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The Foundations

Benefits of Cupping

Silicone cupping activates a remarkable suction-like effect from the skin, deep into the tissues. This draws stagnant blood and interstitial fluids to the surface for the body to eliminate, allowing nutrient-rich blood flow to the area to repair damaged tissue. 

  • Traditionally, cupping is used as a technique for muscle healing, relaxation and pain relief.
  • By opening the pathways of flow deep in the tissues, you support your body's innate healing processes.
  • The stimulation of blood flow throughout your face and body promotes rejuvenation and the health of your skin.
  • Improving lymphatic drainage can de-puff, detoxify and re-define your tissues.
  • Softening fascia in the muscles reduces adhesions to improve function, tone and elasticity.
  • Releasing stagnant tissues in the body assists us in supporting our energetic and emotional flow.
  • A kind self-care routine allows you to reduce tension and improve relaxation overall.
  • It is a beautiful compliment to a wellness routine including a healthy diet and movement. 
How to activate your cups

Apply your favorite massage oil: this ensures smooth gliding and enhances the suction effect.

Squeeze and Place: Gently squeeze the bulb of the cup and place it onto the skin.

Release: To remove the cups, simply press on the edge of the cup to release the suction.

  • The closer to the base of the cup you squeeze, the stronger the suction will be. Tune in to the pressure that feels more nurturing for your body and skin.
  • Start in moderation so that you can explore how cupping feels on your body, and can adjust your practice to avoid intense bruising.
  • This may be especially important for your face ritual where you may experience some redness but may not want any deeper markings
4 Cupping Techniques
  • Traditional Cupping: place cups on your chosen trigger points or acupressure points and leave the cups on for 5-15 minutes. Monitoring the effects and adjusting accordingly.
  • Pump Cupping: lightly suction for 1-3 seconds and releases, as you move along the muscle.
  • Glide Cupping: create suction on one side of an area. While maintaining pressure, glide the cup along to the opposite side of the area. Release and repeat 2 or 3 times.
  • Free cupping: activate your cups and move in gentle circles or horizontally across the tissue.

The vacuuming affect of silicone cups promotes movement in the blood and interstitial fluids. Therefore cupping interacts with your systems of circulation and detoxification. Please consult your doctor if either of these aspects are suspected health concerns, or if you are pregnant, or on any medications. This is not limited to, but includes those with circulation issues, kidney and liver concerns and those on blood thinners, aspirin or pain killers. 

If you are unsure of how cupping interacts with your system, start moderately, with lighter suction for shorter periods, on areas of the body that are more muscular, like your legs or arms. The goal is to not over-whelm your system with releasing to many toxins too quickly. Stay well hydrated. 

Areas to avoid

There are a few main areas to avoid when cupping, and this includes softer more vascularized regions of the body. Namely, behind the knees, the groin area, the arm pit, the glands in the front of the neck, taking extra precautions around the carotid artery on the left hand side.  These areas can be gently messaged with your finger tips to activate the nearby lymph nodes and promoted detoxification.  

  • Avoid damaged or exposed veins. 
  • Avoid cupping areas of open cuts, bruises and acute swelling. 
  • Avoid areas where you may have fillers, botox or other delicate enhancements. 
How to care for your cups

 Cleaning: after every use, clean with a gentle, non-toxic soap and allow to dry.

Once dry, store in clean draw or cupboard. For sanitation reasons, it might be beneficial to wash your cups before use, if you haven’t used them for an extended period of time. 

Avoid prolonged sun exposure as this may advance the aging of the cups. 

We recommended replacing your cups if severe peeling and discoloration occur, potentially every 3-5 years, depending on usage. Store your cups in a safe place away from sun exposure, pets and little ones.

What your cupping marks are communicating about your tissues.

Cupping marks are the discolorations that can occur on the skin after a cupping therapy session. The appearance and intensity of these marks may vary among individuals, at different times.  Certain aspects of these marks may be interpreted to help discover what may be occurring deeper in the tissues, and guide some practitioners with their treatment plan. Cupping marks are usually temporary and fade within a few days to a couple of weeks. 

 Here are some common types of cupping marks and what they may indicate:

Light Pink to Red Marks: These marks are generally considered normal and are often seen after cupping. They are a sign that blood flow has been brought to the surface of the skin, and they may indicate that the cupping has successfully released tension and improved circulation in the treated area. Light pink marks typically fade within a few days.

Dark Red or Purple Marks: Deeper red or purple marks are more intense and may suggest greater stagnation or tension in the tissues. Darker marks can be more common in areas where there is more pain, muscle tension and deeper inflammation in the tissues. They usually take longer to fade, potentially up to two weeks.

Brown or Black Marks: Very dark or black marks may indicate older, more chronic issues in the treated area. These marks are often seen when cupping is used to address long-standing muscular or fascial restrictions. The darkness of the marks may be due to old, congealed blood or tissue damage. These marks can take longer to fade.

Blue or Green Marks: Blue or green marks can indicate the presence of trapped fluids or metabolic waste products in the tissues. These colors are often associated with cupping's potential detoxification effects. They are generally not as common as red or purple marks.

No Marks: Not everyone who undergoes cupping therapy will develop visible marks. Some people may not show discolorations at all, even if the treatment is successful. 

Pump, Glide and Free cupping are unlikely to leave long lasting marks, as this is a gentle cumulative treatment that works with multiple systems within the body. For example, the circulation, lymphatic and fascial systems. 

Our favorite massage oils

Where do we even begin, there are so many great body oils out there.  In no particular order , just alphabetical .

  1. Goop After Glow Body Oil
  2. Gya Labs Massage Oil
  3. Oak Essentials Dew Body Oil
  4.  Osea Undura Algea Oil
  5. Papa and Barkley Releaf Oil (CBD)

Types of Cups

Traditional cups come in many different shapes and forms, from glass, to plastic, to wood, with mechanical suction pumps and without. 

Within this modern silicone range there are 3 types of cups. 

Cone Shaped: this is a single dome shape, that is simple to use and easy to obtain suction on more curved areas of body. 

Double Tier: the reduced volume, enhances the suction, works well in areas of the body with larger surface areas.  

Face cup: this is a simple cone shape, hold at the base and mostly used for gliding and re-creating suction frequently. Our faces are individually contoured, and the glide distance is generally shorter, thus the suction needs to be recreated to maintain flow. 

Our set is comprised of 5 sizes, 2 in each size.

85mm*, 70mm, 65mm*, 55mm, 50mm, 37mm circumferences.

*Double tier design

Benefits of Silicone Cups

Silicone cups are excellent for glide cupping and are very gentle,, safe, effective and easy to use, especially as a self-care practice at home, for both the  face and body.

They are safer to use, and still create a powerful suction and an effective treatment.

We feel all these factors combined promote consistency in a practice.

Silicone cups do not overwhelm the system easily, they are safest for self-care.

Silicone is a long standing material used for food storage and medical items alike, and has been deemed safe to use on the skin and for other aspects of bodily care. 

Silicone is long lasting, which is not only beneficial for you, but also the environment. 

And when the time comes, silicone is recyclable and re-usable. 

Silicone Safety

Materials: Our cups are made from hypoallergenic, non-toxic, and odorless silicone, ensuring a safe and comfortable experience for your skin. Tested to FDA safety standards and international standards for skin safety by an international third party qualifying body.

However, each body is very unique and may react to different materials at different times. We suggest a small patch test, before your beginning your practice. See the section on caring for you cups to ensure silicone safety.

Use THE FACE & BODY CUPPING SET for gentle cupping techniques only.

Fascia, Lymphatic Drainage and Cupping

What is lymph?

On the ground level our lymphatic system is built from a complex network of tissues, vessels, organs, and nodes that comprise our waste removal system of our body, and deliver combatting white blood cells to areas in need. 

Specifically, the lymphatic system :

Drains excess interstitial fluid: The lymphatic network collects excess tissue fluid, called interstitial fluid, and returns it to the bloodstream. This helps prevent tissue swelling.

Fights pathogens: Lymph nodes and lymphatic organs contain immune cells which help the body identify and fight off infections and diseases.

Absorbs dietary fats: the lymph network in the small intestine helps absorb and transport dietary fats and fat-soluble vitamins, such as vitamins A, D, E, and K.

Here are some key components of the lymphatic network:

  • Lymph: Lymph is a clear fluid that originates from blood plasma and is made up of water, proteins, white blood cells, and other substances.
  • Lymphatic vessels: These vessels form a network throughout the body, similar to blood vessels. They transport lymph from the body's tissues to larger lymphatic vessels and eventually back into the bloodstream.
  • Lymph nodes: Lymph nodes are small, bean-shaped structures that act as filters and immune system hubs. They contain immune cells that help detect and fight infections.
  • Lymphatic organs: The spleen, tonsils, and thymus are considered lymphatic organs and assist in immune function. the spleen filters blood and helps remove damaged blood cells, while the thymus is involved in the development of T cells, a type of white blood cell important for immune responses.

There are many factors that affect our lymphatic system, such as diet, stress,  hormones, environment, hydration, lifestyle and activity levels.  Cupping practitioners believe a cupping practice can be an important competent of keeping our lymphatic system robust.

What is Fascia?

Fascia is a connective tissue that surrounds and defines muscles, organs, and all structures of our body. It is a network of collagen fibers and cells that provide support and structure to the body.  Imagine a spiderweb-like matrix running from head to toe, woven in and out of each and every part of our organs, muscles and all our soft tissues. It is all connected.

There are three main types of fascia:

  • Superficial fascia: This layer lies just beneath the skin and is composed of loose connective tissue and fat. It helps to insulate the body and store energy.
  • Deep fascia: Deep fascia surrounds muscles and groups of muscles, providing structural support and helping to transmit forces generated by muscle contractions. It also helps to compartmentalize muscle groups.
  • Visceral fascia: This type of fascia surrounds and supports the organs within the body cavities, such as the thoracic and abdominal cavities. It helps to hold the organs in their proper positions and allows for movement and flexibility.

Fascia naturally has a sinewy texture, and is slightly more fibrous than our soft tissues

When fascia becomes dehydrated, it hardens and becomes stiff.  When fascia is hydrated, it has elasticity, a sponge-like quality and transmits signals freely.  Imagine how your kitchen sponge responds to water. Fascia is hydrated through movement and touch, as the space in and between cells open up and can be nourished with fresh fluid.

Typically, fascia under trauma, creates thick fibrous clumps, scar tissue know as adhesions. Any adhesion in one area of the body, has potential to create imbalance anywhere along the facial chain. Restricted or damaged fascia can manifest as pain and discomfort, and limit mobility, even elsewhere in the body. It also means that the flow of blood, lymph and interstitial fluids is blocked, and the communication mechanism is compromised. 

Fascia is not just a passive structural element; it also has an important role in the body’ proprioception (the body's sense of its position in space). It plays a roll in the communication of our surroundings to our the nervous system and can influence muscle tension as a response.  With this connection to our sensory system, new research is un-veiling that our fascia may have its own memory and may have a more emotional component to it, than previously ideated. It is becoming a bigger part of the conversation in fields researching the body-mind connection. 

Like the lymphatic system, there are many different components of maintaining healthy fascia, including diet and lifestyle. Stretching, dynamic movements, myo-facial release, massage, infra-red sauna and cupping, are all incredible ways of maintaining healthy fascia. The general idea is to break down any overly developed fibrous clumps, to keep all the pathways for movement, fluid flow and communication free. Without care, fascia can naturally harden as we age, and many practitioners believe this is why we become gradually stiffer with age. Scientists are learning more about fascia each year and it seems the importance of fascia is growing.

How does cupping activate lymphatic drainage?
  • Stimulates movements of the fluids
  • Assists in the removal of waste products and toxins from the body.
  • Promotes the movement of white blood cells and immune cells in the lymphatic system.
How does cupping improve your fascia?

The effects of cupping on fascia are primarily related to improved circulation and tissue mobilization:

  • Increased blood flow: can help nourish the fascia and the underlying tissues.
  • Tissue mobilization:  cupping can lift and stretch the fascial tissues. This can help to release adhesions and restrictions within the fascia.
  • Inflammation reduction:  removes inflammation from the fascia.
How does cupping help scar tissue?

Some practitioners have used cupping to assist in the healing of scars. This conglomerated tissue has potential to create blockages in our fluid transportation systems. Many therapeutic techniques like deep tissue massage, lasers, gua sha were created to breakdown adhesions in the fascia and promote better circulation, lymphatic drainage and range of motion of our muscles and joints. Cupping is yet another way to support these processes by:

  • Improved circulation:  which can aid in the healing process and reduce the appearance of scars over time.
  • Softening scar tissue: the mechanical action of cupping, which involves creating suction and drawing the skin and underlying tissues into the cup, can help stretch and soften the scar tissue. This can be particularly beneficial for older scars that have become rigid or raised.
  • Enhanced lymphatic drainage: Cupping may encourage the lymphatic system to remove excess fluids and cellular debris from the area, which can reduce swelling and promote the breakdown of scar tissue.
  • Pain relief: cupping therapy can provide relief from pain associated with scar tissue by increasing blood flow and reducing muscle tension.
  • Increased collagen production: cupping may stimulate collagen production, which is essential for skin and tissue repair. Collagen helps improve the elasticity and appearance of the scar tissue.

Although practitioners have seen improvements with scars through a cupping practice, it is important to note that results may take some time, and can vary from person to person, depending on the scar, its age and location. We recommend working with your practitioner to develop and in-home practice that can suit your specific needs. 

Stay Hydrated

When considering cellular health, it is essential to promote adequate hydration to assist in the 2 main functions of cupping :

  • Detoxification: Proper hydration helps flush out toxins and waste products from cells and tissues. When you're hydrated, your cells can effectively remove harmful substances, reducing the risk of damage and disease. 

  • Nutrient Transport: Water acts as a carrier for essential nutrients, allowing them to move into and out of cells. This transportation of nutrients is crucial for cell growth, repair, and energy production.

When working with the systems of detoxification, and circulation with cupping, we recommend combining your practice with lemon water, herbal teas or your choice of natural electrolytes.

Encourage Results

Like all practices, consistency is key when it comes to achieving results with these cupping methods. Begin by creating a schedule for your cupping sessions, 1-3 times per week. A mini cupping practice, is always better than nothing, don’t be discouraged if you don’t achieve your exact schedule. Just begin. Noting any changes in how you feel physically and emotionally, can often be great self-research and motivating.

Our Practices

The Leg Cupping Practice
The Face Cupping Practice
The Digestive Support Cupping Practice
The Neck and Shoulder Cupping Practice
The Lymphatic Drainage Cupping Practice