Gender income inequality is alive and well within the modeling industry–with women out-earning the men, of course–but you might be shocked by just how much. Forbes just came out with its Top Earning Male Models List, and Sean O’Pry, the IRL Zoolander who ranked the highest, raked in just $1.5 million last year.
While $1.5 million is nothing to sneeze at, you may remember that top-earning female model Gisele Bundchen pulled in a ridiculous $42 million last year–$4 million more than her husband, New England Patriots quarterback (and Ugg spokesman) Tom Brady. Despite gigs for big names like H&M, Hugo Boss, and Salvatore Ferragamo, plus fragrance contracts for Ultrasense by Jil Sander and Spicebomb by Viktor & Rolf, the 24-year-old O’Pry can’t even get near the same tax bracket as his female counterparts.
And remember David Gandy, the dishy lone male model who walked amongst legends Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell during the Summer Olympics closing ceremony last year and has a book dedicated to him by Dolce and Gabbana? Well, he narrowly missed the top title by $100,000, earning $1.4 million last year, and Zegna model Ryan Burns made number six on the list with $610,000 for the calendar year. As a matter of fact, if you add up all of the top 10 salaries, the total comes to just $8 million. Would Gisele even get out of bed for that much?
So yes, modeling, is one industry where women rule the game, which is a feminist discussion of its own–only females are prized so highly for their appearance and objectified as an industry, and they get paid more for it. But it’s hard to argue that with the name recognition, savvy female models do have more career prospects after their retiring (or being pushed out) of the modeling game, too–Christy Turlington has a successful yoga line and Iman is a beauty and cosmetics CEO. Something to think about, but in the meantime, let’s just revel in this women-power moment and look at some eye candy while we’re at it. Hi David.