This is the only ear wax removal method I have tried that is both safe and effective. Ear wax is my least favorite bodily secretion, especially because it affects hearing. I get a lot of it. (No, I don't listen too loud; that's a myth.) It is, however, more dangerous to remove than people realize. I have had my ears blasted by doctors with huge syringes to fix ear clogs. I've been lucky I guess, because my dad got tinnitus from that procedure. There is really no difference between water pressure and air pressure when it comes to ears, so in retrospect, it is amazing that doctors haven't already figured out how crazy is to blast an eardrum directly with anything. For a recordist however, it's a good idea to keep your ears very clean. I am amazed how much more detail I can hear after a cleaning. It goes away so gradually that I don't know I'm missing it. The ACU-LIFE Ear Wax Removal Syringe has three features that make it safe: the water stream comes out three holes that are facing sideways at the ear canal walls-not pointed directly at your eardrum-and considering that's where the ear wax is, that makes it more effective too; these holes are on a flared tip that can't be inserted too far into the ear canal; and there are drain holes on the flared tip, so all the gunk can escape easily. Since refusing to get my ears blasted by doctors, I have tried everything from ear drops to ear candles (a creepy-sounding ancient technique). Sometimes it took weeks to remove clogs. For my last clog, I used one treatment of ear drops to loosen things up and one treatment with the syringe in the shower. That was all it took. Awesome! ($6.49 MSRP;

Tape Op is a bi-monthly magazine devoted to the art of record making.

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