Is Slime the new anti-depressant?

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This article is exclusive to the Online Edition 4 of VARSITY News.


Videos of slime and hot knives cutting through surfaces are taking Instagram and YouTube by storm.



In case you are not aware, for the past two years or so, Instagram and YouTube have had a surge of users creating videos of them making slime consisting of Elmer’s glue, borax, water, and colored dye or sequins. The users of the slime would play around with it by folding it, stretching it out and creating small pockets in the gooey substance. Others have added glitter in the slime and even beads so that it pleases not only the eyes but also to the ears. As the slime is being folded, tucked, stretched etc, it makes oddly relaxing squishy sounds, which helps the viewer get relaxed.


However, not all videos work the same for everyone. Each person has their own “tingles” sensitivity. In other words, what might help one person relax might not help the other person depending on the intensity of the sound of the slime created. This is also called Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, or ASMR.


ASMR is basically the tingling feeling you get on your skin, up and down your spine and even on your ears, neck and scalp. It helps you seem like you are present with the audio of the person in the video who is playing around with the slime.


In addition to the audio sensation, the visuals are also relaxing. ASMR can also transcend to the eyes by helping them relax and even making them heavy enough to help you fall asleep.


For many viewers, when they watch slime videos, all other sounds, distractions and visuals are blocked out. The videos specifically make you as the viewer focus on what is happening in front of you. That in itself is relaxing because all the sounds that are typically associated with distractions, busyness, or stresses are blocked out – including things like footsteps or any sound that triggers “work” in your mind.


The hot knives videos do the same function. They are helpful visually to calm the viewer and the sound that some of the knives make when they cut through a surface helps the viewer get relaxed.


These techniques are inexpensive ways of getting yourself to calm down and block out whatever stresses are plaguing your life. One should use them if they genuinely help. If they don’t, however, there are other quality ways to relax, including medication.


Whatever method works best for you is the one you should use. And if it helps you save money while doing it, heck – even that can add on to the peace of mind you’re already receiving from the videos.



This section of VARSITY is a vehicle for expression on any topic by members of the UCT community. The opinions within this section are not necessarily those of the VARSITY collective or its advertisers.


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