(Or, how Darcy got her tingles back and managed her anxiety!)
Welcome to another Media Monday, y’all!
After a really busy weekend, I woke up this morning with a lot of anxiety. It’s something that I’ve struggled with since I was in high school, and have managed to generally control with therapy and self-care tools. But some days are still a challenge. On those days, I usually turn to albinwhisperland.
Before we talk too much about ALB specifically, I want to explain what ASMR is for the unacquainted. ASMR stands for “autonomous sensory meridian response“. That’s a lot of words that basically mean a tingling/static sensation on your scalp that moves down your neck and back. ASMR feels good and can make the person experiencing it feel more positive and calm. It can be triggered by all kinds of things — it’s often different person to person! I sometimes experience ASMR when someone brushes or plays with my hair, whispers, or crinkles paper. There’s a great Baby Geniuses episode about ASMR with comedian Nikki Glaser. Not everyone experiences ASMR, and much like synesthesia (something I also experience), there hasn’t been a lot of scientific research that explains why some people get it and not others.
I experienced ASMR “tingles” frequently as a kid; when my mom was reading me a story, brushing my hair, cutting through wrapping paper, clinking a spoon against the side of a teacup, etc., but I didn’t know there was anything special or unique about those moments.When I grew older and stopped experiencing the tingles, I didn’t think much of it. At that point, there wasn’t a name to describe the feeling. Years later, I started seeing posts about ASMR online and learned that many people experienced the same thing I did! But the tingles were still elusive. I started watching popular ASMR-ists on YouTube, thinking that maybe I didn’t have ASMR after all… until about a year ago when I happened across ALB’s “DAVIDsTEA Haul“.
Around that time, I was going through several Big Life Changes™. I had just started a new, high-pressure job; moved into a new living situation; and started to feel the post-collegiate FOMO of watching my undergrad friends go back to school. It was not a good time for my anxiety. I wasn’t sleeping well and I, more than once, experienced panic attacks at my desk. The first week I discovered albinwhisperland, I must have watched a dozen of her videos. Something about the combination of her voice and content helped me relax on my lunch breaks and fall asleep faster at night. And the tingles returned!
ALB is a Canadian illustrator and YouTuber known for her pink hair and vintage style. She and her wife, Niko, run her online merch store and are, generally speaking, the cutest YouTube couple out there.
Obviously, not all of her videos are catered to my specific “tingle triggers”, but here are some of the ones that have worked best for me:
- Call the Magic Hotline for all your Spell Needs! (ASMR whisper role-play + keyboard sounds)
- DAVIDsTEA Haul: Winter Collection (ASMR soft spoken & packaging sounds)
- Vintage Waves Hair Tutorial (ASMR soft spoken, brushing, hair spray)
- A Christmas Tree HANDBAG? (ASMR Binaural Ear 2 Ear Whisper)
- You had a bad day- but tomorrow will be better (ASMR soft spoken)
I have friends who don’t experience ASMR tingles that still watch ALB’s videos because sometimes it’s just nice to listen to something quiet and focused in our loud, distraction-filled world. Evan calls ALB “The Whisper Lady” and will often watch her videos with me, even though he doesn’t get ASMR, because they’re soothing in other ways.
This morning, when I woke up anxious, I made myself some tea, got snuggled under my coziest blanket, and put on one of her recent videos (Unboxing a FULL CASE of Pusheenimals Blind Box!) I started to feel better right away. If you struggle with anxiety, and need a little break from time to time, I would strongly suggest checking albinwhisperland out!
If you like…
ALB’s other channel, albinwonderland; the color pink; cute toys, makeup, bags, clothes, and shoes; tea reviews; unboxing videos; cats; vintage style; Japanese snacks; and getting crinkle-tingles, subscribe to albinwhisperland!
Do you get ASMR? Who are your favorite ASMR-ists? Tell me in the comments below!