Broken Veins

This condition is more commonly referred to as broken veins, dilated capillaries, red veins, or thread veins. Mi Skin Clinic  offers various treatments for vein/capillary damage, depending on the severity.


Various Treatments Available:

  • Laser Genesis: Rosacea/mild high colouring
  • Limelight IPL: Rosacea & mild high colouring
  • ND YAG Laser: for visible broken veins known as telangiectasia on face & legs.
  • Shortwave Diathermy: Spider naevi or blood spots

There are a number of reasons why broken veins develop. One of the functions of the skin is to regulate body temperature, so when we are very hot the small veins known as capillaries dilate to release heat & constrict to conserve heat, so when this process happens too often the elasticity in the capillary walls is lost resulting in dilated broken capillaries.

Treating the cause of broken veins is important, in order to prevent new ones forming.



HEREDITY: hereditary disposition comes high on the list of causes. When questioned clients often refer only to the mother’s history, overlooking the fact that skin problems can be inherited from father and his predecessors!

PREGNANCY : spider naevi often occur during pregnancy. If left untreated these often will disappear within six months of the birth. Small, blue veins appearing on the legs during pregnancy does not disappear. Unfortunately due to the depth of the feeder veins, treatment of the legs is not always successful. A long and strenuous labour can often aggravate existing facial telangiectasia.

KNOCKS/ HEAVY BLOWS/BRUISES: such as those caused by bumping into the corner of an office desk may often cause dilated capillaries to occur.

EXTREME TEMPERATURE: this can include frequent use of the steam bath and sauna – particularly if a cold shower is taken afterwards. Hot baths where the hot tap is left running are also not good for the skin due to the excessive heat. Long hours spent in a hot, steamy kitchen have a detrimental effect on facial capillaries. When the skin is subjected to any of the above on a regular basis, weak capillaries lose the ability to dilate and constrict efficiently, eventually remaining in a state of constant dilation.

MEDICATIONS: The application of steroid-based creams such as Betnovate thins the skin when used over a prolonged period of time, or when used too often. Increased redness, skin sensitivity and a tendency to develop telangiectasia are some of the side effects of steroid creams. Antibiotics may cause an increase in spider naevi. Antihistamines dehydrate the skin, which also becomes sensitive to sunlight.

ROSACEA: can vary from mild to severe forms. Telangiectasia first appears on the nose and cheeks in a butterfly appearance. As the condition progresses the skin texture thickens, papules form and the high colour intensifies. The colour can vary from pale pink in the early stages. Medical control is usually by the administration of tetracycline.

SMOKING : reduces the oxygen supply to the skin, therefore cellular regeneration is decreased and the skin is slower to heal. A smoker’s skin often has a grey, sluggish, dehydrated appearance.

SUNLIGHT: Over exposure to the sun’s rays or sun beds causes a number of problems. Tissue fibres are weakened; dehydration of the skin occurs; sunburn & / or prolonged sun exposure damages the surface capillaries. Weather affects skin in several ways; cold winds, strong sunlight & extremes of temperatures all encourage telangiectasia, especially where the surface capillary network is weak.
Therefore a cosmetic sunscreen containing Titanium Dioxide or Zinc Oxide must be used Winter & Summer to protect skin & prevent new veins form occurring.
A natural mineral based sunscreen that acts like a mirror and reflects the light is recommended for those suffering from high colouring and broken veins.
Many sunscreens are chemical based which absorb sunlight energy into the skin, transforms it to heat in the skin & then reflects it off the skin. Because it heats the skin, this contributes to broken veins, so a natural cosmetic sunscreen that acts like a mirror & reflects light is recommended for those suffering from high colouring & broken veins.

ASTHMA: due to the transient narrowing of the air passages, oxygen supply to the skin is impaired. Capillaries with a reddish/blue colour appear on the cheeks and around the nose.
Circulatory disorders which result in weakened capillary walls. Certain medications may aggravate the condition.

COMEDONE EXTRACTION : the repeated extraction of comedones (blackheads), particularly around the nose, with too much pressure from fingernails, often damages the capillaries.

DIABETES : the skin is both sensitive and dry. The blood is slow to coagulate and the skin bruises easily.

DIET: certain foods such as hot curries and spicy foods are very stimulating. Alcohol causes the capillaries to dilate, as do very hot beverages such as tea and coffee. When drinks are too hot the heat from the steam raises the local temperature of the skin. Tea and coffee both contain the stimulant caffeine. Eating food too quickly also encourages the development of telangiectasia.

HORMONES: hyper-pigmentation of the skin and sensitivity to natural sunlight and sunbeds often occurs as a result of taking the contraceptive pill. There is a tendency for dilated capillaries to occur with increased skin sensitivity.

LIVER DISEASES : the skin tends to develop spider naevi, telangiectasia and haemangiomas in abundance on the trunk of the body. Other areas such as the face and arms can be affected. The skin bruises easily.

TIGHT CLOTHING/ POP SOCKS: restrict the circulation which puts pressure on the capillaries.

RESPIRATORY PROBLEMS: these include asthma, hay fever and sinus problems. During the height of the hay fever season consistent sneezing tends to rupture the capillary walls. The skin is often sensitive.

SENSITIVITY : to foods harsh cosmetic preparations, incorrect skincare, e.g. too many harsh facial scrubs, or over stimulating face masks, and exposure to extremes of weather conditions. Sensitive skins have a tendency to flush easily. The continual dilation and contraction of capillaries can result in weakening of the capillary walls.

SPECTACLES: with badly fitting frames and/ or heavy glass lenses can put pressure on the bridge and sides of the nose as well as along the upper cheek bones. This encourages the development of telangiectasia where there is weakness in the capillaries. Unless the cause is rectified the problem will reoccur in a very short period of time.

SPORTING ACTIVITIES: such as horse riding, high-powered speedboats, skiing and water skiing may all result in the development of dilated capillaries. Any sport, which involves frequent exposure to the elements, particularly at speed, will have a detrimental effect on the skin. Biting winds will cause windburn, reflection of ultraviolet rays from snow can result in sunburn, and each will encourage the development of telangiectasia.