What Causes Prominent Veins Beneath The Eyes and How to Treat Them

The veins that bring blood to the vessels in your eyes are called periorbital veins. These veins serve an important function and can usually do their job without being visible under your skin.

But some factors, such as aging and genetics, can cause these veins to become more visible than you would like. Blue, purple, and yellow veins under your eyes can make you feel like you look more tired than you are.

Having prominent veins under your eyes can be a normal part of some people’s aging process and isn’t necessarily a cause for concern. This article will cover causes and treatments for this harmless condition.

What makes the veins under your eyes become prominent?

The skin underneath your eyes, sometimes known as your “tear trough,” is thinner and more sensitive than other skin.

As you grow older, this skin can become more translucent, making the veins underneath more visible. There are several factors that can contribute to this happening:

  • Genetics. For some people, prominent periorbital veins simply run in the family.
  • Sun damage. Repeated sun exposure without protective sunglasses and sunscreen can cause periorbital veins to become prominent earlier in life.
  • Lifestyle. Activities that damage your skin and vascular system, such as smoking and artificial tanning beds, can also make veins under your eyes more likely to show.
  • Skin tone. If you have very pale or translucent skin, your veins might become visible at a younger age.

How can you make the veins under your eyes less visible?

There are a variety of treatments that you can try to make the veins under your eyes less obvious.

Keep in mind that for most people, treating veins under your eyes is a cosmetic option and not a health necessity.

Home remedies

Some people swear by home remedies for making veins under your eyes less visible. These methods include placing cool objects on your eyes each morning, such as:

  • cucumber slices
  • iced spoons
  • a cold compress

This may help constrict the veins and minimize their appearance.

Home remedies are the simplest, least invasive, and least costly method of treating veins under your eyes.

Concealer makeup

Makeup is an easy way to treat under-eye veins and dark circles. Liquid and powder foundations and concealers can be used to cover up veins without any side effects or recovery necessary.

Of course, makeup washes off at the end of each day and needs to be reapplied whenever you’re looking to conceal your periorbital veins.

Look carefully at ingredient labels to make sure your makeup is safe for use around the eyes.

The cost of makeup adds up and gets quite pricey over time, and this method isn’t as effective as other more permanent options.


Sclerotherapy can be used to treat visible veins underneath your eyes. This procedure is often used for smaller varicose veins and spider veins in other parts of the body.

Your doctor injects an iodine solution into the vein that’s visible. This causes the vein to scar, and blood flow is rerouted through healthier veins.

There’s little to no recovery time for sclerotherapy. However, not all doctors think it’s an appropriate treatment for the under-eye area.

Under-eye fillers

A cosmetic surgeon can use dermal fillers to add texture and thickness to the area underneath your eyes. Dermal fillers aren’t permanent, but they can be effective at hiding veins under your eyes for up to 6 months at a time.

Dermal fillers can be done in under an hour in an outpatient setting, and risks and side effects are minimal.

Though fillers aren’t covered by insurance, this method can still end up being less costly than other more invasive treatments for veins under your eyes.

Surgical excision

A surgeon can use small incisions to remove parts of your vein that are visible. This method is best done by a doctor who has a great deal of experience with removing veins from the face and under the eyes.

Blood clots and infection can occur as a result of this surgery, which does require some downtime for recovery. This method can also be quite expensive.

Laser therapy

Laser therapy is sometimes used to treat veins under your eyes. This treatment doesn’t require much downtime for recovery, but several rounds of treatment may be required.

Laser therapy can seal off blood vessels and periorbital veins. Side effects and risks are minimal, but this treatment can be quite expensive.

Which treatment is best for you?

Your eyes are one of the most sensitive parts of your body. An inexperienced or discount-rate provider could injure your skin or even your eyesight, leaving you with lasting damage.

For this reason, it’s important to consult with a specialist who has experience dealing with periorbital veins before you make a choice regarding treatment.

If you’re concerned about prominent veins underneath your eyes, first consult with a general practitioner. They can take factors into account like your health history before they recommend a treatment. They may also be able to refer you to a trusted specialist.

If you’re interested in dermal fillers, surgical excision, or laser therapy, you should consult with a cosmetic surgeon about your treatment options.

To start the search for a cosmetic surgeon in your area, use this Find a Plastic Surgeon tool.

Key takeaways

Having prominent veins under your eyes isn’t typically a big health concern. However, veins that are visible beneath your eyes might negatively affect the way that you feel about your appearance.

Treatment options range from home remedies to surgical removal of the prominent veins. Speak with a doctor if you’re concerned about the way that your periorbital veins appear.

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