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Best replacement ear pads for Bose, Beats and more headphones

Upgrade your sound and comfort with these replacement earpads.

Published onFebruary 29, 2024

Best value
Wicked Cushions Ear Pads for ATH M50X / M40X / SteelSeries Arctis/HyperX Cloud & Alpha/Logitech G Pro X/
MSRP: $30.00
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Massive comfort
Improved sound
Easy installation
High-quality materials
Enhanced depth
Snug fit
Shipment delay
Possible heat retention
Slight modification needed for sound staging
Veil over mids and highs
Best comfort
Brainwavz Oval Replacement Earpads
MSRP: $22.50
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Comfortable fit
Increased sound stage
Blocks ambient noise
Quality material
Improved comfort
Compatible with various models
Slight bass loss
Headphones may slip
Off-color attachment
Minor sound alteration
Best for Pro Audio headphones
Dekoni Audio Elite Earpads for Beyerdynamic DT Series
MSRP: $39.99
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Easy installation
Comfortable fit
Improved bass
Excellent quality
Enhanced sound
Compatible design
Bass overwhelming
Minimal sound clarity
Bang for your buck
Geekria QuickFit Ear Pads for Skullcandy Crusher
MSRP: $17.75
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Easy install
Durable material
Enhanced comfort
Improved sound
Brand new look
Long lasting
Tricky installation
Time-consuming to install
Heavy at first
May require additional tools
Best consumer
SoloWIT Earpads for Bose QC35 & QC 35 II
MSRP: $22.95
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Easy Installation
Variety of colors

If your headphones are a few years old, it’s not uncommon for your earpads to wear out, deteriorate, or lose their cushioning. But that doesn’t mean you have to throw them away or buy a new pair. There are many options available for ear pad replacements that are compatible with popular brands like Bose and Beats to breathe new life into your favorite headphones. Aside from restoring or improving comfort, the right set of ear pads can offer better isolation and sound quality.

Different materials used in ear pads—such as memory foam, leather, velour, and hybrid combinations—can significantly alter the sound signature and frequency response of headphones. Whether seeking to enhance bass response, smooth out treble frequencies, or achieve a more open soundstage, the choice of ear pad material can make all the difference. In essence, replacement ear pads offer a dual advantage: they can improve the longevity of headphones while also providing a customizable listening experience.

Editor’s note: this list was published on February 29, 2024, and is the first version of the article. Updates will follow as the market changes.

Wicked Cushions Replacement Ear Pads

Wicked Cushions Ear Pads for ATH M50X / M40X / SteelSeries Arctis/HyperX Cloud & Alpha/Logitech G Pro X/Wicked Cushions Ear Pads for ATH M50X / M40X / SteelSeries Arctis/HyperX Cloud & Alpha/Logitech G Pro X/
Wicked Cushions Ear Pads for ATH M50X / M40X / SteelSeries Arctis/HyperX Cloud & Alpha/Logitech G Pro X/
Massive comfort • Improved sound • Easy installation
MSRP: $30.00

Wicked Cushions has been around for nearly a decade, and they have been making some of the most popular replacement ear pads for numerous headphones. They often come in a variety of funky colors and patterns if you want to add a touch of style to your headphones, and are easy to install, coming with simple step-by-step guides for each headphone model.

These replacement ear pads are made from soft leather and memory foam to conform to your ear shape, and the inside seams are made with stitching that is reinforced with glue to help prevent the cushions from splitting. If you find your ears getting hot after several hours of listening, they also offer cooling gel earpads with a breathable hybrid of sports fabric and leather to help reduce heat buildup.

Brainwavz Replacement Earpads

Brainwavz Oval Replacement EarpadsBrainwavz Oval Replacement Earpads
Brainwavz Oval Replacement Earpads
Comfortable fit • Increased sound stage • Blocks ambient noise
MSRP: $22.50

Brainwavz started out making wired earphones for audiophiles but found a lot of success in their wide range of universal fit oval-shaped replacement ear pads for headphones. They’ve been producing earpads since 2008 and gained attention for providing thicker and comfier ear pads than most standard models. They are made of memory foam padding to assist isolation and soft PU leather. Their various sizes of ear pads feature a mounting flap on the rear, making them compatible with many different types of headphones and pad mounting systems.

Dekoni Audio Ear Pads

Dekoni Audio Elite Earpads for Beyerdynamic DT SeriesDekoni Audio Elite Earpads for Beyerdynamic DT Series
Dekoni Audio Elite Earpads for Beyerdynamic DT Series
Easy installation • Comfortable fit • Improved bass
MSRP: $39.99

Dekoni Audio produces high-end replacement headphone pads that can enhance the listening experience by optimizing sound quality and isolation. They offer replacement ear pads for Bose, Sony, Audio Technica, and other popular headphone brands in both the Pro Audio space and consumer space.

Dekoni has a large lineup of ear pads of different materials, including basic replacement pads (Earpadz Line) to the more premium Platinum, Choice, and Elite Series that use dense memory foam wrapped in leathers and velours (both authentic and synthetic), to change the frequency response from the stock sound to your liking. For instance, their Elite Fenestrated Sheepskin ear pads will deliver a steeper drop-off in sub-bass, a more energetic midrange, and stronger peaks at ~18kHz.

Geekria QuickFit Ear Pads

Geekria QuickFit Ear Pads for Skullcandy CrusherGeekria QuickFit Ear Pads for Skullcandy Crusher
Geekria QuickFit Ear Pads for Skullcandy Crusher
Easy install • Durable material • Enhanced comfort
MSRP: $17.75

SoulWIT Replacement Earpads

SoloWIT Earpads for Bose QC35 & QC 35 IISoloWIT Earpads for Bose QC35 & QC 35 II
SoloWIT Earpads for Bose QC35 & QC 35 II
Affordable • Easy to install • Almost as good as new
MSRP: $22.95
Comfortable and easy to install, the SoloWIT replacement earpads for the Bose QC 35 and QC35 II are an affordable fix for your aging headphones.
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SoloWIT Earpadsfor Bose QC35 & QC 35 II

SoulWIT is another notable brand that makes replacement ear pads for both old and new headphones alike. They come with a pair of scrims to make installation easy and are made with high-density foam and protein leather to ensure a good seal. They can often be found on sale and are an affordable way to give your headphones a new dress.

The best replacement ear pads: Notable mentions

  • Earrock Ear Cushions for AirPods Max: If the ear pads on your AirPods Max are worn out, these are a simple set of memory foam ear pads that come in mesh fabric, similar to the original, or a lambskin or protein leather, if you want to try something different.
  • Link Dream Ear Pads for Beats Solo 2 Solo 3: This simple set of memory foam earpads comes in a variety of colors and a three-year warranty in case you wear them out.
  • Link Dream Ear Pads for Bose Quiet Comfort 35: If you don’t want to spend much money keeping your Bose QC35s alive, these ear pads are a soft and durable replacement that comes with a scrim tool for easy installation.

What you should know about replacement ear pads

A photo of the Sennheiser HD 800 S and its velour earpads.
It’s tough to beat huge ear cups with soft fabric pads.

When considering replacement ear pads for your headphones, understanding how they can impact various aspects of your listening experience is crucial. Here’s a breakdown of essential factors:

Material and Frequency Response

Replacement ear pads can alter the sound signature of your headphones, affecting the bass, mids, and treble. The material and thickness of the ear pads play significant roles in shaping the frequency response, potentially enhancing or muffling certain sound frequencies.

  • Leather and Protein Leather: Real leather (e.g., sheepskin) is known for its durability, comfort, and superior passive noise isolation capabilities. It’s softer and offers more airflow compared to synthetic options, though it can get hot and sweaty over extended use. Real leather tends to improve bass response due to its thick material construction. Protein leather, a synthetic alternative, aims to mimic these properties affordably but may not last as long.
  • Velour: Velour pads are highlighted for their comfort and breathability, making them ideal for long listening sessions. They are less effective at blocking out noise compared to leather pads but offer a better soundstage, making them a favorite among audiophiles for open-back headphones where airflow and a natural sound are preferred​.
  • Suede and Micro-Suede: These materials are known for their soft feel and breathability. Suede pads are lighter and can provide a comfortable fit without the heat buildup associated with denser materials. However, they may not last as long as other materials due to their thinner construction.
  • Cooling Gel Pads: Aimed at addressing the heat build-up issue, cooling gel pads offer initial coolness but may eventually retain heat, making them less effective for very long sessions compared to more breathable materials.
  • Memory Foam vs. Regular Foam: Memory foam provides a better seal and adjusts to the shape of the head and ears for improved comfort and isolation. The difference in sound impact between memory foam and regular foam is minimal, but the former is generally preferred for its comfort and fit.


The leather-like earpads of the Shure AONIC 50 (2nd Gen).
Large, deep ear cups mean a much easier time getting a good seal.

Ear pads contribute significantly to noise isolation and the effectiveness of active noise cancelation (ANC). The seal they form around your ears can block out ambient noise, improving the overall listening experience in noisy environments. Materials like memory foam can offer better isolation due to their ability to conform to the shape of your head.


The longevity of ear pads is a key consideration, as materials like leather and velour wear differently over time. Durability affects not only how long the pads will last but also how they will age, impacting comfort and sound quality.


Ensuring that replacement ear pads are compatible with your headphone model is essential. Incorrectly sized ear pads can affect comfort, sound quality, and the effectiveness of ANC features because, well, they won’t fit properly.

How we test replacement ear pads

At SoundGuys, our testing process is thorough and objective, focusing on how replacement ear pads affect sound quality, comfort, durability, and noise isolation. We use standardized tests to measure frequency response changes and isolation improvements. For a detailed explanation of our testing methodology, visit our pages on how we test and why we test the way we do:

How we choose the best replacement ear pads

Our selection criteria for the best replacement ear pads are based on material quality, compatibility range, impact on sound quality, comfort, durability, and customer feedback. We consider a variety of user needs and preferences to recommend options that offer the best overall value and performance.

Why you should trust SoundGuys

A woman wears the Astro A20 gaming headset at the SoundGuys offices.
The fabric ear pads are very comfortable, though they can definitely get pretty warm.

SoundGuys is committed to providing unbiased, accurate, and in-depth audio product analyses. Our reviews and recommendations are based on extensive testing and research conducted by audio experts. Our commitment to ethical standards in our review process ensures that readers receive trustworthy and reliable advice.

Frequently asked questions

Angled ear pads can offer a more natural fit by aligning with the natural shape of the ear, potentially improving comfort and the overall soundstage perception, making them preferable for some users and specific headphone models. However, whether they are better depends on personal preference and the design of the headphones.

To replace an ear pad:

  1. Gently remove the old earpads by pulling them away from the earcup. Some models may require twisting or unclipping.
  2. Clean the earcup area to remove any debris or adhesive residue.
  3. Align the new ear pad with the earcup, ensuring any notches or clips match up.
  4. Press the ear pad into place, applying gentle pressure around the edges to secure it. Some models may click or need to be twisted back into a locked position.

Yes, most ear pads on over-ear and on-ear headphones are designed to be removable and replaceable. However, the ease of removal can vary between headphone models.

Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should. We do not recommend using headphones without ear pads. Ear pads provide necessary sound isolation and contribute to the overall sound quality of the headphones. Using headphones without them can lead to discomfort and a subpar listening experience.

Headphone ear pads are not universal. They come in various shapes, sizes, and attachment styles designed to fit specific headphone models. It’s important to purchase ear pads that are compatible with your particular headphones for a proper fit and optimal performance.

The lifespan of headphone pads can vary significantly based on the material, usage, and care. On average, ear pads might last anywhere from 1 to 3 years. Factors like exposure to sweat, oils from the skin, and general wear and tear can affect their durability. Regular cleaning and proper storage can help extend their lifespan.