THE modelling industry has been hard-hit by the economic crisis, but the value of the beauties at the top is as strong as ever. Less than two years ago, Claudia Schiffer declared that the age of the supermodel was over. Magazine covers and beauty contracts had become the province of celebrities. The industrys newest generation had not quite attained the international, first-name basis fame that Naomi, Cindy and Christy had pioneered. A lot has changed in two years. While fashion magazines and retail brands still market their wares with stars from music and movies, models have moved off the runway in equal measure, expanding their brands into fashion, entertainment and philanthropy. The age of the multi-hyphenate model has replaced the age of the supermodel, giving the top girls more earning power than ever before. A perfect example is the No. 2 earner on our list, Heidi Klum. While still a successful model at the age of 35 after having three kids, the majority of Klums earnings are driven by her TV and endorsement career. Klum remains a member of the Victorias Secret angel entourage as well as host of Project Runway and Germanys Next Top Model. The German beauty also designs a line Birkenstock sandals and has endorsement deals with Diet Coke, Volkswagen, McDonalds and LG. Last year, she came out with her own skincare line, In An Instant. Returning at No 1 this year is Gisele Bnndchen, who earned an estimated $25 million in the last year from numerous campaigns including Versace, True Religion jeans, Dior and Ebel watches. The Brazilian model has rare rangefrom high fashion to mass marketand measured impact on the success of the brands she represents. She also has her own Brazilian shoe line and tabloid fame on par with movie stars. The models on our list were ranked according to estimated earnings from June 2008 to June 2009. Forbes The most successful models, including those who have cycled on and off this list, are able to evoke an emotional consumer response. While celebrities hawk everything from cotton underwear to Smart Water, only professional models can walk the Victorias Secret runway with inimitable perfection and enough accessibility to get plain Janes across the world into the stores. While the uber-successful make millions, the majority make very little compared to the impact they have on the retail economy. As with years previous, the changes on the list illustrate the cyclical nature of the modelling business. The loss of a major contract can have a huge impact on overall earnings, as in the case of Karolina Kurkova, who dropped off our list after her Victorias Secret contract expired. Bnndchen, though still No. 1, earned $10 million less with the loss of Victorias Secret and other contracts. Kate Moss earnings climbed $1 million based on the continued success of her clothing line for the British chain Topshop and several deal renewals. This years new girl is Emanuela De Paula at No. 11, who broke through as the face of U.K. retailer Next and is featured prominently in Victorias Secret campaigns. Forbes