Have your earwax removed while on holiday in India

In India, you’ll find lots of things for sale including services that some of you might find amusing. One such service is having your earwax removed. How cool is that? Where in the world are you going to get your earwax removed in this way? In fact, these “earwax removal guys”, we call them “walas” (or fellows) are everywhere. They are the so-called “professional” street-side ear cleaners or ear wax removers who are well versed in their job (by the way, we also have street toenail cutters, tooth pullers, head massagers, nail polishers, barbers and anything you can think of).

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You’ll be surprised that some of them carry ID cards to prove that they are professionals (I have serious doubts that as some of these ID cards are nothing more than laminated cards).

Have your earwax removed on the go in India
Have your earwax removed on the go in India: Photo by Suellyn Cashia

So while you’re holidaying in India, why not get your ear cleaned as well, if you don’t mind the non-surgical equipment and if you’re not paranoid about personal hygiene then by all means get it done. It might even make you light-headed and you’ll probably enjoy your stay in India a bit better if you happen to hate your stay in India for any of these reasons here.

Just make sure you haggle down to a good price. Being a foreigner, you will be quoted a price that is 20 times the normal price. For instance, a price of wax removal for an Indian might be 50 to 100 Rupees while you will be quoted anything between 500 to 2000 Rupees. Just tell them, you only have 50 Rupees and walk away. Most likely they will do it for you. Here’s how to bargain in India like a pro.

Other than having your earwax removed, you might wish to buy some souvenirs, here’s a list of things to buy in India.

Would you have your earwax removed on the street side? Have you have had it done? Would you let a stranger take a peek into your ear? Do you think India should send some of these earwax cleaners to provide the services at Times Square?

47 thoughts on “Have your earwax removed while on holiday in India”

  1. Ha ha ha …….Is it really? It is so shocking for me, I have never met these guys and never heard from anyone that in India you find earwax removal fellows. Seriously this heights of making fool to locals and foreigners.

  2. Are you kidding me!! If anyone is stupid enough to have this done to them, they’ll probably end up with a perforated ear drum. You’re not supposed to put anything in your ear! One of these ear cleaners came up to me the other week in Delhi and I told him exactly that.
    Use Otex ear drops or go to the doctor and have them safely syringed instead.


      • Recently I did it at Haridwar. Generally my ears are very very clean and don’t have any wax bcoz I clean regular interval.
        The episode starts like let me check ur ear. He asked 20 rs. I thought it will be a fun so allowed him immediately he started with my right ear. He started showing some small chunk but I was very very surprised that such dirty I have never seen .then he asked to put some medicine to clean it for extra money. I denied. I felt that my right ear has blocked. Then I realised they by trick actually put dirt in ur ear initially which is good enough to block the passage.
        My left ear is perfectly okay without being cleaned while my right ear got infection.
        Pls don’t try it.

  3. Hi Shalu,

    This is surely interesting, and though I’ve only heard of such people, haven’t seen anyone get their ear wax removed from the folks I know. We mostly visit the doctor if at all it has to be removed as that’s the safest.

    But yes, I know that the common man prefer going to these people and do a rather good job of it too being experienced in this field.

    Thanks for sharing this with us. Have a nice day ahead 🙂

  4. Hi Shalu,
    Yes I am aware of these earwax cleaners and could sight them on the Mumbai streets before few years. Nowadays I understand that they do not exist. I never tried them personally and always afraid of their techniques. You have reminded about something that is really “Only In India”.

  5. No thank you….I am simply not trusting enough. They always try to clean your ears when you get a haircut in China, too. They could never understand why I would decline this free service.

  6. Hi Shalu,

    Wow, I sure wouldn’t want anyone touch my ears to take the wax out of it. I do wash my ears and the wax that’s deep inside needs to be there. Any excess that needs to be clean off everyday, I take care of that myself 🙂

    Very unusual and interesting, though

  7. Dear Shalu, I like your post. Normally nobody will try those technicians for removing the wax. I think ear wax is produced in your ear to kill insects and germs. I remember a film song “it happens only in India” I think any responsible person will never them to clean his ear with those street persons.

    Are you participating in the up coming ICTT International conference hosting by ICTT India proposed to be held at Kovalam, Kerala on June 7-9 2013 ?

  8. This is surely the most amusing story I have read on ShaluSharma.com so far. But if ever I get the good fortune to visit India, I will revisit the post on the Festival of Colors instead. There is just something about somebody’s fingers in my ear that does not appeal to me.

  9. Hi Shalujee

    I’ve seen this at many places in Delhi as well, but won’t allow anyone to touch my ear. I can do this on my own, we’ve JB’s for that.

    Thanks for this share and have a great weekend.


  10. well for others it might be weird but trust me in India its common. I see many people getting their ear clean at railway station and daily market. thanks a lot for getting this online Shalu ji.. This is something unique too 🙂

  11. Never heard or seen such thing….. So little we know about our country….. The idea is not at all fascinating and should be avoided…… Using a ear wax cleaner (ear drop) and buds are better options……

  12. I visited India last year and have also seen this somewhere. In my opinion, I really think that if you want to clean your ears you can go to professional and discrete waxing center.

  13. Although earwax is a natural substance that helps protect the ear and ear canal, sometimes it builds up, causing hearing difficulties or discomfort. Earwax can be cleaned from the ear, but take care not to damage any of the sensitive parts of the ear while doing so.

  14. Removing earwax is a profession in India? Wow, that’s incredible. I don’t think I would feel comfortable standing there having someone remove my earwax for me though! And for 2,000 rupees?! Never mind! Have you tried it yourself?

  15. Hello Shalu,

    In our place it is common scenario – removing earwax in a nearby street by a group. Mostly they sit near a big mall where people gather. Sometime I pass time watching them how they do it. Its a kinda interesting too.

    But I think it is unhygienic. Anyway it is also a part for traveler to watch 🙂

  16. Creativity which makes the person great. This post is all about that.
    Even I am also shocking to see this.
    That’s the only reason we say our country “INCREDIBLE INDIA”.. 🙂

  17. Well I have heard something like this for the first time. This should be a part of a tour. If it does make me light headed I don’t care about the hygiene 😉

  18. Yes, I have seen these people around railways stations and city bus station.
    And real fact is that they try to do this with force by pressurizing the most of people.

    They best solution to get rid of them is to avoid talking and just show your hand to stop and go away sign.

    Once you has started conversation then it will be difficult to get rid of them.

  19. Hi, Shalu Sharma,
    Removing earwax is a profession in India? Please Give me answer. I think they are fraud, and I dunno si it helpful or harmful. everyone should be aware of this.

  20. Had a earwax person clean my ear today, cost me 2000 rupies (yeh.. seems I got duped) but honestly, if he had said 4000 I would have paid. Ive never seen so much wax in my life, my hearing instantly improved by such a factor that my own voice seemed a bit to loud!

    HIGHLY reccommended!

  21. dear respected author,

    thank you for making such a nice article about removing earwax and i am agree with your points and looking forward to more posts like this.


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