The “gender pay gap” continues to be a hot topic and, most likely, will continue this way until there is gender equality in the workforce. However, there is one industry that has a reverse gender pay gap, and it’s the male model industry.
The BBC is reporting that male models are being paid up to 75% less than women in the same industry. According to Elizabeth Rose—a model manager for Premier—says that female models could be paid up to $51,000 to walk a top runway show, while male models only get roughly $12,000 to appear in the same show. Rose says, “I think it’s the only industry where men get paid less than women. It’s unfair for men [and] I wouldn’t say it’s female empowerment at all.”
Rose does say, however, that the industry is changing all the time, and with more men starting to take better interest in their appearance, advertisers are willing to spend more money on male models for grooming products. Rose does champion for her male models by trying to renegotiate contracts for which she feels they are being discriminated against. “I had a brief today that came in and it was ‘male model, [pay] £1,500 [$1,915 USD]’, and the female model was £5,000 [$6,382.55 USD], for the same usage,” she says.
The modelling industry may be unfair, paywise for males, but females face discrimination as well. In terms of aging, female models have a shorter career than males. Rose says, “Men have a longer career path, definitely. The male models that make the most are probably in their 30s.”
So who is the highest-paid male model? According to Forbes®, the last time a male model ranked its list of highest-paid models was back in 2013, and Sean O’Pry topped that list with an estimated $1.5 million earned for that year.