Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds review

Good value sweat resistant workout earphones that lack only luxe features

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds
(Image: © Jamie Carter)

TechRadar Verdict

A long battery life, fast-charging and a secure fit can be found on these great value true wireless earphones that are perfect for wearing while running and exercising. However, at this low price don’t expect touch controls, wireless charging or audiophile sound quality.


  • +

    44 hours battery life

  • +

    Fast-charge in 10 minutes

  • +

    Tile tracking and Spotify Tap

  • +

    Stay in place while running

  • +

    Lots of voice control options


  • -

    Bulky hardware

  • -

    Plasticky feel

  • -

    Average sound quality

  • -

    No wireless charging

  • -

    Disappointing ‘Stay Aware’ feature

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One-minute review

The Skullcandy Push Active are true wireless earphones designed for exercise. They’re primarily supposed to be affordable and functional, eschewing advanced hardware features like wireless charging and touch/gesture controls for software wizardry.

Whether anyone really wants to say 'Hey Skullcandy!' to their earphones constantly is doubtful, but you probably shouldn’t buy the Push Active earphones if you’re not prepared to talk to them. That’s because each earpiece has a button that’s hard to find when they’re being worn, which is a shame because the design here is otherwise excellent. During our tests both running and skiing not once did their hook design fall off our ears, or even more slightly.

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds

(Image credit: Jamie Carter)

Other nice additions include Tile tracking and Spotify Tap, which are both activated within the Skullcandy app that accompanies the Push Active earphones. Sound quality is average – as we would expect at this price – but we found it fine for runs and workouts, with the noise-isolation qualities of the silicone ear tips just good enough to allow some decently high volumes.

IP55 water resistance adds some peace of mind, though the best hassle-free feature on the Push Active is their battery life, which stretches to 44 hours in total, so it’s good for a week or two of regular workouts. The quick-charge feature that sends two hours’ worth of energy into them in just 10 minutes – the time of a warm-up – means they’ are always ready for action, as all earphones should be. Overall the Push Active do a competent job for a good price. 

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds

(Image credit: Jamie Carter)

Price and release date

  • Cost $79.99 / £59.99 / AU$169.95
  • Launched in late 2021
  • Choice of colors

Originally launched in late 2021, the Push Active running headphones have recently enjoyed a slight price cut in the UK and Australia. They’re sold widely by online retailers, but on the Skullcandy website a further 20% discount was also available at the time of writing.

They’re available in a choice of colors: black with orange detailing, dark blue with green, and light gray with blue. 


  • IP55 sweat resistant
  • Earphones weigh 8g each
  • No touch controls

The Push Active earphones are designed to be used while exercising. They’re IP55-certified as sweat, dust and rain resistant, and the design is clearly aimed at making sure they stay put. Each earphone features a fairly large yet flexible hook to secure it around the ear, which in our tests worked really well despite them being rather large compared to the competition (albeit very light at a mere 9g).

Each headphone has a tiny colored button that can be used to pause the music or customized to control something else, but its placement leaves it slightly within the outer ear when worn so it’s tricky to actually press. The physical button design is also a sign of a few corners being cut, since many rivals use touch controls.

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds

(Image credit: Jamie Carter)

Also on the earphones are microphones and a small LED light to signify that they’re pairing and connected (via Bluetooth 5.2) or charging when in the case provided. Like the earphones they host, the charging case is large, but not heavy. It weighs 78g and is a bit bulky to store in a pocket. It uses USB-C to recharge, which is a bit of a relief, though not being able to wirelessly recharge the battery case will annoy some. 

On build quality the Push Active earphones are solid yet lack any kind of pizazz; they feel rather plasticky, though their durable-yet-lightweight nature has a lot of pluses for wearing them while exercising. 


  • Tile tracking and Spotify Tap
  • Skull-IQ voice control
  • 44 hours battery life

You’re not going to lose the Push Active earphones; each one contains a chip that’s compatible with the Tile tracking system, so you can always find them using the Tile app. 

You can talk to the earphones, too, thanks to a fully featured Skull-IQ suite of voice control commands that are here in an attempt to gloss-over the fact that the Push Active lacks touch controls. There are 11 utterances in total, from the simple 'Hey Skullcandy, volume up' and the bit-of-a-mouthful 'Hey Skullcandy, Stay Aware on' to the short-and-sweet 'Hey Skullcandy, Spotify' that kickstarts the useful Spotify Tap feature.

All good if that’s your thing and you want to control your music without rummaging for your phone or using your sports watch, but we’re sure most people still prefer not to talk to themselves when around others.

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds

(Image credit: Jamie Carter)

One of the Push Active's best features has to be battery life. Inside the oversized case is a lithium-ion battery capable of storing 34 hours of charge for the earphones, which on their own provide 10 hours. That’s 44 hours in total. Even better, a fast-charge option allows you to push two hours’ worth of charge into them in just 10 minutes, which is about the time you should be warming-up for anyway!

If set-up within the Skullcandy app it’s also possible to use the earphones as a Bluetooth remote for taking photos. You can also share your audio with someone else also wearing Skullcandy earphones, which could be a nice feature for some. 

Skullcandy Push Active True Wireless Earbuds

(Image credit: Jamie Carter)

Audio performance

  • Decent sound quality
  • Stay-Aware feature is poor
  • Skullcandy app doesn’t add much

Are you going to be blown away by the sound quality coming through the Push Active earphones? No, you are not, but then when did running ever need more than acceptable-sounding tunes? The Push Active earphones’ 6mm drivers deliver balanced sonics that feature just enough bass to please within a soundstage that is up to the task but no more.

You’ll get a little more volume than with bone conduction headphones thanks to some slight noise-isolation effects created by the silicon eartips (though there's no active noise cancellation). During our tests we didn’t have any serious issues with the sound quality of the Push Active while running, though in strong wind it can be hard to hear some details. 

The app that Skullcandy insists you download to your phone is the usual brand extension attempt masquerading as a feature, though it does help you customize the Push Active earphones. For audio there’s only a very simple equalizer with presets for music, podcasts, movies and some bass/treble custom controls.

Other controls here include toggles for the Stay Aware mode (which doesn’t really do much at all), Spotify Tap, Find With Tile and the chance to make some custom shortcuts for controlling your earphones. The drawback on the latter, of course, is that everything is centred on the small button on each earphone that’s difficult to easily access. The app is also used to update the firmware. 

Buy them if

You want some earphones that will stay still
Although the actual fit will depend on the exact size and shape of your ears, in our tests we found that the hooks on the Push Active earphones provided a really secure fit when running. 

You want to go hands-free
Skullcandy has included quite a suite of voice activated commands on the Push Active earphones, with 'Hey Skullcandy!' initiating a range of controls from skipping tracks to accepting a hands-free phone call. 

You value long battery life
Not only do the Push Active earphones last for about 10 hours when fully charged, but their fast-charge feature allows you to push two hours’ worth of charge into them in just 10 minutes.  

Don't buy them if

You demand audio excellence
While it’s not fair to say that the Push Active are good only for podcasts and radio, they don’t offer the kind of bass and refined audio performance that more expensive earphones are capable of. 

You like to stay aware while on the go
The Push Active include a Stay Aware mode, but it struggles to impress. The nature of the silicon rubber eartips is that you’re always slightly isolated from the ambient noises around you. If hearing traffic is important where you run, opt for bone conduction headphones instead. 

You’ve moved on from cables
The Push Active earphones come in a battery case that, sadly, can only be recharged using USB-C and not on a Qi wireless charging pad. 

Jamie Carter

Jamie is a freelance tech, travel and space journalist based in the UK. He’s been writing regularly for Techradar since it was launched in 2008 and also writes regularly for Forbes, The Telegraph, the South China Morning Post, Sky & Telescope and the Sky At Night magazine as well as other Future titles T3, Digital Camera World, All About Space and He also edits two of his own websites, and that reflect his obsession with travel gear and solar eclipse travel. He is the author of A Stargazing Program For Beginners (Springer, 2015),