Michelle grew up in Los Angeles, where mom worked for Universal Studios and dad was an attorney. She started modeling internationally as a teen and lived in Italy for a year -- her Italian is amazing! -- before coming home to pursue acting. These days, she lives in L.A. with her dogs (Beauregard and Mason) and has lots of interests, including travel, food, philosophy, and hockey, her favorite sport.
Following a stint in the short-lived teen soap "Tribes," Michelle joined "The Young and the Restless" in 1994. She won a 1997 Daytime Emmy for Best Supporting Actress before exiting to star in the nighttime soap "Pacific Palisades." Three years later, Michelle returned to "Y&R," where she won the Best Actress Daytime Emmy in 2003 and 2004. Starting in late 2006, she had a second "Y&R" role, Sheila Carter, for three months -- while still playing Phyllis. Hello? Identity crisis on line 1!
You might have caught Michelle's guest appearances on the likes of "Frasier," "JAG," "Judging Amy," and "Charmed," but you know you saw her and her fabulous hair -- no, that's not her natural color -- in that great Clairol Herbal Essences commercial.
Michelle was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was just 18. It wasn't malignant, but she says the initial shock and later gratitude gave her the courage to kick-start her acting career.