I first learned how to swim when I was a teenager. I remember vividly how I once dreamt of becoming a national swimming athlete. And I would always watch swimming competitions on TV to copy the famous swimmers’ style, their strokes and generally just how they looked.
I wore a swimming cap, trunks, and nose plug then and until now. I never really put much thought into it, I just wanted to look like a national swimmer.
Until recently, one of my friends who swam with me during swim nights (instead of gym night), complained about a sharp sensation he felt from his nose bridge to the area where his nose and throat met. I thought I’ve never experienced that before.
He was also struggling a bit with his breathing after each swimming session as if he was always out of breath. In between sessions, he would always be blowing his nose as water would oftentimes enter it. I very rarely experience these and the only difference is that I use nose plugs and he doesn’t.
That’s when I realized the value of wearing nose plugs as I swam. So I started researching the best nose plugs for swimming. I was already used to wearing one but it was initially just to get the look for me, not understanding how it helps me underwater. I came up with the list of the best ones to help swimming beginners or simply for those of you who struggle as you come up from the water for air. Hopefully, this list helps you get the most out of your swim sessions.
Best Nose Plugs For Swimming Compared and Reviewed
|Top||Speedo Unisex Swim Nose Clip Liquid Comfort||Speedo||Check Price on Amazon|
|Speedo Competition Nose Clip||Speedo||Check Price on Amazon|
|Cressi Swimming Ear Plugs & Nose Clips||Cressi||Check Price on Amazon|
|BLUPOND Swimming Nose Clips and Earplugs||BLUPOND||Check Price on Amazon|
|TYR Ergo Swim Clip||TYR||Check Price on Amazon|
#1 - Speedo Unisex Swim Nose Clip Liquid Comfort
This brand needs no introduction with its high-quality line of swimming products that claim to help all swimmers from every level to optimize their experience. You will never see a swimmer not donned in Speedo, be it Micheal Phelps or the kid who beat him, Joseph Schooling.
But targeted for the less experienced and the beginners, the Speedo Liquid Comfort Nose Clip is made of a flexible nylon frame that is designed to mold into all kinds of nose bridges. This implies a very durable frame that will withstand most water impacts.
Now moving on to the pads which are made of TPR or thermoplastic rubber. This is actually one of my favorite things about this product as this material will ensure that the nose clips are firmly and comfortably placed as it squeezes the nostrils to prevent water from coming in the nose. As TPR has abrasion-resistant features, you wouldn’t feel any irritation on your skin regardless of how often you use it.
It also comes in only three neutral colors: white, dark gray, and blue. That’s a bit limited in terms of choices (what about our girl swimmers, eh?) but Speedo Unisex Swim Nose Clip Liquid Comfort makes up for it with a transparent nose clip casing which I personally think is very useful and makes nose plugs harder to lose.
You will definitely still be using this nose plug even as you progress to intermediate and advanced swimming levels.
#2 - Speedo Competition Nose Clip
Designed to have water sports competitors in mind, the Speedo Competition Nose Clip is a slight upgrade from its sibling, the Swim Nose Plug Liquid Comfort.
Although it is still made to have a one-size-fits-most feature, the frame is made of adjustable stainless steel which is a good thing to have as you would want to be as comfortable and lightweight as possible especially in competitions.
I find that having a semi-adjustable nose clip would allow great comfort for those who have wider-bridged noses— a feature that wasn’t present in the Liquid comfort variant.
One similarity is that it was also designed to have TPR padding on the area where the nose clip actually touches the nose. TPR might just be the signature material for Speedo nose plugs.
Besides the metal framing and the TPR nose pads, what I also like about the Competition Nose Clip is that it is made from mostly silicone making this nose clip one of the most durable in the market today. Some even claim that this nose clip is also good for other extreme water sports but I’ve never tried it for that purpose personally.
It initially came in just one color Charcoal (gray), but they offer it now in beige. Casings are part of the deal, too.
#3 - Cressi Swimming Ear Plugs & Nose Clips
If you’re a recreational swimmer looking for a nose clip that has a great grip on oily noses, then Cressi might just be the thing you’re looking for. It does its job of keeping water from your nose while being lightweight and snug.
The only thing that makes me raise my eyebrows as I did my research on this product is it does not specifically say what kind of material the ‘adjustable archwire’ is made of. Is it stainless steel? Will it break if you need to bend it more? You’ll never know.
The pads and the material around it is made from silicone, which is a very friendly material and lasts longer than most. It secures the clip on your nose very well once you’ve adjusted the wiring to fit your liking.
A few downsides are that it comes in only one color, and it doesn’t float in case it comes off, unlike the Speedo variants.
#4 - BLUPOND Swimming Nose Clips and Earplugs
Blupond may not be my top-of-mind brand compared to other products on this list, but it is surely worth the mention as it also offers a unique design with the performance and safety of recreational swimmers and family or group bonding in mind.
There are three reasons why Blupond made this list: material, design, and practicality.
In terms of material, Blupond nose clips are made with silicone and not just the common kind but medical-grade silicone used for medical equipment which will ensure that any reaction, abrasions, or discomfort will not happen on your nose.
A wire is enveloped by this silicone which makes it fully adjustable for all nose shapes and sizes.
Another thing is its unique anti-slip design. The nose pads of the Blupond Swimming Nose Clips have dotted surfaces which makes its grip on the nose ultra-secure. You wouldn’t need to worry about pinching and re-pinching to secure your nose clip anymore (a habit I also developed).
Swimming is truly a family endeavor, and Blupond can offer the best bang for your buck. You get three sets with casings as part of their value packs.
#5 - TYR Ergo Swim Clip
Claimed to be the newest and latest in terms of design evolution and technology of low profile nose plugs as claimed by the manufacturer the TYR Ergo Swim Clip unique selling point is its material. Offering great resilience and durability is its frame made of polyurethane.
Polyurethane makes the frame of the TYR Ergo Swim Clip highly flexible and lightweight. Not only that, it is impact resistant especially to water and oil, bacteria and fungus-resistant (hypo-allergenic), durable but at the same time, provides the comfort you’re looking for in any nose clip.
I also think that swimmers who have a bit of fashion sense will most likely enjoy this product as it comes in 5 different colors including bright pink, electric lime, and neutral colors like black and clear. It can also be used for entry-level swimming with front mount snorkels.
My Number One Pick
- Lightweight flexible nylon frame
- Improved frame shape fits the contour of the nose bridge
- Soft TPR pads provide a tight fit
- One size fits most
- Care box included
What You Should Consider When You Buy A Nose Plug: A Buying Guide
A nose plug is pretty much a very straightforward product, you buy it for the specific purpose of keeping water from going inside your nose as you swim especially when you turn your head to breathe. Easy as that.
Any consideration that you have to make when buying this product all boils down to what you are comfortable with as you swim. First off, you need to determine if you can actually withstand having a nose plug while you do your laps. Some people simply can’t.
Some have the tendency to hold off their breaths, even more, when they use a nose plug, making others feel like it’s less efficient for swimming. On the other hand, some do feel like it is necessary to optimize their laps, and as they progress in their swimming journeys.
If you’re on the side of the spectrum who chooses to dwell in the water with nose plugs, then here’s a guide that I believe can help you more when you decide to purchase.
Durability and Skin Compatibility
Mostly, the main difference between a product from one manufacturer to another is the material that they claim to use. From the nose pads to the product covering the wiring of the clips, these can be made out of a variety of materials from polycarbonate, polyurethane, silicone, or thermoplastic rubber.
One major thing to consider when choosing a nose plug for you is to know the material your nose plug is mostly made of. At the same time, find out if you have any reaction to certain kinds of material.
Also, when you know the make of a product, then you’ll have some idea of how long it will last you. For example, polyurethanes are highly durable while TPR’s or thermoplastic rubbers will tear easier but are very gentle to the skin.
Assuming that you’ll be using your nose plugs for a long time whether you are an athlete, a water exhibitionist, or someone who’s just learning to swim, it is important to know and consider durability and skin compatibility.
Many brands claim that they make nose plugs to have a one-size-fits-most feature when in reality, we all have different noses: different bridge heights and widths, different nostril sizes from small to wide— so it becomes a very vague claim.
As a buyer, what you can do is to check the actual product, go to the store or check reviews online of how the nose plug fares in terms of size. You’d always usually find reviews here and there which would give you an idea of whether a nose plug is for your size or not.
Now let’s talk about aesthetics. It pays to look like a true professional swimmer when you’re in the pool. It gives you a certain boost of confidence when you know you look better, you also feel better which will eventually affect your performance in the water.
If you’re looking for function but also want a bit of flair, the TYR nose clip line can give that to you. For minimalist, low-key swimmers, Speedo has nice neutrals. It’s all on how you want your look to be.
I always believed that not all expensive items are of high quality and not all cheap ones sacrifice quality. Like any investment, it’s worth researching and learning about the product you are eyeing.
Some questions you can ask yourself is how often you will use your nose plug. 5 days a week? 2 times a day, 7 days a week? That’s one way you can discern whether you can opt for mid-range products or need the top quality ones.
Nose plugs that float offer convenience in case you lose them in the pool. Casings are also nice to have because it’s very hard to stash your nose plugs wherever and it promotes hygiene, too. Some also consider lanyards or straps to be a good addition, I personally think they’re a bother but as always, to each his own.
Frequently Asked Questions About Nose Plugs For Swimming
Q: Are nose plugs and nose clips the same?
A: Nose plugs are inserted in the nostrils while nose clips are used as ‘pinchers’ on the nostril. Both have a similar function which is to keep water from entering the nose.
Q: Is it true that nose clips can prevent a certain kind of water bacteria from entering your nose?
A: While it is true that there is indeed a bacteria underwater that can affect any swimmer, it is very very rare that this happens. You’re more likely to get a virus out of the pool than in it. But yes, as nose plugs or nose clips block water from your nose, then it serves that purpose as well.
Nose plugs can come in different colors, shapes, sizes, and make: you have the power to educate yourself and learn about certain brands as much as you can. At the end of the day, it all boils down to personal preference, what’s comfortable and attractive to you might not feel the same to me and others.
While you’re here, why not check out the reviews I’ve done on the best swimming earplugs as you don’t want to get water in your ear either, leading to possible infections! Urgh I know how that one feels, trust me. We also have a post on swimming caps if you’re interested and even swimming nose plugs, as these can surely be added to your arsenal.
Also if you’re taking your swimming to the next level, I suggest you look into a smartwatch for swimming to time yourself. And if you don’t already have the swimmers stable – check these swimming goggles which have been rated as some of the best by other users on the internet.
I would love to hear your thoughts on this, so just leave a comment below and let’s get the conversation going. Until then, enjoy choosing and using your new nose plugs.
Marko Rakic is a trail runner and fitness enthusiast from Sydney, Australia. He is the lead writer for The Ultimate Primate and believes the best way to live a happy life is through constantly challenging yourself.