Learn How to Become a Model (Tips for Aspiring Models)

How to become a model

Here's how to become a model. A career as a model has several advantages. You gain confidence and poise as a result of the abilities you master. Depending on your expertise and reputation, you can have the chance to travel to intriguing locations and meet fascinating people, as well as earn a high pay.

What does a model do?

Models assist in the promotion of a wide range of items, including clothes, cosmetics, cuisine, places, and automobiles. Magazines, television, newspapers, catalogs, billboards, and the internet are all options for advertising.

In a large hat, sunglasses, and a sundress, a model poses for the photographer.

Models must deal with a huge number of people, therefore they must be kind, professional, punctual, and respectful at all times.

how to become a model

Almost all models work through agents, who act as intermediaries between them and their customers. Clients frequently prefer to deal with agencies, making it harder for a model to work solo. In exchange for a percentage of the model's profits, agents seek for "new faces," counsel and train models, and market them to customers.

Models devote a significant amount of effort to compiling and updating their portfolios, as well as scheduling and traveling to meet with possible customers. A model's portfolio is a compilation of prior work that she brings with her to all client meetings and bookings. Because employment competition is fierce and clients' requirements are precise, patience and perseverance are key skills.

A model's profession is dependent on maintaining his or her physical features, therefore they must maintain a balanced diet, exercise frequently, and get enough sleep to remain healthy and photogenic.

A man model poses for the camera while wearing sunglasses and a red jacket.

Choosing a specialization

Models can be used successfully in a variety of situations. From runway models to plus size models, the modeling business is currently looking for people of all shapes and sizes. We've outlined the many sorts of modeling jobs that are accessible, as well as the requirements for each.

Fashion models

These models must be between 5'8 and 5'10 in height "to 6' tall, weigh 108-130 pounds depending on height, waist no more than 25", maximum hips 35", dress size 0 to 4US, with a typical bust size of 34 The age range is 13 to 25 years old. The "look" can range from classic beauty to outlandish. For men, the age range is 16 to late 40s, with a height of 5”11 to 6”2, an outstanding physique, and a chest size of 37” to 42” and a waist size of 30” to 32”. Models must be able to walk gracefully and confidently on the runway.

Editorial/print models

These models appear on magazine covers such as Elle, Vogue, and others, as well as editorials. Because many of the same models work in both high fashion and editorial, the criteria are often the same. This sort of work gives models a lot of exposure, but the compensation is usually modest, and getting the higher-paying gigs might require a few years of experience.

Commercial print

These models specialize in print advertising, which includes anything from publications to billboards to product placement on shop shelves. Because brands are searching for models that closely resemble the people who will be purchasing their products, there are more job possibilities in this field.

Catalog modeling

This sort of modeling provides several options for people of all shapes and sizes. Firms hire models to represent their target audience and make their products seem nice. Clothing lines and other items are marketed through online or printed catalogues, and companies hire models to represent their target demographic and make their products look good. For many aspiring models, this can be a highly practical alternative because to the growing number of companies that demand models to market their items online.

Modeling for plus-size women

This style of modeling is becoming more popular, and it necessitates a bigger body type (sizes 8-16 US) and a minimum height of 5'8" ".. Given that the typical American woman is a size 14, more and more advertisers are turning to plus size models to sell their products and reach a wider audience.

Modeling of body parts

Hands, feet, and legs are the three primary forms of body component modeling. Ears, hair, bottoms, necks, eyes, and lips, on the other hand, have a market. This sort of model can be used to promote and sell items, as well as in films when the producers are especially seeking for attractive hands or legs. Modeling rings and bracelets for jewelers, as well as nail paint, nail extensions, and hand lotions, is done with hand models.

Modeling for glamour

These glamour models can work in lingerie, swimwear, nude photography, and men's publications, among other things. Many models find that there are no height limitations, which can be extremely appealing. For this sort of job, a model's body must be flawless.

Commercial TV

Because each commercial demands a unique and individual person for the job, there are no general age, size, or height requirements. Brands are constantly on the lookout for models who can connect with the general public, making this sort of employment accessible to anybody who believes they have what it takes. Commercials can be extremely stylized or very realistic, and some acting skill is required.

how to become a model

Influencer modeling

Sometimes referred to as a promotional model. On Instagram, extremely fashionable people tend to have very huge followings, and big companies are starting to see the value in these people. Influencer models are what they're called. When they publish a post, these influencers are the hot, attractive, tattooed, pierced, alternative, busty, or quirky, and they have a lot of influence.

Influencers and brands will work together and agree to have the influencer post an endorsement of the company's product in exchange for monetary compensation (or free items) from the business. If the influencer is able to send a large number of clicks to the brand's website, they can be able to demand a greater payment. Everyone can participate in this sort of modeling.

Becoming a fitness model is a great path on social media, too. An aspiring model can get their start here and move into the fashion world. Or take modeling classes and advance their skills.

Alt modeling

Do you have an ever-growing tattoo and piercing collection? Is your regular appearance considered a fancy dress outfit by others? When it comes to beauty and style, alternative models don't always conform to industry standards. Alternative models are the wild children of the modeling industry, with their tattoos, piercings, radical hair, and outfits overflowing with spikes, corsets, and PVC. Alt modeling is typically a hybrid of glamour and art modeling.

Average salary for a model

A model's hourly wage in the United States is $23.10. Models who are female make more money than male models. This is partly due to the fact that there are more female models, which means that female modeling jobs are more competitive.

How much money you make as a model is mostly determined by your experience and reputation as a top model. You should also work with a reputable agent who can help you locate high-paying employment.

How to become a model

If you wish to pursue a career as a model, here are some measures you can take:

Decide your modeling career path

Models come in a variety of shapes and sizes, including runway, print, plus-size, and hand models. There are also models who do not follow normal modeling guidelines. Given the variety of possibilities available, it's critical that you start your modeling career by selecting which form of modeling best suits you.

Practice at home

You can start preparing for a modeling career right away. Look for professional model videos and see how they move and pose. These videos can be imitated and learned from. If you have one, practice your runway walk in front of a full-length mirror.

If you don't have access to one, check out your local gym or dancing studio. Because many forms of modeling need you to stay within a certain weight range and have muscular tone, you should pay attention to your food and exercise.

Regardless, modeling can be a highly taxing profession. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle will aid in your emotional and physical well-being.

how to become a model

Build a portfolio

Your model portfolio is everything. Fashion designers want to pick their runway model based on your ability to be stylized. Begin with images taken by your pals. Have them shoot full-body and head pictures of you with no makeup on a plain background. This aids an agency or client in determining whether you are the type of model they seek. Look for aspiring photographers who would be willing to shoot you in return for the right to use your images in their advertisements.

To get professional photos, you'll eventually need to hire a photographer. Make sure you have a diverse set of photos in your portfolio that show you in a variety of positions and settings. This demonstrates your adaptability and ability to work in a range of settings.

Look for an agent

Although you can try to locate clients on your own, most clients prefer to work with a modeling agency, so you should look for one. Bring your portfolio and be prepared to audition when you visit an agency. You should also be aware of your physical characteristics, such as height, weight, eye color, and shoe size.

While it is better to provide professional photographs to an agency, your amateur photographs can suffice. If the agency likes what they see, they will usually pay for a professional photographer to visit you. Before you sign a contract with an agency, make sure you do your homework to make sure they are real.

how to become a model

Take classes

Modeling schools offer students everything they need to know about the profession, including how to work a photo session and how to stay healthy and eat well. To become a model, however, you do not need to attend modeling school. Consider taking acting or dancing courses if you want to improve your modeling abilities.

Acting courses can come in handy if you need to portray a mood or character in a picture shoot. Dance courses can aid in the development of poise and proper posture.

Look for opportunities to get noticed

To thrive as a model, you must be unafraid of self-promotion. Always search for modeling opportunities that can help you stand out to potential clients. Volunteer at a local fashion show, for example, or seek for retail stores that require models to display items.

canbe some local hairstylists or cosmetics artists are looking for models to practice on. Always consider each engagement as a professional opportunity, and make sure someone is there to photograph you for your portfolio.

how to become a model

Use social media

Because you can publish photos and films that potentially reach thousands of people, the internet is a wonderful method to advertise oneself. You can get followers and establish a presence by using social media.

This can pique the interest of potential clients who want to see you wearing their items in front of your followers.

Start building a professional social media presence if you don't currently have one. Pay special attention to sites that promote images and video.

Do you need modeling school?

If you want to break into the modeling profession, you can want to consider enrolling in a modeling school. It is not, however, required. In reality, many models begin their modeling careers by sending headshots to agencies and scouts. You can enroll in a modeling school if you want to learn how to be a model, how to walk down the runway, and how to posture in front of the camera from pros.

They can also teach you other skills, such as cosmetics application, portfolio creation, and lighting and camera angles, in addition to posing. You can take seminars and lessons to enhance your postures and catwalk to help you acquire the abilities needed to become a model in addition to modeling schools. Taking lessons will also help you to meet other aspiring models if you're new to the field.

How to find an agent

Getting started in the modeling world can feel daunting. And it can be difficult to find a respectable modeling agency, especially if you're new to the field. Make sure you do your homework while looking for a trustworthy modeling agent.

You can research local modeling agencies in your area by visiting their websites. There are big worldwide modeling agencies with offices in numerous locations in addition to boutique modeling agencies. Visit their website and follow them on social media. Take a look at the models they've worked with in the past and the job they've done. Learn about the firms and partners with whom the modeling agency has collaborated to get a sense of the kind of brands you could be able to work with. Whether you want to be a high-fashion model and walk the runway in New York, you should check with the modeling agency to see if they have expertise with such kind of events.

Finally, look up the agency's internet reviews or ask your modeling business contacts for recommendations on trustworthy companies they are presently working with. Remember to look for an agency that is a good fit for your demands and objectives. Once you've found the appropriate agency for you, send them your modeling portfolio and get ready for your audition.

Common questions

Commonly asked questions about the modeling industry.

how to become a model

What's the ideal body size of a model?

The optimum model size is determined by the type of model you wish to be. Commercial models can be any size and height, depending on the client's needs. Runway models generally have fairly tight body size restrictions. Models that are plus size or tiny must also fit into specified size categories.

Swimsuit and glamour modeling both highlight a specific body type. Knowing which category best fits your body type can aid you in determining the field of modeling where you have the highest chance of succeeding.

How old do you need to be to start modeling?

Modeling possibilities are available for persons of all ages, including children under the age of 12 and older models over the age of 60. The average age range for fashion modeling is 16 to 21 years old. Most other forms of modeling have age restrictions that are primarily determined by the demands of the customer for a campaign or project.

How tall do you need to be?

In the modeling field, there are a variety of height requirements. Being slender and tall can or can not be a need depending on the sort of modeling you choose to pursue. As a result, in addition to height, the agency will frequently consider additional characteristics.

If you want to model for editorial, commercial prints, body parts, or catalogs, businesses will search for models that fit their brand. Modeling requirements might vary depending on the profession, from physical type to face form. If you want to be a high-fashion model, though, most modeling agencies would want you to be at least 5'8" to 5'11". Even yet, a few high-fashion models stand at 5"7 or above 6"0 in height. Companies are allowed to make exceptions if they meet other criteria.

What's a "go-see"?

The modeling counterpart of an acting audition is a "Go-See." It's where you meet with a client representative to see whether you're a good fit for the company's image or their campaign. This includes not just photographing you, but also meeting with you to get a sense of your personality and how simple it will be to collaborate with you.

Is it okay to have tattoos or scars?

Being a model is not impossible if you have tattoos or scars. It depends on their location, size, and the client's requirements. Your tattoos can complement a certain outfit or venue for a picture session. Tattoos can be covered using clothes or digital photo editing techniques, just like scars.

What kind of education do I need to have?

While a high school diploma is beneficial, it is not required to be a model. Fashion models can be as young as 16, and they are not required to complete high school. Your reading and math abilities, on the other hand, should be sufficient to handle your profession. You will need to read contracts and budget your income and expenses, so a basic education is recommended.

how to become a model

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author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), NCDA Certified Career Counselor (CCC), and general career expert. Patrick has completed the NACE Coaching Certification Program (CCP). And has been published as a career expert on Forbes, Glassdoor, Dice.com, WorkWise, American Express, Reader's Digest, LiveCareer, Zety, Yahoo, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, SHRM.org, Process.st, FairyGodBoss, HRCI.org, St. Edwards University, NC State University, IBTimes.com, Thrive Global, TMCnet.com, Work It Daily, Workology, Career Guide, MyPerfectResume, College Career Life, The HR Digest, WorkWise, Career Cast, Elite Staffing, Women in HR, All About Careers, Upstart HR, The Street, Monster, The Ladders, Introvert Whisperer, and many more. Find him on LinkedIn.

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