How much should you charge as a model getting started?
That depends on your level of experience and type of modeling.
New Model: Just getting started, no wardrobe, little experience, basic portfolio, does basic poses, needs guiding.
Experienced Model: Been consistently modeling for a few years, has a wardrobe, can do their own make-up, can flow pose, has a good portfolio.
Full Time Traveling Pro Model: Modeling many years, published in national magazines, does own make up, has a full wardrobe, excellent portfolio, well know in the industry, can pose in any style on command and flow
This is what photographers on the East Coast of the US are generally paying models.
Type of Modeling New Experienced Full Time Traveling Pro
Fashion (Dresses, P $15/HR $50/HR $75/HR
Glamour $20/HR $50/HR $75/HR
Bikini $25/HR $50/HR $75/HR
Lingerie $30/HR $60/HR $75/HR
Implied Nude $35/HR $70/HR $75/HR
Topless (female) $40/HR $75/HR $100/HR
Glamour Nude $50/HR $75/HR $120/HR
Fine Art Nude $50/HR $75/HR $120/HR
Erotic Nude $55/HR $100/HR $150/HR
$100 per hour or $1,500 per full day for catalogs
$250 per hour or $10,000 per day is average for advertising agencies
High Fashion Models:
High fashion models usually earn by the hour. They made average annual incomes of $65,000 as of 2013, according to the job website Simply Hired. This equates to $31.25 per hour, based on 40-hour workweeks. Most high fashion models learn their craft from a very early age. Many attend modeling schools to learn how to pose, walk on runways and apply makeup. From a physical standpoint, they must be tall, fit and photogenic. Women are usually 5 feet 8 inches to 6 feet, according to Bob Pardue Photography. Men should be 5 feet 11 inches to 6 feet 3 inches. Other essential requirements include discipline, a sense for clothing styles, persistence and organizational skills.
Some high fashion models earn millions of dollars. Gisele Bundchen — also known as quarterback Tom Brady’s wife — was the highest paid fashion model, at $33 million per year, according to latest data from Forbes. The next two highest earners were Kate Moss and Heidi Klum, who earned $9 million and $8 million per year, respectively. Most high fashion models earn between $25 and $300 per hour, according to Glassdoor. This equates to $52,000 to $624,000 per year, based on 40-hour work weeks.
Income by Region
In 2013, average incomes for high fashion models varied considerably within certain U.S. regions. In the Northeast region, they earned the highest salaries of $79,000 in Massachusetts and the lowest of $59,000 in Maine, according to Simply Hired. Those in the Midwest made between $51,000 and $69,000 per year, respectively, in South Dakota and Minnesota. High fashion models in the West earned $52,000 to $74,000, respectively, in Montana and California. They earned $51,000 to $103,000, respectively, in Mississippi and Washington, D.C., which were the lowest and highest incomes in the South. Moreover, fashion models earned $77,000, $73,000 and $72,000 per year, respectively, in the top fashion markets of New York City, Los Angeles and Chicago.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects a 14-percent increase in modeling jobs in the next decade, including those working in high fashion. This rate of growth is on par with the 14-percent national average for all jobs. Top fashion companies will primarily hire models for print and digital advertisements. Job opportunities may continue increasing if the economy improves.
2016 Salary Information for Models
Models earned a median annual salary of $21,870 in 2016, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. On the low end, models earned a 25th percentile salary of $19,010, meaning 75 percent earned more than this amount. The 75th percentile salary is $41,470, meaning 25 percent earn more. In 2016, 4,800 people were employed in the U.S. as models.