Realities of being a Desi Sex Cam Model

Sex Cam modelling is a lucrative industry and there are many Desi models. But what is it really like to be a sex cam model?

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Desi Sex Cam Models are not as rare in the industry today.

Sex cam modelling is an industry that has been around for a long time but the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic saw a huge increase. The number of sex cam models is rising rapidly.

Financial pressures saw women around the world joining up to different websites to become amateur porn stars. Promises of making lucrative amounts of money enticed even the most traditional Desi woman.

Sex has always been a taboo subject within the South Asian community but that doesn’t stop women from streaming to thousands of men. All that’s needed is a good webcam and a reliable internet connection.

Many questions surround this profession from being safe and protecting your identity to, how much money is really made. Models are encouraged to use a stage name and never reveal personal information.

How do Desi models find the world of sex cam modelling and what are the realities of the job? Do they share what they do with family and friends or hide it as a well-guarded secret?

We find out by exclusively speaking to some Desi sex cam models about their experience.

Warning: the following content contains adult and sexual themes.

The Decision to Become a Sex Cam Model

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The Covid-19 pandemic of 2020 caused thousands of people to lose jobs and struggle financially. Many industries were losing money but there was one that was doing well and that is the online sex industry.

The porn industry is a billion-dollar one but the pandemic meant that no films were being made. Sex workers could not work due to lockdowns so they decided to turn to the internet.

There are many websites that sex workers could start streaming on as a way to continue making money. Chaturbate is one of the most popular ones but there are many more being set up regularly.

At first sex workers and adult film stars were the ones who began signing up to these sites. They already worked in the industry and they were just changing the way they did their job.

Eventually, these sites started to attract women who had never worked in the sex industry before. These women just needed a way to pay their bills and becoming a sex cam model was the way.

Meena* is a 28-year-old from London who lost her job as an office manager due to the pandemic. Her decision to become a sex cam model was an easy one:

“One of my male friends mentioned it in a conversation as a joke. He said that I should sign up for Babestation and I just laughed at him.

“Then I Googled it to see what it was all about. I saw that it was more of a TV channel but then I saw results about streaming sites. They kept mentioning easy money.

“I had a few savings but nothing major and my rent is expensive so I thought I would sign up. Honestly, I did it without thinking and the process was easy.

“I signed up to a website called CAM4 and after they verified my identity, I was ready to start. I went online for the first time that evening and had no idea what to expect.

“You can tag yourself to attract viewers and I noticed there were hardly any British Indian women. There were quite a few from India though. I used tags like British Indian, big boobs and curvy.

“Men joined the room very quickly and would type just as you would in a normal chatroom. They could all see my video and hear me talking. I was wearing some sexy lingerie.

“People could see I was new as the tag new was added to my page. Some guys were really helpful and told me I shouldn’t get naked for free and I needed a tip menu.

“I had a look at a few other models pages to see what I needed on my tip menu. There were basic things like flash boobs or flash ass and then more kinky ones.”

Meena* set up her tip menu with ten items that included flashing parts of her body, to doing a striptease. She also does oil massages and uses a vibrator, depending on how big the tip is.

Viewers would send tokens to tip her and they also have the option to take the model into a private show. This is a one-to-one where the viewer may or may not share his camera.

Meena* explains that private shows are where the most money can be made:

“Private shows are charged by the minute and the model decides her rate. The guy usually wants to put his camera on as he wants you to watch him.

“It’s not the greatest thing to watch but I just smile and get on with it.

“This is a job, just like any other job. It’s just a job where I have to take my clothes off.”

“I spent a lot of money in the beginning but you have to spend money to make money. I made sure I had the best webcam because that’s where a lot of models fail.

“New lingerie is essential and I buy outfits to do roleplay in like a nurse’s outfit and a policewoman’s outfit. I actually really love dressing up and the men definitely love it.”

Attracting Viewers

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Meena* has been a sex cam model since early 2020 and now streams on several other sites as well, including Chaturbate. Chaturbate has a lot of viewers but that also means more competition.

Meena* constantly keeps things fresh with new outfits, toys and games:

“Sometimes I stream for 8 hours so I have to keep myself entertained as well. If you look bored men will go find another model quickly. I love playing games with the viewers like Spin The Wheel.

“A viewer will tip to spin the wheel and then I do whatever command it lands on. It could be anything from flashing my feet to using a vibrator.

“I have a Lush vibrator which connects to an app on my page that lets men control it. It will also buzz when I get tipped. The bigger the tip, the longer and harder the vibration.”

Models are constantly coming up with new ideas in a bid to attract big tippers to their room. Some models will do special shower shows as a one-off and sometimes bring a partner on.

Sara* is a 24-year-old from Manchester who started streaming in July of 2020. She says:

“I have a boyfriend and I have brought him on to the show with me a few times. Those shows are probably the ones where I end up with the most tips.

“I will get tipped to do sexual things to him or vice-versa. We have had sex online as well but that is for the biggest tip only.”

Online Abuse

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Streaming isn’t all about sex and having a good time though. Many models face abuse when they stream and Desi sex cam models are no different.

Sara* says she has faced a lot of online abuse from viewers but says it is part of the job:

“Trolling and abuse happen everywhere online and it’s the same on sex cam modelling sites. Most of the abuse I get is because I am Indian and it is usually from Indian guys.

“They always ask if my family know what I do and that I should be ashamed. That I should be doing a real job instead of getting naked on the Internet. Men can be vicious.

“They will comment on my appearance saying I have ugly boobs and things like that. It can be very emotionally draining and sometimes I can’t handle it and just switch off.

“Some men just demand you to take off your clothes and will never tip you. Free members are those who don’t have any tokens to tip you but they can still come and watch you.

“They are usually the worst ones when it comes to abuse and name-calling. Tippers can be mean as well.

“I am called a slut and slag and swear words in Indian like kutti (bitch).”

“Those are difficult as I can’t really say anything as they have tipped. They have paid so they just want whatever it is they have tipped for so I just do it.”

Sara* usually drinks alcohol whilst she is streaming as she says it helps her to loosen up. She said:

“I definitely drink too much but sometimes that’s the only way I can stream. If I am a little tipsy the negative comments won’t bother me. It also helps me do more kinky things.

“A popular thing guys ask for is to put my vibrator in different places. Sometimes it isn’t easy to do and the alcohol helps me relax. I do it as it gets me big tips.”

Hiding your Identity

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One of the biggest problems that face Desi sex cam models is the fear their family or friends will find out what they do. Even though they use stage names they still worry.

Radha* is a 29-year-old from Delhi, India and is one of the rare models who doesn’t reveal her face on the screen. Only a few models do this as it is not popular with viewers.

Radha* usually has her camera aimed at her chest and she stays topless for her entire show:

“If I wasn’t topless, I would not make the same money as other models. Even then, I still make less because I do not show my face. But I am too scared to show it.”

Radha* comes from a traditional Hindu family but she doesn’t live with them, as they stay in Mumbai. She moved away from home to a job in Delhi where she worked in a bank.

When Covid-19 started she lost her job and started to work as a sex cam model. She said:

“I had heard another girl mention it and thought I would try. I didn’t tell my parents I lost my job because they would make me come home and I didn’t want to.

“It is hard to be free in India and I felt free in Delhi. I kept sending my parents money and they thought it was from my bank job but it was from the modelling.

“Many men online ask me to show my face and make rude comments to me but I never show myself. If anyone saw me they would tell my parents and then, I don’t know.

“Maybe they would come to Delhi and drag me home or maybe they would just come to kill me.”

“They will say I bring shame to their family and I have no respect for them.

“If they knew where the money was from, they would not accept it even though they need it. They are very poor and that’s why I moved away for a good bank job.

“It was so I could help them but they will not understand. I want to help and this is the only way.

“One day I hope I will get a job in a bank again but for now, this is fine.”

Desi Model Appeal

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The number of Desi sex cam models in the industry is low compared to that of other ethnic backgrounds. The models find the fact they are from a South Asian background gives them an advantage.

Meena* says:

“The men love it when they see I am Indian and even more that I am British. There are hundreds of cam models, Indian and others, who tag themselves as British when they are not.

“The viewers often ask me to dance to Indian music and even to dress up in ethnic clothes. I love dancing so I have a striptease dance as an option on my tip menu.

“The tipper gets to choose the song I dance to and they usually choose an Indian one. I have a lot of Indian viewers; I think they make up the majority.”

Radha* finds her viewers are mostly Indian as well. She said:

“They always ask me to speak in Hindi which I don’t mind doing at all. I always have music playing when I do my show and it is always Indian.

“People always comment about me being Indian especially my non-Indian viewers. I think Desi girls are like a fantasy to them, they see me as exotic and that makes me feel good.”

Sara* also uses her ethnic background to her advantage. She explained:

“There really are not that many Indian girls online at all. Obviously, sex is something the South Asian community likes to pretend doesn’t exist. I just think of it as more money for me.”

How Much Money do Models make?

Some models claim that they make thousands of dollars a month but these are only the highest-earning ones. These are usually current or former adult film stars who have a fanbase when they start.

Sex cam models are self-employed and therefore have to register and file their own taxes. The major credit card companies and companies such as PayPal, will not process payments from cam sites.

Because of this, the cam websites take a cut of the model’s earnings, along with processing fees. All of the websites use US dollars to count earnings and tokens spent.

Some websites take as much as 75% of what the model has earned. Meena* tells us:

“Each token I receive as a tip is actually only $0.10 so if I receive 100 tokens I would receive $10.00. I usually set myself a goal of 2500 tokens a show which is $250.

“Some days are better and some are worse. I have done shows where I have ended up with 12,000 tokens but they are very rare. The more you do, the more you get basically.”

Sara* says that after her taxes she generally makes $3000 a month but she stresses that this is not easy:

“I work 10 hours a day, sometimes 6 days a week.

“Being a sex cam model is not easy and if you want to make lots of money, you will have to do a lot.”

Strange Requests

When you are a sex cam model you expect viewers to ask you to do strange things but what are some of the worst? All three girls said that urinating on themselves is a common request.

Sara* laughs:

“The number of times a guy has asked me to pee on myself is ridiculous! I don’t do it but I know there are plenty of girls who do. It’s a personal choice.”

Radha* says that she gets the strangest requests when someone takes her for a private show:

“I was once asked to pretend to be the guy’s mom and dirty talk in Hindi. It was strange but he is one of my biggest tippers so I had no problem.”

Roleplay is definitely one of the biggest requests when it comes to these streaming sites. Meena* says:

“It’s all about fantasy and these guys love roleplay. Most guys know they probably wouldn’t get a girl like me in real life so it’s all about pretending. I give them the whole experience.”

When it comes to the men who visit these sites, the majority of them are married or in a relationship and have no problem telling the model.

Sara’s* biggest tippers are married:

“They don’t see it as cheating and who am I to judge? They get from me what they don’t get at home and I am happy to provide for them.

“You would be surprised at how many guys just need someone to talk to. They feel like their wife or girlfriend doesn’t listen so I am happy to listen to them.”

Although most men understand that these models are a fantasy, there are plenty of men who ask models out on real-life dates. Meena* has been asked many times but always refuses:

“It would be stupid to meet any of these men in real life and all models are encouraged not to.

“I have been offered $5000 for a date before but I’m not an escort.”

“My inbox is full of messages from men who want to pay me for my company. Most of them understand when I say no but some guys can get annoying.

“In the end I just block them. For me, this will only be something I ever do online.”

Additional Income

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Streaming can be time-consuming so sex cam models find other ways to add to their income. One popular way is to sell items of their underwear, from worn panties to bras and stockings.

Each model has their own profile page on the website and this is where they will list items for sale with the amount required in tokens. They can also sell photos and videos.

Many models stream and use the popular website OnlyFans and some only use OnlyFans.

Kiran* is a 32-year-old from Birmingham who uses OnlyFans regularly.

Although she started as a sex cam model, she quickly realised OnlyFans was better for her. She could make more money without the need to perform in front of a webcam all day.

Kiran* explains: “I started out streaming for about four hours a day and I loved getting tips but it was hard to make good money. Viewers started asking me if I had an OnlyFans.

“I didn’t know much about it so I looked into it and signed up. I set up a subscription where a member pays a fee per month to see everything on my page.

“For $10 a month, they could see all my naughty photos and videos. I streamed for a few more months to promote my OnlyFans page as much as I could.

“My page quickly gained 100 members a month which is $1000 a month with a small fee taken from OnlyFans. It was great and I started posting more photos and videos.

“I would make naughty roleplay videos where I would act out being a teacher or a nurse, things like that.

“I even posted sex videos with my boyfriend and those really got me more members.”

“Members can also request custom videos which I love making. Usually, guys want a video where I rate their d**k in photos they have sent me. One guy wanted me dressed as a French maid.

“I sell my underwear on the page as well and when I hit 2500 members I stopped streaming. Now I put all my effort into photos and videos and I post every couple of days.

“I am hoping to have 5000 members by the end of the year.”

Another way sex cam models make extra money is by selling their Snapchat and WhatsApp IDs. Models usually have a different account set up as they do not give out their personal account details.

Models will charge a one-off fee just for the ID and then additional fees for voice calls and even video calls. Subscribers can also buy photos and videos of the models this way.

Back to Normal

One of the reasons the sex cam modelling industry has become so popular is because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Many people stuck at home are looking online for entertainment.

Are models worrying that as things start to return to normal, viewer numbers will decrease? Meena* says it will:

“I definitely think there will be fewer people watching and I also think there will be fewer models. Most women did this because they had no other choice.

“With things getting back to normal, they will have less time to go online and chat with the models. The models will probably go back to a normal job. I know I will.”

Radha* is also hoping she will once again get a job in a bank when everything returns to normal. She said:

“This is only a short-term thing for me and I am looking for bank jobs. I guess I am ashamed of being a sex cam model but I had no choice. What could I do?”

Sara* wants to keep modelling and is also thinking about starting work as an escort. She told us:

“The money that escorts make is a lot. Sometimes thousands an hour and I have an expensive lifestyle. I love designer labels and getting my hair and nails done.

“That all costs money and I am earning a lot now.

“Why would I want to go back to a 9-5 that pays minimum wage when I can keep doing this?”

“I am my own boss and I set my own hours. That’s what most people dream of.”

It’s clear to see that being a sex cam model is not a quick and easy way to make lots of money. It takes time, commitment and the ability to shake off abuse.

It’s not a career for the overly sensitive since having to put up with strange requests, negative comments and competing with other models are just part of everyday life. For those strong enough to do it, the results seem to be rewarding.

When it comes down to choice, these Desi sex cam models and many more are living life the way they want to.

Dal is a Journalism graduate who loves sports, travelling, Bollywood and fitness. Her favourite quote is, “I can accept failure, but I can't accept not trying,” by Michael Jordan.

Images courtesy of cam models

* Names have been changed for anonymity