The facial vein (anterior facial vein) commences at the side of the root of the nose, and is a direct continuation of the angular vein.
It lies behind the external maxillary (facial) artery and follows a less tortuous course. It runs obliquely downward and backward, beneath the Zygomaticus and zygomatic head of the Quadratus labii superioris, descends along the anterior border and then on the superficial surface of the Masseter, crosses over the body of the mandible, and passes obliquely backward, beneath the Platysma and cervical fascia, superficial to the submaxillary gland, the Digastricus and Stylohyoideus. It unites with the posterior facial vein to form the common facial vein, which crosses the external carotid artery and enters the internal jugular vein at a variable point below the hyoid bone. From near its termination a communicating branch often runs down the anterior border of the Sternocleidomastoideus to join the lower part of the anterior jugular vein.
The facial vein has no valves, and its walls are not so flaccid as most superficial veins.