3 Ways to Get Rid of Spider Veins

Contrary to popular belief, crossing your legs doesn't mean you're going to develop spider veins. No, varicose veins are entirely due to genetics (thanks, Mom!). Here, the only three ways you can make them disappear.

1. Use self-tanner. Apply it at night and the blue lines will be less noticeable by the time you wake up. “If you’re really pale, you need to go at least two shades darker than your natural skin color, though,” says Anna Stankiewicz, a spray tanner at Louise O’Connor OC61 Salon & Spa in New York City. And skip self-tanners with shimmer, “especially if the veins are raised,” says Jenni Blafer, the owner of the Sunkissed by Jenni salon in Los Angeles. “The light reflection will make protrusions more pronounced.”

2. Consider trying sclerotherapy. To vaporize spider veins, a doctor injects each one with a detergent solution that makes it collapse. Sounds intense, but “if you can handle a small needle prick, you can handle this,” says Robert Min, the chair of radiology at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. You usually need three to five treatments to eliminate an entire web of veins.

3. Don’t be afraid of lasers. This is the gold standard for treating varicose veins, the ones that bulge. “A laser is inserted into the problematic vein to seal it closed,” says Min, who pioneered the treatment. The vein often disappears immediately but might need a sclerotherapy follow-up. A new option is a treatment called VenaSeal, which was just approved by the FDA. A doctor injects veins with a medical glue that seals them off. It’s too early to know its long-term success rate, but it could be a less invasive alternative to the endogenous laser.