Broken Capillaries: How to Treat Them

Broken capillaries mar your complexion just like other blemishes such as zits. They can appear on your nose, chin, and cheeks. The red zigzag marks are hard to cover with makeup and look unsightly. They can also occur on your chest, legs, and other areas of your body. In this article, we will explore how to prevent and erase broken capillaries.

9. What Are Broken Capillaries?

Broken Capillaries

Broken capillaries are often called spider veins, but their medical name is telangiectasia. The tiny reddish or purple veins have a threadlike appearance and are located just below the skin’s surface. They occur when the blood vessels widen and then suddenly narrow, which causes damage.

The diluted veins do not disappear and are easy to see. They look like small blood spots or tiny tree branches.

8. What Causes Broken Capillaries?

Spider Veins

Broken capillaries occur for a wide array of reasons, such as sun damage, skin aging, rosacea, and genetics. Sometimes the cause is unknown. However, if your parents have broken capillaries then you stand a good chance of also developing the condition.

The sun damages the capillaries. It is believed that the ultraviolet rays weaken the blood vessels in the skin and makes them move closer to the skin’s surface. Rosacea is another cause of broken capillaries. The inflammation in the skin from the condition is another contributing factor.

The older you get, the more likely you are to see broken blood vessels. This is probably because the aging skin is far weaker and thinner than young skin, which is plumped by collagen. When you are young, collagen is rapidly replaced, but aging and hormonal changes dramatically slow down collagen production, which thins the skin.

7. Preventing Broken Capillaries

Spider Vein

You can’t swap out your genes. We all must deal with the hand we have been dealt, but you can take steps to prevent broken capillaries:

  • Avoid skin trauma
  • Do not aggressively scrub your skin
  • Gently exfoliate and do not harm the skin during the process
  • Stop pimple popping
  • Wear sunscreen to avoid sunburn or UV damage
  • Protect your skin from windburn
  • Try to avoid extreme temperatures

6. Protecting Your Skin

Use Sunscreen

Rosacea is made worse by inflammation and capillaries become visible, especially when accompanied by ruddiness, which is an overly red complexion. Ideally, you should moisturize every day and wear sunscreen to control rosacea.

Sunscreen and moisturizer will not fix existing broken capillaries, but it might prevent future ones from developing. Remember, you want to avoid sunburn or excessive skin irritation.

If you are outside in extreme temperature, then take the necessary steps to protect your skin. Wear sunscreen and moisturizer to provide a layer of protection that acts like armor.

When choosing a sunscreen, try to pick one with an SPF that is 30 or higher to give the best protection.

5. Avoid All Vasodilators

spicy food

Vasodilators are things like alcohol, spicy foods, heat, and caffeine. They all work by allowing the blood vessels in your body to fill with blood, which then causes the capillaries to become far more visible. They will also cause the skin to take on a reddish hue.

Below are foods that can make rosacea worse:

  • Fermented foods
  • Alcohol
  • Spicy foods
  • Chocolate
  • Hot beverages
  • Marinated foods
  • Tomatoes

4. Try VBeam Laser


Sadly, even with the best preventatives, you might still develop broken capillaries. If you are looking for ways to combat the unsightly blemishes, then try VBeam laser, which is a common treatment option.

The VBeam laser can emit 595 nanometers of ultraviolet light that red absorbs. The blood vessel heats quickly and stats to explode. The broken capillary then bruises and is absorbed by the body. Over time, the broken capillary shrivels and starts to disappear.

The higher the heat used, the greater the chance of bruising. After treatment, a bruise might develop that will last from five to seven days before it starts to disappear. When lower heat is used, the bruising is not as severe, but the broken capillary may require several treatments before it starts to heal and disappear.

Ideally, you should always talk with your physician to determine if you need high heat or low heat to treat the broken capillaries.

3. Broad Band Light Therapy (BBL)

Broad Band Light Therapy

BBL is like VBeam therapy. They both rely on a laser that emits multiple wavelengths. Usually, the 560-nanometer wavelength is used to target the broken capillaries. However, a BBL laser can also treat acne, brown spots, and skin texture problems.

Unlike the VBeam, red does not pick up the BBL laser as easily. Usually, patients will require several treatments before they start to report results.

2. Don’t Rely on Electrodesiccation

Spider Veins On Leg

For years electrodesiccation has been used to treat broken capillaries. The system cauterizes the broken blood vessels. However, lasers are now the gold standard and much safer. With electrodesiccation, severe scarring can occur, so it’s best to avoid the outdated treatment method and always go with the modern laser choices.

1. Use a Topical Treatment


Vitamin A creams (tretinoin) work well on broken capillaries because they work to boost the collagen levels in the skin. Extra collagen helps to minimize the appearance of broken capillaries. Ideally, you should use the cream or serum every day to fight inflammation and strengthen your failing capillary system’s walls.