ASMR: A Massage for Your Mind

Jason Upton, Sports Editor

Since when was cutting a slice off a piece of soap satisfying? Or wringing out a sponge? Biting into a piece of fried chicken? Tapping a wall? With new technology, autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR) has taken the Internet by storm, with many people having made a career out of satisfying the average Joe. The easiest part? All you need is a microphone.

A quick Google search defines ASMR as “a feeling of well-being combined with a tingling sensation in the scalp and down the back of the neck”. Still, the sound of a good ASMR video is indescribable. Maybe part of it is that it settles your burning OCD, or it could be the joy you get from hearing every little snap, crackle, and pop from someone taking a bite of food. There are even interviews over ASMR microphones, where the person whispers each of their answers into the mic. The possibilities are endless.

What has made ASMR such a big hit is the fact that literally anyone can make a video. All they have to have is something that produces that satisfaction. The most basic thing is soaking a sponge with liquid, then wringing it all out. You can step it up by adding glitter and other colors to the sponge. Another form of ASMR is to buy special soap bars, some that are made of individual little cubes that you can scrape off with a knife, or some that you can slice off into the thinnest of pieces. Sure, the visuals are cool that you can get from these, but the essential part of ASMR, the part that really makes it pop is the element of sound.

Personally, I think there are two components to making a really masterful ASMR video. Visuals, like scraping off soap, and audio. Low-budget ASMR productions are more likely to contain solely videos minus the sound, but you know you’ve found a good video when the sounds alone put your mind at ease.

Professional ASMR artists all have insanely high quality mics. While there aren’t any microphones made specifically for ASMR, cheap $15 mics won’t do the trick. These mics will pick up anything from fingernails tapping on a table to french fries crunching in your mouth.

So, next time you’re stressed by all that homework you left for one night, if you just can’t get to sleep, or even if you’re just in the mood to be relaxed, open up YouTube, type ASMR into the search bar, crank up the volume, and let the videos do the rest.