Broken capillaries: What are they doing on my face and how do I make them leave?


They’re those spider-like veins we often spotted and associated with the faces of our grandparents and now… they’re moving in. If you’ve noticed a few broken capillaries have begun setting up camp across your cheeks, nose, chin, or anywhere they possibly can, then we urge you not to panic.ou are not alone. 

RELATED: 5 steps to finally soothe that dry, red skin around your nose

RELATED: Your redness recovery skincare routine, sorted

What causes broken capillaries?

When it comes to the cause, there are a few culprits to blame. The main being trauma to the skin – so this covers anything from bruising, harsh exfoliation, chronic sun damage and even (sorry hayfever sufferers) rigorous nose blowing.

And, *eye roll* genetics. So as Julia Roberts inherited her multi-million dollar smile, the rest of us received a layer of blue and red veiny skin. Thanks fam.

But, while broken capillaries may seem unavoidable and totally sporadic, on the most part, there is a method to their madness.

So when it comes to preventing newbies or healing and potentially totally eradicating the already present, these are our recommendations to follow…

Image credit: Getty

How to get rid of broken capillaries

Wear sunscreen

We’ve said it once and we’ll say it again, SPF is not just for beach days. As sun damage is a major trigger for broken capillaries, it’s crucial to keep yourself covered in a minimum of SPF 30 at all times.

bh recommends: Cancer Council Face Day Wear Moisturiser Matte SPF50+ InvisibleBanana Boat EveryDay SPF 50+


Dry skin is irritated skin, so by keeping things hydrated you’ll effectively be protecting yourself from aggravation or sensitivities. Seek out formulations designed to restore your skin’s barrier and repair any inflammation.

Ingredients to look for include oat, aloe vera or vitamin E, which will absorb into thirsty skin and protect from environmental pollutants and free radicals.

bh recommends: Aveeno Skin Relief Moisturising LotionSukin Naturals Aloe Vera Gel

Drink icy water 

Ice cold drinks will constrict the blood vessels in your face and neck, preventing redness and capillary dilation (the same applies for holding an ice pack directly onto the area). 

So if you’re prone to hot flushes, little sips of an icy water bottle throughout the day, or during workouts, will work to prevent your blood vessels from breaking.

Incorporate vitamin C into your routine 

One of vitamin C’s greatest benefits is its ability to strengthen capillaries and soothe redness, while fading brown spots, discolouration and evening skin texture overall. 

bh recommends: Trilogy Vitamin C Energising Mist TonerThe Body Shop Vitamin C Glow Boosting MoisturiserLa Roche-Posay Pure Vitamin C10 Serum

As well as topical vitamin C, taking a daily supplement has also proved helpful in strengthening the capillary wall and keeping your skin from bruising. 

Keep your lotions and potions cold 

By keeping moisturisers and serums in the fridge, the cool temperature of products will help calm inflamed skin and soothe any redness.

Look for anti-inflammatory or calming ingredients 

Full disclosure, if your broken capillaries are relatively developed and prominent, these products won’t make an enormous difference, however, daily application of a soothing, anti-inflammatory ingredient such as rosehip oil will do it’s best at working towards minimising redness and keeping the skin hydrated.

Plus, it will give you an illuminating glow that’s distracting enough that no one will even notice your broken capillaries. 

Laser treatment

When it comes to actually getting rid of the broken capillaries that are already present, a professional laser treatment (sorry) is just about your only option. 

While at-home remedies and skin care can help to fade and heal the red spots, they simply don’t have the ability to get rid of them entirely. 

Laser or IPL treatments for diluted or broken capillaries are offered at most laser or skin clinics and are a safe and effective solution to getting rid of those pesky red marks for good. 

How to keep broken capillaries from returning

Hot water 

Avoid hot showers and directly applying hot water to your face, same goes for steam facials. The quick rush of blood and rising temperature will trigger redness, creating the potential for capillaries to burst. 

Avoid microdermabrasion treatments

While we praise this treatment for keeping our skin glowing, if you’re prone to broken capillaries, this is not the treatment for you. The vacuuming nature of the treatment can invite the red veins to be brought to the surface. 

Don’t pick your pimples

In an attempt to pop a pimple, you may be unknowingly breaking blood vessels in the process, falling under the umbrella of skin ‘trauma’.the best thing to do is

Main image credit: Getty

Have you experienced broken capillaries? Do you have any tips on how to prevent or heal them?

Share your thoughts

Comments 24

  1. yep, im a suffer from hayfever so my nose is always red, same for having too many hot showers, now I’m hunting down stuff to soothe and remove my red skin.
    looking into laser as this might be my only option

  2. Thanks BH I have broken capillaries around my nose and chin will need to get Laser Treatment one day when I can afford it, will be careful so that I don’t get any more, will not have microdermabrasion at all.

  3. Thanks for this as I have a friend that is quite distressed about broken capillaries on her face so I will pass this info on as she is considering laser treatment. Very helpful.

  4. I had needle diathermy done over 20 years ago with limited success.

    Just recently, I had a series of LED therapy sessions that have reduced the overall ruddiness of my face, which has been a genuine transformation! The downside is that reducing overall redness has made the broken capilleries more noticeable, so I’m now looking into where to get laser done.

  5. Sadly I have them around my nose and I have dreadful hay fever and allergy’s .
    I cover mine with concealer and yes they do look ugly and ageing but Ive seen a lot of laser treatments that have gone wrong so I will just leave them I think.

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