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How to Become a Model Get Started as a Model (5 Expert Tips)

At ModelScouts the number one question we receive is “How Do I Become a Model?” Becoming a model can be easy, or it can be difficult, depending on how you approach it and the people with whom you associate.

As experts with 35 years experience scouting, managing, and placing models with the world’s leading modeling agencies, our scouts have a wealth of information on how a new model can begin his or her career, and what it takes to succeed. To keep things simple, we’ve narrowed it down to five expert tips. Here’s what we’ll cover:

  1. Get an honest evaluation by several experienced professionals.

  2. Get as much exposure as possible. Don’t limit yourself to local markets.

  3. Don’t spend money on expensive photo shoots. Snapshots are all you need.

  4. Modeling schools are not necessary to become a model.

  5. Only work with established, legitimate modeling agencies & scouts.

1. Get an Honest Evaluation by Experienced Professionals It is very important to get the opinion of more than one agent or scout because many agents and scouts specialize in just one particular area. Some only represent editorial (high fashion) models, and others may only represent commercial models, child models, plus-size, showroom and fit models or petite models. Just because one agent can’t represent you, it doesn’t mean that another agent won’t. Getting the opinion of several different types of agents is the best way to find out if you have what it takes to be a model. ONE CHANCE TO MAKE A FIRST IMPRESSION Thinking of submitting your photos to modeling agencies that represent new models? You only have one chance to make a first impression. Don’t waste your opportunity by submitting the wrong photos or submitting them incorrectly. Submitting your photos through the right channels can make all the difference between a million dollar career and a career that never gets off the ground. LET OUR EXPERTS SUBMIT YOUR PHOTOS TO THE BEST MODELING AGENCIES The agents at have scouted hundreds of fashion and commercial models who have gone on to have successful modeling careers working for clients such as, Vogue, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Elle, GQ, Esquire, Seventeen, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Giorgio Armani, Prada, Marc Jacobs, Givenchy, Versace, Abercrombie & Fitch, Dolce & Gabbana, Christian Lacroix, Gucci, Chanel, Valentino, Dior, YSL, Clairol, Pantene, many and more. Click below to start your journey! YES! SUBMIT ME TO THE BEST MODEL AGENCIES > 2. Get As Much Exposure As Possible The more exposure you get to agents, scouts and clients the higher the odds become that you will be successful in finding representation and ultimately booking jobs. When you are first starting out the most important exposure is to the agents and scouts. Why? Because they are the ones that have all the clients. They are the ones who are going to promote you and get you booked for jobs. There are several ways you can get exposure to the agents and scouts:

  • Email your photos to the agencies – This can be fast, but often not effective. Almost all of the top agencies that post an email address on their website post a generic email that is rarely, if ever, checked.

  • Send your photos out by mail to hundreds of agencies – This can be a very costly and time consuming method.

  • Attend a modeling convention – Modeling conventions can be a lot of fun and a great way for new models to get exposure, but they’re extremely expensive, usually costing over $5000.00 to attend.

  • Create a profile withus has direct connections to all the top modeling agencies in the world. At ModelScouts you will get the exposure you need to agents and scouts representing over 250 of the world’s most powerful agencies. ModelScouts welcomes high fashion, runway, commercial print, plus-size, petite, showroom and fit models of all ages, sizes and heights.

3. Don’t Spend Money on Expensive Photoshoots When you are first starting out it is not necessary to spend money on expensive photoshoots. All the agents and scouts really need to see in the beginning is simple snapshots. They just want to see how you look naturally with very little makeup and simple clothing. If the agents and scouts feel you have potential they may then recommend that you invest in professional photos that are appropriate for your look and the market for which you are best suited. Some agencies may even offer to cover the expense of a professional photo shoot that you can then pay back once you start booking modeling jobs. BEFORE MODELSCOUTS – Snapshots Laura L. used when she joined WHAT TYPES OF PHOTOS DO MODEL AGENCIES WANT? Before you spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on professional photos, it’s important to know that the best international modeling agencies around the world never require professional photos to evaluate your potential as a model. In fact, professional photos can do more harm than good to your image if you don’t get them right, and new models rarely get professional photos right. Basic snapshots taken with your phone are just fine as long as you follow some basic tips:

  • Photos should be clear and in focus

  • Include at least one headshot and a full length shot

  • Keep hairstyles simple and well groomed

  • Keep clothing simple and in good taste

  • Include a swimsuit photo if you are comfortable wearing a swimsuit

  • Do not submit nude photos

  • Do not wear fur. It is outdated, offensive to many agents, and it’s just wrong.

  • You should be the only one in the photo

  • Remember that first impressions are important

4. Modeling Schools Are Not Necessary You do not need to go to modeling school to become a model. To become a fashion model you either have the look the agencies are looking for or you don’t, modeling classes will not make a difference. We do not have anything against modeling schools and some of the better ones can be very helpful in teaching poise, style, makeup and hair techniques. We just don’t think they should be calling themselves modeling schools, but rather, finishing schools. However, we do recommend that aspiring fashion and commercial models enroll in acting workshops if possible. Learning proper auditioning skills and how to work on set, with cameras, etc. will give you an edge over your competition. 5. Only Work With Legitimate Modeling Agencies Finding a legitimate modeling agency can be a difficult endeavor. How do you know who to trust, does the agency have your best interests in mind, or are they just trying to make money by selling you unnecessary courses or photoshoots? It can be a daunting task to try to wade through the mine field of legitimate and Illegitimate agencies. It can also be downright dangerous if you find yourself hooked up with some shady characters. With 35 years experience scouting, managing and promoting models the staff at can help you find the industry’s most trusted and respected agencies. We know who the best agencies are because we work with them everyday. Why waste time scouring the internet looking for reputable agencies when ModelScouts can do the work for you? Our staff has managed the careers of hundreds of fashion and commercial models, and we fully understand the various aspects of the modeling industry from contract negotiations, the relationships between international and mother agencies, travel arrangements, overseas accommodations, work visa’s in foreign countries, and more. CONCLUSION: Following these simple steps is a great way to start for any new or experienced model seeking agency representation in fashion or commercial modeling.


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