Being both a firearms instructor and an industrial safety professional, you might say I’m a bit of a personal protective equipment connoisseur.  I have heard (and experienced) almost every complaint imaginable from workers about PPE comfort (or lack of), so I am always on the search for the next best thing. Comfortable protection that isn’t effective doesn’t do you much good, and effective protection that isn’t comfortable, well, as soon as you aren’t looking the workers you are responsible for will take it off or modify it to make it bearable, which usually renders it completely ineffective. Balancing effectiveness with comfort, especially when you add the interference of other protective equipment, can be difficult.   A product that actually increases the comfort while also improving the effectiveness of protective equipment is something very rare and special.

I am a big fan of Howard Leight hearing protection by Honeywell.  I have used it in some of the noisiest industrial environments as well as on the shooting range and I find it has the highest NRR’s (noise reduction ratings) of any available electronic earmuffs, with good stereo electronics, at a very affordable price. If I am shooting alone, (and typically suppressed), I will opt for the lighter weight Impact Sport model, but when I am on the line with other shooters (and their confounded muzzle brakes), or shooting something particularly noisy, then I opt for the more effective, if somewhat bulkier Impact Pro’s boasting a 30dB NRR.    I like both models and both are fairly comfortable, but the stems from eye protection do interrupt the seal, decreasing their effectiveness and eventually causing a bit of a headache from the pressure points just below your temples.   Up till now I have just sucked it up and lived with it, but tonight I received a package in the mail from Noisefighters:

These insanely awesome gel caps fit the Howard Leight Impact Pro and Sport, as well as the L3, Sync, and Viking model muffs. As of right now, gel earcushions for other brands can only be pre-ordered.

 

Installation is super easy and takes about 2 minutes: pull the old sponge earcushions out of their tabs, then snap in the new gel earcups around the edge, ensuring that all 8 plastic tabs are holding the new gel earcushions in place…done.

 

The difference is immediately noticeable when you don the hearing protection, not only is it a softer and more effective seal, but the SightLines relief cuts on top of the earcups accommodate the stems of your eye protection, holding them in place securely without compromising the seal, or putting undue pressure on the side of your head.

Every set of Howard Leight earmuffs I own are getting outfitted with these in the very near future. I am thoroughly impressed.

 

RATING:

Cost 4.5/5 At almost $40 a pair, these aren’t inexpensive, but quality products seldom are.

Comfort 5/5

Functionality 5/5

Overall Rating 97% EXCELLENT

Material Disclosure

I received this product as a courtesy from the manufacturer via Spotter Up so I could test it and give my honest feedback. I am not bound by any written, verbal, or implied contract to give this product a good review. All opinions are my own and are based off my personal experience with the product.

*The views and opinions expressed on this website are solely those of the original authors and contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Spotter Up Magazine, the administrative staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.

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About The Author

Writer Michael Lake is a Benefactor Life Member of the National Rifle Association and has been actively involved in a variety shooting activities since 1989. In addition to being a certified range safety officer he holds several NRA instructor ratings and armorer certifications. He has received training from the US Army Marksmanship Unit, the US Marine Corps Rifle Team and some of the finest private training facilities in the nation. In 2013 Michael co-founded Adaptive Defense Concepts, a Northwest Ohio-based Training organization. He is currently a contractor for the US Department of Energy, an instructor for Badlands Tactical Training Center, and is an accomplished Freemason.

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