Editor’s Note:  Paul Fisher has spent two decades representing the most famous models in the world:  Stephanie Seymour, Naomi Campbell, Eva Herzigova, Janice Dickinson, Monica Bellucci, Carole Alt, Carre' Otis and hundreds of other famous faces.   He has trained many of today’s top modeling agents and has seen the fashion modeling industry first hand and up-close.  He is now the CEO of The Network, an international consortium of fashion modeling agencies.



What is the Proper age?

- By Paul Fisher


In fashion modeling the right and wrong age to get started really depends on the girl or guy.  You may know my feelings about the modeling business: it is potentially very harming for young people.   Now remember, there are NO rules in the modeling industry. Girls have started at 25 and became very famous.  I have represented a few examples of this. Jade Roque (who is married to Matt Lauder) really came into her own in her late 20’s.   


However, as past agent/owner, I would want to see girls between the ages of 14 and 18.  The best age to start is approx 14 to 16 years old.  The business wants YOUNG Girls.  Here are some reasons why:


1) It takes a couple of years to build of up their resume, you would call it a portfolio.  Maybe a trip or two . . . or three . . . to Europe.  The “peak” for a model is usually between the ages of 18 and 23, although there are many, many exceptions.  The goal is to be working by the time you are 18 or 19.   And if it takes a few years to get the proper pictures, the proper jobs that can elevate your career, give you more exposure etc., then one should start to learn their craft before 18.


2) Ever seen a 14 or 15 year old girl who is 5'10" or taller? Kind of different yes?  Freakish?  Kind of cool?  Well to the fashion freaks of the modeling industry, it is cool.  A 15 year old 5'11" girl with perfect skin (who looks 21) and with the ability to look sexy in front of the camera . . . Welcome to our world.   Pretty gross but nevertheless reality.




This article is an excerpt from Mr. Fisher’s forthcoming book “Forbidden Fruit” about modeling at the apex of the fashion industry.  Used by permission.  Article copyright 2010 Paul Fisher