That Tingling Feeling – 5 Common ASMR Triggers

Have you heard of ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response)? More importantly, are you one of the many people who are able to experience the head tingling sensations caused by ASMR actions and meditation?

If you’ve ever had a feeling that makes you wonder ‘why is my head tingling?’ then you quite possibly have had an ASMR experience. But, did you know ASMR has many triggers? Let’s look at common triggers that make up many ASMR sleep and relaxation videos, and things people have reported to be stimulating.


Many ASMR YouTube videos use the power of whispering to leave hundreds of thousands of viewers with head tingling sensations. Female whisper videos are quite common and people who watch them leave comments that suggest the wispy sound actually work to evoke brain tingles that relax them and leave them feeling blissful. ASMR whisper videos and general whispering are also used to induce sleep in people who have insomnia.

Weird Sounds that Make the Head Tingle

A variety of unexpected sounds can produce tingling feelings inside the head, evidenced in many ASMR videos and techniques. In fact, one of the first videos linked to ASMR is one containing the sound of a paintbrush applying paint to a canvas, producing a series of definitively raspy sounds in the process. Other sounds which people have reported as having a soothing, tingling effect include the pouring of sand, crumpling paper or plastic, scratching and tapping, popping, and repetitive humming sounds. Some ASMR artists use a variety of background noises, such as scratching and rubbing things together, creating varying sounds that can trigger ASMR tingles.

Head Touching

The head is filled with nerve endings, from the hair covering, it to the thin skin of the face. Gentle strokes on the head can produce brain tingling sensations that spread out through the neck and shoulders, helping to provide relaxation. ASMR head touching works particularly well on babies in calming them down and even putting them to sleep. However, having a loved one gently touching the head and face can act as ASMR sleep therapy for adults who have a hard time sleeping, as well as helping to provide relaxation during stressful periods.

Listening to Soothing Music

Music has long provided relaxation and solace for many people. But, it can provide even deeper sensations when it triggers an ASMR reaction. From ancient, spiritual symphonies to modern and contemporary arrangements, there are many soothing musical arrangements that can cause head tingles for different kinds of people. Among the many ASMR YouTube videos, you will find that some use music in the background to complement whispers and sounds that trigger the tingling effect. Others use binaural ASMR beats that operate on a certain frequency and induce relaxation.

Close Attention

We all like to be pampered and taken care of, so it probably should not be surprising that getting close attention from others can also trigger tingling in the head. Personal attention activities, such as getting haircuts, massages, manicures, and even doctor examinations, can bring about relaxing feelings and contentment. That explains why people tend to nod off in the salon chair or while getting massages; probably due to ASMR sleep relaxation kicking in.

ASMR triggers are everywhere. What’s yours? If you haven’t found it yet, or are new to ASMR, there are many ASMR videos online that you can check out to see what works for you.