YouTube comment sections are typically filled with fierce arguments and harsh criticism towards content creators. It’s almost impossible to watch a video without running into unhappy viewers, but such is not the case with Lilly and her channel, MissASMR.
In fact, her channel is a real haven of peace and tranquility. Many of her 142,000 present day subscribers have come to make MissASMR part of their everyday routine, using her videos as a means to de-stress after a busy day, ushering them into a peaceful sleep.
This new form of relaxation, Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR), is one of the latest internet sensations. But how does it work?
What is it and where does it come from?
ASMR responds to our need of "letting go" by delivering a space of calm and serenity in our daily lives where everything goes too fast and where we are constantly confronted with external aggressions such as stress and anxiety.
You may have already unconsciously experienced ASMR in real life while listening to an actual person close to you speaking softly or when getting a haircut.
Early discussions on ASMR began in 2008 on a Yahoo group called Society Of Sensationalists. Later on, the blog The Unnamed Feeling drew more attention on the topic. However, the term ASMR remained unknown until a Facebook page entitled ASMR Group came out in 2010.
ASMR is based on triggers which pertain to each person individually. Everyone will have their own personal trigger – stimuli that allow them to enter a state of relaxation. Widespread triggers include whispering, brushing, tapping, scratching, turning pages, personal attention.
Does ASMR equal braingasms?
Despite a growing audience, many still misinterpret the nature and aim of ASMR as medical hypnosis or sexualize it.
There has been a lot of talk about ASMR and brain orgasms, aka braingasms, but the term actually corresponds to an asexual orgasm – a sensation of pleasure caused by the appearance of tingling and tickling running from your brain to other regions of your body.
A new survey shows, however, that watching ASMR videos too frequently would desensitize viewers from the pleasing sensations. Taking a short break (one or two weeks) may be enough to restore these sensations.
To better understand what ASMR really entails, we asked Lilly a few questions. Read her answers below!
Konbini: Some describe ASMR as *brain orgasm* – how would you define it?
MissASMR: I would describe it as non-medical relaxing therapy that definitely includes personal attention which can give a tingling sensation on your head and your back.
Has it anything to do with hypnosis?
The most popular video on my channel is my “Sleep and Dreams Go Binaural” which is a hypnosis video. So yes, hypnosis and ASMR are definitely related in some way and can be combined.
Why are some people more susceptible to ASMR than others?
It’s the human nature. We’re all different and we react to things differently. For example, people may listen to the same music and have different feelings about it.
How important is the visual component?
For me, an ASMR video is complete when both the visual and audio components are up to scratch. I always work hard to make sure the visuals of my ASMR videos are as good as the audio. Of course, there are people who prefer to close their eyes while listening to ASMR, therefore they’ll be only triggered by the audio.
What makes ASMR so successful?
We live in a stressful world: we spend hours and hours in front of computers or in the gadgets and we need relaxation more and more. ASMR is like a "pill" that has no side effects but can help you relax and have a better sleep.
What’s the profile of your typical subscriber?
My audience is very diverse in terms of age and gender. I think what they have in common is the need for relaxation, for sleep and of course my big love and appreciation for them.
Will ASMR ever replace the traditional relaxation methods?
ASMR doesn’t replace, rather complements the traditional methods of relaxation and has already become a great addition to them.