Olympic champ Anderson talks skin care, love for hometown

Jamie Anderson is celebrated during a ceremony at Sierra-at-Tahoe in 2018.


SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — After picking up Olay as a sponsor, local Olympian Jamie Anderson sat down with the Tribune to talk about skin routines, beauty standards and her love for her hometown.

Anderson, who grew up in South Lake Tahoe, has made a name for herself as a world class snowboarder.

She is the first ever women’s Olympic Slopestyle Gold Medalist, youngest Winter X Games medalist, and took home the ESPY awards for “Best Female U.S. Olympian” and “Best Female Action Sports Athlete.” Those are just a few of her accomplishments but the list goes on and on.

Anderson grew up snowboarding at Sierra-At-Tahoe and still has a special place in her heart for the mountain.

“My favorite run in Tahoe? Anywhere at Sierra-At-Tahoe,” Anderson said. “When I was young, it was just Sugar and Spice, the nice cruisy run all the way to the bottom but now I love riding the gates at Sierra. That’s the backcountry gates that are a little steeper and if it’s a powder day, you can catch me at Huckleberry Bowl.”

Even though she now lives in Canada, she tries to get back to Tahoe once or twice a year.

Being picked up by Olay may seem counterintuitive for a snowboarder who is basically covered head to toe in clothing and equipment.

“Unlike gymnastics or tennis, we’re very bundled up and can cover up your identity,” Anderson said. “When I was younger I really liked that because I was such a tomboy and I was always trying to keep up with the boys.”

She said she often wore boys clothing simply because there wasn’t a lot of women specific snowboarding clothing at the time.

“I think it’s important, especially as you start to grow into a young woman to embody the feminine power and appreciate it and know that it is our greatest gift,” Anderson said.

Growing into her femininity came naturally for Anderson who grew up with six sisters, in addition to her two brothers, and a mother who Anderson said was, “the definition of fearless.”

Now, she says her morning routine is, “sacred,” to her, especially on the mornings of competition. She said she likes to start her day with a warm shower where she can warm up and set her intentions, and she also likes to practice yoga before the competition.

Being a woman in a male dominated sport wasn’t the only adversity she faced. Anderson describes snowboarding as a “luxurious sport,” that can be expensive to access for many people.

“My mom had a lawn care business that my sisters and I helped her run in the off-season,” Anderson said. “We’d mow 30 lawns a week and just kind of save up money because our dream was to be professional snowboarders and we knew it wasn’t a very cheap sport.”

That gave her a sense of determination and independence that she appreciates to this day.

Anderson said she has seen some positive changes in the sport since she was a young girl.

“I’ve seen a huge shift in young girls snowboarding, that being because they have more women to look up to,” Anderson said, adding when she was young there weren’t really any women snowboarders to look up to.

he started the Jamie Anderson Foundation as a way to make winter sports more accessible to young girls and at risk youth. Since 2013, the foundation has more than 30 young winter sports athletes with equipment, clothing, season passes and financial aid.

Live Violence Free in South Lake helped connect Anderson with kids who were at-risk and Sierra-At-Tahoe donated passes to those kids.

How do I transition into a day in the life?

“I feel like I’m a pretty unique Olympian because snowboarding is such a free spirited sport. I don’t have the typical training routine that other Olympic athletes have but I know I’m really good at having fun,” Anderson said.

She enjoys mountain biking, yoga, surfing, swimming and “pretty much anything outside in the summertime.”

Leading into winter, she likes to get her body prepared by making some healthy, seasonal meals like soups, drinking a lot of water and doing a ton of yoga. Anderson said that with COVID, she’s been working on making new habits at home, like doing yoga rather than in a studio or at a gym.

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