Lend Me Your Ears!

Tony Alfieri

With its sleek canister, specially molded nozzle, and patented “reverse spray action,” the new Earigate ear cleansing system from Murine looks ready to blast away annoying ear blockages for good. Except Earigate “helps prevent” earwax build up, not remove it.

It would be a surprise to find a consumer purchasing Earigate whose ear isn’t already plagued by sticky goo. As is the case with other preventative treatments, the pre?- part is overlooked in hopes of a quick fix. But after accepting that Earigate’s “new technology” isn’t the cure for lopsided, ear clog vertigo, it can be a handy and effective product.

Earigate’s spews fluid – isotonic, desalinated, 100% natural-source seawater, to be exact – backwards from the tip, cleansing the portion of the ear canal behind it. With regular use (1-2 applications, 3 times per week) it keeps the ear canal free of sediment and avoids build up that can cause pain and disorientation.

The same function also prohibits plunging the depths of your cranium to excavate that pesky nugget driving you, or the man in Murine’s own commercial, dizzy with discomfort. While the wide-based spray tip protects the eardrum from excessive pressure, and allows you to mine farther than a Q-tip is supposed to be inserted, it leaves the finest buried, golden treasure untouched.

Murine “highly recommends” using Earigate over a sink. They may want to recommend wearing a raincoat, too, or clothes you don’t mind being drenched in seawater; the reverse spray action is impartial to destination as it streams from your head. Any trepidation concerning cold liquid splashing against the tender interior of the skull quickly vanishes when one realizes the flow is going the other way entirely.

The initial spray may cause a clogged or pressurized sensation seconds after use, followed by the tickle of the fluid as it drools out. Applications may not yield any visible progress (wax, dirt, etc.). Assumingly, the proof of efficacy lies in the prolonged absence of a condition. (I have used Earigate for one month and have experienced no clogs or discomfort.)

Earigate’s instructions are clearly written on the canister and easy to follow. The only information not included is how long to activate the spray (seconds? minutes? days?) and how long to maintain a titled head as the fluid oozes out before switching to the other side. Murine’s website offers more information as well as a video tutorial.

Earigate is hypoallergenic and uses no preservatives. It also claims to be “100% natural,” yet one might wonder how isotonic, desalinated seawater can be considered natural.

(Speaking of natural, some doctors, like web columnist Jeff Benson, M.D. of Bowdoin College, Maine, suggest that the human body is naturally equipped to transfer ear skin cells, and its wax, from the ear canal on its own. Tips for relieving ear clogs are as simple as aiming a shower stream into the ear canal.)

With its sophisticated appearance and highly touted spray action, Earigate looks like a savior for the clogged and weary, and, if used as intended, it can be. If you’re looking for immediate relief, it is highly recommended to seek a different product.