Not all models are 5’ 10” with tiny waists, long legs, and perfect teeth. Models come in all shapes, sizes, colors, and genders. After all, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If you want to break into the modeling business but aren’t comfortable showing off your face or body, you’ve come to the right place. Foot modeling is a popular and lucrative career that lets people from all walks of life (pun intended) break into the modeling industry. This is also known as body parts modeling and can include modeling specific areas like your lips, legs, hands, and yes, feet!
Believe it or not, there’s a significant demand for foot models and foot-related content. Everyone from jewelry makers and tattoo artists to product developers and shoemakers needs foot models to showcase their inventory. And your feet might just be the perfect fit!
Keep reading to learn everything there is to know about the foot modeling industry and how to get your foot in the door (yes, another pun).
What Does a Foot Model Do?
Foot models are individuals that model everything from jewelry and shoes to socks, toenail polish, medical products, and even lotions, creams, and other topical treatments. The client will dictate what products or items they want to be modeled and how. All they need is a foot like yours to act as their canvas.
Who Can Become a Foot Model?
Anyone with feet that a company or individual deems attractive or appropriate for their product can thrive as a foot model. In most cases, the more well-maintained, pampered, and attractive your feet are, the better. Unless of course, you’re modeling a foot care treatment for a specific condition that you have. For example, foot models for pharmaceutical products that treat things like planter’s warts, athlete’s foot, bunions, or calluses may need a foot model for their “before” picture”.
In most situations, though, you’ll need feet that are smooth, moisturized, manicured, and well-maintained. Certain features are more in-demand than others. For example, feet with high arches are great for modeling shoes. And if you have perfectly manicured toenails, you can easily model jewelry and toenail polish.
But it’s not just your feet that matter. The lower half of your leg and calf may also be pictured and also need to be attractive and free from cuts, bruises, and other unsightly marks. Exfoliating and moisturizing the skin on your legs and feet can help keep it looking refreshed, smooth, and ready for the camera. Although some companies hire foot models specifically for their tattoos, bare, untouched feet often receive more callbacks and are a more versatile option.
Most foot models only work part-time to supplement their full-time work. So, even though you won’t retire off your foot model salary, you could make a nice little side hustle from this fancy footwork.
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Now that you know what a foot model is and what types of products they advertise, let’s break down the process step by step.
Do Your Research
Before you start snapping foot pics and applying to modeling gigs, it’s a good idea to do some research about the market and industry. Find out what the current trends are and how feet are used and portrayed in different print ads and video commercials. Choose a few foot models that you’d like to mimic and follow their work. Some of the most well-known foot models include Zara Miller, Beverley Brown, and Claire Kesby-Smith. Scott Adams is a famous male foot model worth checking out.
Check out some of the most popular brands and publications that showcase foot models. Focus on the types of products you’re interested in pursuing, for example, shoes and footwear or jewelry and skincare. Make sure your research extends beyond the Internet and social media to magazines, brochures, and other paper advertisements. The more you know, the better you can market yourself to the right clients.
Take some time to practice different poses, positions, and angles that you see other foot models using. You can do this in a mirror, using a tripod and your smartphone, or instilling the help of a trusted friend or partner. What you see from your side may look very different on camera so be sure to take plenty of pictures and make any necessary adjustments.
Don’t be afraid to incorporate props as well including footwear, jewelry, and creams or lotions. The more you understand how your feet move, bend, and look, the better prepared you’ll be for a photoshoot. While this may sound strange, you can also express certain emotions with the way you position your feet and flex or curl your toes. Play around with different poses and actions. This helps you build a more versatile portfolio and easily accommodate the requests of photographers in the future.
Create a Portfolio
Once you get more comfortable in front of the camera, you can start taking professional photos for your modeling portfolio. Yes, even foot models need portfolios! You can either take these pictures yourself or hire a professional photographer. The choice is yours and is often based on your budget and skill level. If you do hire a photographer, make sure it’s someone with experience taking foot pictures. Not every photographer knows enough about the industry to take high-quality photos.
If you’re taking the pictures yourself, experiment with different lighting and angles. The more natural the photos, the better. Although you can apply filters and edit them later on, the best foot pics don’t require a lot of retouching. Then, select the top 10 or 12 photos to create a diverse portfolio. Include a variety of different pictures to show your versatility. For example, include some barefoot pics (some with your feet relaxed and others more tense or posed), shoe pictures, shock or stocking pictures, and foot pics using props. Make sure at least one of the pictures also shows your lower leg or calf, in case the casting agency is interested.
Most experienced foot models will also include a picture of their face in their portfolio. Even though you’re only planning to market your feet, this gives the clients a complete picture of who you are. Plus, it’s an easy way for them to recognize you during a callback.
Find an Agent or Foot Model Agency
Some foot models hire an agent to help them break into the business. While it can be difficult to make a name for yourself as a foot model, it’s not impossible. Joining a foot modeling or body parts agency can get you one step closer. Not only do these agencies specialize in foot modeling and body parts work but they often get first dibs on the best jobs.
Research the most well-known agencies in your area and apply to several at a time. Just avoid applying multiple times to the same agencies, which is somewhat unprofessional. Interested agencies will reach out and invite you for a casting call. If they’re uninterested, you won’t hear back at all so, in this case, no news doesn’t mean good news.
With any modeling career, it’s important to stay positive and not get discouraged if you don’t get as many callbacks as you’d hoped for. Competition is fierce, especially now as foot fetishes and foot content are becoming increasingly popular online. There are also many reasons why an agency may pass on your portfolio. For example, they may not have any jobs that fit your particular niche or they have other models that resemble your same look and style. The best thing you can do is keep your chin up and keep trying.
Learn Basic Business Skills
Becoming a successful foot model is about more than just having pretty feet and snapping flattering pictures. There are also some business skills and industry knowledge involved. Beyond just researching the foot modeling market, you need to brush up on your business skills. Independent foot models need to be their own agents, advocates, and marketing experts. You should also know how to price jobs, manage your finances, and interact professionally with clients. The way you present yourself to potential clients and agencies could make or break your foot modeling career.
When it comes to marketing yourself as a foot model, an agency will help but you still need to do your fair share. The best place to turn is social media. You can use your personal accounts or create new profiles just to promote your foot modeling business. Outlets like Facebook and Instagram are great places to start but don’t forget about other platforms like Twitter, Snapchat, and TikTok.
Because you’re trying to attract clients that want your foot pics, make sure that all of the images you upload are high-quality. Consider your news feed as an extension of your portfolio. Avoid posting sloppy, blurry, or unprofessional photos when promoting yourself as a foot model. Be sure to always follow each platform’s community guidelines to avoid having your account deleted or banned without warning.
Outside of social media, you can also create a website or blog dedicated to your work. Here, you can use WordPress and other software tools to create a website that perfectly portrays your personality. The beauty of this promotional tactic is that you’re in complete control of what you post, how it’s organized, and the overall appearance of the website. Be sure to add your contact information clearly, references and links to previous work, and your social media handles. You can also add your website or blog to your social media bios for additional exposure.
Pamper Your Feet (and Legs)
If you’ve ever looked for a reason to pamper yourself, this is it. You need to invest time and money into caring for your feet and lower legs. This includes getting regular pedicures, investing in comfortable shoes that fit well, moisturizing, and removing dead or dry skin using a body brush or pumice stone. You want your skin to look shiny, healthy, smooth, and tight.
Avoid injuries or activities that may injure your feet or legs or cause cuts, bruises, or strains. And don’t forget about your lower leg. Although your legs aren’t the main focal point as a foot model, their appearance is still important. Stay active and incorporate both moderate weight training and cardio into your daily routine. This promotes good blood flow, muscle tone, and an overall healthy, athletic appearance.
Tips for Becoming a Successful Foot Model
Following the above steps can help you get started with foot modeling. But it takes more than just checking these items off your list. Here are a few more characteristics of a good foot model.
This applies to both the application process and once you get hired for a job. It may take you several months to book your first foot modeling job, which means you need to stay patient, positive, and determined. Once you finally land your first gig, the work has just begun. Fashion photographers can be very demanding and particular. They want to capture the perfect picture, which might result in you holding the same position or pose for hours at a time. Wearing uncomfortable shoes, curling your toes in a certain way, or taking hundreds of photos from a dozen different angles can be taxing and exhausting for even the most seasoned models. Remember, the client is your boss. You’re representing their brand and they want the image to be just right. Take a deep breath, dig deep, and remember why you became a foot model in the first place.
An Eye for Design
Although most photo shoots will be orcustrated by the client or a creative director, it doesn’t hurt to have your own vision and ideas. Even if these don’t translate on-set, you can use them as inspiration for your own foot pics, portfolio, or website. Understanding the proper angles, poses, lighting, and backdrops can also make a photoshoot run more smoothly and help you come across as a professional foot model. If you impress the client, they may use you on a regular basis or recommend you to other agencies or clients in the same industry.
Flexibility as a foot model means being both physically versatile and flexible with your time. Some foot models are required to hold challenging poses, wear uncomfortable shoes, or contrast their feet in unnatural ways. You need to be able to rise to these challenges and accommodate the client’s needs.
In addition, you may need to step outside of your comfort zone or accept a less-than-ideal job. For example, you may not get chosen to model Jimmy Choo shoes but, instead, to promote an antifungal foot cream. While this doesn’t sound very appealing, a job is a job and it would be in poor taste to decline an offer. The more exposure you get as a foot model, the more likely you are to receive future callbacks. Taking on a variety of different projects also shows future clients that you’re diverse and can work with a multitude of clients and products.
All models need confidence, including foot models. You need to excuse confidence and show photographers and clients that you’re comfortable in front of the camera. This usually involves knowing your most flattering sides, angles, and poses. Get to know your body and feet on a more intimate level. Understand how they bend, flex, and curl. The more comfortable you are with posing, the more confident you’ll come across on camera.
That’s right, even your feet and legs need to be in good shape to become a successful model. Remember, most foot pics also involve a portion of the leg. Most clients want models with athletic, toned, and attractive limbs. While this doesn’t mean hitting the gym several times a week and performing endless squats, you should spend at least a few days a week exercising your legs. Staying physically fit can also help when it comes time to hold difficult positions for extended periods of time.
This attribute goes without saying. Most foot models have attractive feet. While there’s no one-size-fits-all standard for what makes feet attractive, you should have nice looking toes, heels, and ankles. Other highly-sought-after attributes include long, slender toes, and high arches.
Good Business Sense and Work Ethic
Being a foot model is about more than just having a pretty pair of feet. You also need a good worth ethic and basic business sense. This involves creating a professional portfolio, responding promptly and professionally to inquiries, conducting yourself well on interviews and callbacks, and negotiating pricing. If you’re working as an independent freelance model, you also need the ability to market yourself and manage your finances.
Put Your Best Foot Forward (Literally) and Explore the World of Foot Modeling
Are you ready to take your foot pic business to the next level? If you’ve been successful selling feet pics and videos online on websites like FunWithFeet.com, you may have what it takes to become a professional foot model. Like any other career, you need to take this job opportunity seriously. Start by creating a professional portfolio, finding a modeling agency to work with, and marketing yourself. You should also practice the art of taking attractive foot pics.
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