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The 11 Best Wireless Headphones for Running and Working Out

It’s time to swap out your basic buds for a pair that goes the extra mile.

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Gear Patrol

This definitive guide to wireless headphones for running and working out covers everything you need to know before buying your next pair of sweatproof Bluetooth headphones, with picks for different budgets and activities.

Not all headphones work for running or exercising, even if they are wireless. If you have a pair that isn’t sweatproof, there’s a good chance they’ll die on you. And if they don’t fit your ears, well, they’re probably not going to stay in, either.

Sport headphones add a new dimension to your workout. They’re light, comfortable and designed to stay securely in your ears during high-intensity intervals. So if you often find yourself lifting weights, running on the roads or trails, or doing a total body workout, it’s time to swap out your basic buds for a pair that goes the extra mile.

Editor’s Picks

    The Rest of the Pack

      The Top 3

      Looking for quick recommendations on the best wireless headphones for running and working out? Here are Gear Patrol‘s top three picks of 2020.

      Best Overall: Jaybird Vista

      Water Resistance: IPX7
      Charging Port: USB-C
      Battery Life: Up to 6 hours per earbud, 20 extra hours with charging case

      The Jaybird Vistas are rugged wireless earbuds for serious athletes. They have an IPX7 rating, meaning they’re fully waterproof and sweatproof. Their lightweight design makes them feel like they’re not even in your ears, and the carrying case is slimmer than that of the competition. They are compatible with a companion app that allows you to change the EQ settings or borrow the EQ settings that have been used by some of Jaybird’s sponsored athletes.

      Buy Now: $160

      Runner Up: Beats Powerbeats Pro

      Water-Resistance: IPX4
      Charging Port: Lightning
      Battery Life: Up to 9 hours per earbud, 24 total hours with charging case

      The Powerbeats Pro are similar to the AirPods Pro because they’re both made by Apple and have the same H1 chip that makes it easy to pair with an iPhone. Runners, in particular, will appreciate the large ear hooks that grip and hold the earbuds in place. The nine-hour battery life — with up to 20 extra hours from the carrying case — is unmatched, though said carrying case is huge, making these less than ideal for everyday wear. They’re also more expensive than the competition.

      Buy Now: $250 (Amazon) Buy Now: $250 (Apple)

      Best Budget: Anker Soundcore Spirit X

      Water Resistance: IPX7
      Charging Port: Micro-USB
      Battery Life: Up to 12 hours

      Anker’s Soundcore Spirit Xs are a great pair of no-frills neckbuds. They are extremely sweat- and water-resistant and have an ear hook design, similar to the Powerbeats3 Wireless, so they’ll fit most people’s ears. And for around $40, the sound quality is actually pretty good.

      Buy Now: $40 $22

      The Rest of the Pack

      Apple AirPods Pro

      Water-Resistance: IPX4
      Charging Port: Lightning, wireless charging case
      Battery Life: Up to 5 hours per earbud, 24 total hours with charging case

      These “pro-level” AirPods are the first wireless earbuds that Apple has ever made that are sweat-resistant, which is great news for runners, as well as noise-canceling, which is great everybody else. They have a silicone ear tip so they fit tighter than Apple’s regular AirPods. On the sort-of downside, they have the same battery life as regular AirPods (and even less life when noise-canceling is turned on).

      Buy Now: $249

      Master & Dynamic MW07 Go

      Water Resistance: IPX6
      Charging Port: USB-C
      Battery Life: Up to 10 hours per earbud; 12 extra hours with charging case

      Master & Dynamic released the original MW07 in 2018 and we called them “the most beautiful wireless earbuds you can buy.” They’re made of acetate and stainless steel are just gorgeous. The 2019-released MW07 Go aren’t quite as “premium,” but they’re also a bit different. They’re made of an ultra-durable TR90 composite material, which makes them water- and sweat-resistant. They’re also 15-percent smaller and lighter than the original MW07, which will help them better stay in your ears while you’re working out.

      Buy Now: $200

      Sony WF-SP800N

      Water Resistance: IP55
      Charging Port: USB-C
      Battery Life: 9 hours listening time (9 extra hours with case)

      The Sony WF-SP800N are unique on this list because they are wireless earbuds that are designed for working out, but they also have active noise-cancellation similar to the company’s flagship WF-1000XM3. The Sony WF-SP800N don’t quite have the sound quality or noise-cancelling abilities of the WF-1000XM3, however, because they lack the same QN1e processor. That said, they’re $30 cheaper.

      BUY NOW: $148 (Amazon) Read the Review

      Jabra Elite Active 75t

      Water Resistance: IP57
      Charging Port: USB-C
      Battery Life: 7.5 hours listening time (up to 28 hours with case)

      These are “active” versions of the Jabra Elite 75t that were released earlier in 2020. What that means is that they’re identical in every way, except they’re more water-resistant, they have a stickier coating so they stay in your ear better, and they’re slightly more expensive. Aside from that, these are some of the best all-around wireless earbuds you buy in 2020.

      BUY NOW: $200 (Amazon) BUY NOW: $200 (Jabra)

      Google Pixel Buds

      Water Resistance: IPX4
      Charging Port: USB-C and wireless
      Battery Life: 5 hours listening time (up to 24 hours with case)

      Google’s second-generation Pixel Buds are exactly what Pixel owners have deserved for years: wireless earbuds that work well and easily pair with all Pixel and Android devices (no opening Bluetooth settings required). They have intuitive touch controls and premium features that only Google could deliver, like a conversation mode integrated with Google Translate. Additionally, they have an earwing design and IPX4 water-resistance rating, so they make a great workout partner.

      BUY NOW: $179 (Google) Read the Review

      Beats Powerbeats

      Water Resistance: IPX4
      Charging Port: Lightning
      Battery Life: Up to 15 hours

      The Powerbeats are the next generation of the company’s Powerbeats3 Wireless that were released in 2016. The new Powerbeats have been integrated with Apple’s H1 chip for fast pairing with your iPhone, just like AirPods and AirPods Pro, but it also enables them to charge faster and get significantly better battery life. As far as design, fit and sound, the Powerbeats are essentially more affordable, neckbud versions of the truly wireless Powerbeats Pro.

      Buy Now: $150

      Jaybird Tarah Pro

      Water Resistance: IPX7
      Charging Port: Pogo pin connector
      Battery Life: Up to 14 hours

      Released in 2018, these are Jaybird’s highest-end neckbuds and, frankly, some of the best wireless earbuds you can buy. They are completely sweatproof and waterproof, and because they have tremendous battery life — up to 14 hours on a single charge — they’re really designed for ultra runners and endurance athletes. A neat and under-appreciated feature: the two earbuds magnetically stick together so you can wear the Tarah Pro around your neck, as a necklace, when you’re not listening to them.

      Buy Now: $130

      Bose SoundSport Free

      Water Resistance: IPX4
      Charging Port: Micro-USB
      Battery Life: Up to six hours

      One of the great things about Bose is that all of its in-ear headphones, whether wired or wireless, fit the same, so if you know they’ll fit in your ears before you even order them (so long as you’ve worn Bose’s earbuds with StayHear+ tips before). The SoundSport Free are solid wireless earbuds with Bose signature sound. The catch is that these earbuds are several years old and Bose is expected to release two new versions, the Bose Earbuds 500 and Bose Noise Cancelling Earbuds 700, in 2020.

      Buy Now: $200 (Bose)

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