Sometimes I think to myself, Should I try cupping? and then I see photos like Hilary Rhoda‘s recent Instagram and begin to think again. In fact, I don’t think I ever want to try cupping. Not ever–seriously, her picture is that stressful.
Rewind: So, cupping is an ancient technique that has been treated as a sort of fad since celebrities began going cupping-crazy not too long ago. Here’s a description of the process according to Pacific College:
Cupping is the term applied to a technique that uses small glass cups or bamboo jars as suction devices that are placed on the skin. There are several ways that a practitioner can create the suction in the cups. One method involves swabbing rubbing alcohol onto the bottom of the cup, then lighting it and putting the cup immediately against the skin. Suction can also be created by placing an inverted cup over a small flame, or by using an alcohol-soaked cotton pad over an insulating material (like leather) to protect the skin, then lighting the pad and placing an empty cup over the flame to extinguish it. …
Once the suction has occurred, the cups can be gently moved across the skin. … The suction in the cups causes the skin and superficial muscle layer to be lightly drawn into the cup. Cupping is much like the inverse of massage – rather than applying pressure to muscles, it uses gentle pressure to pull them upward. … Once suctioned, the cups are generally left in place for about ten minutes while the patient relaxes.
It is supposed to help with ailments like chronic pain, stress, and stiffness, among other things, which leads me back to Hilary Rhoda’s photo. The model captioned her Instagram shot “The cure to this chronic back/neck pain?! Please let it be! #cupping #acupuncture #massage.”
Hopefully it truly does help, because here were the results:
Yeah. Not fun, not in the slightest. I think I will stick to my thoroughly relaxing massages, thanks.
We all know that “beauty is pain”–except it really doesn’t have to be–because procedures exist like the vampire facelifts and Brazilian waxes. Plucking hurts. Shaving is annoying (and occasionally painful). I mean, cupping obviously has a different purpose than any of those despite often being done by spas that also offer those types of services, but the aftermath is still awful: bloody, bruised and really, really great material for Instagram. I do wish Hilary and her back the best, though, because this is 50 shades of stressful to even look at.