Byline: Laura Klepacki

NEW YORK — That Le Mirador — QVC’s exclusive, three-year-old skin care brand — had an unusual beginning was only one of the points that sold model Carol Alt on her recent decision to help QVC develop it.
Alt, who has spent the last several years building an acting career, has agreed to work with QVC to not only promote the upscale skin care collection, but shape its future.
Fearing the industry would misconstrue her role as simply a “spokesperson,” both she and QVC executives stressed that Alt would play an integral business role.
“I didn’t want to be just a ‘face,’ ” said Alt, whose modeling career has spanned some 20 years including ads for Cover Girl and Lancome. “What interested me is that they [QVC] want my input.”
Over the years, she said, “I have studied with a biochemist in California on how food and oil affects the body and consulted with dermatologists.” Alt said she had taken to packing a collection of natural oils and created her own skin care regimen because she couldn’t find products that contained the ingredients she desired. “I would take my oils around with me and do my own thing.”
Alt was impressed when introduced to Le Mirador products earlier this year. “I read the ingredients,” said Alt, “and thought, ‘here is everything I need.’ “
Le Mirador was created in 1997 by International Research Inc., with help from the University of Pennsylvania. The company waged a worldwide search to find the best skin care products on the market, according to Allen Burke, director of beauty and cosmetics at QVC. The result was the introduction of a day moisturizer and night cream under the Le Mirador name, after the famed Swiss spa which also carries the items. In 1998, QVC purchased the brand, which has since expanded to about 10 items. Last year, QVC tapped Michelle Werner from Elizabeth Arden as product developer.
“We think Carol will help us take it to a new level of visibility and help us grow the business to a size much larger than it is today,” said Burke.
Burke said he expects the business to grow 40 percent this year and to continue at that rate “in future years.” QVC declined to give the size of the Le Mirador business, although its total beauty business is expected to exceed $200 million this year. A Le Mirador moisturizer is $24 and the night cream is $27.
Alt’s first appearance is slated for Nov. 3. New items will include Instant Infusion, a moisturizer for stressed skin and Firming EyeShadow Base, a multi-benefit product that firms skin and also hides oil.

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