Daily Archives: December 20, 2015

Snowcat Skiing Vail

Fresh Tracks…Snowcat Skiing

Imagine eight hours of skiing untracked, fresh powder with no lift lines and only a small group of fellow powder fanatics along with you on this ride. Snap your fingers because there’s no need to let this dream live only in your imagination. There are acres and acres of easily accessible – guide included – backcountry skiing available to you, within a short drive from these world-class resorts.

Even on paltry snow years, backcountry tour guides know where to find stashes of powder, which are inevitably accompanied by long ski runs, burning legs and hoots of excitement. Let’s be clear, area skiing is awesome. But there is something special about riding a few miles out in a snowcat, far from those angling in on lift lines and straight-lining down the slopes.

“It’s all about powder skiing. We don’t like dilly dallying for sure. We let people find their mojo, then they really start turning and burning,” says Jen Bartosz, who co-owns Vail Powder Guides with her husband Ben.

Ski Cooper Snowcat Skiing

The Bartoszes have 35 combined years in the cat-ski business and have owned Vail Powder Guides since 2006. As you talk to them, you sense they are a team – living their dream with their dream job, which is just what you want when you’re far from a developed ski area. They talk extensively about safety, ability levels, athleticism versus ability, and what to expect from the day way before the first turn is made.

Craig Stuller, director of operations at Chicago Ridge, which operates out of Ski Cooper on top of the world, agrees. Guests need to know what to expect from the day before going out into untracked, pristine powder.

“It’s very much a dynamic operation. We have to figure out how to manage the terrain, how to manage the group because of the varying skill levels. It’s amazing how well it works, it’s such a tilted house of cards but we pull it off,” says Stuller.

The companies pull it off, indeed, thanks to passionate individuals who know the terrain, know how to guide the skiers and generally have years of experience. It’s a bit of a (snow) dance, really.

The guides find out what the group expects from the day and then they work together to deliver the goods. “I have seen bad skiers have a great time in bad snow. Good skiers have a bad time in good snow. We try not to make presumptions on people’s behalf, we lay the facts out as we see them and have very experienced group, with knowledge of backcountry terrain. I can’t say enough about people who we work with,” adds Stuller.

The guides set the pace for the day, give advice on where the skiers and riders should go, which tracks to follow to make sure the group has the best possible experience.

The backcountry operators agree that skiers need to be intermediate to advanced skiers. They assess skill level on the phone when booking the trip. Vail Powder Guides operates out of the White River National Forest on top of Vail Pass, where they have access to 3500 acres of skiable, powder terrain. Chicago Ridge is behind Ski Cooper on the Continental Divide and has access to White River and San Isabel National Forests.

“If you were to come ski with us, we have an extensive conversation on the phone first, gauging what their ski level is and how hearty you are, emphasize a positive attitude and athleticism versus a true ability those two things go a long way,” Jen says.

John DiToro, a longtime client of Vail Powder Guides and skiing aficionado, has taken hele-skiing trips in Brittish Columbia, hails from Vermont and firmly believes he’s had a better time cat skiing here than any of those other experiences.

Skiers and Boarders Beware
Warning! If you try backcountry cat skiing once, more than likely you are going to want to try it again. And again. And again. The Bartoszes and Stuller have come to know their clients well. Some book for an entire week, some come multiple times throughout the winter and others fit it in throughout the season. It can be a group experience – up to 12 can ride in the snowcat – or one or two can book. Regardless, it’s going to be a special experience.

“We rarely have unhappy people at the end of the day,” Stuller says. “We try to be the highlight of anyone’s ski vacation. We have dedicated people who come up year after year or come up four or five times a year.”

Not only is it a highlight, though, it’s a day of guaranteed happy exhaustion. “A typical day is 8 to 12 runs. If you’re not whipped at end of day, we didn’t do our job,” Stuller adds.
Ben agrees. “Standing around is one of the least favorite activities. We do six to eight runs before lunch,” Ben says. “We ski late into the day. After lunch we do anywhere from two to four runs. We return with almost 100-percent guest satisfaction.” Guests have been known nodded off on the cat drive back – something Ben and Jen love to see.

Part of the fun – besides the powder, the fresh runs, the delicious lunches served in the yurt and the overall backcountry experience of course – is going out with a group.

Happy skiiers

“It goes back to really taking the time to build cohesive groups, sometimes it’s a fair mix of people from all over the world. One of the great things about it is that it’s easy for everyone to have enjoyable time and meet some other interesting folks,” Ben says. “The skiing is great but for us it’s the amazing people we get to ski and ride with.”

The guides not only gauge the experience level of the group, they tour the group around, finding the powder, creating fresh tracks, which is good for the group today as well the one that comes out tomorrow. Last winter, when snow conditions were less than fabulous, the backcountry tour operators were still able to find the powder and to get first tracks.

Trips will be canceled, though, if the conditions aren’t worthy or if it’s unsafe. Sure, it might be disappointing, but not nearly as sad if you were to show up ready for freshies only to find rocks and poor snow.

“We guarantee fresh tracks, powder, fresh snow. But if we don’t have it, we don’t run the trip,” says Jen. “It used to be that you booked a trip, and you are going, we never participate in that. It hurts.”
DiToro has been on both sides of the cancellation policy. “The thing I believe that is unique is that they are committed to not take you out unless they think it’s going to be a very good powder day. [I’ve had trips] cancelled because they didn’t think the snow would be up to their standards. Ben and Jen are very conscious about that,” DiToro says with respect in his voice.

Not all tips are created equally, though. Skiing isn’t always on the forefront of a client’s mind. Last year long-time Vail local and ripping skier Jen Mason was part of a group who had an amazing late-season ski day with Chicago Ridge. Amongst laughter and chatter, the guides deftly set up a winter wonderland scene for a marriage proposal that got everybody teary eyed. The guides videoed the entire thing.

All in a day’s work. “It’s definitely a great job. When we’re out there, we are loving life for sure. A bad day at our office is nothing to cry about,” Jen sums it up.

The fine print:
It’s not all about skiing or snowboarding, you know. The outfitters provide pretty close to a gourmet lunch served in a yurt. Best yet, there’s no calorie counting after hard skiing for four or five hours. Adventures start around 9 and end about 4. The companies provide you powder skis – fatty skis to help you float through the powder. It’s fun to try new equipment, but, Stuller recommends you tote along your tried-and-true skis as well. You don’t want to be out on an bluebird powder day and regret not having your favorite gear with you. Finally, keep a good attitude – you’re out there to have fun, darn it!



These days moisturizers are packed with all sorts of “extras” from anti-aging serums or peptides to anti-inflammatory emollients and antioxidants. To help choose what’s right for you, consulting a skin aesthetic professional can be very helpful.

To begin, it is paramount to hydrate the skin with a high quality moisturizer, advises Dr. Karen Nern, of Vail Dermatology. And even more important in our altitude and climate is to use a moisturizer with a high performance sunscreen. Skin aesthetics, she believes, begins with proper maintenance and, at the core, is hydration for both men and women. Nern also suggests that the best protection from the damaging sun is to use a moisturizer that includes an SPF of at least 30, then reapplying it every two hours, especially in winter as the Colorado sun, in this altitude, can take it’s toll. Don’t let the cold temps fool you!

Krissy Timlin, an esthetician at the Allegria Spa in the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek adds that it’s also extremely important to hydrate from the inside out. Even more important than water, she says, is to add good fat into one’s diet. To help with hydration – especially in the winter – Timlin recommends including “good” fat in your diet like olive and coconut oils, nuts and fish, like salmon.

Timlin also suggests using a moisturizer that includes hylauronic acid, which supplies moisture to your cells. “When the skin is hydrated, it performs the way it’s supposed to,” Timlin says. “It can repair itself and encourage cell turnover.”

In other words to really enjoy our glorious – but dry – Colorado weather, it’s really a must to eat fish, drink water and moisturize!



Like Vail Village, Lionshead – a short mile from Vail – is a mecca of fine shops, an assortment of restaurants and first-class accommodations, making living in this village, essentially, carefree. With the Eagle Bahn gondola right there to whip you up the mountain in a manner of minutes and ski school at the base of the mountain – getting started on a winter’s morning is a piece of cake!
The summer months bring a plethora of festivities to Lionshead including free concerts, art festivals – topped off with the Vail Jazz Festival, held on Labor Day Weekend. You can ride on the gondola to take you up to Adventure Ridge and a choice of hikes ranging from easy, like Eagle’s Loop or the more challenging such as Berrypicker. Mountain bikers, too, will find a range of trails to get their hearts racing! And road bikers can just hop on the bicycle path to go wherever
Lionshead is also within a short walk or free in town bus ride to the Vail’s public library as well as the Vail Valley Medical Center…. just in case.


Racing to Build Vail

Bob Lazier always loved cars.
His first auto purchase at age 14 was an “ice car,” appropriately named since it could only be driven on frozen Lake Minnetonka during the winter months, but his parents helped him procure a four-year-old Jaguar in 1958.
“I absolutely love cars, and I absolutely love driving cars, and I really, really love driving cars fast and in competition.”
In fact, he met his wife, Diane, at a car race. His friend Johnny pointed at Diane and said, “I’m going to date that girl.” Bob said he’d give him a week, because he was going to date her as well. Johnny called her up on the following Thursday, but Bob had already been out with her twice.
His response to Johnny: ”Hey, I’m a street kid, what did you expect!”
They married in the fall of 1961.
With Diane having a steady job at the phone company, Bob was working at a ski shop in Minneapolis during early fall of 1962 when a man wearing lederhosen waltzed into the shop.
He was traveling from ski shop to ski shop throughout the Midwest, armed with only a Hal Sheldon sketch on a brochure, trying to get skiers to visit a new ski area called Vail.
The man’s name was Bob Parker (former editor for Skiing Magazine and Vail’s first publicity man, plus much, much more). Bob Lazier had never heard of Vail, yet took one of the brochures home and said, “Diane, we’re going to go ski bumming! You’re gonna learn how to ski!”
During the 1960-61 winter Bob had “ski bummed” at Alta and Mammoth, and though breaking his leg in Mammoth, was still hot for the sport that allowed him to go as fast as he could without the assistance of a combustion engine.
The man just likes to do everything quickly.

Arriving in Vail less than three weeks after opening day on January 4th 1963, Bob swears they made it out for about ten bucks in gas.

Stopping off at the Vail Village Inn, a woman was standing there, crying, and declaring, “I’m never going to work for that ?&*!@! Charlie Gersbach again!” (Charlie was manager of the Vail Village Inn at the time, and became a beloved character of this community until his passing in 2002).
Thinking it was a perfect opportunity for Diane to apply for a job, they spent their first Vail night in a cozy Morris Minor woody station wagon. Upon applying, Charlie insisted he see their marriage certificate because he wouldn’t allow anyone living in sin to stay at his hotel (those who knew Charlie, please stop laughing…). She got the job as a waitress, and they found a place to live in Minturn.
Charlie then hired Bob to help the maids make the beds, and he also needed a dishwasher, so Bob did that as well. Moving to the front desk, he learned how to work the phones, manage room folios, etc. while also becoming a bartender.
Bob knew little about the hotel business, but was quickly learning.

“You are a product of your life,” says Bob Lazier.

Well, after that first winter, he saw a need for the fledgling little ski area, and it involved places for employees to live.
With a $5,000 loan from his fa

ther and the sale of a car back home, he was able to buy a small piece of property from Vail Associates for $7,000. The sale took some real convincing though, as Bob ran into roadblocks every step of the way.
“They said I was too young and didn’t know what I was doing,” he says.
That was, of course, all he needed to hear.
Everyone else was constructing with wood at the time, but Bob wanted to build a concrete building, “Something solid that would last,” he says, a statement eerily reminiscent of his early years in the orphanage.
Construction started in early fall of 1963, and the eight units of the Wedel Inn were ready for tenants by December, and they already had a waiting list.
“We were the only ones with individual bathrooms,” says Bob. “Besides, Vail has always sought quality and all the others were dormitory style, with a community bathroom. Plus, we had bunk beds.”
He and Diane would clean the rooms once a week,.
Both keeping their day jobs, with Diane waiting tables and Bob bartending, he was receiving loads of free advice each night at the bar from all of the construction workers that came in for a drink.
It proved invaluable over time.
Yes, Bob knew little about the building business, but was learning quickly.

The following spring, 1964, Vail Associates was expressing a need to the tiny community for hotels, so they opened up for sale two lots on the northwest side of where the Covered Bridge is today.
Once again able to secure one of the lots and enough financing to start building in spite of the naysayers, construction began on September 8, 1964, and finished on December 19.
The man built in overdrive; yet always manage to provide quality construction.
The first people to check in were welcomed to a motel with 20 rooms but no doors. Bob told them, “Leave your stuff and go skiing. We’ll have ’em on by the time you’re done enjoying the day.” He also didn’t have the boiler running yet, and with seven rooms occupied that first night, the guests helped them get things going by bedtime. A few years later, Bob sold two of the original guests condominiums.
“Hey, we’re in the hotel business,” he said to Diane that night.
She was still waiting tables and he was still bartending.

A year later they bought the second lot and completed the Wedel Inn with more rooms and a restaurant. The next year, Vail’s Arcade building was finished and after another year their fourth building was completed – The Tivoli Lodge – and Bob had an interesting offer from J. Robert Young, chairman and founder of what became Colorado Alpine Banks. Young could not borrow money from his own bank, and wanted to purchase a Formula Vee (an open wheel, single-seater junior motor racing formula based upon the 1963 Volkswagen Beetle engine and suspension), and asked Bob to take out a loan and be a partner.
“I’ll pay all the interest, and when we sell the car I’ll pay off the principal…in the meantime, if you’d like, you can run the regional races in it and I’ll race it in the nationals.”
Bob, sensing an incredible opportunity, happily took the car and ended up winning every race he entered for six weeks. Young didn’t see his car again until early summer.
“It was the only thing that would stop me from building buildings…I just loved to race cars,” he says with what I swear was a tear in his eye.
But the he didn’t stop building.
Since races were on weekends, construction stayed in high gear for the next decade, with Bob completing The Willows, the Lionshead Arcade Building, the Lifthouse Condominiums, Sun Vail, Solar Vail and a parking structure, just to name a few. High on his list was his involvement in the first Vail Mountain School building.
But the racing took center stage whenever Vail Mountain was closed.
In 1970 Bob purchased a Formula Ford and began racing both cars, eventually joining the Pro Formula 5000 circuit, the Pro Trans Am series, Formula Super Vee’s and, cream-of-the-crop at the time, CART (Championship Auto Racing Teams) Car series.
A decade of racing came to a tremendous climax when he qualified for the 1981 Indianapolis 500. Racing head to head alongside such famous notables as Mario Andretti, Bobby Unser, Al Unser and A.J. Foyt, Bob blew his Penske-Cosworth engine in the 154th lap.
In October of that year he came in fourth to Rick Mears and Al Unser in the Primera Copa Mexico City 150 and another fourth to Mears in Watkins Glen, N.Y., and was named Rookie of the Year.
All at the young age of 42.

As a small yet very important side note, I should add that Bob’s two boys, Buddy and Jacque, both became professional racers as well, with Buddy winning that little race called the Indianapolis 500 in 1996.

But that’s another story for later.
Still involved in construction, racing, flying (did I mention he builds airplanes too?), skiing and, of course, running the Tivoli Lodge at the age of 76, the thrills from speed has never waned for Bob.
Just last June 33 former Indianapolis 500 drivers paired with amateurs for a 40-minute Indy Legends Pro-Am race. Bob paired with good friend, Jim Caudle, in a 1969 Chevy Corvette.
They won by 48.9 seconds.
Currently working on a new building in Lionshead as well, Bob Lazier has no plans to slow down anytime soon.
Unless, of course, somebody tells him he can’t.


Lake Creek

Just west of the Edwards is Lake Creek, an alpine valley with thick forests and dominating views to the south where the rugged mountains mark the beginning of the Sawatch Range. There are various communities and ranches within Lake Creek – some gated – all in bucolic settings that are just magnificent. The beauty of Lake Creek is that – although it feels as though you might be in the middle of nowhere, you are actually within 10 minutes of Riverwalk for shopping, restaurants and the movie theatres. Also, the Arrowhead skiing area can bring you up to Beaver Creek Mountain in just minutes.

In winter or summer, riding and hiking trails are out your door.

It’s Colorado. What more can you ask for?


GoPro Mountain Games

More than 60,000 spectators watched as over 3000 outdoor athletes converged on Vail’s rugged mountains and roiling rivers for competitions in a variety of outdoor lifestyle activities at the 14th annual GoPro Mountain Games in June. The games included competitions in nine sports, 25 disciplines and a variety of outdoor lifestyle activities



Derived from the Greek word, Geoides, which means “earthlike”, geodes look like nothing more than round rocks. Yet, within these rocks are hollow cavities filled with crystals or mineral matter that are used to make exquisite jewelry and sculpture.

Geodes begin as bubbles in hot volcanic rock in which, over time, crystals form as water seeps in and out of these bubbles or air pockets. It’s the size and formation of the crystals as well as various shades of color within the crystals that make each geode distinct. The rough exterior of the geode gives no indication of the secret or beauty held within its core – and it’s amazing to find what beauty lies within each rock to make it so treasured.

While nature creates geodes, the precision and skill it takes to slice a piece of the crystal interior to create a piece of art or jewelry, relies solely on the expertise of the artist. Yet, each crystal creation is unique in its beauty and form.


Vail Valley Jewelry

As visionary designers push the boundaries of fine jewelry, the use of non-traditional, non-precious metals are being incorporated into the look of contemporary jewelry – all being used with increasing frequency by jewelry designers seeking new ways to excite customers. Today’s designs sometimes include pieces of oxidized metals, agate, rough-cut stones, antique coins and even concrete. And if you embrace a more couture look, designs with rose cold stand out from the pack. These days, fine jewelry isn’t restricted to just gold, platinum and precious gems. It’s also about vision and creation. And, in this valley, the choice is yours.


Sarah Schleper’s New Chapter (don’t know if this works for you)

Sarah Schleper’s life has always been about challenge and balance. From the time she decided that she wanted to be an alpine ski racer she became a juggler of sorts between school, practice and competition – the balance and challenge always a priority.

Schleper’s career began in 1995 and spanned 15 years, a stint that included four Olympic games, seven national championships and four World Cup podium finishes.

When Schleper announced her retirement in 2011, this free spirit did so in style. Skiing in her last World Cup run and dressed to the nines, Schleper stopped mid-way down, picked up her four-year-old son, Lasse, and carried him through the finish line.

Then, Schleper did what many ski racing “retirees” do – she returned home – in this case, Vail – began coaching and in 2013 had a second child, a daughter, Resi. Life was good, certainly more tranquil than Schleper was used to, yet she still thought about racing – a lot. She missed the camaraderie. She missed the competition. As she told the New York Times last year, “I had retired, but I never really let it go completely. In my mind, I never really gave up ski racing.”

And so, Schleper, who is married to Federico Gaxiola de la Lama, a real estate broker and Mexican citizen – and always the maverick – had an uncommon idea. She pursued Mexican citizenship, which gave her dual citizenship and, eventually, she received permission from international ski officials to represent Mexico instead of the United States.

“I love skiing, and I love racing,”remarks Schleper, “and it was an opportunity to continue without the confinement pressures of big teams and having to continue to perform. I could focus on my family and race at the same time. And that worked for me.

“And then I had the idea of building a Mexican training center in Vail and I started hearing from a lot of Mexican kids who were interested in training. So it went, even beyond myself, in building another program. Of course, I have to balance being an athlete and having a career and family.”

Last summer, Schleper set up her own camp in Europe where she coached young skiers from Mexico, as well as the United States. Now she is working with a team of girls, just out of high school, who don’t feel as though they are finished with their skiing careers. They train at Copper Mountain, Keystone and Breckenridge.

“I’m working in Summit County with a group of U18 members (six girls under 18), because there isn’t a program for that in the valley,” says Schleper. “So we created a team, within a program called Team Summit, to provide an extra opportunity for these girls before they move onto college. And I am the coach, mentor and racer.

“I train alongside the girls. I bring pace and experience and it’s also an opportunity for me to train and compete against pretty fast athletes.”

According to Schleper, there really isn’t an official Mexican ski team. And that’s what Schelper wants to create. In fact, she is the only woman representing Mexico in all the current World Cup races.

“Getting a team together is a long-term process,” explains Schleper. “If we wanted to do it right and have a center here in Vail, we’d need a house where kids could stay. Then we’d have to arrange something within the Ski and Snowboard Club Vail, and that would take time. And then I would have to create a team. So going through all the steps will be a process. I have a goal, a good vision and a goal to work towards.”

Schleper continues, “They say that when kids are just learning something, they’ll pick it up faster if the teacher is passionate and shares that with the kids. I really focus on that – just getting the kids that I coach and the people I work with to love the sport, the outdoors and nature.

“That, for me, comes full circle. It certainly makes sense from all the training I did when I was younger: that I can pass it down and share that with the kids.

“I really love that.”


Let’s face it — you can’t stop the clock

In last summer’s blockbuster hit Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation, Tom Cruise impressed moviegoers by doing his own stunts, most notably the one where he hung from the side of an Airbus while the aircraft took off over the UK. Remarkable, yes, but what really impressed me is how the 52-year-old actor has seemingly stopped the aging process.

Tom Cruise looks good. He looks young. And he looks young without any evidence of weird, stretchy-pully plastic surgery. Could the mega-star have access to a time machine?

“In the old days, surgeons used to pull and tighten skin, but they missed the part of replacing volume,” says Karen Nern, MD, of Vail Dermatology. “Now they replace volume, as well as looking to improve the skin’s texture. As we get older, we get thinner and thinner and you want to add volume back. I think that is what Tom Cruise is doing. He has about the same volume he had when he was younger, and he has a really good person maintaining his volume loss, a little at a time, to keep it from changing.”

Most of the evidence of aging (wrinkles, brown spots, dullness and broken capillaries) –basically all the reasons people seek cosmetic dermatology – is related more to sun exposure and less to chronological age, Nern says. Just peek at a breast or butt, for example. Hidden from the sun, those areas of the body are still smooth and luminous, not spotted and wrinkled, even in someone’s 50s. Sun exposure breaks down collagen in the skin, reducing elasticity, and creates pigmentation and poor texture.

“Young skin, like a baby, is very uniform and it reflects light. It’s very radiant. As we age, our skin’s surface becomes irregular and dull and it doesn’t reflect light as well,” Nern says.

Prevention is key, which is why most cosmetic dermatologists preach sun protection as the most effective strategy for age maintenance. Use sunscreen and a good skin care line, products that contain topical lightening agents and antioxidants, like Vitamin C, Retinol and Vitamin A, which help gather free radicals so they don’t damage the collagen and elasticity in the skin. Antioxidants help produce collagen and promote cell turnover.

But what if you haven’t been sporting a wide brim hat your whole life and are guilty of using bar soap on your face and rubbing baby oil on your body to actually accentuate the sun’s tanning powers? Can you reverse the damage and rewind the clock? The answer is … yes, to a degree.

Pump up the volume and freeze face
To put it simply, there are basically two camps of cosmetic dermatology. The first camp includes fillers and Botox, both of which require needles. Fillers (usually made up of hyaluronic acid, a natural substance in the body that helps maintain skin volume and hydration as well as joint lubrication and cushioning) add volume and lift back to the aging, sagging, thinning face. These are products that are injected under the skin to help soften the appearance of fine and deep lines in the face. Results can last from six months to two years.

Botox is arguably the most common cosmetic dermatology procedure. These injections are made from botulinum toxin A and reduce or eliminate facial wrinkles, squint lines, crows’ feet, etc. Botox blocks the nerve signal that tells the muscle to contract. The muscle still functions, it just never receives the message. Wrinkles begin to fade within 24 hours and results typically last up to 4 months.

“A lot of people are afraid of Botox, that it’s injuring the something, but that’s not the case,” Nern says. “Botox is actually used more in the medical world than it is cosmetic for Cerebral Palsy and bladder spasms.”

Nern says there are 25 years of safety data and Botox is deemed highly safe. In fact, recent studies have found that it actually helps with depression. Data can’t conclude why – whether it’s because people look younger or are scowling less and thus having better day-to-day interactions – but Botox reportedly makes one happier.

Buff, peel and shine
The second camp of cosmetic dermatology is surface work, including procedures like chemical peels, Microdermabrasion with Dermalinfusion, laser resurfacing and photofacials. These procedures improve texture, color and luminosity of the skin, usually caused from sun damage.

At Mountain Dermatology Specialists in Edwards, Jean Liu Urquhart, M.D., handles the injections, while aestheticians Karen Dammen and Jena Holt perform the exfoliation and laser work.

Dammen says that most people come to her with hopes of lightening pigmentation, like brown spots, freckling and broken capillaries, from sun and aging. For the least invasive procedure, she recommends Microdermabrasion with Dermalinfusion.

“Microdermabrasion is a mechanical exfoliation that resurfaces skin on the epidermis layer. It’s a pretty fantastic machine. You can then choose an infusion to brighten, hydrate or add Vitamin C or more of clarifying infusion for more acne skin types,” Dammen says. “It smoothes the surface of the skin pretty intensely but with no down time.”

Dammen says men are particularly good candidates for Mircrodermabrasion because their skin tends to be thicker and oilier with larger poles.

“It really helps to smooth their skin but it’s not as touchy as a regular facial. Men like their machines, right?” she says.

Going deeper into the water layer of the skin is laser work, procedures like photofacials and non-ablative fractional resurfacing, great for 40s and up, which is when you have the money to do it, Dammen says.

Fractional resurfacing targets age spots, improves skin tone and texture and treats wrinkles, scars and stretch marks. Fractional resurfacing heats the skin to stimulate the body to produce new collagen, which helps the skin appear more smooth and clear. Several treatments typically are required to see results.

“There’s no real down time with laser work, your skin looks like have a sunburn for 24 to 48 hours,” Dammen says.

Results more than skin deep
Eagle resident Megan Green has seen Dr. Nern for cosmetic dermatology for the past 10 years. She’s done “a little bit of everything,” her husband chimes in from the background. Green is extremely candid about it, she’s done fillers and Botox for wrinkles, fractional resurfacing for her dark spots, and most recently, injections to shrink “the flabby part under my neck.”

“It’s inevitable. It’s going to happen. I don’t want to look 20. I don’t want weird lips or weird eyes. I’m in my 50s. I want to look like I’ve slept. I want to look alert and healthy and well rested,” Green says.

For Green, results from cosmetic dermatology are more than skin deep: She feels better about herself.

“When you look better, you feel better about yourself. I don’t want to spend too much money, but I do budget for it,” she says.

Green also recommends using an active skin care line. She likes Obagi and SkinMedica’s serum TNS, which Green calls “your little black dress. You need to have it.”

Using a good skin care line in tandem with fillers, Botox and surface work, these age maintenance techniques can stall the aging process and reverse sun damage to make you look and feel younger. Hello, Tom Cruise.