Cotton swabs should not be used in the ear canal. People use them like a rammer is used, to push the ball into a cannon before it firing.
Ear wax (also known as cerumen) is produced by the ears and is a self-cleaning agent. It is our body's way to keep the ears clean. The body normally keeps moving old wax out of the ear, where it dries and falls out, taking any dust from the ear canal.
Confused? Well, the ear canals are generally self-cleaning. Thus, there is no need to poke things in your ear. If it seems as if your ears are plugged or if your hearing has decreased, get your ears checked by a doctor.
It's perfectly fine to clean the external areas of the ear using a damp cloth. Just make sure nothing is inserted into the ear canal.
If you have too much wax that refuses to come out on its own AND if there is no hole in your eardrum, a few drops of hydrogen peroxide in each ear, once a day, is safe to use as well. If there is no improvement in 3 days, see your doctor.
Bobby pins scratch your ear canal, which can lead to an ear infection. Also, it can rupture your eardrum, seriously affecting your hearing ability. Period.
The FDA issued a warning back in 2010 stating that ear candles can lead to serious injuries and a possible loss of hearing. Never use ear candles!
If you feel things are not normal or if you feel as if your ears are producing too much wax, visit a doctor and let them recommend the appropriate treatment or cleaning procedure. Do not attempt to clean them yourself.