How to decorate hearing aids like Jessica Flores
It’s 9:13 in the morning, and comedian D.J. Demers is live-streaming with Facebook fans on Day 8 of the Here To Hear Tour, as he sits in the hotel courtyard in San Francisco, California.
D.J. a comedian who has been wearing hearing aids since age four, has his beige Phonak Naida hearing aids propped behind his ears like usual. Today, however, those beige hearing aids will be getting a makeover, thanks to YouTuber and “Phonak hEARo” Jessica Flores.
“I’m not going to say I’m nervous, because obviously there’s nothing to be nervous about, but kind of my whole style, not just with me hearing aids, is that I’m trying to be not too in-your-face,” he says.
Decorating hearing aids have become a trend lately, especially among teens, young adults and mothers of children with hearing loss, who are looking for ways to take pride in their hearing technology.
Read more: Why I decorate my hearing aids
D.J., like many hearing aid users, says he has always chosen a hearing aid color based on discreteness. A flashy, colorful hearing aid will bring a whole new dynamic to his life with hearing loss.
“We’ll see how I feel walking around with really effervescent hearing aids,” he says.
Decorating Hearing Aids with Jessica Flores
“Hi!” Jessica says with accompanying sign language when she sees D.J., her hands saluting with excitement off her forehead.
Unlike D.J., Jessica makes a point to have her hearing aids stand out. Her bright pink ear molds pop against her dark brown hair that is pulled back in a ponytail. A “ZOOM!” sticker with a lightning bolts flashes from behind her ear.
“I’ve been making YouTube and Facebook content to spread awareness about what it’s really like to be deaf or hard of hearing,” says Jessica, who also has severe-to-profound hearing loss and wears Phonak Naida hearing aids. “I want to educate more people.”
Just as any arts and crafts project, Jessica gets out her box of stickers and supplies for them to use to decorate their hearing aids.
Nail stickers and Washi Tape work great, but any kind of sticker work, she says. You can trace and cut large stickers, or use small stickers to overlay on top of a colored background sticker.
D.J., who originally planned on decorating his hearing aids with blue stickers, picks a shiny, iridescent background and chooses puppy stickers from Jessica’s collection.
“That’s pretty cool! That’s some pretty futuristic hearing aids right there,” he says. “What do you think?! Can you see the dog!?”
“They look so pretty!” Jessica exclaims, “Yeah, he looks like he’s like ‘woof, woof!’ just peaking. So cute!”
Do you decorate your hearing aids? Show them off on social media using #Phonak and #HereToHearTour!