Rosie Herman created One Minute Manicure

In 1997, manicurist Rosie Herman was a stay-at-home mom and she and her husband were $75,000 in debt from fertility treatments. After her twins were born, she had another big problem on her hands. Caring for premature twins, she couldn't use manicure products on the market because they contained perfumes and dyes that she was allergic to or might harm the babies, but constantly washing her hands was causing her hands to crack and bleed. Armed with her knowledge as a manicurist, Rosie whipped up a treatment in her own kitchen and within a week her hands were soft and smooth.

Rosie passed out her magical mixture around town and immediately she was flooded with requests for more. With almost no money in the bank, Rosie had to think outside of the box. She rallied friends and neighbors to help her get started and traded baked goods for business know-how. In just five years, sales of her One Minute Manicure topped the $20 million mark!

Even with millions in the bank, Rosie says life hasn't changed much at all. She still clips coupons and puts dresses on layaway! "You've got to teach your children today just because we were successful, they need to know they need to work for it also," says Rosie. "[My children] do things around the house and I treat them to a day at the dollar store."
Victoria McDowell created Airborne

As a teacher and a mother, Victoria found herself catching colds all the time. In her spare time, Victoria took to her kitchen to wage war on the common cold. Within six months she had created the prototype for Airborne, her all-natural cold fighter. Her friends and family started using it and Victoria says no one was getting sick. So she and her husband set up shop in their home and began to market Airborne. The accounting office was in the dining room, one of the bedrooms was the marketing office and the bathroom was shipping and receiving! The orders started pouring in and in the first year, Victoria made $25,000—the same as her teaching salary.

That was just the beginning. Airborne made $21 million this past year and is the number one natural cold remedy in the United States—but they still only have five employees. "One of the keys to our success is that I'm used to operating on a shoestring budget," says Victoria. "Once a teacher, always a teacher. Now I can be in the classroom and enjoy being with the children, without worrying about money."

Airborne's low-budget commercials may make you laugh, but the product has its own celebrity following, like Sarah Jessica Parker and Kevin Costner. And, celebrity event planner Colin Cowie says he's obsessed with Airborne. "When I travel, I'd rather leave my credit cards at home than leave my Airborne at home." Plus, Colin says it's fabulous for curing hangovers!
Rebecca Matthais created the world's largest maternity clothes company!

Rebecca Matthias was a 28-year-old mom-to-be when she conceived an idea that would change her life forever. Struggling to find maternity clothes to wear to work, Rebecca used her savings to create a maternity catalogue she thought would appeal to other women, but her black and white catalogue was a bust. Even though she made major mistakes, Rebecca's maternal instincts and perseverance paid off. Her next attempt at the belly business was a big success. Today, her company MothersWork has 1,100 stores around the U.S. and is a $500 million clothing empire!

"If you can raise kids, you can run a business," says Rebecca. "What better way to combine having children and having a career than being able to be in control of when you work and what you do? And if you have to drop everything for an hour and go to the play at school that your kid is starring in, you just go! You don't have to ask anybody."
MothersWork casual maternity fashions

Here are casual, contemporary maternity fashions! On the left, trendy "Seven for All Mankind" maternity jeans with a silk lace camisole and a floral velvet jacket from A Pea in the Pod.

On the right, a cropped vest, striped shirt and cargo pants from Mimi Maternity.

The models' shoes are from Neiman Marcus. All of their jewelry is from Alyse Ziede.
MothersWork business attire maternity fashions

Next up is MothersWork business wear. On the left is a fabulous retro look: a black print silk dress with a dusty pink coat from A Pea in the Pod.

On the right is a herringbone tweed jacket and matching pants from A Pea in the Pod.

The models' shoes are from Neiman Marcus. All of their jewelry is from Alyse Ziede.
MothersWork holiday and evening maternity fashions

Dressing a pregnant belly for the holidays or special occasions can still be chic and elegant. On the left is an elegant chiffon gown from A Pea in the Pod.

On the right, an amethyst ruffle halter top with floral print and satin evening pants from Mimi Maternity.

The models' shoes are from Neiman Marcus. All of their jewelry is from Alyse Ziede.
Deborah Rosado Shaw built her own umbrella company

Deborah Rosado Shaw knows that when it rains, it pours. She grew up in a tough Bronx neighborhood where violence was a way of life. Deborah hoped education would be her ticket out. She got a full scholarship to Wesley, but dropped out after only one year. She got a part-time job with an umbrella company answering phones. One day she took a sales call that turned out to be the break of a lifetime. Passing herself off as an account executive, Deborah sold $140,000 worth of umbrellas and landed her first full-time sales job.

Deborah took the umbrella business by storm and went from taking sales calls to running her own company. Although her umbrellas were being sold in museums and major retail stores across the country, balancing her growing company and motherhood has not always been easy. "There have been times in my career when I thought, 'I'm stuck,'" says Deborah. "You have to keep picking yourself up and doing it again, even when everyone says you can't."

Even though this divorced mother of three can afford the best of everything, she refuses to live like a millionaire. "When I watch rich people, I see that the more you live beneath your means, the more you have," Deborah says.
Janice Howroyd created Act One staffing company

Janice Howroyd was temping at Billboard magazine when she discovered she had a knack for hooking other people up with jobs. With only $1,500, Janice started her own staffing company. Today her company, Act One, is worth over $500 million!
Thomas Stanley on careers and qualities that make women millionaires

Thomas Stanley, author of Millionaire Women Next Door, studied ordinary women who became wealthy, and uncovered some extraordinary facts. For example, he says more than 20 percent of women with million-dollar estates were once teachers!