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How Paulina Porizkova Achieved a Net Worth of $10 Million

Paulina Porizkova

Paulina Porizkova is a Czechoslovakian model, actress, and author who holds dual Swedish and American citizenship. Although Porizkova originally became famous as a model, she is now better known as a former judge on ‘America’s Next Top Model.’ The model-turned-actress is also known for being the late wife of Ric Ocasek. Now, Paulina Porizkova’s net worth is $10 million, and here is how she achieved her wealth.

Her Early Life

Paulina Porizkova was born on April 9, 1965, in Prostejov, Czechoslovakia. The model had some unique and unsettling experiences during her childhood, as her parents fled to Lund in Switzerland with her during the Warsaw Pact Invasion of 1968. After leaving her in her grandmother’s care, the Czechoslovakian authorities would not let them reclaim their daughter. Her parents then got into a battle with the authorities, and the case was widely covered by the Swedish media. Although Porizkova’s mother made a rescue attempt, it failed and led to her mother’s detention. However, political pressure led to her mother’s release, and Porizkova was eventually reunited with her parents.

Paulina Porizkova’s Modeling Career

Porizkova was first noticed by a modeling agency at the age of 13. One of her friends wanted to become a makeup artist, so the friend painted Porizkova’s and some other friends’ faces and sent photographs of her work to several Paris modeling agencies. A model agent got in touch with Poirizkova and asked her if she wanted to go to Paris. During the early 1980s, Porivkova became the top model in Paris. After posing in an issue of Sports Illustrated wearing swimwear, the model also became famous in the United States. In 1984, Porizkova became the first Central European woman to appear on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. The model also appeared on the cover the following year, making her only the second woman after model Christie Brinkley to feature on the magazine's cover in consecutive years. A year later, She appeared both inside and on the cover of New York Magazine. One of Paulina Portizkova’s biggest claims to fame was replacing Willow Bay as the face of Estee Lauder. The contract was worth $6 million, which was the highest-paying modeling contract of its time. Becoming the face of Estee Lauder transformed Porizkova’s image from a swimwear model to a European sophisticate. Porizkova was the face of Estee Lauder until 1995.

By the 1990s, She was established as one of the top models in the United States. In 1992, the model was named as one of Harper’s Bazaar's ten most beautiful women. The same year, Porizkova was named as the model of the 80s in the first issue of American Photo magazine. Throughout the 80s and 90s, Porizkova appeared in numerous other magazines, including Cosmopolitan, Elle, Vogue, Glamour, and Self. She also appeared in advertising campaigns for brands such as Christian Dior, Mikimoto, Versace, Chanel, Oscar De La Renta, Hermes, Anne Klein, Barney’s New York, Perry Ellis, Revlon, Ellen Tracy, Guerlain, Ann Taylor, and Laura Biagiotti, Furthermore, Porizkova appeared on the catwalk for Calvin Klein.

Her Television and Acting Career

In addition to her high-profile modeling career, Paulina Porizkova has gained fame for her television appearances. She is best known as one of the judges on ‘America’s Next Top Model' ( She replaced Twiggy for cycle ten and resumed her role as a judge for cycles 11 and 12. Porizkova claimed that the producers fired her from the show, and the producers had said it was because Porizkova had an ego problem. One of the issues was that she repeatedly complained about Tyra Banks being consistently late to the set, which was a complaint also made by Janice Dickinson who was fired at the same time. However, the producers released a statement blaming her firing on the state of the economy and the necessity for budget cuts.

In 2007, Porizkova was a contestant on ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ but was voted off in the first week of results. The model also appeared on ‘Andy Warhol’s Fifteen Minutes‘ and ‘Celebrity Ghost Stories.’ Paulina Porizkova has also had a career as an actress in both film and television. Between 2009 and 2010, She appeared in five episodes of the soap opera ‘As the World Turns.’ In 2012, Porizkova had a small role in ‘Jane by Design,’ and in 2015, the former model made a guest appearance in ‘The Mysteries of Laura.’ Porizkova also appeared in a single episodes of ‘Desperate Housewives’ and ‘Head Case.’ She made her film debut in the modeling mockumentary ‘Portfoilio’ in 1983. Her other films in the 19080s were ‘Anna’ and ‘Her Alibi.’ In the 1990s, Porizkova had roles in both ‘Arizona Dream’ and ‘Thursday.’ In 2001, Porizkova wrote and directed the movie ‘Roommates,' and then starred alongside Judd Nelson in ‘Dark Asylum.’ Her most recent film role was in the 2004 romantic comedy ‘Knots.’

Other Ventures

A lesser-known fact about Paulina Porizkova is that she co-authored a children’s book called ‘The Adventures of Ralphie the Roach,’ which was published in 1992. Porizkova also wrote a novel in 2007 called ‘A Model Summer.’ Currently, Porizkova is a blogger for The Huffington Post and Modelinia.

Paulina Porizkova’s Net Worth

According to Nicki Swift, Paulina Porizkova’s net worth is estimated at $10 million. This successful woman has made her money through her work as a model and also from some television and acting work.

Her Personal Life

In her personal life, Paulina Porizkova was married to Ric Ocasek, the lead singer of The Cars rock band. The couple married in 1989 and had two sons together, Jonathan Raven and Oliver. Although the couple separated in 2017, Porizkova cared for Ocasek in 2019 when he was recovering from surgery. Porizkova found him dead in his home in September 2019. The couple did not divorce before Ocasek’s death, but he had disinherited Porizkova from his will claiming that his wife had abandoned him. It is now down to a judge to decide if this claim stands as Porizkova cared for Ocasek after his surgery. It is possible that following the court case, Paulina Perizkova’s net worth may increase if the judge rules against the allegation of abandonment.

Allen Lee

Written by Allen Lee

Allen Lee is a Toronto-based freelance writer who studied business in school but has since turned to other pursuits. He spends more time than is perhaps wise with his eyes fixed on a screen either reading history books, keeping up with international news, or playing the latest releases on the Steam platform, which serve as the subject matter for much of his writing output. Currently, Lee is practicing the smidgen of Chinese that he picked up while visiting the Chinese mainland in hopes of someday being able to read certain historical texts in their original language.

Read more posts by Allen Lee

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