By: Erik Weldon

Have you ever been on Youtube trying to find something to watch when all of a sudden, you see a live video of an animated girl studying. If you haven’t seen it, this is one of the most popular live streams for studying, and featured in it is Lofi music. If you frequent the side of Youtube trying to find music, you’re bound to have run across Lofi music. What is this genre of music and does it actually help you to study?

What is Lofi music?

It’s an abbreviation for low fidelity, a musical term for poor recording. Poor recording can be anything from background noise, to audio distortions. You know when you’re at a pool and they have music playing and the bass doesn’t sound as good as in your car. The genre of Lofi music embraces those imperfections and doesn’t cut them out unlike more professional music. 

Lofi has several characteristics to it that make it unmistakeable. In any song labeled as Lofi there will be a drum loop of some kind. In the specific, and most popular genre, Lofi hip hop there will be samples of other noises, vocals, or nostalgic noises. This is taken from the boom bap movement in hip hop music. The chord progressions in the tracks are most commonly jazz progressions. All of these characteristics combined create the vibe you can’t find elsewhere. 

Why it helps

There are at least two areas this genre of music helps, brain activity, and your mood. The drum loops in Lofi music become predictable at a certain point allowing you to tune them out and they become background noise. With that background noise that’s predictable and you studying you’re activating both sides of your brain. Meaning there’s an increase in activity improving your focus. Sure not all Lofi music is slow, but it does have a mellow vibe. The mellowness of the music releases serotonin, the happy hormone. While we’re in a happy state, even if we’re not doing something so pleasant, dopamine is released. Dopamine is the hormone responsible for enhancing your alertness and motivation. 


Does Lofi music actually help you study? Science says it will. Still don’t believe it? Take me for example. I used to have a hard time getting any homework done. Doesn’t matter if I was interested in the topic or not. My younger sister introduced it to me. One day out of curiosity I turned it on while studying. Immediately I was getting assignments done and wasn’t as distracted. It’s all subjective though, if you still aren’t sure after reading this maybe it’s time to check it out for yourself. 

Here’s the channel that started the craze:

Looking for a playlist instead of a video?