If you’ve ever found yourself spending hours watching videos of dough rising, paint mixing, carpet cleaning, soap cutting or slime making, then you’ll understand what makes oddly satisfying videos so oddly satisfying.
In case you didn’t know, oddly satisfying videos are short clips that show mundane activities, which viewers may find strangely, sometimes inexplicably, fulfilling. This trend has quickly transformed into a huge online content niche all over social media, and TikTok is no exception. By simply searching for the hashtag #oddlysatisfying, you should be able to see how many people create content like this, and how many viewers actually respond to these types of posts.
But what is it about these videos that get people so hooked in the first place? Is there a magic ingredient that their creators add, enabling them to rouse positive emotions like satisfaction, joy and relaxation, from watching clips of ordinary, everyday things being done? Many believe this is due to a combination of several different factors, both psychological and physiological.
From a scientific perspective, watching videos like these are believed to produce a reaction in the body called an autonomous sensory meridian response (ASMR), which is like a skin-tingling sensation that spurs positive emotions. When this happens, the brain releases serotonin and dopamine, chemicals that are both known to make people happy. While this doesn’t happen for everyone, it’s easy to see how those who react this way to oddly satisfying videos get hooked on watching them.
Another factor is the repetitive, often rhythmic nature of these videos, which brings an almost meditative quality to them. Many of these oddly satisfying videos also feature images of symmetry and balance. This video by TikTok creator @dublaj..adam shows a man chopping leaves off a plant, creating an attractive pineapple-like pattern as he works. Even the sound that his shovel makes is therapeutically rhythmic.
In soap bar cutting and flower foam peeling videos, there is evenness and uniformity apparent in the end result, as you can see in these two posts from @satisfyingsensation https://vt.tiktok.com/YdCNMn/ and @sosatisfying. https://vt.tiktok.com/YdrkAX/
A snail laying eggs or a snake molting are likely to be two of the last things you will think of when asked to describe something aesthetically pleasing, but these TikTok videos by @joopo https://vt.tiktok.com/Ydy8Cw/ and @complex https://vt.tiktok.com/Ydxqfy/ might change your mind.
Another example is paint mixing videos, where you see several colors perfectly blending into one. These are visually pleasing and gratifying, making people want to see them over and over again. Similarly, the patterns formed in this TikTok video by @imbmtllc are almost hypnotic to watch. https://vt.tiktok.com/Yd4XXD/
Some of these oddly satisfying videos demonstrate processes completed until the end, like those that show dough rising and bread baking, and even slime making. In these DIY-type clips, random ingredients and shapeless mixtures are turned into beautiful end products, like crusty baked creations and colorful, glittery blobs of slime.
Ever wondered how different oddly satisfying videos would make you feel? Download TikTok on your iOS and Android devices, and start browsing through all the oddly satisfying content available on the app today.