Gwyneth Paltrow’s back – red marks from an alternative spa therapy treatment
- Published: Sunday, September 24th 2006
- in Living Well
I’ll give you my layperson’s version of the Moxa Ventoza treatment I experienced at The Farm at San Benito. And then you can check out this CBS News segment on a similar treatment called “cupping” that aired the day after Gwyneth Paltrow was seen with round red marks on her back, which she attributed to this alternative therapy.
My therapist held a cotton ball she had soaked in alcohol at the end of a long pair of scissors. She then ignited the cotton ball by holding it over a flame. She took the flaming cotton ball and put it inside a heat-resistant glass for just a second or two. Apparently this removes the oxygen. Then the glass was immediately put on the skin of my back. A suction developed that was quite strong. The glass was left in place while she did the same thing with the other five glasses.
Once all six glasses were on my back with suction, she pulled the first one off and repeated the flaming-cotton-ball procedure with each glass until the cotton ball no longer burned. Then it was time for a new cotton ball. She repeated the whole sequence again. This goes on for about 30 minutes. The sensation is one of slight heat and a fairly strong suction feeling. The procedure was followed by a back massage and a cool cloth at the very end. The idea is to pull out toxins – if such a thing is possible. I do know that blood rushes to the surface of the skin, and I found the combination of slight warmth and the massage activity of the suction (as well as the subsequent massage) very comfortable. I did have red marks on my back for the rest of the day.
Mental note: Don’t do this before a big evening event if you will be wearing a backless dress. It must have been Gwyneth Paltrow’s first “cupping” treatment. Of course, she could have chosen a different dress!
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