In 1985, the life of a 14-year-old aspiring singer by the name of Tiffany Renee Darwish changed forever when she finished second place on Star Search with Ed McMahon.
She went on to sign a contract with MCA and recorded her first studio album, Tiffany, which was released in 1987. Unfortunately, her first single, “Danny,” failed to chart, so her manager, George Tobin, sent her on a nationwide shopping mall tour called “The Beautiful You: Celebrating The Good Life Shopping Mall Tour ’87.”
Tiffany started to build up a fan base as the shows progressed, and by the time she released her second single, a cover of Tommy James & the Shondells’ hit “I Think We’re Alone Now,” she was popular enough to reach No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100. Tiffany became a household name, and forever cemented herself as one of the decade’s icons.
People Magazine described her in the title of a story as “Tiffany, the Teenage Mall Flower Who Serenades the Shoppers of America.” Her shot to stardom was further fueled by her second single, “Could’ve Been,” and for the remainder of the 80s she held her position as a pop princess competing with the likes of Debbie Gibson. She’s also to thank for giving New Kids on the Block the national exposure they needed by having them open up for her U.S leg of her concert tour.
She appeared on magazine covers, MTV programs, and even provided the voice of Judy Jetson on Jetsons: The Movie, which was released in 1990.
But as new artists began to emerge, Tiffany’s star power started to diminish in the early 90s. As people’s musical tastes started to shift, the pop star’s career started to suffer, and before long, she was forgottten.
So where has she been this whole time?
The lack of successful sales did not deter the former teen idol from releasing more music. She took a hiatus in the mid-90s and moved to Nashville to work on her songwriting, before making a comeback at the start of the 2000s.
She released an album titled The Color of Silence, which debuted to positive reviews. Tiffany then surprised everyone by posing for the cover of Playboy’s April 2002 issue. She explained her decision to pose for the magazine to Billboard, saying she wanted to shed her “mall girl” image.
“I came off that tour and all of a sudden I got the call from Playboy. I was going through a divorce — as a woman, I was like, “That is a great idea!” she recalled.
Tiffany released more albums and continued to tour throughout the early to mid-2000s. She also appeared in a variety of television shows, including VH1’s Celebrity Fit Club and How I Met Your Mother.
Nowadays, the 46-year-old singer is not only making music, hosting charity events, and starring in commercials for brands like Miracle Whip, she is also running a boutique in Nashville.
The store, which is appropriately named Tiffany Boutique, offers an array of eclectic vintage and modern fashion pieces.
“I thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to open up a boutique that is a little bit of glamour, and a little bit different?’” she told People. “I work with local designers around Nashville, and buy different items from around the world that can be tailored.”
Tiffany explained that her goal is provide products for women of all shapes and sizes, while being budget conscious.
“My goal is to provide fashion for real women – any size, any age. I’m budget conscious; my things don’t cost a fortune. But it’s a way for people to feel good about themselves, based on how they are dressed,” she added.
As for her reputation as a mall girl? “That’s okay,” she said, adding “That was my start. But I can do so much more than that. My voice has matured; I’ve developed as a songwriter. And I want to show that off.”
One thing that Tiffany has remained mum about is her love life. She was once married to makeup artist Bulmaro Garcia, but they got divorced in 2003. The couple share a 25-year-old son, Elijah.
Since Elijah is all grown up, Tiffany has been putting all her extra time towards giving back.
“I’ve had a good career,” she continues. “And I’ve had the good fortune to do very well. Giving back is the right thing to do.”
And for her fans, she says she isn’t going anywhere, and “has so many great things coming up.”