According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a bruise is “a mark on your skin caused by blood trapped under the surface. It happens when an injury crushes small blood vessels but does not break the skin.” Bruises can be caused by minor injuries, surgeries/non-invasive treatments, playing sports, general clumsiness, etc. The good news is that bruises tend to resolve themselves within about a week to 10 days. More time may be necessary depending on the severity of the bruise. Though most are no big deal, they can still be painful and unsightly. Here’s how to treat and/or cover up a pesky bruise on your body.
To treat a bruise, you’ll want to grab for a cold compress as soon as possible to help alleviate any swelling that occurs. Applying an ice pack for 30-60 minutes is a good rule of thumb, according to the NIH, and over-the-counter pain medication can help to relieve the pain. Try reaching for acetaminophen and avoid pain relievers such as ibuprofen or aspirin, as they slow the clotting of blood and may increase bleeding.
During the healing process, you shouldn’t have to let a bruise prevent you from wearing what you want to wear. Here are some great over-the-counter bruise care products that can help speed up the recovery process and conceal unsightly bruising so you don’t have to interrupt your normal routine.
Note About Bruising From Surgery or Medical Treatments:
When it comes to bruising after surgery or other medical procedures (like BOTOX, for example), be sure to follow your doctor’s after-care recommendations. While the first two products listed below are designed for post-procedural care, be sure to check with your doctor before use.
After a surgical or cosmetic procedure, you might be in the market for a great post-op treatment to help speed up the healing process and prevent bruising. Vitamin K oxide and vitamin E work together to help minimize bruises, improve the appearance of skin and speed up cell regeneration for a faster healing time.
Try: Auriderm Post-Op Gel
Antioxidants—such as vitamin E and green tea, both commonly found in moisturizers—are powerful nutrients that can protect, restore and heal your skin. The Clinicians Complex Bruise Cream is specially designed to improve skin and minimize bruising from cosmetic surgical procedures. It’s an ideal cream especially for use before and after Botox injections, collagen injections, liposuction, laser resurfacing, sclerotherapy and any other procedures when minimal bruising may occur.
A popular herb used in homeopathic medicine for centuries, arnica montana is commonly used in creams and ointments to treat bruises, inflammation, swelling and a wide range of other conditions. Made by the homeopathic health and wellness brand VitaMedica, this cream uses arnica montana plus vitamin K and botanicals to help soothe and reduce the appearance of bruising and swelling. It is also designed to help improve circulation during the healing process.
Beeswax has antibacterial, anti-inflammatory and protective qualities that make it a bruise-fighting wonder ingredient. Burt’s Bees Res-Q Ointment is 100% natural and is formulated to provide relief, while speeding up recovery time. Other notable ingredients, comfrey, allantoin and lavender extract help to prevent scarring and keep bacteria away from your wound.
A group of naturally produced vitamins, vitamin K is a powerful ingredient in many skin care products. It promotes proper blood circulation to help reduce the appearance of broken capillaries and dark circles. Donell K-Derm Cream contains a potent formula powered by vitamin K to do all of the above and more. In addition to healing bruises, it’s often used to help treat the symptoms of rosacea, scarring and spider veins.
Try: Donell K-Derm Cream
Dermablend Leg and Body Makeup is available in a variety of beautiful color-matching shades and is very effective at covering bruises and more. It comes infused with SPF 20 to protect from the sun’s harmful rays. Cover up those bruises, blemishes and scars with this lightweight liquid. It provides up to 16 hours of coverage and should leave skin feeling softer, smoother and definitely concealed.
Watch this video for a quick tutorial.