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Flirt Magazine

Sexual Healing: The Art of Erotic Cupping for your Pleasure

This is a different kind of "sexual therapy" that doesn't involve work but, rather, play. Erotic play, that is.

Woman with fire cups on her back
Erotic Cupping: Perfect technique for the kink-curious and kink-abstinent.

With sex, you can always get creative. Two people can always push the boundaries, bring in the dirty talk, the imagination, the fantasy, the fetishes. It can even happen online - adult chat rooms, anyone?

But dirty talk online is one thing. Using everyday, non-sexual practices in your sexual repertoire is something else entirely. That's pretty much what the first couple using erotic cupping was thinking: "Hmm, this feels good...but will it survive being eroticised?

As it turns out, YES!: Erotic cupping is very much a thing and it's guaranteed to come to a bedroom near you whether you and your partner consider yourselves to be masters of the kink or not.

When you think about it, "cupping" is unlike being whipped or using clamps, whips, blindfolds and other "accoutrement". Why? Because actual people in their everyday lives pay for this "massage" technique, the way your grandmother maybe pays to see an acupuncturist.

Like all early adopters, kinksters took one look at cupping and thought, "Duh. There's pleasure, pain, bruising and objects you use on the body. Sign me up!" But the ease and safety of this technique makes it perfect for the kink-curious and kink-abstinent.

It's the art of erotic cupping.

The Agony and the Ecstasy of Erotic Cupping

The whole point of erotic cupping is to, like any "kinky" practice, heighten arousal and increase a body's sensation. Other erotic practices that involve these use clamping, stimulation, object contact with skin (ropes, leather whips, chains), deprival of senses (blindfolds or gags) and even asphyxiation (in the art of "shibari") to do this.

With erotic cupping, you've got pressure. Sensation and arousal of your body (or your partner's) comes from the suction and release of pressure from the cups. Like acupuncture and QiGong energy fields, cupping is thought to have originated in Chinese medicine and works with the body's "energy" or pressure points.

Pop the cup on the preferred area, press, twist (or pump) and lock in for the next 10 to 20 minutes. Et, voila! You have a nice, moon shaped welt and a release of pressure across the body that several users have sworn alleviates issues like diabetes, anxiety and muscular fatigue.

So what makes this practice erotic? Well, obviously, you'd take this method and apply it to the breasts, nipples, labia, and, for the lovers of more extreme sensation, the penis and/or the clit).

sexy blonde having erotic cupping reactions
Erotic cupping increases a body's sensation.

The "pressure" is so pleasurable because, rather than instant "pain" like a whip or an electrical impulse, there's a building of sensation and a release. This makes erotic cupping feel rather comfortable and pleasant.

If sex is an effective way to release endorphins then cupping just heightens that.

RELATED: Clamp Your Way to Cum: Using Genital Clamps for the Ultimate Orgasms

Anyone Care for a Second Cup?

Sometimes, the cupping is so good, you need a second cup. And a third. Luckily, there's a "type" of cup to suit your cravings.

First up is dry cupping. It's almost exactly like what it sounds like: cups (specifically designed for massage therapy), some with built-in pumps to heighten the suction power, meant to be placed over the body's area.

Easy peasy and probably where you're going to want to start.

Next comes "fire cupping" which is exactly like dry cupping, except that the cups are glass, not silicone, also specially designed for cupping, and involve using a small fair of forceps, a cotton ball dipping in alcohol and a very light flame that is then waved into the glass to heat the air, before it goes on your body.

Fire cupping is fine but presents a lot of need for control: you're trying to control the temperature inside and outside the cup (one's got to be hot while the other cooler) and control the amount of heat that is just right but not produce a situation that causes second and third degree burns.

PRO TIP: Be Safe!

Take a fire-cupping erotic class to learn from professionals how to safely initiate this practice. You should also always test the temperature of the cups on your own thigh first to see if you got it right.

The last variant is wet cupping, which involves either fire cupping or dry cupping...except that the area you place the cup on has small lacerations on the skin and the suction essentially pulls small amounts of blood. If you're a germaphobe or cringe at the sight of blood, avoid.

Cupper Beware!

Erotic cupping is taking areas of the body where there are the most nerve endings and where skin, usually, is quite thin, and applying that sensation of pressure and release. It's a deep tissue massage - except that your back, thighs, hamstrings and buttocks were built for deep tissue massages.

Your breasts, penis, labia, and clitoris were not. This can get quite intense very quickly so you should be starting with no more than one to two minutes per genital area.

If you're beginning with dry cupping, use cups that have three "levels" of intensity to their suction, so you can gauge and get use to how far you (or your partner) wants to take it.

And, lastly, don't make the mistake of using mason jars, random glass cups or mugs in your house. If you're going to do erotic cupping, do it right because the suction could pop these glass jars off and cause them to shatter.

handsome man after applying wrong erotic cupping method
Erotic cupping can get quite intense, take care!

Tips for a "Well-Made" Cup

  1. Keeping it smooth: It might help the process if you involve some coconut or baby oil or even water-based lubricant. Even with dry-cupping, a little bit of lube can make the cupping - the twisting and suction on the skin - smoother while keeping the sensation alive.
  2. The ideal place for cupping: Dry cupping allows you to pop these bad boys anywhere. That means genitalia is fair game. Being sexually-kinky doesn't mean not being safe, though, so avoid fire cupping on more sensitive areas.
  3. Start safe and scale up: It's like running - don't try and do a full hour of cupping the first time. Begin with two to five minutes. Consider this your version of the "sensual" massage.

PRO TIP: What About the Bruises?

Bruises from cupping can look like a hickey - except, way more alarming. You could definitely opt for some strong cover up but start off with cupping in places that can be easily hidden like the inner thigh or the back.

There's really no reason why BDSM needs to all dungeons and dragons and whips and leather. "Kink" is really whatever you and your partner want to make it. In the main, it's all about pushing your limits in the erotic arena.

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Image sources: (1) Tyler Olson | (2) georgerudy | (3) theartofphoto |