Editor’s Note: Part of our recommendations are based on the exhaustive review work of The Wirecutter team who methodically tested over 40 sets to determine their top pick. So make sure you read their research on The Best Headphones Under $30 before making a final decision.

The term “disposable clothing” has, somewhat regrettably, surfaced in the last five or ten years. We like high-quality, long-lasting apparel, so unless we’re in a pinch, purchasing cheap clothes with the intention of truncating our relationship with them isn’t the most appealing thought. Same goes with most electronics, since in that world cheap almost always means crappy. Almost.

Earbuds, rather than full-size headphones, are essential for most because of their compactness. Wind them up (okay, wad them up), shove ’em in your pocket and you’ll be ready to untangle them go at a moment’s notice. You can go for quality (and costliness) like other kinds of ‘phones — though odds are you’ll lose or ruin them in no time flat. The best solution is a decent pair that won’t disappoint aurally or financially. If you’re a commuter or jogger or some other type of person who can’t balance one-pound earmuffs on your head all day, and you don’t want to spend a pretty penny on something that you’re likely to lose or break, these budget earbuds are for you.

OUR SELECTIONS: Panasonic RP-TCM125 Ergo Fit ($11) | Sennheiser MX 365 Earphones ($15) | Sony MDR-EX37B ($19) | RHA MA350 ($40) | SoundMAGIC E10 ($35) | Monoprice 9927 Noise Isolating Earphones ($8)