Capillaries, also known as blood vessels, are veins that run underneath the skin. The walls of capillaries can sometimes narrow and expand suddenly, eventually leading to them being permanently damaged or “broken.” Broken capillaries appear as small veins on the skin in a shape similar to a spider’s web, which is why they have been nicknamed spider veins.

What are the Causes?

There are many different factors that can contribute to broken capillaries: aging, genetics, rosacea, skin trauma, and sun damage are only a few. Broken capillaries can happen to anyone, especially those with sensitive skin or who aren’t appropriately protecting it.

Preventing Broken Capillaries

There are some who find broken capillaries embarrassing or who are more prone to developing broken capillaries. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent and repair these damaged blood vessels.

Protect Your Skin 

The elements can be harsh on our skin, so it’s important to protect our skin at all costs! Environmental irritants like sunburn and powerful winds can damage blood vessels and cause irritation. So, no matter the weather, protect your skin with sunscreen and moisturizer, especially when exposed to extreme temperatures. A broad-spectrum SPF 30 sunscreen is recommended for regular use daily.

Light Therapy

Light therapy is emerging as an effective option for preventing broken capillaries, specifically red light therapy. This type of therapy improves the appearance of the skin by reducing acne, scars, wrinkles, and other skin conditions. 

The light from red light therapy interacts with the mitochondria, providing them with more energy so that they can work more efficiently to promote new cell growth. For those who are experiencing broken capillaries or beginning to show the signs, red light therapy for broken capillaries can help increase the amount of blood circulation to the areas. Blood circulation will promote the production of new skin cells and improve the appearance of any dark marks layered on the skin. 

Avoid Vasodilators

Vasodilation is the widening of blood vessels, and it occurs when the muscles within the walls of arteries and veins relax, which allows blood vessels to expand and open. This increases the blood flow through blood vessels, which helps lower blood pressure. There are certain things that we regularly consume, like spicy foods, alcohol, or caffeine; consuming items like these regularly can weaken the elasticity of capillaries so that they reach a point where they don’t contract to their natural form. While occasional vasodilators are fine, regular or constant consumption can lead to broken capillaries or capillaries that are more visible on the skin.

Change Your Face-Washing Routine

If you want to avoid broken capillaries on your face, there are two changes you need to make to your face-washing routine. First, wash your face with cool or lukewarm water. Blood vessels can expand, sometimes rapidly, when exposed to hot water, and this often is a cause of broken capillaries. In general, it is good practice to keep your face away from steamy water.

Skincare woman washing face foaming soap scrubbing skin. Face wash exfoliation scrub soap woman washing scrubbing with skincare cleansing product. Enjoying relaxing time.

Avoid rough, gritty exfoliants when washing your face because these might agitate your skin and blood vessels. Try a gentle, smooth exfoliant instead to remove dirt and dead skin cells.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C has many great properties, and it can help prevent broken capillaries by reducing inflammation and damage caused by free radicals, which are atoms that can damage other cells and cause premature aging and illness. Vitamin C also has the ability to strengthen blood vessels, which is an important step in preventing broken capillaries. They do this by maintaining the strength of the blood vessel walls.

Once capillaries are broken, they are difficult to fix, which is why it is important to take precautionary steps.

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