The Best Invisible Hearing Aids of 2022

Our experts researched and reviewed the industry’s leading invisible hearing aids and narrowed the list to their top eight recommendations.

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Hearing aids are designed to enhance hearing, and not be a burden! That’s why many older adults go with an invisible — or nearly invisible — style. Because they’re so discreet, wearers can go about their everyday lives without worrying about their hearing aids getting in the way.

While the choices are ample, invisible hearing aids are not all created equal. We have ranked the top eight invisible hearing aids to help you make a confident purchase. Four are invisible-in-the-canal (IIC) style for mild to moderate hearing loss, and four are mini behind-the-ear (BTE) devices, which are slightly more visible and typically suited for mild to moderately severe hearing loss.

Did You Know: Want to learn more about the different types of invisible hearing aids and who they’re best for? Jump down to our section on the types of invisible hearing aids.

How We Chose the Best Invisible Hearing Aids

To help you select the best invisible hearing aid for your lifestyle, we have chosen the top eight based on several criteria. Durability, ease of use, sound quality, size, value, and discreteness are some factors we took into consideration when ranking the best invisible hearing aids on the market.

Types of Invisible Hearing Aids

If you’re in the market for invisible hearing aids, you have two types to choose from: invisible-in-the-canal (IIC) and mini behind-the-ear (mini BTE) hearing aids. Since IIC hearing aids are typically suited for mild to moderate hearing loss only, we wanted to include some mini BTE options too. Mini BTE hearing aids aren’t totally “invisible,” but they’re as close as you can get to invisible if you have severe hearing loss.

Invisible-in-the-canal hearing aids

IIC hearing aids are for people with mild to moderate hearing loss. They sit deep within your ear canal and out of sight. Many people prefer this type of hearing aid because it’s small and as discreet as possible. Plus, it won’t interfere if you wear glasses or a mask. One thing to look out for with this style is wax buildup. Wax can quickly clog the speaker, making hearing more difficult. Proper hearing aid maintenance and cleaning are very important with the IIC style.

Mini behind-the-ear hearing aids

Mini BTE hearing aids are suitable for those with mild to severe hearing loss. This style isn’t totally invisible, but it comes close, especially if you have hair that goes past your ears. A BTE hearing aid consists of an earmold that sits in your ear canal and a receiver that sits behind your ear. A tube, called an ear hook, connects both parts. Providers typically offer the receiver in a variety of hair and skin tone colors for as much discretion as possible.

Earwax won’t damage mini BTE hearing aids, like it could with IIC hearing aids. So, if you are susceptible to earwax buildup, drainage, or moist ears, this style may work better for you. Just note that if you wear glasses, you may need to have them refitted, since your glasses and hearing aid will share space on your ear.

Important Features in an Invisible Hearing Aid

Invisibility is important to many people who have hearing loss, simply because it’s nice to have hearing aids that enhance hearing without getting in the way, especially if you regularly wear glasses or a mask. Of course, that doesn’t mean just any invisible hearing aid will do. Below are some other functions to look for in an invisible hearing aid.

Background noise reduction and speech enhancement

Most hearing aids today offer background noise reduction and speech enhancement as standard features. They’re especially crucial when you find yourself in noisy situations, struggling to hear the people or sounds that you need to hear. Verify with your hearing provider that the model you are interested in comes with these features.

Caveat: Because IIC hearing aids have only one microphone, they will be limited in how well they can separate speech from background noise. If you are interested in an invisible hearing aid, it is advisable to request speech-in-noise testing during your hearing test to determine if a remote microphone is warranted. On the other hand, BTE hearing aids have dual microphones, so if you’re okay with slightly visible (but still discreet) hearing aids, they’re worth considering.

Feedback cancellation

No hearing aid will completely eliminate feedback, but the good ones will significantly suppress it to make your hearing more comfortable. It’s important to ask your hearing provider for hearing aids that have advanced feedback cancellation if you are sensitive to feedback.

Quick Tip: Want to learn more about hearing aid technology? Visit our guide on how hearing aids work for a closer look.

Multiple hearing aid channels

Your doctor will ultimately determine whether your level of hearing loss will require multiple hearing channels for best hearing results, but it’s good to consider this. A multi-channel hearing aid isn’t necessarily better, but it helps the hearing aid divide sounds into more frequency sections for separate analysis. Having more channels may be beneficial if you have complex hearing loss.

Telephone features

Being able to communicate with others on the phone easily is important. See whether your potential invisible hearing aid offers Bluetooth streaming or some other form of easy phone use, like a specific program in your hearing aid that your provider may set up. Hearing aids and phones do not always work together seamlessly, so be sure to ask your hearing provider about the different setup options.

Self-learning

Some invisible hearing aids are “smart” enough to “learn” the wearer. By this, we mean that they can internally record the number of hours the hearing aids are worn, volume preferences, and the nature of the wearer’s usual sound environments, for example. This feature can help users to fine-tune their hearing experience and provide audiologists a way to identify and resolve certain types of hearing issues.

Tinnitus masking

If you experience ringing in the ears, you will need an invisible hearing aid that boasts tinnitus masking as a feature. These hearing aids have sound generators that produce various sounds to offset the perceived loudness of tinnitus. While it’s a relatively new feature, it has proven to be useful, so it’s definitely worth looking into if it’s a concern for you. And, if tinnitus is the main reason you’re looking for hearing aids, be sure to review our list of the best hearing aids for tinnitus.

Written By

Dr. Ruth Reisman

Audiologist

Ruth Reisman, AuD MBA, is a licensed audiologist and hearing aid dispenser in New York state and is certified by the American Speech and Hearing Association. After serving as an audiologist in the New York downstate hospital system, Dr. Reisman led the… Learn More About Dr. Ruth Reisman