One of the inevitabilities of using electronics of just about any sort is that cords will get tangled. Period. It is true of any cord or cable, but earbuds seem to be particularly vulnerable to spontaneously tying themselves in knots. The combination of the split cable with left and right earbuds, and the fact that each branch of the cord ends with a physical object (the earbud) makes it very aggravating to try and untie the whole mess.
That is where The Loop comes in.
It’s a plastic circle. It is sturdy, unbreakable plastic but weighs essentially nothing. The circle is about two-and-a-half inches in diameter. Laying on its side The Loop is about a half-inch thick. There is a channel in the middle between the two sides, and one side is serrated with teeth that make it look a bit like a Chinese throwing star. The Loop comes in a diverse array of 10 different colors.
The Loop is basically a small reel you can use to wrap your earbuds so they can’t get tangles. There are two holes inside the channel on the inner circle of The Loop. You insert the 3.5mm plug end of the earbuds into the hole, and then wrap the cord around the plastic circle. Once the earbuds are wrapped around The Loop and you have just a few inches left you slide the remaining cord into one of the teeth on the side to hold it in position. The Loop is sort of genius in its simplicity.
It definitely works as advertised—check out my YouTube video. The only question, really, is whether you’re willing to spend the money. You can’t buy just one. The Loop is sold in 3-packs for $19 or a 10-pack for $50. The 3-pack breaks down to more than $6 per Loop and assumes you either have three sets of earbuds to guard from tangling, or you have two other people to split the 3-pack with. Personally, I do feel like the $5 or $6 for The Loop is reasonable, but I only really need one so I would want to find some friends to share the cost of the 3-pack with me.