A model has lifted the lid on her success after earning her first million at the age of 25.

Katharina Mazepa, now 26, was working a minimum wage job in Forever 21 just a few years ago.

She was folding clothes for six months when she was 16 before her modelling career really took off.

The model, who is originally from Austria, was inspired by the catwalk stars on the billboards and dreamt of being them one day.

Now fast forward to 2021, not only has Katharina gone to places, she's even pocketed a fortune along the way too.

Since she turned to the industry, she's modelled for Miami Swim Week and made her first million, as well as buying three homes.

She credits Forever 21 for booking her in for its collection at the fashion event.

Speaking to Fabulous, Katharina said: "It felt surreal, like coming full circle. The shop job was definitely hard work.

"It teaches you the value of money and of your time, how hard you have to work to make £6.90 an hour. It made me study harder.

"Then I decided to try modelling and quit my minimum wage job. It's been up and down."

Katharina had success in other departments too after being crowed Miss Vienna when she was just 18.

She lived in Singapore, before moving to Barcelona, Munich, Italy and South Africa.

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Despite her early success in the industry, Katharina still finished school and got a degree in environmental engineering.

She also achieved her dream of moving to the US in Florida 2020, with her husband Shilo Mazepa, 32, joining her.

But with millions of people around the globe, coronavirus came and it got in the way of Katharina's career.

It was at that point where she really started to focus on social media and grew her Instagram from 40,000 followers to 1.7million.

She added: "I made my first million earlier this year, over the summer. Social media has helped so much. It felt unbelievable."

Katharina also started an OnlyFans page which she described as a "game-changer".

She admitted: "Honestly it's PG13 stuff, very similar to my Instagram. I post a lot of behind the scenes stuff from shoots.

"It's just bonus material which hasn't been posted on Instagram. It's work you can do from anywhere, which is amazing."

Her standard day is quite busy with the model starting with an 8am workout, followed by meditation and writing a to-do list.

She shoots content two days-a-week and spends the rest of her time editing pictures and creating a social media strategy.

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The model hasn't been spending her earnings on designer shoes or bags, but investing in three rental flats in Washington, US.

She also put cash into the stock market and index trading.

Katharina revealed: "I want to make sure my family and I are in a good place financially.

"It's my biggest advice to models, to make smart, sustainable decisions while you have the freedom to.

"You want to be financially independent in the long run, not only in the good days."

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