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What Are Your Favorite ASMR Triggers? Here’s Some of Mine…

There are plenty of ASMR sounds to choose from and enjoy. Some are soft, gentle, easy to listen to, while others are harsh, crisp, and plain loud. People have plenty of ideas for what their most preferred sounds are, but do they really know what their favorites are? Well, this blog is here to remind you that there are more out there than the traditional ones we see on YouTube!

If you are new here, an “ASMR trigger” is an object which can produce sound to enable ASMR in the viewer. There are separate definitions of “triggers” or “triggering”. It can either mean something that can provoke someone, and make them frustrated, or it can be your best friend. In this case, it is the best possible scenario, so let’s just focus on that definition.

I am going to start off by listing my absolute favorite ASMR triggers, in no order. They are as follows:

  • Flashing light

  • Pencil to paper

  • Rice on seashells

  • Coffee beans on wood

  • Keyboard or phone typing

  • Tapping nails

  • Magazine page flipping

  • Hair brushing

  • Scalp Massage

  • Mouth sounds

  • Ocean waves

  • Food eating

  • Palm tickling

  • Makeup application

  • Plastic crinkling

  • Roleplay scenario

  • Hand movements

  • Any form of energetic work / healing

  • Card shuffling

  • Zipper sounds

  • Whispering

  • Makeup brushes

  • Feathers

  • Reading from a book


There are plenty of triggers for ASMR artists to use to their advantage, which I know someone will! 24 triggers, for each hour of the day. If someone made a 24-hour video, and spent an hour per trigger, I would be in not only ASMR heaven, but I would not be a very productive individual either!

Nevertheless, I will be creating a video like this soon. I cannot promise a 24-hour session (as there wouldn’t be enough memory space) but I can promise these will be used in one video soon, and I never break a promise!

Now let me explain why some of these triggers are my personal favorite. Note that these are all great points to keep in mind if you would like to start your own ASMR channel, or when researching for your favorite triggers. Starting with

Rice on Seashells

which I just recently filmed with, this must be one of my long time top five. The way the delicate rice grains fall upon the hard yet shallow surface of a seashell, creates the most blissful sound imagined. It makes music to the ears, but still falls harsh enough to be sort of irritating at times. However, if done right, you have a genius assortment of ASMR, using the power of nature to combine and make beautiful sound.

Coffee beans on wood

is another nature on nature type of trigger, except the wood would be a wooden table below the coffee beans, to support it and keep them stable. When I pushed around coffee beans with a wooden spoon on a table, it made such a harsh but stimulating sound effect that is difficult to describe in words. All I can say is that it helped me relax, and I don’t normally become triggered by my own actions! I know when this occurs, it is a good ASMR sound!

Tapping nails

works efficiently on nearly any surface! My all-time favorite is when someone has extra long nails that are pointy and sharp. I’m talking about “just came out of the nail salon” sharp! I want to hear even the pointiest of nail slamming against a glass surface, or a phone case. With every single mind jarring tap, I want to feel the tingles inside of my head explode and spread through my whole body. To feel this effect, nail tapping on ANYTHING does it for me, and fast too!

Magazine page flipping

only works for me if done slowly, and intently. Even better, is if the performer of the trigger licks their finger briefly before flipping the page. Glossy textured and thick pages are the best to produce the triggering sound, but the worst are thin and flimsy pages, as they make too much sharp noise. Some paper types don’t grip on the fingertip right and take too much effort to flip and separate from each other. Other pages rip easily and can literally “tear” right through your relaxation! Yikes!

Ocean waves

are pleasant at times, however not something which enables me to feel ASMR. Quite frankly, this trigger is only good for trying to meditate along with. If the waves are too loud and roaring, it does nothing for me. They must splash against the sandy ground in a gentle manner for it to trigger even the minor amount of ASMR. Water is an excellent trigger, but not often when mixed in with gravity (especially when you must use the bathroom!)

Palm tickling

“triggers” a great memory of childhood, as friends would love to play this game where we would have to tickle each other’s palm and pull away on time before the other person had their wrists smacked! It would be both triggering and terrifying, but the mix of suspense and sensation of gentle motions under the hands created the perfect storm of tingles on my scalp. The miniscule hair on the back of my neck would even stand up!

Roleplay scenario

is to this day, a huge trigger, and it can be any scenario! Just the fact that the artist is intently acting out a character, gives me ASMR. I will be watching a movie, think about how the person is not really that character, only someone playing a role, and it will trigger my ASMR. How weird is that? I really cannot explain this phenomenon, but it is true. I guess I have an odd ASMR fetish for role-play.

Any form of energetic work or healing

will indefinitely trigger some form of ASMR within me, as I like to believe I am an empath, and feel sensations all around. Due to my sensitivity of surrounding, healing energies or any type of work that causes energy to move around the room, will induce the feelings of ASMR along with it. I suppose this is because the energy waves are moving around my body and thus giving me tickling sensations.

Reading from a book

will only work if the person is entirely focused on what they are reading. Whether it is a short paragraph or an entire page, just the fact that I am listening to someone reading with full concentration on the story will induce ASMR inside. I like to know that someone is paying close attention to something and feeding me information. The fact that special attention is paid to sharing knowledge while unintentionally producing relaxation, invokes pure nirvana.

I hope you enjoyed these explanations and that they help some of you be more aware of how triggers work and why they are so effective for the ASMR world. I only listed the top 9 of the 24 which I felt needed more explaining, due to a lack of context or preference for the trigger.

Next time you are seeking ASMR online, make sure to be mindful of why you really like a sound, and try it for yourself! You might just give yourself ASMR!

Preview of future video
Coffee Beans against Wood

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