Capillaries are tiny blood vessels that connect the veins and arteries in your face and throughout your body. They can become visible on the skin’s surface, especially where the skin is thin. Broken capillaries look like thin red threads on the skin, and because of their telltale, webbed appearance, are often referred to as ‘Spider Veins’.

broken capillaries

It’s not difficult to damage capillaries, especially on the face. Because they are delicate, tiny, and just under the skin’s surface they can twist, dilate and break. Once broken, they usually remain that way, and typically do not constrict back to their normal thickness or repair themselves without intervention.


  • broken capillariesScrubbing your face too vigorously or washing with water that is too hot
  • Excessive exposure to the sun
  • Excessive consumption of alcohol (chronic alcohol intake can increase your blood pressure, causing the veins in your face to dilate)
  • Smoking (damage to your circulatory system may enable capillaries to break more easily)
  • Obesity (excessive body fat can cause an additional load on the veins and capillaries—most commonly seen in the legs)


  • Aging (the skin thins as it ages, making it easier to see broken capillaries on the surface)
  • Family history
  • General Rosacea (skin prone to redness and flushing brought on by Rosacea can often be accompanied by broken capillaries)
  • Pregnancy (increased blood flow throughout the body during pregnancy can result in vein enlargement and broken capillaries)
  • Hormonal changes during puberty, pregnancy and menopause

Depending on the severity of the area in question and its impact on your emotional well-being, there are several options available to help reduce your risk, and reduce or remove areas of broken capillaries on your skin.

Preventative treatments range from home remedies such as sunscreen, diet and lifestyle changes, vitamin supplements, topical creams and a gentler cleaning regimen.

Laser therapy using Vascular/Pigmented Lesion Lasers such as Excel V and VariLite KTP can be very effective. In some cases, the underlying veins causing the condition can be treated with sclerotherapy. After a thorough examination and consultation, Sante Medical will create a custom treatment plan for your broken capillaries.

Related Procedures To Think About

Vascular / Pigmented Lesion

Vascular and pigmented lesion lasers are designed to reduce the appearance of facial veins, redness and benign vascular lesions.

Forever Young BBL