Article ID : 00231109 / Last Modified : 30/07/2019

Can I use my headphones to do sports or work out - IP ratings explained

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Few things can boost your motivation and confidence than listening to your favourite music tracks during a workout. Lots of people like to get in their music bubble and double down: but how do sweat and tears affect your headphones?

What is an IP rating?

IP stands for Ingress Protection Marking, which classifies and rates the degree of protection provided by mechanical and electrical casings against dust, water and other intrusions. In other words, the IP rating will tell you how your product is designed to handle moisture, water and dust.

How do I check the IP rating of my device?

You can consult the IP rating in the specifications of each product. You can find the specifications tab on the upper left-hand side of your product page, next to the Product Highlights.
Alternatively, you can consult the specifications in the Help Guide or manual, which is also available on the product page.

If you can’t find any IP rating, your product is not officially resistant to dust or moisture (this includes sweat). Repeated exposure to dust and humidity could potentially damage your product. Always make sure to check the IP rating of your headphones before using them in physical activities that potentially drench you in sweat or expose you to lots of moisture or dust.  Sony’s Sports Wireless Headphones such as the WF-SP900 and the WF-SP700N are examples of headphones specifically designed for sports enthusiasts and have an IP rating. 

IP rating overview

Protection from solid objects and dust

Protection from water


No special protection


No special protection


Protected against solid objects > 50mm in diameter


Protected against dripping water


Protected against solid objects > 12.5mm in diameter


Protected against dripping water when tilted up to 15 degrees from the normal position


Protected against solid objects > 2.5mm in diameter


Protected against spraying water


Protected against solid objects > 1mm in diameter


Protected against splashing water


Protected against dust; limited ingress (no harmful deposit)


Protected against low-pressure water jet spray for at least 3 minutes




Protected against heavy jet spray for at least 3 minutes




Protected against the effects of immersion in up to 3.29 feet of water for 30 minutes




Protected against the effects of continued immersion in water depths greater than 3.29 feet. The exact conditions are specified for each device by the manufacturer.