Glamour modelling focuses solely on sexuality. Therefore, there are no requirements to be a glamour model other than the ability to pose seductively. Glamour models can be any size or shape. There is no industry standard for glamour modelling and it varies greatly by country. For the most part, glamour models are limited to modelling in calendars, men’s magazines, such as Playboy, bikini modelling, lingerie modelling, fetish modelling, music videos, and extra work in films. However, some extremely popular glamour models transition into commercial print modelling, appearing in swimwear, bikini and lingerie campaigns.
It is widely considered that England created the market for glamour modelling when The Sun established Page 3 in 1969, a section in their newspaper which now features topless models. In the beginning, the newspaper featured sexually suggestive images of Penthouse and Playboy models. It was not until 1970 that models appeared topless. In the 1980s, The Sun’s competitors followed suit and produced their own Page 3 sections.It was during this time that glamour models first came to prominence with the likes of Samantha Fox. As a result, the United Kingdom has a very large glamour market and has numerous glamour modelling agencies to this day.
It was not until the 1990s that modern glamour modelling was established. During this time, the fashion industry was promoting models with waif bodies and androgynous looking women, which left a void. Several fashion models who were deemed too commercial and too curvacious were frustrated with industry standards and took a different approach. Models such as Victoria Silvstedt left the fashion world and began modelling for men’s magazines. In the previous decades, posing nude for Playboy resulted in a model losing their agencies and endorsements. Playboy was a stepping stone which catapulted the careers of Victoria Silvstedt, Pamela Anderson, and Anna Nicole Smith. Pamela Anderson became so popular from her Playboy spreads that she was able to land roles on Home Improvement and Baywatch.
In the mid-1990s, a series of men’s magazines were established such as Maxim, FHM, and Stuff. At the same time, magazines including Sweden’s Slitz re-branded themselves as men’s magazines. Pre-internet, these magazines were popular among men in their late teens and early twenties because they were considered to be more tasteful than their predecessors. With the glamour market growing, fashion moved away from the waifs and onto the Brazilian bombshells. The glamour market, which consisted mostly of commercial fashion models and commercial print models, became its own genre due to its popularity. Even in a large market like the United Kingdom, however, glamour models are not usually exclusively signed to one agency as they can not financially rely on one agency to provide them with enough work. It was and still is a common practice for glamour models to partake in kiss-and-tell interviews about their dalliances with famous men.The notoriety of their alleged bed-hopping often propels their popularity and they are often promoted by their current or former fling. With Page 3 models becoming fixtures in the British tabloids, glamour models became household names such as Jordan who is now known as Katie Price. By 2004, Page 3 regulars earned anywhere for £30,000 to 40,000 where the average salary of a non-Page 3 model as of 2011 is between £10,000 and 20,000. In the early 2000s, glamour models and aspiring glamour models appeared on reality television shows such as Big Brother to gain fame. Several Big Brother alumni parlayed their 15 minutes of fame into successful glamour modelling careers. However, the glamour market became saturated by the mid-2000s and numerous men’s magazines went under including Arena, Stuff and FHM in the United States. During this time, there was an upward trend of glamour models becoming DJs to supplement their income, including Kellie Acreman and Lauren Pope. In a 2012 interview, Keeley Hazell said that going topless is not the best way to achieve success and that was lucky to be in that 1% of people that get that, and become really sucessful.