Just when you thought the spider veins on your legs were a problem, you notice them on your face. Yikes! But not to worry, this is completely normal. The skin on the face is thin, sensitive, and constantly exposed to the elements. It’s the perfect storm to develop spider veins.
The good news is, facial spider veins are preventable…or if it’s too late, treatable! In this article, we’ll talk you through why they happen and how you can remove them for good.
What Causes Spider Veins on the Face?
Spider veins form when the capillaries in the skin on your face become dilated. This happens from poor blood circulation and aging, damaged skin. Broken blood vessels on the face can develop at any age, but some people may have a higher chance of developing them than others.
Some causes of broken blood vessels on the face include:
- Genetics: People with family members who experience spider veins are more likely to have them.
- Excessive sun exposure: Sun damage can enlarge the blood vessels and draw them closer to the skin.
- Changes in weather: Drastic changes in the weather can affect blood circulation, causing the skin in the face to flush. The blood vessels may burst and cause a spider vein.
- Changes in pressure: A sudden, extreme change in pressure can cause spider veins to appear. A hard sneeze or vomiting can cause this change in pressure.
- Pregnancy: Hormonal changes during pregnancy may also cause spider veins on the face. But they usually disappear after birth.
- Environmental irritants: Exposure to certain chemicals or environmental pollutants may damage the skin and make blood vessels more visible.
- Rosacea: Rosacea is a common condition that causes fair skin to become flushed and red due to enlarged veins.
- Alcohol consumption: Alcohol can dilate the blood vessels temporarily. Frequent alcohol consumption can lead to longer-lasting broken blood vessels and redness on the face.
- Injuries: Head injuries that cause bruising may cause broken blood vessels. In this case, the blood vessels usually heal when the bruise does.
Treatment for Spider Veins on the Face
- Sclerotherapy: Sclerotherapy uses injections of sclerosing agents to help spider veins disappear in a short period of time.
- Laser Therapy: Laser therapy uses intense laser lights to destroy spider veins. However, laser therapy can also damage the skin, which could make it sensitive during recovery.
- Intense Pulled Light (IPL) Therapy: IPL therapy uses special lights that penetrate into the deeper layers of skin without damaging the top layer. This treatment may mean less recovery time and less damage to the skin.
Home Remedies for Spider Veins on the Face
- Cold compress: A simple cold compress, such as an ice pack or bag of frozen peas, can be applied to the face after sun or heat exposure. The cold may help reduce the appearance of burst blood vessels in the face.
- Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar acts as an astringent on the skin, pulling it tight to reduce redness. This may help with the appearance of spider veins in some people.
- Aloe vera: The gel from an aloe vera plant may be helpful in treating skin redness. Research has found that aloe vera could reduce redness but it tends to dry out the skin cells.
- Vitamin C: Vitamin C supplements may help reduce the appearance of broken blood vessels on the face. It plays a key role in keeping the blood vessels healthy.
How to Prevent Spider Veins on the Face
- Avoid extreme heat: Very high temperatures from spas, saunas, or hot water may dilate the blood vessels and increase the chances of spider veins appearing.
- Limit sun exposure: Wearing sunscreen, a hat, and long layers of clothing can help reduce the chances of spider veins from sun damage.
- Wear protection: Protective gear may help avoid spider veins caused by an injury. Examples include facemasks and helmets for baseball, cycling, or riding a motorcycle.
- Avoid vasodilators: Vasodilators cause vessels to fill with blood and may make spider veins more noticeable. Common vasodilators include caffeine, spicy foods, and alcohol.
Spider veins cause no pain or additional symptoms. But it’s normal to be bothered by their appearance. If this sounds like you, try to determine the direct cause and take steps to treat it and avoid it from happening again. In some cases, broken blood vessels on the face may be a sign of an underlying medical condition. Anyone uncertain about the cause of their spider veins should visit a vein specialist for a proper examination and diagnosis.
At Delaware Advanced Vein Center, our medical staff has years of experience helping people with their spider and varicose veins. We would love to welcome you to our family of satisfied patients.