How to become a male model

One of the challenges of trying to keep your finger on the pulse of fashion and style around the world is that you’re regularly confronted by the reality that you’re clearly not as tall, thin, or (most crushingly) as young as the guys parading the designers’ clothes up and down the catwalks of the world.

But how do you actually become a male model?

I spoke with Charlotte Bensley from Models Direct to get some advice on whether I potentially had what it takes to land the cover of the September issue:

What age do most male models begin their career?

Your career as a male model could potentially take off at any age. Ultimately, success will depend on whether or not a client is interested in your look and requirements can vary a lot according to the type of client you’re dealing with or the influence of current trends.

If you happen to have what they’re looking for at any age you’re in luck. We have a demand for male models from new born babies to seniors.

Is there a specific look that model agencies are looking for when assessing potential new male models?

Again, this will vary greatly depending on the clientele of a particular agent and the area of modeling that you choose to go into. Some clients may prefer a very polished, high-fashion look, others may be looking for something more quirky or edgy.

There is an increasing number of ‘real’ models being used in shoots these days, as advertisers become more aware of the consumer’s desire to relate to the subject of a photograph – this is also a response to bad press around photo-shopping.

What sort of preparation should aspiring models do before approaching an agency?

Do your research. Good agencies will offer you free, neutral advice and you can find out a lot by checking out their websites and going through the small print.

We’d also recommend that you stick with government regulated agencies as these companies have to adhere to rules which are put in place to protect the consumer.

Another top tip would be that while professional pictures can be very nice to own, they’re not necessary in order to find modelling work — so don’t be duped into paying out for expensive portfolio images when applying to become a model.

What type of work can most male models expect to be put forward for?

The type of assignment that a model is put forward for will depend on how well they fit the specified brief. We have enquiries and bookings for men of all types, ranging from promotional and event hosting, to character roles for photo shoots and films posing as doctors, business professionals, dads, or everyday shoppers.

Open a newspaper or magazine and every time you see a man in an advert they’re represented by an agency and being paid for the job.

How long can you expect to work as a model?

There’s no way to predict the length of a model’s career — it will depend on various factors, again, the most relevant of which being how sought for the model’s look is at any given time. We’ve had very senior men working as granddads, senior execs, retired professionals, and holiday-makers.

Is working as a male model financially rewarding?

Modelling can be extremely lucrative, but the level of financial reward varies from one model to another depending on how often their look is called upon. Having said that, it may take just one high profile assignment to set your career into over-drive.

Read more from Gareth Johnson

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.