What do you do when you have just got your modelling career off to a flying start and then you find out you are pregnant? First of all, celebrate this exciting time in your life and second of all, please don’t panic. Pregnancy does not mean an end to your career; in fact it doesn’t even have to mean a pause.
Although most maternity models were modelling before they were pregnant, there is always space for fresh faces in maternity modelling. In fact, Talent Management’s clients have an ongoing need for pregnant models.
Are you one of those those lucky women who turn from pretty to stunning whilst they are expecting; the ones who get that elusive pregnancy glow, sparkling eyes, thick shiny hair, glowing skin whilst your mid section grows into this perfect round bump? Maternity modelling could be for you.
Maternity models are always in demand and have plenty of work. So there is no need to take a sabbatical from modelling unless you want to.
Maternity-wear designers, pregnancy magazines and many other companies all require expectant models—not just for maternity clothing but for pregnancy catalogues, websites and pregnant editorials.
Ten years ago it was common to use fake bumps on non-pregnant models, but today most companies are bypassing the prosthetic stomach and opting for genuinely pregnant women. This is principally because a model with a prosthetic belly does not move naturally and so the pictures don’t look authentic. It is also impossible for a non-pregnant woman to represent all the changes a body goes through during a pregnancy.
So what do the agencies look for in a maternity model?
– An attractive face: Classic beauties often do well in maternity modelling. It’s best that you have a clear skin and no visible piercings or tattoos.
– Tall and lean physique. The requirements for maternity models are the same as those for other models. For fashion shoots and shows, the clients usually want somebody at least 5’9 tall. However other shapes and sizes are also needed regularly for feature articles and TV ads. Pregnancy isn’t a permission to eat for two especially if you wish to be modelling. So it is important to stick to your normal exercise routine and a healthy diet under the guidance provided by your GP.
– Good health. You need to be fit and healthy enough for the job. If you are suffering from debilitating morning sickness (and let’s face it, the name is deceptive as it can hit you at any time of the day or night) or another physical condition that would make modelling uncomfortable or downright dangerous, perhaps maternity modelling isn’t for you—or at least not until you are over the worst of it.
If you plan to move into maternity modelling, the following are essential:
- A portfolio of any modelling work you have done in the past.
- Professional photos, or very high-standard amateur ones taken of the current you. These should include a head-shot and a full body picture. You don’t need to pose for the pictures in swimwear but choose a properly-fitting outfit that shows off the bump whilst still flattering your figure. .
- Be prepared to update the full body picture as your pregnancy progresses. Many clients are looking for models with a visible round pregnant belly, but maternity models are needed at all stages of pregnancy.
When you approach an agency, it is a good idea to include a note from your doctor or midwife stating that you are fit for work. Responsible agencies will need to have a peace of mind when hiring you. Modelling can be physically exhausting and you must be able to move effortlessly during photo-shoots and fashion shows.
When attending castings, make sure you look the part:
Pay careful attention to your grooming. Natural make up is best, as it lets your pregnancy glow shine through.
Don’t turn up in your most comfortable joggy bottoms; choose correctly fitting, flattering clothes that show off your bump.
Maternity modelling is a temporary career, so make the most of it but don’t try to change yourself or make any radical changes to your look; it is still you but with a bump! Although your bump may not be showing until long into the second trimester, it is still advisable to contact your agency as soon as you find out that you are pregnant. Clients require women in all the stages of pregnancy so it is important that you are on their books from the outset.