The faces and bodies of models are used to represent products, showcase apparel and generate publicity. In fact, specific body parts, such as hands and feet, may also be modeled. Hand models must have beautiful hands or distinctive hand features and must take great care to keep them well- groomed. Although hand models may not work as consistently as traditional models, they may earn enough to work fulltime.
The average salary for a hand model is $55,000 annually as of 2011. The Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the hourly salary for models at $13.18 as of 2008 with the highest 10 percent earning more than $21 per hour and the lowest 10 percent earning less than $8 per hour. Hand models may earn between a few hundred dollars for a few hours to as much as $10,000 per day. Models generally only work a few hours for a job and may supplement their income with other jobs.
Top Hand Models
Ellen Seirot, one of the top hand models in the United States, earn between a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars per day working for television and magazine ads. Seirot has earned as much as $300 per hour. Jimmy Furino, a top male hand model often works with Seirot on assignments. Both are represented by Parts Models, a top New York City agency for models.
A Closer Look
In a December 2009 article for Newsweek, Danielle Korwin, the founder of Parts Models, Inc., states that roughly 50 hand models throughout the industry make a living from hand modeling. After starting out with only 10 hand models in 1986, she now has more than 300 models on her roster. Hand models are now earning significant income from high-tech gadgetry commercials such as iPhone commercials. Unlike traditional models whose faces can be seen in commercials, the anonymity of hand models allows them to work for competing companies.
Other Salary Stories
Ashly Covington is full-time model who has "caressed computer keyboards, in addition to twirling razors for Gillette, spraying deodorant for Axe, and tearing into crescent rolls for Pillsbury" according to the Newsweek article. She adds that the increase in high-tech gadgetry commercials means more job opportunities for hand models. Jody Newman-Alborn, a former hand model, used her hands to pay for graduate school in the late 1990's.