Former Victoria’s Secret angel Gisele Bundchen, known simply as Gisele, once again topped Forbes’ list of the world’s highest paid models this year, making it the 15th consecutive year that she has help the #1 spot. So it’s no wonder that Gisele’s net worth is equally impressive: $360 million as of the most recent update. She reportedly earned $30.5 million this past year and has averaged around $44 million over the past few years.
Gisele is a Brazilian supermodel of German descent (6th generation), and has been working as a model from age 14. At that time, her mother encouraged Gisele and two of her sisters to take a modeling course, and she was later discovered by Elite models. She had her big break 20 years ago at NYC Fashion Week in 1996, and the rest is history.
The number of magazine covers that have featured Gisele is dizzying, too many to even count. But as of last year, she is estimated to have modeled in 350 ad campaigns, 1200 cover shoots, 450 editorials and 470 runway shows. There are reports that her estimated total earnings over the course of her career total $430 million, although Gisele has humorously commented, “I don’t know where they’re getting these numbers, but definitely not from my accountant!”
Aside from being ranked as among the world’s wealthiest women, most powerful women and one of the most powerful people in the fashion industry, Gisele has also been rated as one of the most generous celebrities in terms of charitable donations. Her causes range from humanitarian (Zero Hunger in Brazil, Red Cross in Japan, Save the Children, Doctors without Borders, and others) to environmental. In addition to donating money directly, she has helped raise money by volunteering as the face of American Express Red for Product Red, and anti-HIV/AIDS organization and designing a fashion collection for Born Free Africa, which works to prevent mother-to-baby transmission of HIV.