What is cupping? Cupping is a technique where a suction cup is used on the skin to pull up muscles. There are several types of cups used such as bamboo, glass, plastic and silicone. The cups are left on for 5 to 10 minutes , leaving behind those familiar circular marks, which fade away in 2 or 3 days. Many misconceptions that cupping is only restricted to adults, but actually it is also safe and applicable to children.