How to Clean Your Ears in the Shower

It’s important to keep your ears clean, but it can be difficult to find the time in your day to do so. That’s why taking advantage of a few moments in the shower is an effective way to take care of your ears. To make sure you are doing it right here’s what you should know about how to clean your ears in the shower.

Cleaning your ears while in the shower can help you stay on top of any wax buildup and keep them free from infection or irritation. To make sure you are doing it right, here’s what you should know about how to clean your ears in the shower.

Structure of Ears

The outer ear is the visible part of the ear that protrudes from the side of the head. The outer ear consists of the following parts:

  • The pinna (or auricle)
  • The external auditory meatus
  • The tympanic membrane (or eardrum)
how to clean your ears in the shower
Structure of Ear

1. Pinna

The pinna is the fleshy, triangular-shaped cartilage that makes up the visible portion of the ear. The pinna serves to collect sound waves and direct them into the external auditory meatus. 

2. External Auditory Meatus

The external auditory meatus is a canal that leads from the outside of the head to the eardrum. The eardrum is a thin, translucent membrane that separates the outer ear from the middle ear.

3. Middle Ear

The middle ear is comprised of three tiny bones:

  • Malleus 
  • Incus
  • Stapes

which are collectively known as ossicles. These bones transmit vibrations from the eardrum to the inner ear. The inner ear is responsible for converting these vibrations into electrical impulses which are then sent to the brain where they are interpreted as sound.

What is Ear Wax and its Function?

Most of us have had the experience of finding wax in our ears after showering. This can be a gross and unpleasant feeling, but it’s actually a sign that your ears are healthy! So what is ear wax and what is its purpose?

Ear wax is produced by special glands in the skin of the outer ear canal. It’s made up of:

  • Fat 
  • Dead skin cells 
  • Hairs 

It acts as a barrier against dirt, dust, and other foreign particles that could potentially damage the delicate tissues of the ear. Ear wax also has antimicrobial properties, which help to protect against infection.

While ear wax is beneficial, too much of it can cause problems. If ear wax builds up and blocks the ear canal, it can lead to hearing loss and pain. In some cases, it can even cause an infection

That’s why it’s important to clean your ears regularly. The best way to do this is to use a soft cloth or cotton swab to gently wipe away any excess wax. You should also avoid using sharp objects like bobby pins or tweezers to remove ear wax, as this can damage the skin or push the wax further into the ear canal.

how to clean your ears in the shower
Ear Wax on Cotton Bud

Why to Clean Ear?

There are a few good reasons to clean your ears in the shower. 

  • It can help to loosen any wax build-up that may have accumulated. 
  • The steam from the shower can help to soften the wax, making it easier to remove. 
  • The water from the shower will rinse away any soap or other residue that may be left behind after cleaning. 
  • Showering after cleaning your ears can help to prevent any further irritation.
how to clean your ears in the shower
Cleaning Ears

How to Clean Your Ears in the Shower

If you’re like most people, you probably don’t think much about cleaning your ears. But the truth is, earwax can build up over time and cause problems like: 

  • Hearing loss
  • Ear infections
  • Even tinnitus

The good news is that there are easy ways to clean your ear wax in the shower. Here are a few tips:

  1. Use a soft washcloth or cotton swab to gently remove any excess earwax from the outside of your ear.
  2. Use mild soap and warm water to clean your outer ear. Be sure to rinse all of the soap out when you’re done.
  3. Use a sterile syringe or bulb syringe to suction any wax out of your ear canal. Be careful not to insert the syringe too far into your ear—you could damage your eardrum!
  4. If you have any concerns about cleaning your ears, talk to your doctor or audiologist. They can offer more specific advice based on your individual needs.
how to clean your ears in the shower
Ear Infection

What happens if You do not Clean Your Ears?

If you don’t clean your ears, dirt and wax can build up and cause an ear infection. Ear infections can be painful and may require medical treatment.

Why not Clean Ears with Ear Buds?

There are a few reasons why earbuds are not the best choice for cleaning your ears. 

  • They can push wax further into the ear canal, which can cause blockages
  • They can scratch the sensitive skin inside the ear canal, which can lead to irritation and infection
  • Earbuds are not always effective at removing all of the wax, so you may still end up with some buildup in your ears.

Precautionary Measures for Cleaning Your Ears

If you have concerns about how to properly clean your ears, consider the following tips:

  • Use a washcloth or cotton swab dampened with warm water to wipe around the outer ear.
  • Be careful not to insert anything into the ear canal itself.
  • If you have any buildup in the ear, such as wax, gently remove it with a washcloth or cotton swab.
  • Avoid using Q-tips, as they can push wax further into the ear canal.
  • Dry your ears after showering by tilting your head to the side and using a towel to pat them dry.
how to clean your ears in the shower

What to do If Your Ear is Blocked?

If your ear becomes blocked while showering, there are a few things you can do to try and unblock it. 

  • Tilt your head to the side so that the affected ear is facing downwards. 
  • Then, using a washcloth or your fingers, gently clean any wax or debris that may be blocking the ear canal. 
  • If this does not work, you can try using a cotton swab to remove the blockage. Be sure to use gentle pressure and insert the swab only as far as the Cotton-Tip Applicator Label indicates. 
  • Finally, if these methods do not work, you can try irrigating your ear with warm water. Fill a small cup with warm water and hold it over your head so that the water can flow into your ear. 
  • Tilt your head to the opposite side and let the water drain out. You may need to repeat this process several times before the blockage is cleared.
how to clean your ears in the shower

When to See a Doctor?

If you experience any pain, discharge, or bleeding from your ears, it’s important to see a doctor as soon as possible. If you have any chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes, that may affect your ears, it’s also important to see a doctor if you experience any ear problems.


If you’re looking for an easy way to clean your ears, the shower is a great place to start. By using a little soap and water, you can remove built-up wax and debris from your ear canals. Just be sure to use a gentle touch, as you don’t want to damage your delicate ear tissues.

When you’re finished cleaning your ears, be sure to dry them off thoroughly. You can use a soft towel or a hairdryer on the low setting. And if you’re prone to ear infections, consider using an ear drying aid like a cotton ball soaked in white vinegar.

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