page contents

Facial Spider Vein Treatment - Your Possibilities

Considering facial spider vein treatment there are a number of considerations from their severity, how they affect you, and what is locally available.  Some therapies carry significant risks or downsides.

Knowing how spider veins develop as I have discussed will give you some idea about whether to seek out help.  Knowing they are likely to gradually get worse will certainly cause many people to want to get something done.

Facial spider vein treatment that is appropriate will depend on the actual problem and presentationMilder linear spider veins

That, your position and connections with the public, media, friends or meeting new people.


I have mentioned rosacea in the introduction.  This needs specific management before direct facial spider vein treatment is sought out.

That flushing tendency with sometimes even milder foods and spices indicates an underlying problem that needs addressing first.

Facial spider vein treatment requires extra steps to control an underlying problem like rosacea - in appearance like acne without the blackhead comedonesGreat example of active rosacea

Going on to further eruptions caused by it like a raised, almost acne-like rash, or a rhinophyma (enlarged bulbous tissue especially about the nose tip), calls for specific targeted therapy.

Rosacea Control Treatment

It  can take some time to get a response in managing the underlying problem.  It needs to be continued for months to years to ensure it fully sorted.

Too short a program will often see a bounce back of the condition again.

It's worth encouraging yourself by understanding facial spider veins are more likely to increase the longer rosacea remains unmanaged. 

Generally available, effective treatments are broken down into three types:

  • taking tablets by mouth,
  • and/or daily cream application,
  • or a specific cream application on a few sessions targeted by specific laser light energy. 

You can read more on that on the page dedicated to treating underlying rosacea.

Then Facial Spider Vein Treatment - Options

So, assuming you have initiated rosacea treatment and it is coming under control, or your problem is not rosacea, what can be done?

The strongly visible veins need to be closed somehow.

There are three main ways to do this.

The best option is definitely laser.  More on that below.

But what if you cannot access laser?

Diathermy And Radio-Frequency

Diathermy is usually offered by beauty therapists.  Over many years they have treated facial spider veins with their electro-cautery apparatus. 

Some people use similar radio-frequency devices.

Facial spider vein treatment can be done by heat creating devices like radio-frequency as used by this Ellman surgitron deviceA radio-frequency (or RF) device - the Ellman Surgitron

The aim, or action, is essentially the same.  Creating local, external heat that sears the vessels closed. 

It is non-specific heating and can risk burning the surrounding tissue which can lead to long-lasting local scar tissue.  Although usually small, it can be visible long term.

Sclerotherapy - Injection Treatment

Injecting the vessels with a solution that irritates the lining, creating a healing reaction, can help seal blood vessels.   Known as sclerotherapy, and based on the same agents I use in leg vein sclerotherapy, it can be effective.

Facial spider vein treatment by sclerotherapy or injection treatment with special cell wall active agents can work.  There are some known risks.  Care is needed.Array of solutions for sclerotherapy management

Before I had lasers in my arsenal, I did spider vein facial vein treatment this way.  It was effective, although you can imagine, a little messy.

Possible Risks

It also carries some risk.

As the veins the face connect with important vessels about the eyes connecting quite closely with the brain, care needs to be taken how much and exactly where it is injected and spreads. 

With a liquid inside a vein this is not totally controllable.  But scrupulous care can avoid most problems. 

Unlike leg spider veins there are not the larger vessels that need treatment before you can get a response.  At least nearly always.  Occasionally there might be such a vessel that needs addressing.

Lasers In Facial Spider Vein Treatment

As I mentioned laser is the ideal treatment.

The Question Of IPL - Intense Pulsed Light

Knowing this there are many offers to get the same result using the non-laser IPL or intense pulsed lights treatment units. 

Many distributors of the technology will call their units lasers.  But they are not in any way shape or form.  As such they cannot marshal the same intense, narrow spectrum, and tightly focused treatment points that lasers can. 

They will help with background blushes and, at times, with smaller, low-flow vessels. 

In doing so though, the energies often need pushing which can result in unwanted surrounding tissue damage.  As well as greater discomfort.

The Laser Advantage

Lasers offer usually a single wavelength that can be matched to the varied peak absorption points particularly for the red haemoglobin pigment in the blood red cells. 

This attracted, targeted energy is converted to heat within the spider veins, rather than from outside it.  Sealing can occur from the inside out. 

The very small beams achievable allow for very focused treatment energies.

Even the larger, higher flow vessels about the nose area will respond well to this facial spider vein treatment.

The Yellow Part Of The Spectrum

Initially the specific peak in the yellow part of the haemoglobin absorption spectrum was used.  Pulsed dye, argon and similar lasers were employed. 

Frequently the pulsed dye laser was so powerful it would shatter the vessels leading to considerable bruising which would take some weeks to settle.  Several sessions were required.

Other specific yellow light lasers tend to have narrower beams with less explosive energy settings.  Bruising is not as common.

The Dual Yellow Copper Bromide Laser

I have used a Dual Yellow copper bromide laser for many years using the yellow wavelength out of its unusual twin green and yellow colours.  High flow vessels about the nose can be difficult to close with this laser.

Facial spider vein treatment can be done quite effectively with the Dual Yellow copper bromide laser with its twin 578 yellow) and 511nm (green) wavelengths as visually portrayed on the laser.Twin wavelengths for the Dual Yellow laser - 511 (green) and 578nm (yellow)

It also carries the side effect that most worries or affects those receiving laser for facial spider vein treatment. 


Light being absorbed creates the internal vessel heat that closes them down.  But the surrounding tissue can feel this. 

Anaesthetic creams and cooling air directed on the surface can lessen the sensation, but not totally mask it.

The Xeo Cool Glide Laser

Fortunately the Xeo Cool Glide laser I first started using for facial spider vein treatment has another way to overcome this side effect.

Its different infra-red wavelength also makes it safe to use on skin colours other white, untanned skin.  Initially I was unsure that the 1064nm wavelength of the NeodymiumYAG crystal origin for this laser would be appropriate

Facial spider vein treatment can be managed across a large range with the Xeo Cool Glide 1064nm laser with it NdYAG doped crystal producing an infra-red 1064nm wavelengthMy usual preferred option for laser treatment of facial spider veins

But there is another absorption peak at this wavelength in haemoglobin.  Being a longer wavelength it can effectively penetrate deeper into the skin that the yellow colours. 

Its power unit also creates a very powerful beam that can be adjusted over a wide range of power and length of pulse.  This allows me to produce very specific treatment parameters for the huge variations presenting for facial spider vein treatment.

As far as comfort goes, it has a water cooled metal skin contact tip which protects the skin and almost immediately creates a degree of numbness.  By applying the cooling tip before and after each shot the released heat effects can be massively reduced. 

There is usually a pinprick type of sensation.  But it is relatively mild, incredibly short, and there is no residual discomfort.

Side Effects

Facial spider vein treatment can produce a little swelling and pinkness after the session which can last for a couple of hours to a few days.  Usually any swelling is something you will be more aware of after your treatment rather than being noticeable to others. 

There are a couple of ways this can be managed especially if it tends to last longer than couple of hours or so.

Occasionally the odd vessel will retain some altered blood.  This shows as a purple line inside the vessel.  Fortunately it tends to clear spontaneously in about a week.

Usual Sequence

All these approaches will require more than one treatment for best results. 

With lasers these are normally best spaced at least six weeks apart to allow for full settling of the initial treatment response.

Future Occurrence

More sessions may be required in the future if you have the tendency to readily develop spider veins on your face. 

Genetics and exposure will determine this.

But at least, having had great initial improvements with the original sessions you will know what to do for any future facial spider vein treatment.

New! Comments

Want to say or question something about this page? Leave me a comment in the box below.