Fashion Model Salary

Behind the Scenes Look at the Fashion Model Salary – “How Much Money Can I Make in Modeling?

Because I shot hundreds of modeling portfolios as a photographer, I was asked a thousand questions or more. Most of these questions included something about model types, or the elusive fashion model salary.

Yes, the first question, I think, or even the silent question people have in their mind is…

How much money can I make?

Okay, this is a good question. In reality, because you’re concerned about getting started in modeling as a business.

fashion model salary

fashion model salary

So, I try to write more modeling tips & answer their questions. However, there is no direct answer (what a cop-out!).

Salary Benefits You’ll Get as a Fashion Model

For catalog in a New York major market, you could make big bucks. Of course, in a smaller market you’re going to make less.

Depending on what level you’re at in your career is going to decide.

So, you could make anywhere from $1,000 per day to $25,000 a day.

But, if the job includes part of a campaign, you could make more than that.

So, your fashion model salary depends on these factors:fashion model salary

  • the client
  • the usage
  • for how long they’re going to use it.

All of the above are used to determine the catalog salary of fashion models.

If You Make It Big in NYC, The Fashion Model Salary Could Change Your Life!

A model in New York City who’s been at it for quite a while, let’s say, seven to ten years – is going to make way more than $100,000 a year.

Usually, a half-million a year is a target. But all of that becomes relative. And, that kind of money won’t happen in your first year.

In modeling, you make an investment. Or, the opposite: you get really lucky with someone like Wilhelmina or IMG. You really hit at the right time.

You’re in a market where people want to pay you a lot more. You can make crazy money really quick.

High fashion modeling can be a slow climb or a fast hill. For me, I read about models who reach high success.

So, I think that it’s better to try for a slow climb in modeling.

How Do You Stay at the Top of the Modeling Salary Income Levels?

fashion modeling salaryFirst, once you get to the top, the goal is staying at the top.

You must continue working at a level to generate the income that you’ve already become accustomed to.

If you got lucky early then you’re going to think that it was no sweat. You feel that’s just how it happens.

But, that’s not always how it happens. Starting out in modeling is different for everybody.

There are girls that make money right away. They move to the top very fast. And, they don’t get any editorial or image work.

Then, there are girls who do editorial and image work for a long time before the money kicks in. Some even dive into freelance work which has it’s own rewards and pitfalls.

Facts & Figures Don’t Mean Much If Your Salary as a Fashion Model is Low

What’s the secret to long term modeling success? Well, nothing is certain in entertainment. But, there is one way to brighten your chances to draw a good fashion model salary.

If you shoot for the stars, put in applications at top companies like Ford or Elite Models.

Or, you can make a good living working locally but not like the NYC stars.

So, hire a good agent. That’s the answer to that question. As for the question of a fashion model salary, it depends upon you and the curve of fate.

Want to Learn More about Fashion Modeling?

If these answers about a fashion model’s salary intrigued you, I suggest getting my newsletter for new models. It’s available with a bonus for a limited and really worth your while…


If you are ready to take that next step to learning how to model, check out my book below. It’s available on Kindle and ready for instant download. Just click the picture to buy now…

I hope you enjoyed this little Q&A about the fashion model salary and will come again soon for more tips and advice. Best of luck in your career! – Bob Pardue

Filed under: Modeling Tips