We spoke to a woman earning more than $100,000 a year selling explicit content on OnlyFans - this is exactly how she makes her money
Supplied by Monica Huldt
- OnlyFans - a paid-for subscription site - is becoming more popular as a place where porn creators can earn money directly from subscribers.
- Monica Huldt or 'miss_swedish_bella' is one of the platform's most successful creators, making a six-figure salary from her work there.
- Huldt explained to Business Insider exactly what her working day involves, and how she makes her living selling adult content on OnlyFans.
- She said it's a seven-days-a-week job that needs constant communication and the ability to stand out from the competition.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
Monica Huldt is an adult content creator who makes her living providing X-rated pictures and videos to hundreds of followers on OnlyFans.
As one of the top earners on the site, she's making more than $100,000 a year, from a mixture of subscribers who pay $6.50 a month as well as larger fees for pay-per-view and commissioned work.
Huldt shared the details of her working life, and some financial information, with Business Insider to give a sense of how someone can turn adult content work into a very high-paying job.
Her life wasn't always like that. Two years ago she was struggling to make ends meet trying to monetize hundreds of thousands of Instagram followers with what was then a stream of safe-for-work modelling pictures. A move to racier content on OnlyFans changed that.
OnlyFans, where she is known as "miss_swedish_bella," is a social media platform that allows users to set up a paywall around their profiles. There, Huldt can post content to a feed, receive and send direct messages, and post pay-per-view content.
Huldt talked Business Insider through how she built her 1,100-strong following there, and walked us through a typical day.
Start with a "good morning" picture and answering messages
Huldt's subscribers expect new material every day, but she said running a successful OnlyFans is as much about good communication as X-rated content. "I have followers who I talked to a lot because they tend to text a lot, so I know them on a more personal level," she previously told Insider.
Every morning she posts a new photo to her wall, then gets to work on her inbox. The photo is often a non-explicit lingerie shot.
She'll typically have 40 to 50 messages to respond to, including general chat. Working through these takes up to two hours.
"If I don't do that, they will just pile up and it will be hundreds to get to," she said.
Breakfast with her husband, then to the gym
Huldt's husband John is a personal trainer, so by this time he's returning from early-bird clients at the gym. They have breakfast together, and then it's time for Huldt to maintain her own physique.
She's had two plastic surgeries. In total she says the cost around $35,000 - a Brazilian butt lift (BBL) and 700cc breast implants, which is on the larger end of the scale.
Both were funded by her social media presence. She got a "little bit of a deal" with the surgeon who performed her BBL, which involves transferring fat to the rear from other areas of the body.
She funded her breast enlargement through her OnlyFans, although she said she never outright asked for the cash for either surgery.
Either way, she still has to work out.
Then come custom requests, which can be silly
Around 10% of Huldt's income is made through fulfilling private requests from her fans, which are charged as extras.
Depending on the request, they can take between a few hours and a few days to arrange, as they might include specific clothing or scouting a location.
"If they need, did they want a certain color of lingerie or certain stockings or boots or whatever, I will try to assemble that first," she said. "Then I do the videos and edit them."
Her sense of humour often comes into play. One fan, who runs a cattle ranch, paid her $250 to read a custom script in a nude video, which he could then send out as a "thank you" for his customers.
"I was wearing a cowboy hat and I was like, 'Hey, you made the right choice, cattle buyer,'" she said.
For another video, a fan asked her to wear a bikini and get intimate with a pink plush teddy bear, which she said she played for laughs. "It was super fun."
"It wasn't anything overly sexual," she said. "But I had to get oiled up and sit on that bear's face."
That earned her $150.
Getting outfits and "looks" together has proved easier with Instagram brand partnerships. She has a sponsorship arrangement with skin clinic Laser Away, and is a brand ambassador for FashionNova and PrettyLittleThing.
It's racy, but very different to the image she projects on Instagram
To view Huldt's Instagram is to see highly polished pictures often taken by one of three professional photographers she spends around $1,000 with every month.
Behind her OnlyFans paywall it's different. Firstly, the raciness is often dialled up: there she posts nudes that Instagram doesn't allow, and fetish content.
But the look is often much simpler. She wears a lot less makeup, and shoots most pictures by herself, just using her phone and a selfie lighting ring.
The reason? She wants her followers to feel like they are talking to the real her. As she told Insider, the men who follow her are often looking for an emotional boost as much as a sexual one.
So she often takes snaps as she goes to the gym, or around the house as she prepares a meal. They're still X-rated, but it's also about giving people "a door to my life," as she put it.
"Because they feel like they're getting me, without all the glamour, without all the pretty makeup and the hair," she said.
She maintains her boundaries
Sometimes Huldt gets requests that she declines.
"It can be [requests] like gang bangs, or, 'would you go with strange men?'" she said. "It can be very like graphic and very over the top. It's like, 'Oh no, I would never do that.'"
One custom request she decided not to fulfil was to roleplay a rape scene.
"It was a fantasy he wanted to talk about, you know? And that's fine," she said. But nonetheless, it wasn't a fantasy she wanted to enact.
"I was like: Oh my God, I'm so not comfortable with doing this."
In situations like that, she offers an alternative: In this case, she offered to read from an erotic novel describing a rape scene, which worked for her subscriber.
Dinner with her husband, who loves what she does
Despite the fact that she's in intimate (if virtual) contact with hundreds of admirers every day, Huldt said her husband couldn't be more supportive.
Part of it is that he's just proud of knowing how much the world admires her. "He's like: 'That's my wife,'" she said.
They maintain trust by giving him access to all her social accounts, and by having a "super, super honest relationship and marriage - the good and the bad," said Huldt.
His main advice is that, as long as she's staying in her comfort zone, he supports her 100%.
He's a practical help too, helping to set prices and shoot content. That's particularly helpful when her fans ask for outdoor pictures, which are popular. This takes planning and his help as a driver, and lookout.
"My followers do love the out-in-the open stuff, but I always tell them: 'Hey, I need to plan this, because I live in an area where there's tons of people and I don't want to go to jail for this.'"
By early evening, she checks in again with fans
By then, her inbox has filled up again, so it's another hour or two of messaging, as well as posting something that will brighten up her followers' evening.
Here are some examples:
She keeps up-to-date with her pricing
According to Huldt, the typical OnlyFans model charges $9.99 a month, a bit more tan her $6.50.
However, more models are opting for a "freemium" model where basic access costs nothing. Huldt has so far resisted that.
"There has been a shift in the OnlyFans culture a little bit, where you don't have a subscription price," she said. "And people start getting used to that because there are more and more models who do it."
Huldt says she pays 31% tax in California, although many of her expenses are deductible.
It's a non-stop job
There isn't really a weekend in Huldt's schedule - this goes on seven days a week.
"I would never advise someone doing it, if they only wanted to do it like two days a week or something," she said. "It's not a part-time thing in your mind. You wouldn't make enough money."
A large Instagram following helps
Before using OnlyFans, Huldt grew her Instagram following through posting suggestive content regularly, and got a big leg-up when Instagram influencer Allegra Cole boosted her account to her 1 million followers.
From there, she cemented her status as an influencer with the handle @swedish_bella. She also sold videos in the same way as she does now, just without the OnlyFans structure.
But it wasn't really making money. When OnlyFans became more popular, it was the logical place for her to take her most devoted Instagram fans.
The problem was that Instagram took her first account down, because she had linked to her OnlyFans.
Now, Huldt has rebuilt her Instagram following and uses emoji lettering to indicate that she has an OnlyFans.
When she's stuck for ideas? She does what works
When she's out of inspiration, she turns to her best friend and her husband for ideas - and, of course, checks with her followers about what they want to see.
No idea has ever really bombed, she said. "The guys are just happy to see my boobs, to be honest," she said.
While her brand is based around being a curvy blonde, her advice for new people on OnlyFans is to find their niche.
Other highly successful OnlyFans are making it with completely different offerings, she said.
68-year-old Michelle Hardenbrook has over 3,000 OnlyFans subscribers as a "GILF", while Huldt's friend Holly Valentine, with over 1 million Instagram followers, works a slim and athletic look.
And, of course, a lot of OnlyFans are not making adult content at all, but sharing crafts or streaming videogames.
"I don't think that there is a sudden mold for what works and what doesn't," she said.
"Whatever concept works for you, you have to find that out. What have your followers requested on social media? What do they like? Ask them, ask your people.
"They are your hardcore fans, and you have to play off of them because if they feel like they're contributing to your success, they will want to follow you."
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