Have you overdone your time in the sun? If you have gotten one too many sunburns or have lighter skin, you may suffer from facial spider veins. These tiny webs of blue, red or purple blood vessels in your face are sometimes referred to as “broken capillaries,” though they’re simply enlarged, not broken. Either way, spider veins on your face are unsightly and difficult to cover up. How did they get there and what can you do to get rid of them?
What Causes Spider Veins?
Spider veins on your face can be triggered by pregnancy or too much sun exposure, but they also may simply be a result of genetics. Facial spider veins don’t stem from varicose veins as they sometimes do in the legs and generally don’t indicate other vein problems. They are usually treated for cosmetic reasons only. If yours aren’t hereditary, they can be caused by anything that dilates the blood vessels and also weakens the collagen in the surrounding tissue, such as aging, oral contraceptives, hormone therapy or inflammatory skin conditions like rosacea. Weakened veins lose their ability to shrink back down to a normal size after dilation, making those squiggly lines permanent and more visible.
How a Specialist Can Help
A professional dermatologist or vein specialist can treat facial spider veins using IPL laser, as well as other laser therapies. Laser therapy is generally the preferred option for facial spider veins, though the cost can be $200 to $500 per session and is typically not covered by insurance. Bruising in the treated area is typical after laser treatments.
A vein specialist may be able to treat facial spider veins with sclerotherapy, depending on the vein size and location. Sclerotherapy is considered the gold standard of treatment for spider veins in the legs, but is not always the best choice for spider veins on the face. For example, if spider veins are under the eyes or are particularly small, laser would be the recommended treatment.
Reviewed on February 16, 2017