Because of their small size and the numerous built-in nooks and crannies, it may be difficult and even dangerous to clean AirPods and their charging cases thoroughly. We will demonstrate the proper way to clean your AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max, as their cases, without causing any damage.

AirPods and their cases often accumulate dirt, dust, and wax with regular usage, which can compromise their performance and overall lifespan. This comprehensive guide provides a step-by-step process on how to clean your AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max, as well as their cases, without causing any damage.

What to use to clean your AirPods and AirPods cases

Is your AirPods preventing Siri from comprehending you? Do the people you’re calling have trouble hearing you clearly? It’s important to regularly clean your AirPods to remove debris like dried earwax, dust, lint, and more. What you’ll need to safely clean your AirPods is as follows:

  • Cotton swabs (or Q-tips, or cotton buds) are used for a variety of purposes.
  • Cotton swabs and balls
  • A lint-free, screen-safe cloth, preferably made of microfibre

Accessories to consider if your AirPods are really dirty:

  • Toothpicks made of wood (some individuals choose flosser picks instead, however, we feel that they are rougher on the teeth).
  • Liquid for cleaning electronic displays (may be used on touch screens and TVs). If you don’t have any of these on hand, you may get by with very little filtered or distilled water. You may learn from us.
  • To clean or moisten instruments, place them in a small, shallow dish. Don’t fill the dish more than halfway, since you’ll need to blot any extra liquid out with a towel.
  • A teaspoon of mild laundry detergent (no bleach!) may be all you need to clean your AirPods Max.

How to Clean AirPods & AirPods Pro

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We’ll demonstrate the safest method for wiping down your AirPods.

  • To begin, wipe away any oil, grease, or dirt from the outside surfaces using a cotton rag or other soft cloth. This will give you a firmer hold on the AirPods while you clean their sensitive surfaces, and it will save you from accidentally reintroducing dirt to those regions.
  •  Use a dry cotton swab to remove any lint or dust from the earbuds’ seams, which are where the various plastic and metal pieces fit together.
  • Next, carefully remove any earwax, dirt, or other debris from the earpiece where the sound comes out using another cotton swab, and repeat for any tiny holes on the outside of each earbud.
  •  Take special caution while working around the speaker mesh, buttons, and other potentially delicate parts.
  • If necessary, you may use a toothpick to delicately scrape dried earwax out of the earbud; however, you should take care to avoid touching the mesh screen, as it is easily damaged. Avoid using the toothpick’s tip and instead softly massage the area.

You may use a little bit of distilled water or a screen-safe cleaner to remove stubborn stains off your AirPods’ exterior, but do so very carefully and only if necessary. A finger test is a useful technique to determine how much cleaner to use; if your finger appears moist after blotting with a cotton swab or towel that has been dipped into cleaner, you have probably used too much.

Additional Instructions for Cleaning Your AirPods Pro

Once you’ve finished the fundamentals of AirPods cleaning, go on to the AirPods Pro’s additional components:

  • To clean your earbuds, take off the ear tips and submerge them in warm (not hot) water.
  • The best time to clean these ear tips thoroughly with a cotton swab is when they are still moist.
  • To remove stubborn buildup like earwax, a brief soak in water at room temperature should do the trick.
  • Absorb any remaining moisture with a dry cotton swab, and then wait until the ear tips are fully dry before replacing them.

Expert advice: change your AirPods’ tips if they are old, damaged, or too filthy to clean.

AirPods Max: A Cleaning Guide

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The materials used to construct these AirPods are distinct from those used to create the original AirPods and the AirPods Pro. Cleaning your AirPods Max is as easy as:

  • Remove the AirPods Max ear cushions one by one and lay them aside.
  • To begin, wipe away any external oil, filth, or dirt using a cotton ball or cotton pad.
  • Using a dry cotton swab, clean the ports where the headphones’ various parts plug into one another.
  • Next, give the headphones’ crown and buttons your attention, taking special care to wipe away any built-up dirt in the recesses and ridges.
  • Remove any remaining dust or dirt from the outside surfaces by giving them another wipe-down.

Next, I’ll show you how to safely clean your AirPods Max’s ear cushions and headband:

  • Apple claims that a mixture of one teaspoon (5 ml) of mild detergent and one cup (250 ml) of water is safe for use. Warm water is preferred over hot water.
  • Use a microfiber or other lint-free cloth and dip it into the mixture, squeezing out as much of the liquid as possible so that the fabric is moist but not dripping. Apply the hand-dabbing test to determine whether the cloth is too damp to use. The proper quantity of moisture is achieved when the surface seems dampened but not drenched.
  • Clean the cushions completely, inside and out.
  • Use the same method to clean the headband, giving close attention to the rough areas and grooves where dirt tends to accumulate.
  • A cotton swab dipped in water may be used to remove stubborn dirt.
  • Please wait until these parts are totally dry before reinstalling.

AirPods Max, in general, are bigger yet more convenient to clean. As the AirPods Max includes mesh and other delicate materials, you shouldn’t use any bristle brushes or wipes that may crumble on them.

How to Clean Your an AirPods Case

Cases for AirPods, AirPods Pro, and AirPods Max may be washed in the same way that the pods themselves are cleaned. Don’t submerge them or force anything sharp through the openings in these casings.

  • Cotton or soft cloth should be used first to remove any extra oil, grease, or dirt from the outside surfaces.
  • Remove any dust or dirt from the crevices of the case’s inside and exterior with a dry cotton swab.
  • Cotton swabs may be used to gently clean out the Lightning port and any other openings.
  • Carefully use a toothpick to pry out anything is jamming your case’s Lightning port without poking or scraping any of the internal components.

External AirPods Hygiene Kit

The Hagibis Cleaning Pen ($9.99) is an AirPod cleaning kit that we tested and enjoyed, despite the fact that we don’t often endorse third-party cleaning equipment for Apple devices. Take care while cleaning your AirPods since doing so improperly might harm them and render your AppleCare guarantee null and useless.

Do you ever acquire earwax in your AirPods and wonder how to clean them? A sharp tool on this AirPod cleaner gets into every nook and cranny to scrub away grime. However, it also comes with a soft tool that can access the AirPods’ steam chamber.

As a final touch, it includes a little brush for cleaning the in-ear mesh and buffing the earbuds themselves. The Hagibis Cleaning Pen is not only useful for cleaning Lego parts but also for cleaning other tiny devices.

AirPod cleaning isn’t hard, but it is a labor of love. If you take care of your accessories, they will serve you well for many years to come. Now that your AirPods are spotless, you should probably also learn how to clean the charging connector on your iPhone. You may find out how to upgrade the firmware on your AirPods, or you can discover why you don’t need to.

Avoiding Mistakes While Cleaning Your AirPods & Case

when this piece usually comes last, I thought it was important to go through the big no-nos of AirPods cleaning before you start working away at making your accessories seem like new since so many people damage their AirPods and AirPods cases every year when trying to clean them.

  • Keep away from metal objects. This might cause damage to the earpiece displays as well as the plastic and other components. Cleaning your iPhone, iPhone case, and Apple Siri Remote are all part of the same process.
  • Don’t clean with damp materials. You probably don’t need me to tell you that sweat and electronic devices don’t get along, and neither are AirPods. However, there will be unusual occurrences when a splash of water is required. We’ll go through the circumstances in which water may be used to clean your AirPods, AirPods Pro, AirPods Max, and AirPods case, as well as the specific steps you should take.
  • Do not use any cleaning products. These may deteriorate your equipment’s protective layers, perhaps rendering them useless.
  • Avoid using excessive force. Use your time effectively. With the appropriate equipment and strategy, you won’t need to put in as much physical effort.
  • Do not disassemble anything. Do not disassemble the device or take apart any of its parts until instructed to do so.
  • Avoid using rough paper towels or washcloths. Absorbent things like paper towels, washcloths, and similar items may scratch the AirPods and their case.


Keeping your AirPods clean is an essential part of their maintenance. Regular cleaning helps improve their performance and can extend their lifespan. Remember to avoid using harsh cleaners or abrasive tools, and when in doubt, refer to Apple’s official guidelines or consider investing in a third-party AirPod cleaning kit. Regular maintenance will ensure you continue enjoying your AirPods, AirPods Pro, or AirPods Max for years to come.