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So, You Want to Be a Porn Star

There was a time, when I was a more forward facing personality in the world of porn, that I was constantly asked, “How do I get into porn?” It may be a rehash of some things I’ve said in the past, but I’m going to answer the question here, just in case anyone’s reading.

First of all, if you’re thinking about getting into the porn business, ask yourself why.

Why do you want to get into the porn business? Think about it hard. Be honest with yourself. After all, no one else is listening.

Go ahead. I’ll wait…

If your answer isn’t something akin to, “This. This is what I want to do with my life. This is the career I  genuinely want to pursue and excel in,” then I suggest you reconsider your interest in porn.

The fact of the matter is that porn doesn’t go away like it once did. In our digital age, a porn scene is forever. It will be duplicated, sold, repackaged, sold again, uploaded to a tube site, and so on. Your sexual performance will never, ever, go out of print. And while it’s silly and prudish, the stigma of sex work isn’t likely to change for your generation. While I personally don’t understand it, there are loads of people (particularly in the United States) who labour under the delusion that a person’s ability to suck three dicks at the same time and make it look good on camera makes them ill-suited to sell insurance, teach mathematics, aid the sick, or (insert mainstream job of your choice here). It’s dumb, but it’s reality.

Now, let’s just say that you really do want to make porn your career and potentially, your life’s work. What should you do?

Honestly, go to school.

Yes, I realize that your local college or university doesn’t have courses on how to push a house plant past your anal sphincter or ejaculating on command, but hear me out.

Porn is a business. It could be said that it’s also an art, but above everything else, it’s a business. You want to make a career out of this right? You want to eat and pay the electric bill, right?

Go to school.

Get a degree in marketing, go to film school, learn web design. Whatever. But don’t think you’ll survive the changing tide of porn based solely on your appearance and ability to look good having sex. You can get away with that for awhile, but if you want this to be a career, you’ll need more.

From that point, you have a basis for success.

In terms of actually getting started in porn, there are a few things you’ll need to consider.

Hire a competent photographer (or if you like, do some sort of content exchange where both you and the photographer have ownership of the images) and have some good photos and possibly demo video taken. And for fuck’s sake, listen to the photographer. If he or she tells you to point your toes, raise your chin, pop your hip out, etc., do it. That’s what models do. This is a business of fantasy and illusion. Don’t take offense.

Contact producers and other models whom you admire (in many cases, they can easily be found on social media) and get advice on the right talent agent for you (this is absolutely necessary in the US and Europe, less so in the UK).

Be prepared to work hard. Porn is not easy.

Be prepared to invest time and money into your appearance. Stay in shape. I don’t mean that you have to be skinny or fit into a particular body standard. But having sex for a hours on end requires physical stamina. Budget money for things like a good stylist. If you’re a woman, learn how to do your own make up well, as many porn sets will not have an artist there. This is the entertainment industry, after all, and there’s a big emphasis on appearances, for good or ill.

Avoid excess. I’m not gonna say you can’t smoke a joint at the end of the day or have a couple drinks here and there, but don’t get caught up in the vicious cycles in which so many others in the entertainment business find themselves trapped. Addiction can and mostly likely will end your career before it needs to end. And it damn well could end your life.

Never compromise. Never let anyone talk you into something you don’t want to do or are not ready to do.

Show up to your job on time. Do what’s been agreed upon. Ask for and expect clear information on what you’re expected to do on a shoot before you arrive. And if they ask you do something different, remember that you can always walk away. E-mail is your friend. Get those expectations in writing.

And ultimately, take pride in your work. Take pride in who you are and who you choose to be. If you don’t, no one else will give a damn.

And if you’re not prepared to do all of these things and more, it’s simple. Don’t get into the porn business.