Businesswoman. She is the founder of Beauty By Tova cosmetics and widow of actor Ernest Borgnine
Tova Borgnine is a pioneering businesswoman and beauty industry entrepreneur who founded the ΤΟVΛ® Corporation in 1977. Starting with four skincare products containing cactus extracts that were marketed directly to customers through mail order, the ΤΟVΛ® Corporation grew to become a multimillion-dollar fragrance, color cosmetics and skincare enterprise, with offices in London, New York and…
Tova Borgnine is a pioneering businesswoman and beauty industry entrepreneur who founded the ΤΟVΛ® Corporation in 1977. Starting with four skincare products containing cactus extracts that were marketed directly to customers through mail order, the ΤΟVΛ® Corporation grew to become a multimillion-dollar fragrance, color cosmetics and skincare enterprise, with offices in London, New York and Beverly Hills. Tova has been sharing her passion for beauty with television viewers since 1991 and has earned the honor of being named QVC’s “First Lady of Beauty”.
At the age of seven, Tova emigrated from Norway to the United States. Drawing inspiration from her mother, Aase, who, though she had only seventy dollars with which to start a new life in America, remained steadfastly determined to succeed, Tova has since been ruled by her dictum that “It can be done”. Tova pursued her dreams of modeling and acting in New York but soon discovered a keen interest in the cosmetic arts. After studying with the city’s most gifted makeup artists, Tova opened a boutique along the New Jersey shore called “Tova’s Touch”.Selling the business, Tova moved to Las Vegas, establishing makeup concessions at Ceasar’s Palace and the International Hotel and friendships with the many headline performers and showgirls who made up her clientele. All showed signs of skin damage from harsh stage lights, heavy makeup and drying desert sun. When legendary screen beauty Merle Oberon shared a small jar of an ancient Aztec beauty potion derived from the roots of five desert cacti that miraculously restored the skin, Tova embarked on a quest that would consume several years and eventually form the cornerstone of her business empire.
Personal happiness and fulfillment enriched Tova’s life in 1973, when, after meeting on a blind date arranged by comedian Marty Allen, she married actor Ernest Borgnine. They continued to share a loving, permanent bond filled with laughter, romance and respect. It was while with her husband, filming on location in Mexico, that Tova finally traced the source of the cactus-based essence. Soon, Ernie and all of his Hollywood friends were using Tova’s “Cactine®” masque. When Ernie related this fact to a San Francisco Chronicle reporter who was writing a profile on him, an article appeared with the banner headline- “Ernest Borgnine’s Wife Discovers Facelift In A Jar- All The Stars Use It”. Whether due to the boldness of this proclamation or just a slow news cycle, the story was picked up by UPI and reprinted in newspapers across the country.
Unable to place her products in high-end department stores, Tova innovated the use of new technology, such as toll-free telephone ordering and acceptance of credit cards for payment. Early ΤΟVΛ® catalogues showcased the glamorous elegance of the Beverly Hills lifestyle with all of the exuberant excess of the 1980’s. Along with Tova’s pure botanical Cactine® skincare regimen and professional grade color cosmetics, one could purchase Burt Reynolds’ Arabian Stallion or a $117 million Concorde jet.
Tova handpicked a corps of expertly trained ΤΟVΛ® Beauty Counselors to keep in close personal touch with an ever-growing and fiercely loyal customer base; calling to wish happy birthday or to give a friendly reminder to reorde.In 1982, Tova introduced the Fragrance Hall of Fame nominated ΤΟVΛ® Signature fragrance; a cleanly sensual American classic scent that instantly struck a chord with consumers. In 1991, after Tova met with executives of QVC and demonstrated her belief in herself and her products, this was the scent that cracked the difficult television market, debunking conventional wisdom that with perfume there could be no selling without smelling. More fragrances followed: Body, Mind & Spirit® in 1992 (along with a luxurious Beverly Hills Salon of the same name), the FiFi award winning ΤΟVΛ® Nights in 1997, Love Everlasting in 2006 (an homage to Norway presented in a cut glass glacier), among others. However, more than thirty years after its debut, ΤΟVΛ® Signature continues to lead the pack, thriving and growing year upon year, as millions of wearers are routinely accosted with the polite but insistent question, “What are you wearing?” This is quite a singular achievement in the annals of American fragrance history.From 2002 to 2012, Tova deepened her association with QVC, devoting herself exclusively to expanding the ΤΟVΛ® brand through the Beauty By ΤΟVΛ® program across QVC’s worldwide television networks. 2013 marks the launch of Tova’s own internet retail presence: TOVA90210.com, and the re-introduction of Tova’s acclaimed botanical skincare line, updated to reflect advancements in the science of skincare.
Tova is a twice-published author, holds an accelerated Business MBA from Harvard University, is the recipient of numerous awards in recognition of her business achievements and her charitable works, is a breast cancer survivor, and is an accomplished and inspirational public speaker.
Ernie was perfect for our Elders Conference at Little River Casino Resort in Manistee, Michigan. We will definitely be using PDA again!
LITTLE RIVER BAND OF OTTAWA INDIANS
Our speaker was great and the crowd enjoyed her! She was very engaging. Thank you again PDA for the great list of suggestions!
Everything went great! and our speaker was wonderful! Thank you so much for all your help PDA! Looking forward to the next one.
UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI – KANSAS CITY
I hope that this message finds you well. We had a phenomenal time with Atsuko this past Thursday. We wanted to just let you know how amazing she was. All those that were in attendance thoroughly enjoyed her and had nothing but amazing things to say about her. Thank you for working with us to make sure this happened!
BAYLOR UNIVERSITY CAMPUS
We had a fantastic day with Inge! She was very engaging with all those that attended. Her personal stories about the holocaust were very special and we were moved that she was willing to share them with everyone. Thank you again, PDA for all your hard work and dedication to make this program such a success!
SALT LAKE COMMUNITY COLLEGE
Dear PDA Group, Thank you so much for your hard work in scheduling our speaker! From the moment we reached out to you the first time, you worked with us on all details and logistics and kept us up-to-date on the progress. Thank you for all your hard work on making our event such a success! We couldn't have done it without you and your team!
Thank you again, Dr. Kimbrough, for a great presentation, our attendees are still talking about it!
Dr. Henry Lee's presentation was entertaining, insightful and wise. I, and everyone at Pfizer, especially appreciate the remarks you directed about following your passion and preparing yourself to excel. Thank you, everyone, at PDA for helping to make this happen!
The event was successful! I received many messages expressing how awesome, outstanding and inspiring Ms. Webb-Christburg's speech was."
DR. MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. MEMORIAL BREAKFAST, BOSTON, MLK SPEAKER
Everything went well. Atsuko was very easy to work with and the students enjoyed her performance! Thank you again for your recommendation and I hope to work with you again in the future!
CENTRAL MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY
Dr. Novello left this morning after a very successful event on our campus! Thank you PDA Group for your help from the first phone to the last you were with us every step of the way.
GRAND VALLEY STATE UNIVERSITY
Jordan Carlos was very very entertaining! A majority of students who answered the event survey indicated they really enjoyed Jordan and definitely will bring him back!
WESTERN CAROLINA UNIVERSITY
On behalf of myself and my organization Entertainment Unlimited the Campus Programming Board of Ferris State University, we thank you PDA and Dan for a successful event!! Dan was magnificent! Students really enjoyed the presentation. I know I did. Can't wait to bring in more programs with PDA Group.
FERRIS STATE UNIVERSITY
It was a great pleasure to work with PDA Group! The communication was always prompt, friendly and helpful. We loved the speakers and events we booked through Mr. Peter Walker (PDA Group).
WESTERN MICHIGAN UNIVERSITY
Thank you, Peter, for all your help, you'll be happy to know that the event went incredibly well! Aneesa Ferreira was by far one of the best speakers we've ever had!
A Conversation With Tova Borgnine
TOVA Signature 3.4 oz Eau de Parfum Duo on QVC
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