They’re the face (and body) of the world’s biggest lifestyle brands.  They are supermodels, and they aren’t cheap.  They are the top paid models in the world, arguably the most beautiful women from across the globe.  To salute them and their pocketbooks, here is a list of the 16 highest paid supermodels in the world…

16. Liya Kebede

This 30-year-old Ethiopian stunner has made quite a name for herself in the world of modeling.  Born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Liya Kebede earned her break in 2000, when Tom Ford offered her an exclusive contract for a Gucci fall/winter fashion show.  Since then, she’s been a frequent covergirl, a regular on the catwalk and one of the modeling world’s top earners– pulling in $1.5 million last year alone…

15. Hilary Rhoda

Not to be confused with Hillary Rhodham (whose image would entirely ruin this list), this 21-year-old supermodel is the face of the Estee Lauder brand of cosmetics.  This and her editorial/runway work has earned her around $2 million a year, which ties her as the 14th highest paid model in the world.  Born and raised in Chevy Chase, Maryland, Hilary Rhoda had worked to become an athlete, which didn’t hurt her chances of have the right form to be a model.

14. Valentina Zelyaeva

Being the face (and body) of campaigns for L’Oreal and Ralph Lauren certainly can’t hurt– as it can bring in nearly $2.3 million a year in contracts.  Russian model Valentina Zelyaeva’s 7-year deal with Ralph Lauren has brought her into the ranks of the elite, putting her on the covers of magazines like Elle, Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.

13. Selita Ebanks

This 25-year-old Cayman fireball is as well-known in the model world as she is in celebrity dating gossip mags.  She’s been linked to rapper Kanye West, to New York Giants lineman Osi Umenyiora and to douchebag Nick Cannon.  But we salute Ms. Ebanks for her talent of selling clothes and taking breaths away, a talent that earned her $2.7 million last year alone.

12. Gemma Ward

Australian model and actress Gemma Ward has been talked about quite a bit this year.  The nearly six-foot blonde was dating actor Heath Ledger up until his untimely death prior to the release of 2008′s The Dark Knight.  Personal life aside, Ward has been contracted by brands like Dior, Dolce & Gabbana, Karl Lagerfeld, Louis Vouitton and others, earning her $3 million– and the 12th spot on our list.

11. Isabeli Fontana

The first (and certainly not the last) beautiful Brazilian on our list, reknown supermodel Isabeli Fontana had a rather quiet year last year.  While raising her newborns, Fontana took some time off– but still managed to pull in $3 million.  She’s back at it now with a fresh set of contracts, enough to push her up much higher on the list in the years to come.  Wait a minute, back up– this body just had two kids?  Unreal.

10. Miranda Kerr

Another Down Under dame, Miss Miranda Kerr has also been well known on the gossip circuit, like her Aussie counterpart Gemma Ward.  While she’s currently the arm candy of actor Orlando Bloom, she’s not your run-of-the-mill model.  Kerr is widely read on spirituality, an active Nichiren Buddhist that has made this religious tradition central to her life.  It also does not suck that she earned $3.5 million last year…

9. Daria Werbowy

While you might be scratching your head, “Daria Who?”, Miss Werbowy is a 24-year-old Canadian who has earned herself a healthy following in the model world.  Not only is Daria Werbowy the face of Lancome, she’s also a contract model for Chanel, Versace, H&M and many others.  All that work adds up to $3.8 million a year and growing…

8. Carolyn Murphy

At 35, American supermodel Carolyn Murphy can give any of these up-and-comers a run for their modeling money.  She is the body behind Estee Lauder cosmetics, a gig that makes it easy to pick and choose the other contracts she carries.  Her work last year earned her a healthy $4.5 million…

7. Natalia Vodianova

This top Russian supermodel is more than just a to earner for her craft, she’s also a dedicated mother of three.  You wouldn’t realize that in looking at her work, as Vodianova exudes the classic look of Lolita.  Natalia is the longest-standing model for Calvin Klein, and has an impressive body of work with brands like Versace, Chanel and many others.  Added all together, this 26-year-old earned $4.8 million last year alone.

6. Karolina Kurkova

This 24-year-old, 6′ Czech beauty has been modeling for nearly ten years.  What started with runway and print work at the age of 15 has become an impressive career- spanning brands like Victoria’s Secret and even Dell.  Last year, she netted $5 million even from her work in front of the camera, and by a quick glance at that image above, you can certainly tell that she’s worth it.

5. Doutzen Kroes

Victoria’s Secret’s newest model has also become one of the world’s top earners.  In addition, the 23-year-old Dutch supermodel Doutzen Kroes has some monster contracts under her belt (err, brassiere).  She earned $6 million last year thanks to Victoria’s Secret, as well as Calvin Klein and L’Oréal.  We’ve got plenty to look forward to with Miss Kroes, there are countless photo shoots like the one above in her future…

4. Adriana Lima

This Brazilian beauty is nearly ubiquitous in the world of the supermodel.  She’s a star in her own right, a model so sought after that she is the 4th highest paid in the world– at $7 million last year alone.  Adriana Lima is one of Victoria’s Secret’s finest, in addition to the face of Maybelline cosmetics.  At 27, she’s still got a big career ahead of her, and one hell of an impressive body of work behind her.

3. Kate Moss

While her recent career may have been marred by scandals of the chemical kind, she’s still a rock in the world of modeling.  In addition to her modeling work, Moss has a successful line of clothing of her own, one that has helped her bring in the $7.5 million that she earned last year.  While much of this was still from her contracts as a model, she did lose a few big deals last year.  Worry not, this 34-year-old British babe isn’t going anywhere any time soon…

2. Heidi Klum

The timeless beauty Heidi Klum is certainly a lot more than just a model.  At 34, she’s also a mother of three and wife to recording artist Seal– but Heidi Klum is also becoming a media star in her own right.  Her show Project Runway has become a cult sensation, a hit that has propelled Klum to a new level.  Klum still works as a model, and her work with Victoria’s Secret and others have combined with ther TV income to bring in $14 million last year alone…

1. Gisele Bundchen

It should surprise none that Brazilian supermodel Gisele Bundchen is the top of this list.  Last year, Bundchen pulled in $35 million from a long list of top modeling contracts, plus her own line of footwear– the later of which earned her $6 million.  While she parted ways with Victoria’s Secret last year, her star is still rising.  The 27-year-old’s relationship with Tom Brady has kept her in the spotlight, although its easy for us to say who the real star in the couple is.  Miss Bundchen, we salute you.  You’re an other-worldly kind of hot that has the world affixed on your image.  Kudos, Gisele.  Send money.

If you enjoyed this, don’t miss StyleCrave’s coverage of the world’s most beautiful women.

Thanks for reading, StyleCravers, Diggers and Stumblers.  We’re curious, who do you think is the most beautiful on this list?  Who is the most deserving of this kind of bread?  Or otherwise, do you think its a bit ridiculous how the world rewards beauty this way?  Share your opinion below.  And please share this article with your friends, in addition to voting it up in your favorite social media website!

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