Sort out those earphones

how to organise earphones

Seriously, the amount of people I see talking about needing to buy new headphones/earphones/ear buds (what do you call them?) astounds me. Sure, the ones which come with the device may not be perfect, however if you look after them they can last you years.

Make sure you keep them untangled so they can’t snag things or become frayed at the bottom of your bag.
photo.JPGThe best way to do this is loop the cord across your hand a number of times until you have about 5 inches left over. Use the remainder of cord to wrap around the middle of the formed loop to create two loops, before pulling the the plug end through the top loop and pulling to secure. photo.JPGEasy peasy, your earphones should no longer get all tangled up.


I like to then slide them into an old film canister so they don’t get dirty at the bottom of my bag. It’s amazing the amount of grime which collects at the bottom of your hand bag and the thought of it going in my ears makes me feel a bit ill.

Alright so tangled up earphones may not seem the end of the world but you know what? If you look after things you don’t have to waste money buying new stuff. Also, who wants to be that person on the tube trying to get their earphones untangled from a tampon?

Go forth and preserve the life of your ear phones.


P.S. How do you keep yours from getting tangled up and broken?

P.P.S. This is the Wednesday task from Daily Housewifery Prompts which you catch up on here.

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  1. I, unfortunately, am that person who has had tampons and lipsticks fly everywhere while trying to pull my headphones from my bag, so this is a great post! I would’ve never thought of an old film canister. Thanks Thrifty! xx

  2. Glad it’s not just me on the tampon front then ahaha! I’ll try this, I’m forever breaking mine xxx

  3. oh yes! old film cannisters are so handy but I don’t get new ones anymore. hated it when they started putting my films in foil wrap instead. I don’t buy any film at all now. :-( our head phones like that are tied the same but kept in their plastic resealable pouch . thanks for post. i love that fabric. :-)

  4. I do this, I fold them a little different but the same thing. I never used to though and I trapped about 3 pairs of earphones in doors, I kid you not. That’s how I broke my Apple ones. :( I started to do this and I’ve had the same £5 Pink Gummies from Tesco for over a year and bought another pair because well, they got a bit grotty. But they still work fine! I’ll have to steal the film cannister tip now! x

  5. And that nail polish holds up well doesn’t it?!

  6. Thanks Thrifty, great post as always xo


  7. Nice tip!

  8. I have a Kate Spade toiletries bag (a xmas present)that I use for all those small things including business card holders, usb keys etc – but no toiletries …

  9. Hi,

    Can I be the proper geek and advise you and your lovely readers, that tying them too tightly can also damage them. If it’s only a cheapie pair, and you don’t mind, then go for it! But if you have splashed out on a posh expensive pair – you should be aware that any tight bends in the cable can lead the delicate wires inside to weaken and eventually fray – then, no more headphones! The same goes with wrapping them tightly around your MP3 player!

    I’ve spent 10 years in audio retail, and this is the biggest killer of headphones – next to naughty pets haha! However, if you coil them loosely around your hand and pop them in the tub without the knot, that will still do the trick! I use an old zip up coin purse for mine, then it still looks handbag appropriate!

    And the whole bottom of the handbag thing…? I clean mine out once every couple of weeks and it still gets gross! I wouldn’t want that anywhere near my ears or face!!

    Geek chat over! :)

  10. This is such a clever idea. Using a film canister is such a great way to recycle.
    - Keyta x

  11. I bought that fabby bag organiser, so my headphones are always wrapped around my ipod and they have their own dedicated pocket :D

  12. I made a small zip case for mine, so I can attach it to zips and pockets – instructions here –

  13. I made little zip cases to store mine in with a tag to attach to zips and straps, instructions here –

  14. I have ones that aren’t meant to tangle and don’t! Shame they fall out my ear every 5 minutes..

  15. I cut a slit into one of those toilet roll cardboards and wrap my ear phones around that. If you’re a bit more finickity, you can wrap the cardboard in pretty paper so people on the street/public transport don’t look at you funny :)

  16. My headphones are forever tangling together, and by the time I’ve untangled them I don’t even need them anymore! I like your idea of using an old film canister to store them in :)


  17. Using a film cannister is such a cute idea, you could decorate it too ;D


  18. I do something similar but I use a hard cased lipstick box (I think that is what its intended use is!) an embroidered one I picked up cheaply from a market stall, the ones that sell the Chinese coin purses and tops.
    Stops my iPod nano and earphones getting based about in the bottom of my bag and has the added plus of a mirror on the inside of the lid!
    Pretty but practical 

  19. I really like this idea! wil probably give this a try! thanks for sharing :).


  20. *hangs head in shame* I AM that person on the tube untangling my headphones from a tampon…. or hair brush… or the other set of slightly busted headphones….

    Love the film canister tip, I definitely don’t have any but so going to hunt down something similar!

  21. i buy a lot of headphones…because i kind of chew on the wires …. :|
    i keep mine in a large tic tac tub :D
    i love tictac tubs i use them for hair grips (the small ones are the perfect height to stand them in :)), pins and needles, beads, stud earrings, ribbons… ummm… tic tacs….the tub of a million uses :D

  22. I keep mine wrapped up like that, but I’ve never thought about putting them in something to keep them clean! I’ve got a pocket in my new handbag devoted to just my headphones though so hopefully they’ll be okay :) xx

  23. I never keep my earphones unattached from my device. It’s either wrapped around my iPod or stored away in one of those useful side pockets. I really dislike it when people just suddenly pull out a tangled mess of earphones!


  24. Ooh I like the film cannister idea! I wrap mine loosely around my ipod, then use a hair band to tie so it doesn’t come off! It works really well and then I’m not having to separate my ipod and headphones :)


  25. Oh wow, so many clever ideas! The only time I use headphones is on my laptop when hubby is home. I keep them in my medicine bag( A Soft train case-stuffed with meds) on top of all my meds. I will definitely have to try to find a better place for storage!

  26. Love all the ideas! Now I will have to find a new way to store mine. I keep mine in a soft train case on top of all my medicine. (Yes I have a lot) lol. Thanks for all the tips!

  27. Good to know I’m not the only geek concerned with the damage to wires. Might I suggest using twist ties instead of wrapping the cord around itself? Also the canister is a great idea!

  28. I’ve tried to look after headphones but i’ve still gone through loads of pairs xxx

  29. Wow! Thanks for your lovely tip Thrifty! I always look forward to your posts :) xo

  30. Thanks this was a great help

  31. Thanks, this was a great help.

  32. Hi

    Thanks for the helpful review

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