Saturday, May 26, 2012

Million Dollar Faces

Prior to the 1970s, exclusive contracts for models were almost unheard of - Jean Shrimpton signed one with Yardley of London and  Evelyn Kuhn, with Revlon. But in the '70s, a handful of models  negotiated these  exclusive contracts  (given out by  top cosmetic manufacturers) into  lucrative deals. So much so that by the 1980s, these same models were commanding gigantic fees and were the highest paid models in the entire industry. These Supermodels were literally  Million Dollar Faces.

"Is This The Next Million Dollar Face?" was the title of an article that appeared on the pages of Life Magazine in 1981 and Carol Alt was the model in question. But more importantly, the magazine enumerated the highest-paid Supermodels under exclusive contract at the time.  These pioneering women  were the first batch of Supermodels to  have ever been under exclusive (and very lucrative) contract. Lauren Hutton, Iman, Karen Graham, Cheryl Tiegs, Christina Ferrare, Shelley Hack and Margaux Hemingway were  THE Million Dollar Faces in the industry, the Best-Selling faces of the time. They pioneered the lucrative and exclusive contract for models that is sought after by every model up to this day.