Patrick Eng
An Aspiring Rooster Teeth Employee

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Week 18 - What I Needed to Know About the ASMR Effect

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*Ding*

Ever get a little excited every time you hear your phone alert you that something has happened? Maybe you just posted that cute photo of a taco on Instagram, or maybe you finally texted your crush and you're anxiously waiting for a response.

Either way, that simple noise has the power to trigger a powerful response in ourselves, whether it be excitement, dread, happiness or even relaxation.

In this week's post, I'll be focusing on the Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR) effect and how such simple and soft sounds can send such shivers down our spines.

While many of us use YouTube to learn how to the change the headlight fluid in our car, many others are using it as a way to relax.

ASMR quickly rose to little known prominence since its introduction in 2010 and most people are just wondering what it is. It even generated more queries than any candy or chocolate searches.

ASMR is essentially an auditory relaxation technique that utilizes whispering, accents, and white noise to induce a relaxed and sedated atmosphere.

Many people who listen to ASMR clips will feel shivers or tingles in their scalp and down their spine.

An early practitioner of ASMR is Bob Ross, who created an ASMR effect through his soft-spoken painting videos.

ASMR is seeing interest from all over the world and is only increasing in popularity. As of June 2016, there are currently 13.5 million ASMR videos.

Half of all ASMR searches are on mobile, as people are looking for an easy way to relax and fall asleep, usually around 10:30 p.m.

Many brands are even adopting ASMR into their strategy, as many ASMRists are using various branded products to produce the soft and tingle-inducing noises that people love to listen to.

KFC, for example, created an ASMR ad for their new crispy fried chicken since they knew that their consumer base was in love with the ASMR effect. It all comes down to establishing strong buyer personas.

According to Google's Data on ASMR:

  • 18-24-year-olds comprise half the viewer population

  • Interested by both men and women

  • 77% are also interested in either beauty or fitness

Make-up tutorials have always been a traditionally popular type of video as well, and are now starting to use ASMR. They'll include sounds of brushing, scratching, and tapping to try to simulate a feeling of being in a makeup artist's chair.

Another growing ASMR audience is the gaming and tech community. Research has shown that a gaming brain can have heightened senses, making it perfect for the brain massaging effects of ASMR.

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Head orgasms.

Or according to Dictionary.com "a calming, pleasurable feeling often accompanied by a tingling sensation."

Autonomous sensory meridian response, or ASMR, has quickly become a popular form of relaxation and a sort of sleep aid for many people.

While I would want to punch someone if I just listened to lip-smacking for 20 minutes, others find it soothing and pleasurable. Other noises include:

  • Whispers

  • White noise

  • Tapping

  • Brushing

  • Licking

  • And chewing/eating

Doing a simple YouTube search for ASMR will give you a flood of videos, usually done by women and revolving around haircut videos.

ASMR channels have millions of followers and viewers, and the best part - we don't even know that much about ASMR scientifically. Based on a study done in 2015, scientists were able to identify 4 main types of ASMR that triggered a majority of people.

  1. Whispering - 75% trigger rate

  2. Personal attention - 69% trigger rate

  3. Crisp sounds - 64% trigger rate

  4. Slow movements - 53% trigger rate

When it comes to the purpose of ASMR:

  • 98% of people use it for relaxation

  • 82% use it to help them fall asleep

  • And 5% use it for sexual stimulation

And while this has yet to be fully decided, ASMR is thought to also have healing effects like meditation and could provide improve mood and decrease pain levels.

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Now that we have a good idea of what brain orgasms are, let's take a look at some of the most popular ASMR videos that you can try for yourself. I personally don't experience any sort of tingling or pleasure from listening to these, but maybe you'll enjoy it.

1. GentleWhispering's *_* Oh such a good 3D-sound ASMR video *_*

Considered to be a classic in the ASMR community, and one of the most viewed ASMR videos, GentleWhispering utilizes her accent, white noise, and soft voice to give listeners a powerful ASMR experience. Watch it here.

2. ASMRrequests' Sci-Fi Series

In these videos, ASMRrequest uses her soft voice, white noise, and futuristic special effects to bring each viewer into a new world. Watch it here.

3. ASMR Darling's ASMR 10 Triggers to Help You Sleep ♥

In this video, ASMR Darling uses the following triggers all aimed to help you fall asleep:

  • Brushing

  • Tapping

  • Describing/tapping a vase

  • Tapping/flipping through a book

  • Pulling tape

  • Tapping a mason jar

  • Pouring water/dripping noises

  • Toying with a matchbox/matches

  • Scissors

  • Pushing coins around a bowl

  • More tapping and scratching

You can watch the video here.

4. TheOneLilium ASMR's Come closer, little moth...❤

In this video, TheOneLilium draws the viewer into a hypnotic state. Watch it here.

5. MassageASMR's ASMR 10 Hours of Tapping, Crinkle & Trigger Sounds - No Talking Just Sounds

In this video, homeboy spends 10 hours just doing random shit. Honestly, this videos are just weird. Wtf...watch it here.

6. Gibi ASMR's [ASMR] Slime Triggers! (Squishing poking crunching stretching)

In this video Gibi focuses on tapping containers and messing around with some colored slime. Watch it here.

Honestly, there are 3 more videos that were mentioned in this post, but I can't keep listening to these anymore. If you're into this, just read the article and search for ASMR on YouTube yourself. I can't listen anymore of this.

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Too Long; Didn't Read

ASMR is considered to be an orgasm for your head. All it takes is a soft voice, some tapping, brushing, lip smacking or really just any noise that can be pulled off in a soft and soothing way.

ASMRists use regular household objects and just touch them to cause people to just lose their shit.

ASMR is mainly used to help people enter a relaxed state and can be used as a sleep aid. A select few even use it for sexual stimulation. ASMR is supposed to be immersive and bring people into an almost hypnotic state.

While not much research has been done into the psychological and physical effects of ASMR, scientists believe it could have healing effects for both mood and physical pain.

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Patrick Eng