I recently put on a pair of Eargo invisible hearing aids for a dinner out with my wife. At the end of the meal, I asked if she noticed anything different. She hadn't.
When I pointed out that I was wearing a new pair of hearing aids, she came closer, looked directly at my ear, and saw my new devices for the first time.
As technology gets smarter and smaller, hearing aids are becoming less and less visible. Of course, not all invisible-style hearing aids are created equal. In this guide, we'll condense our research into a quick breakdown of the best invisible hearing aids on the market.
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Overview of "invisible" hearing aid styles
There are four common types of in-the-ear hearing aids that you will find online or at an audiologist.
Invisible In The Canal (IIC) - This tiny style sits inside your ear canal with only a pull tab visible to remove the device.
Completely In Canal (CIC) - The top of the hearing aid is visible to those looking from the side, but the device is very discreet.
In The Canal (ITC) - Comfortable but visible. More easily accessed to change the volume or mode.
ITE: This style is even more accessible and allows for more power and, in some cases, rechargeability and Bluetooth.
Most people who prefer invisible hearing aids will gravitate towards IIC or CIC styles.
Pros and cons of invisible (IIC) hearing aids
Invisible hearing aids come with some obvious benefits but they aren't for everyone. Here are a few pros and cons to consider:
Invisible hearing aid pros:
- Hard to Notice - Here's the obvious one. Invisible hearing aids are...well invisible. Most styles are unnoticeable unless someone looks in your ear.
- Masks and Glasses - Invisible hearing aids sit inside the ear and don't interfere with masks and glasses.
- Convenience - Lyric (listed #2 below) stays in your ear 24 hours a day and doesn't require battery changes or charging.
Invisible hearing aid cons:
- Limited Functionality - The smallest designs come with limited Bluetooth and charging functionality.
- Dexterity Challenges - Smaller devices can be frustrating for those with limited dexterity.
- Fewer products to choose from - There are fewer invisible hearing aid products to choose from, and typically they come at a slightly higher cost
One more thing...
I started my own search for hearing aids to find something invisible. Ultimately I discovered that my receiver-in-canal hearing aids were far more discreet than I had expected. Most people have no idea I'm wearing hearing aids.
The list below is made up of hearing aids that sit entirely in your ear, BUT if you don't find what you are looking for, remember that RIC hearing aids can be invisible in many ears. Here's a picture of me wearing my Jabra Enhance Select hearing aids.
Ok, let's get to the list. These are the best invisible hearing aids for 2023.
That's the list, friends.
We hope you enjoyed this guide to the best invisible hearing aids available. We update this page regularly and will be back with new models as they come.
We created this site to make finding hearing products and care more accessible.
If you have questions, you can email our team at any time [email protected].
Frequently asked questions
Invisible hearing aids work much like traditional hearing aids. Most devices have a pair of microphones that pick up sounds, and the onboard processor then customizes the sound to match your hearing loss, and a speaker plays an amplified sound.
Invisible hearing aids are typically custom-molded to match your ear canal. To create a custom earmold, an audiologist will fill your ear with a silicone paste and let it set. They will then remove the dried mold and ship that mold to the manufacturer.
The manufacturer then builds a one-of-one hearing aid to match your ears and fits the components into that mold.
The result is a comfortable device that sits deep inside your ear.
Prices for invisible hearing aids vary fairly widely, and Prescription-level devices are typically 5K-7K per pair. You can find lower-cost care on this site by following the “find care” button on any page.
Invisible OTC devices start at $999 (Sony CRE-C10) and go up to around $2,600 (Eargo 7).
Most hearing aids last around 3-5 years. Warranties typically last for three years.
Most do not. Starkey’s completely-in-canal hearing aid (one size bigger than their smallest) does come with Bluetooth, and Starkey currently makes the smallest Bluetooth hearing aid on the market.
Most invisible hearing aids require a custom earmold, but there are some newer designs that push back on this trend. Eargo, Signia Silk, and Sony all use read-to-wear styles with various tips or domes to match your ear canal.
Some users report that ready-to-wear invisible hearing aids are less comfortable or don’t sit as far inside the ear canal.
Generally yes. Custom-molded devices should sit comfortably in your ear and will stay out of the way of glasses and masks.
Starkey is the leader in custom-molded products and Eargo is a clear favorite for ready-to-wear products. Full invisible hearing aid guide here.
Yes. Eargo and Sony are the leading invisible OTC hearing aid makers.
Invisible hearing aids can be challenging if you struggle to handle small pieces and batteries. Phonak Lyric can be a good option for seniors who want to set it and forget it until their regular appointments.
If you have small ear canals and want invisible hearing aids, you’ll likely want to get a custom-molded device like Starkey. We’ve found that Eargo can also work well in some small ear canals.
Yes. A quality pair of invisible hearing aids can be fitted to most hearing loss types. Some people with great hearing in low frequencies prefer open-fit hearing aids (these sit behind the ear) because that style allows natural low-frequency sound into the ear instead of blocking it.
Good question. A lot of hearing aids call themselves invisible, but the reality is that every ear canal is different. Phonak Lyric is truly invisible. Most of the others on this list are so discreet that they would rarely be noticed in most ears.
Click the “compare” section of this site. Each invisible-style hearing aid we’ve reviewed has numerous verified customer reviews.