NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Michael Phelps and the big red marks on his body put the practice of cupping in the international spotlight.
Now, the technique is being touted as a new skincare phenomenon.
The ancient therapy of cupping is known to decrease pain, increase blood flow and act as a type of deep-tissue massage.
Face cupping is putting a new twist on things.
“It does pull toxins out of your body, but this one we’re constantly moving, so you don’t get bruised,” skincare specialist Ildi Pekar told CBS2’s Alex Denis.
Pekar said facial cupping reduces wrinkles and puffiness caused by stress and daily exposure to toxins.
“If they wear a lot of makeup and they wear a lot of toxic makeup, which is in right now, they see a great result,” she said.
First, your face is thoroughly cleansed. To prepare the skin for cupping, Pekar uses a device to stimulate the lymphatic system.
“It has a magnetic field to it, so I’m just pressing on all your pressure points,” she said.
Denis tried the treatment herself and said she could feel the suction but wasn’t uncomfortable.
“You’re going to have a little redness, but that’s what we want,” Pekar told her. “Circulation gets more oxygen to your skin.”
There are also some at-home kits available for cupping, but Pekar suggests having the treatment done by a professional first so you understand how to do it correctly and get the most out of it.
“If you don’t use this right, that’s where the bruising will come,” she said.
Not everyone is convinced that cupping is the trick to flawless skin.
“You’re going to come to your dermatologist and say ‘how come I have all these broken little blood vessels on my face?’” cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Howard Sobel said. “I don’t know what long-term affect it would have.”
Denis said she saw reduced puffiness, and best of all, no bruises.
A 75-minute treatment cost $330, or cups for home use range in cost from just a few dollars to $50.