The gender pay gap - male models are suffering

  | James Innes

The gender pay gap – male models are suffering

There has been widespread debate about the gender pay gap between men and women recently, with surveys indicating the average woman still getting paid less than her male colleagues for doing the same job. However, there is one industry where the opposite is true. According to a top modelling agency, male models suffer a significant pay gap compared to women.

According to Elizabeth Rose, who manages Premier, the modelling agency which helped build the careers of Naomi Campbell and Cindy Crawford, male models can be paid 25% of what women earn.

“I think that it is the only industry where men get paid less than women. It is unfair for men”. Rose indicated that a woman could earn £40,000 for a top show; her male peer only £10,000”.

Last year, the top ten female models earned more than a million US dollars, with Gisele Bundchen topping the list with earnings of US $44m (£34m). By comparison, the top male model in 2013, Sean O’Pry, earned US $1.5m (£1.15m).

There are signs of a change, however. Advertisers have historically favoured female models because women spend more on female products. However, as men’s habits change, and they spend more on grooming products, so the demand for male models is starting to increase.

Rose commented: “Men are taking a lot more care of themselves in the 2000s. It’s fine to take a long time doing your hair. It’s fine to use moisturiser”.

Where male models do have the edge is in career longevity. Women are often discriminated against because of their age, whilst those men earning the most are modelling in their 30s.

Rose says her models never complain but she has asked clients to split the rate and allocate some of their budget away from women to men. “The more models are made aware of it, the more you can try and help change it, because the more agents that say “No, we’re not accepting this”, that’s the only way it’ll ever change.”

“And models standing up and saying “I’m not going to do this unless I’m paid the same as the woman”.


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