Samsung’s Galaxy Buds wireless earbuds are some of the best in the mobile industry, and it is unfortunate that some customers can’t seem to enjoy them due to allergic reactions to stainless steel or, more likely, the small percentage of nickel contained within the stainless steel compound.
Stainless steel is one of the most popular metals around, used in everything from kitchen appliances to wearable smart devices and classic watches. Samsung explains on its official Galaxy Buds support page that the earbuds might cause an allergic reaction in some people because the company uses a stainless steel speaker mesh (for all Buds products) and a stainless steel air vent mesh (for the Galaxy Buds Live and Buds Pro). And that’s generally a good thing, as stainless steel has anti-rust properties. Earbuds can become wet due to sweat or rain, and a speaker mesh that can become rusty inside the user’s ear could cause serious issues.
In most cases, stainless steel is too good to let go of
The stainless steel material used by Samsung contains iron, chrome, and nickel. The company says that the materials it uses for the Galax Buds series meet U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission standards, the regulations of European countries, and other international standards. Nevertheless, a small percentage of people can have an allergic reaction to the nickel embedded in the stainless steel material. And new user reports on the matter keep popping up occasionally.
It is unfortunate that some customers react badly to these stainless steel components, but Samsung isn’t the only OEM using this metal for its products. Apple does too, and the same material is used even in medical equipment thanks to its anti-rust properties. Samsung could perhaps replace the stainless steel components with plastic or other materials, but as yet, it hasn’t made such changes to get rid of stainless steel entirely. And it may never will.
If you know you are allergic to nickel and don’t want to get an ear infection, sadly, you may want to avoid using Samsung Galaxy Buds, no matter which model they are. Or use them for short periods at a time, but there’s always a risk. You can check out Samsung’s official support page and read the guidance for users who are sensitive to certain materials for more information.
If you have no issues getting in contact with stainless steel, you can check our Galaxy Buds 2 Pro review and buy the latest earbuds at a $30 discount (at the time of writing).