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How to Wear a Swimming Nose Clip

Nose clips (sometimes called nose plugs) are small devices that pinch your nose and allow you to keep water out of your nose while swimming.

They are especially useful for beginners that haven’t mastered the breathing technique of a particular swimming stroke yet.

Nose Clip Types

First, there’s the basic nose clip. It’s made of an u-shaped nosepiece with padded ends to avoid cutting. The nosepiece is made of stiff wire or nylon, and the pads are made of latex, silicone or TYR.

The u-shape of the clip pinches both nostrils together so that it sticks on your nose and keeps water out.

A regular nose clip

Second, there are nose clips featuring a strap made of latex. This strap attaches to both ends of the nosepiece.

The strap helps to keep the plug in place while swimming. It also prevents losing the nose clip in the water when you remove it from your nose.

A nose clip with a strap

How to Fit a Nose Clip

Fitting a regular nose clip is rather easy to do. Just push it against your nose with the bridge facing upwards. Then push the ends against your nostrils to pinch them.

How to fit a regular nose clip

Use a similar method to fit a strapped nose clip. Move the strap over your head and behind neck once the clip sits on your nose. The easiest way to do it is to first put on your swim cap, then your swim goggles and finally the nose clip.

How to fit a nose clip with a strap

Is a Nose Clip With or Without a Strap Better?

Personally I prefer strapless nose clips because fiddling with the strap is cumbersome. Furthermore, the strap tends to break after a while, rendering the clip unusable.

On the other hand, regular nose clips stick to the nose well, even without a strap. I can’t remember having lost mine while swimming. Finally, I prefer the look of strapless nose clips.

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Friday 19th of May 2017

I am looking for nose clips that my grandchildren will wear.

We swim in lakes and do a lot of skiing and tubing. Of course like a lot of people I have a lot of concern about the amoebas.

Thanks Lisa


Friday 19th of August 2016

Do nose clips stay on jumping into water? We're about to do the tough mudder in a few weeks. One obstacle involves a 10 ft or so jump into a pool. Trying to hold my nose last year didn't work, just afraid of the impact/pressure knocking it loose.


Friday 19th of August 2016

Good question, I have no idea... ;-)


Saturday 5th of March 2016

Thank you for this article. I am about to purchase a nose clip and learning how to wear it will help me pick out the right one for me.

Geoffrey Alexander Taber

Tuesday 29th of July 2014

Thanks for the write up, I completely forgot how to wear them. Thank you!

Anthony Watson

Friday 18th of July 2014

Grew up using these wherever I went swimming. Most children wore them swimming.

Perhaps we should have children & adults wearing them again. I think it could help keep the amoebas out of noses.

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