Important Criteria for a Career as a Male Model

If you meet these criteria, nothing stands in the way of a successful modeling career

Important criteria for a career as a male model
Photography by ©Krzysztof Wyzynski

The man on the website of your online fashion store stares at you. In a natural-looking pose, he smiles, but appears nonchalant. How did he get to this place and what is he telling you? Maybe he is a student, father or in training to be a painter. Whoever still believes today that it depends solely on looks who can become a male model is misinformed.

What are the requirements to become a male model?

As a male model, a lot of emphasis is placed on body-related changeability in particular, as less work is done with makeup.

  • facial features
  • physique
  • versatility
  • personality
  • mental attributes

Facial features

A man’s facial features are often crucial. High cheekbones and prominent facial features are part of it.


The physique should always be athletic, but slim and also the minimum body height is often 1.80 meters. Many agencies recommend measurements around 100-80-100. The weight says less about the suitability as a male model. It is better if the proportions are right, and you have a body fat percentage of about 15%. Especially for your sedcard the correct indication of the body measurements is important, because these are for example central for orders as a fitting model for designer clothes.


The more different types a male model can embody, the better his chances of getting assignments.


Another point is personality. When applying, it is therefore essential to present yourself individually and be aware of your strengths. For many employers, it is now especially important to present a unique narrative that appears natural and yet enchants the consumer. You can learn more about your personality just by doing a simple personality test.

Mental attributes

The mental attributes for success in a modeling career primarily include initiative and strategic thinking. Self-promotion, courage and fitness are also factors that you should not miss.

Important criteria for a career as a male model
Photography by ©Krzysztof Wyzynski

Categories of male models

When considering a career as a male model, it is important to be aware of the different types of modeling that exist. Understanding these types can help you determine which direction to pursue within the industry.

Male models are often distinguished between categories that are not necessarily mutually exclusive.

  • Best Agers
  • Imperfect types
  • Models with flaws

Best Agers

Female models often start to lose their careers in their mid-twenties. Men don’t lose their attractiveness quite so quickly as they get older. That’s why you come across more and more gray eminences – experts call them Best Agers. Men in their prime, slightly or completely graying, lend their faces to big brands like Baldessarini, Armani and Co. But gray hair alone is not enough. If you take a closer look, you’ll find parallels even among these men: Somehow, despite their obviously advanced age, they seem very vital, if not youthful. There are agencies that specialize in models in their prime.

Imperfect types

In recent years, the trend has developed towards small imperfections. Albino models like Shaun Ross, with a scar under the eye like model Tobias Sorensen or even with a prosthetic leg like the German Mario Galla – small flaws become eye-catchers. Nevertheless, these gentlemen still fit into a model scheme: good physique, a certain size and just the right expression. They are joined by former outsiders like the androgynous Andrej Pejic, who reflect the diversity of society and its beauty ideals.

Models with flaws

On the other hand, there are guys, if you meet them on the street, most of them would never guess in their life that they work as a model: huge eyes, protruding ears, freckles, crooked teeth, tattoos on their face. For them there are usually separate agencies specializing in this, such as Misfit Models and Everyday People. It’s incredible, but a man with an unusual face can earn extremely good money. However, a convincing charisma is also essential. Misfit Model founder Derrick Keens was discovered on the street 20 years ago by the Ugly Models agency in London. He then stood in front of the camera for brands such as Calvin Klein and Levis. In Berlin, he founded his own agency and hit the bull’s eye. He now has over 400 models in his file, the only criterion for exclusion: too beautiful.

How much does a male model earn?

Male models usually earn less than their female counterparts, although the demand for male models in the industry is increasing. Female models receive about 148% more salary than male models. In this job, a woman can earn up to 45,000 € a year and a man only around 29,000 €. Shocking and unfair, but unfortunately the truth. Although the number of male models is high, the model salary for men is quite low. The reason for such a big difference is provided by the fashion industry. Clothing companies make a higher profit on female clothing than on male fashion. However, with the increasing style consciousness of men, the market is changing and soon the model salary for male models will change as well. It is the only industry in which men tend to earn less than women. In other professions, the opposite is more likely to be the case.

Conclusion – Almost every man can be a model

Almost every man can work as a male model. It doesn’t always have to be the big catwalk.

What’s more, it’s comforting to know that it’s precisely there that you tend to earn little money. Most of the money comes from advertising campaigns and catalog shoots.

Images from MMSCENE PORTRAITS: Kuba Jerzak by Krzysztof Wyzynski – See the full story here

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