Could I Be a Model? Making it in the World of Fashion

Aspiring models will ask themselves, ‘could I be a model?’ and with good reason; it’s a difficult industry to get into, with many obstacles involved. The best starting point is knowing you have what it takes to make it; otherwise, you could be fruitlessly attempting to get into an industry that simply isn’t right for you.

So what does it take to be a model? What are the requirements? Are these easily achieved, or do we need to be born with them?

Read on to find out everything you need to know about whether you could be a model. 

Types of Modelling

There is a lot more to modelling than just being good looking – there are also certain requirements you have to meet. Each niche has different requirements.

There are many different niches and types of modeling in the fashion industry. You’re probably familiar with high fashion modelling – those are the household names and supermodels you see on catwalks and magazine covers. 

But there are also many other types of modelling to consider. These include:

– High fashion (also known as catwalk models or runway models)

– Commercial modelling

– Plus-size models

– Petite models

– body parts modelling

– Fitness models 

– Lingerie modelling

– Alternative modelling (those with tattoos or piercings) 

Your individual look and style will likely fit into one category more so than the rest. Take into consideration too thing things you can’t change, like your body shape and height. These things will also factor into how successful you will be at modelling. 

High fashion models are tall (typically over 5’8″) and slender with long, willowy limbs and little body fat. Commercial models can get away with being slightly shorter, and there is a little more room for different body sizes and shapes.

If you want to see which niche of modelling you suit, you’ll need to measure your height and get some body measurements. High fashion is the strictest and not many people meet the requirements, but commercial modelling is far more accepting and it’s likely you will meet the requirements for a modelling agency within this category. 

Could I be a model

Are You Tall Enough?

Typically, runway models and commercial modelling need to be fairly tall – that’s over 5’8″ for women and 5’11” for men. But don’t worry if you don’t meet this requirement – there are also models who manage to break the rules and still find success. Being shorter will definitely make it harder for you to get a foot in the door, though.

If you’re under 5’6″, why not look into petite modelling? This niche of modelling looks specifically for models who aren’t tall to work for brands that cater to a shorter audience.

Measuring Up

Your weight will not be taken into account when modelling, but your measurements will be. 

Your UK clothing size, shoe size and body measurements all matter. That’s because stylists need to know whether you will fit into their garments. 

In high fashion these requirements are strict and unforgiving; many people do not meet them (which is why high fashion modelling is such a difficult industry to get into). For commercial modelling, however, things are a bit more relaxed. Brands and modelling agencies tend to be more willing to accept those who don’t match the on-paper requirements. 

You’ll need to measure your shoulder width and bust if you are a woman, as well as your waist and hip size at a minimum. 

General Requirements for Modelling

It’s generally believed that you need to be incredibly good looking to be a model, but this isn’t always the case. Many top models have unique or unusual features that make them stand out from the crowd – this is their defining feature, and likely the main reason they were selected. 

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so what one person finds beautiful, another may not. That means a generic standard for modelling can’t be beauty alone, because beauty has no quantifying measurement. 

However, modelling agencies do keep their eye out for certain features:

– White teeth. They don’t have to be perfect (in fact many top models have a gap), but they do need to be in good health. 

– Bright eyes (not red or puffy)

– Clear skin (though make-up and post-production editing can smooth this out)

– General beauty maintenance (good hygiene, neat nails, tidy brows etc.)

– A toned, tight jawline


It’s not just your looks that matter. A modeling scout will also be on the lookout for a great personality. That means being hard working and polite as well as easy to work with. 

This also means being professional – you need to show up on time, be courteous, listen and follow instructions well, know when to offer your own ideas, and – of course – be great in front of the camera. 

Model Grooming

Both male, female and other models need to keep on top of their grooming routines. Staying put together year-round is a part of a model’s job – you never know when you might get called into work. 

You don’t need to be perfect and pristine all the time, but you do need to keep on top of a few essentials:

– Teeth hygiene is vital. Go to the dentist regularly and ensure you brush twice daily at least. 

– You should have a good exercise routine that you are able to stick to. 

– You should have a mostly healthy, clean diet.

– You should ensure your hands and feet are looked after; dead skin should be sloughed off, nails should be kept clean, filed and buffed nicely, and skin should be moisturised. 

– Hair should be looked after. Men need to get regular trims to stop it from getting too long (unless that’s your style). Women need to ensure dead ends are cut off and any root growth that shows through on dyed or bleached hair is covered as soon as possible. 

– All models should have a skincare routine. This is to prevent acne and hyperpigmentation as well as age-related issues such as wrinkles. You should be wearing an SPF every day to protect the skin, and you should cleanse each night to remove any make-up, dirt and swear. Models have to wear a lot of make-up while working so you need to ensure you know how to properly remove this and replace moisture/other essential elements back into the skin with a good serum and moisturiser. 

Could I Be a Model? Getting Started

If you think you could be a model, what are you waiting for? Get started today by registering with us! We’ll tell you whether our industry experts believe you have the potential and, if you do, you’ll be invited to your very own photo shoot based in one of our photography studios. We will then help you select your best photos, which can then be purchased and included in your portfolio, on your modelling z-cards or in your modelling agency applications. 

Ready to get started? Click here to register!

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