If you have spider veins and aren’t comfortable with the idea of treating them medically, you might start looking at natural treatments. There are many options out there, and some people swear by them. But do they really work?
Thus far, there’s no scientific evidence to back up natural treatments for spider veins. Any proof you’ll find be in the form of testimonials — people who have tried them and felt that they helped.
If a treatment works for many other people, will it work for you? Popularity definitely doesn’t equal medical legitimacy, but there’s usually no harm in trying something out, especially in small concentrations.
Learning About Natural Treatments for Spider Veins
Below, you’ll read about some of the most popular natural treatments for spider veins. Find out how they might help, how to try them, and what to watch out for.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a popular home remedy for many different medical and cosmetic issues — from toenail fungus to dandruff. Its relevance as a spider vein treatment mostly comes from its alleged ability to improve circulation in the skin. Wellness experts tout this benefit often, but it’s difficult to find hard data to back it up.
One study did show that applying apple cider vinegar can reduce the physical symptoms of varicose veins but only in combination with medical treatment. There’s no indication that it has any effect on spider veins, which generally don’t cause any kind of physical discomfort.
Apple cider vinegar is generally safe, so you can feel comfortable trying it if you so choose. It’s an external remedy, meaning that you apply the vinegar directly to the affected site. Some people choose to wrap the area to keep the vinegar from evaporating.
Keep in mind that for some people, direct application of apple cider vinegar can irritate the skin. If you notice redness or discomfort, try switching to a different remedy.
Like apple cider vinegar, essential oils are commonly used home remedies for spider vein treatment. Popular options include:
Some peer-reviewed studies, including a 2010 study of rosemary oil, do suggest that certain essential oil products may improve circulation. Essential oil advocates also say that cypress can strengthen capillary walls, and weakened blood vessels are a known contributing cause of spider veins.
Essential oils are another topical treatment. You apply them directly to the skin — but be sure to dilute them first in large amounts of carrier oils like sweet almond, coconut, or olive oil. When not diluted enough, essential oils have the potential to cause adverse skin reactions. Once diluted, you can rub the oil blend directly into your skin or create a compress using a clean cloth. This is the same technique that people use to apply essential oils to varicose veins, a different condition that can also develop due to weakened veins.
It’s easy to see why people trust massages as the best treatment for spider veins. It feels great and there’s really no downside, other than the potentially high cost of regular professional massages.
Massages may even help to improve blood flow, though the jury’s still out on how much of an effect it has. There’s definitely no hard evidence that it can treat or prevent spider veins. That said, it’s possible that a massage will make you feel so relaxed, you won’t worry as much about what your veins look like.
If you want to try massage for your spider veins but don’t want to take the leap into professional treatment, you can massage your legs at home. Sit comfortably with your legs elevated. Start with the feet and ankles and work your way up, massaging gently.
Be especially gentle on the affected areas. Spider veins are weaker than healthy veins, and squeezing or pressing too hard can cause damage.
Herbal and Vitamin Supplements
It seems like there’s a supplement for every ailment these days, and spider veins are no exception. Supplements for spider veins usually have some connection to healthy blood flow or strong blood vessels. Popular examples include:
- Beetroot powder
You may also see claims that B vitamins and iron improve vein health and may have an effect on spider veins. Nothing’s been proven, but as long as you stay at the recommended dose, taking these supplements won’t hurt you.
Be careful, though. You can get sick if you take more than the recommended dose, or if your supplement interacts with a medication that you take. Talk with your doctor about any supplements you plan to add to your routine and only buy products with a Consumer Lab, NSF International, or USP certification.
Finding Spider Vein Treatments That Work
Although spider veins aren’t dangerous to your health, it’s important to seek treatment if they get in the way of your ability to live life fully. There’s nothing wrong with trying natural treatments for spider veins initially, but the best way to get rid of them is with proven medical treatment.
If you’re interested in talking with a vein specialist about possible spider vein treatment options, My Vein Treatment’s locator tool can point you toward someone in your area. A vein specialist can discuss possible treatments and help you to decide which, if any, might be right for you.