While the sound quality isn’t as good as what the higher-end models can offer, you’re not going to find better sound for under fifty bucks. Even so, the sound coming out of the SR850 headphones is surprisingly clear, with crisp highs and punchy lows. So, don’t expect to get the muffled, thin sound (associated with many off-brand headphones) from Samson SR850, because they’re clearly capable of more.
The SR850 model is available in several versions. It may be tempting to get the Basic or Studio ones since they’re cheaper and they actually look pretty cool, but we highly recommend the “Studio Reference” if comfort is a priority. The headband of the Studio Reference headphones is completely different than what you get with the other two models, meaning a world of difference for people wearing glasses. Thanks to the extremely wide, auto-adjustable headband, these headphones can be a good fit for just about anyone, with plenty of space to comfortably accommodate your glasses.
Sound not as great as higher-end options
Model: SR850 Studio Reference
Headphones for Glasses Wearers Buying Guide
Features to Look for in Headphones for Glasses Wearers
Size – How well a set of headphones fits you is a huge factor in how comfortable they’re going to be. For people who wear glasses, this presents a unique challenge. The headphones will have to be tight enough to provide a tight seal, but not so tight that they squash your ears and glasses frames into your head. Most headphones sport adjustable headbands so you can customize the fit to an extent. But if you have an especially large or small head, keep an eye out for an XL or XS option.
Ear Pad Material – When it comes to comfort, ear pads are a crucial component when it comes to headphones. Since they are what comes in contact with your eyeglass frames, they’re where the potential for discomfort lies. Even slight pressure can press your eyeglass frames into your temples, which can cause some pretty savage discomfort, especially during long periods of wear.
Look for especially squishy ear pads made with a softer external material like velour or soft leather. These materials will conform around your glasses’ earpieces, instead of cramming them into your temples.
Over-ear vs. On-ear Headphones – For the most part, headphones come in two different forms: over-ear headphones and on-ear headphones. (The ones that go in your ears are called earbuds). Choosing which kind depends on personal preference, but there are a few things to consider.
- Over-ear headphones have larger cups designed to fit over the entire ear. This provides a secure seal around the ear for better sound and noise cancellation. They also eliminate any pressure points on your ears since your head is the only point of contact. This is doubly true for people who wear glasses.
- On-ear headphones are smaller and lighter thanks to their smaller ear cups, which rest on the ears instead of over them. These headphones are generally more portable, but they can pose a problem for people with glasses since they add pressure between the ears and eyeglass frames.
Headband – A good, padded headband is ideal for comfort in general. But if you wear glasses, adjustability is a bigger factor. Some headphones have headbands that can expand and retract to allow you to customize how they fit. This is perfect for glasses wearers since you can try a few different settings with them to dial in a comfortable fit.
Glasses Frames – You’re going to be wearing your glasses a lot more often than your headphones, so a good fit with your glasses should be your priority. No matter how much music (or how many crime podcasts) you listen to, headphones are a peripheral piece of gear compared to your glasses. So, make sure your glasses are a comfortable fit, then buy a pair of headphones that works well with them.
Versatility – For office wear, things like portability are secondary to comfort. A well-fitting pair of headphones that’s comfortable enough to wear for an entire workday should be your highest priority if you’re buying a pair for the office.
If you want a more versatile pair to wear during your commute, to the gym, or for travel, you’ll need to consider a few more things. Look for a durable pair that packs down small. This way, it won’t take up a ton of space in your pack and won’t get damaged while it bounces around in your bag.
Also, a wireless connection might be ideal, so you won’t get tangled up running on a treadmill or fidgeting around in your airplane seat.
Headphones for Glasses Wearers FAQ
What are the best headphones for people who wear glasses?
Since people come with different-sized heads and wear a wide range of glasses types, there’s no one pair of headphones that is perfect for everyone who wears glasses. There are, however, a few things to look for if you wear glasses.
The best headphones for people with glasses should have soft ear cups, so they won’t put a lot of pressure on your eyeglass frames. Also, look for a pair with an adjustable headband so you can customize your fit.
Once you’ve found a pair that seems like a good fit, check the reviews online to get an idea of how they sound, then look for any other features you’d want, like Bluetooth connectivity.
Can people with glasses wear headphones?
People who wear glasses absolutely can wear headphones. There are plenty of great headphones for glasses wearers that are comfortable and provide great sound. For the most part, over-ear headphones are the most comfortable for glasses wearers, but there are also great glasses-friendly headphones that go on the ears as well.
How do you wear noise-canceling headphones with glasses?
You wear them just like you wear any other noise-canceling headphones. A good pair of headphones will have ear cups that are soft enough to wrap around and provide a tight seal over eyeglass frames.
- The Most Common Problems You’ll Encounter as a Glasses-Wearer – Innes Eye Clinic