What does it take to become a male supermodel? Leading agency reveals

The slog to the top isn't always easy

Sarah Young
Tuesday 24 January 2017 12:12 GMT
Fendi Autumn Winter 2017 - Milan Fashion Week
Fendi Autumn Winter 2017 - Milan Fashion Week (AFP/Getty Images)

While a handful of models take the express route to stardom, for many, the slog up the ladder can be far more taxing.

And, though strong, chiselled features and a good physique are important, it turns out these are just two of the many elements needed to become a male supermodel.

Speaking to Forbes, the head of the men's division at Elite Model Management Milan, Ruggero Quarta, shared the four things that make up-and-coming models stand out from the crowd.

It’s no secret that a career in this industry is typically short-lived and as such, most start their runway careers from a young age. With men’s fashion month well under way, Quarta revealed that designers are consistently looking for younger, fresher looking male models.

“At present we’re noticing an increasing demand from clients for younger male models – meaning under the age of 18,” he says. So if you're knocking 20, your dreams may already be over.

Similarly, when casting for shows, these brands are looking for a distinct look - but there’s been a shift of late. Male modelling is no longer the reserve of bronzed adonises, and thanks to the rise of designers like Raf Simons and Gosha Rubchinskiy, European guys are often at the top of the wishlist.

“The guys from Northern Europe and Eastern Europe are currently amongst those more requested. In theory however, we’ll suggest all the guys with the right measurements to clients,” Quarta adds.

In the age of digital media, it’s equally as important for budding models to have an interesting off-the-runway persona, a strategy that Quarta says is key in establishing a social media following and one that can determine the course of a model’s future career.

“Some of them might be musicians, others skaters or surfers. Bringing out those personalities can give them something over a fellow male models.”

Interestingly, while it’s vital to get noticed in this industry, there is such a thing as overdoing it, as Quarta explains that the key word remains quality over quantity.

“You don’t want the new face to immediately take on too many projects, as it will give clients the impression that he has already done everything, and you lose a sense of exclusivity. And they’ll start losing interest,” he says.

Nevertheless, the runway gives a male model the exposure he needs to launch a successful career, which can lead to booking lucrative campaigns such as perfume deals, print and TV commercials.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in