Did you know there are many ways to sell a body that don't involve selling it to the night? And no, it also has nothing to do with selling your kidney in a back alley somewhere in Southeast Asia.
I'm talking about legitimate ways to make money while disabled to supplement your income. But not every opportunity out there is worth talking about and here's why…
You have enough challenges living with a disability and the last thing you need is more health problems. That's why I've decided to exclude the following ways to make money with your body from this article...
- Anything that requires you to be in a controlled environment for an extended period of time (e.g., hand modeling, life modeling, sleep studies, etc.)
- Any clinical trials that put your health further at risk (e.g., sleep deprivation studies, psychological tests, drug trials, etc.)
Okay, let's get on with the shortlist!
SELL YOUR HAIR
How much can you earn?: $100-$4000 per donation
Natural hair is in high demand to make wigs and extensions and you can sell yours provided you've got the right hair:
- At least 10" long (the longer the hair, the easier it will sell and the more money you'll make)
- Properly cared for (regularly cleaned and groomed)
- Lots of volume
- Minimal number of chemical treatments (bleaching)
- Healthy lifestyle (well-balanced diet, no traces of drugs or smoking)
Hair grows on average 6" per year so it's possible to sell yours once per year for more than $1000 each time (even more if you're a natural blond or redhead!)
Here are some main players in the industry to check out:
My body could stand the crutches but my mind couldn't stand the sideline. – Michael Jordan
SELL YOUR BREAST MILK
How much can you earn?: $300-$1200 per month
Believe it or not, there's a huge market for breast milk and not just for mothers unable to produce their own for newborns but also bodybuilders and athletes who use it to increase energy and muscle tone!
The price for a mother's milk is based on the age of the baby which influences the composition of the milk.
SELL YOUR EGGS OR SPERM
How much can you earn?: $5000-$10,000 per egg | $30-$300 per sperm donation
As an egg donor, you role is to help a woman who doesn't produce healthy eggs become pregnant.
So long as you have a clean medical background, you can make up to $10,000 per egg donation cycle! Now, the reason it pays so well is because the procedure is a bit tricky, involving a hefty combination of hormone injections, fertility drugs, sedation, and counseling.
The cutoff point is usually 35 or 36 years old but some companies like ConceiveAbilities.com set the age limit to 29.
While it sounds simple enough, it's actually not that easy to qualify as a sperm donor. Not only do you need to be in excellent health but at least three generations of your family do as well. You also have to be educated, attractive, height-weight proportional, and between the ages of 18-40.
To get started, you'll need to fill out family history questionnaires, get a bunch of medical tests done and take part in an extensive oral interview. If you're accepted, you'll likely be expected to donate a minimum of once per week for at least six months to one year which can net you anywhere in the neighborhood of $1000 per month.
But be careful as some states in the U.S. now demand child support for sperm donors! (Alas, these are the crazy times we live in). So, if you think you can remain anonymous as a sperm donor, think again!
Still interested? Google "donate sperm near me" to find some clinics in your area.
SELL YOUR BLOOD PLASMA OR BLOOD PLATELETS
How much can you earn?: $20-$60 per plasma donation | $20-$35 per platelet donation
Do you notice anything missing here? Yep, no talk about simple blood donations. Why? Because you won't make any money from it — the best you'll do is receive a gift card or free tickets to a show. But what can make you money is donating your blood plasma and/or blood platelets so let's look into these options specifically.
The largest component in human blood is plasma — a clear liquid that contains proteins, enzymes, and antibodies which help treat various diseases and conditions like autoimmune disease, liver disease, blood clotting and severe burns. The process works like this…
You start with a blood draw and then a machine automatically isolates the plasma from the rest of your blood and pumps the plasma-less blood back into your body.
The good thing is plasma replaces quickly which means you can donate up to twice per week if you wish, netting as much as $400 per month or so. But as you'd expect, you have to be screened beforehand...
Now, you could qualify if your disability is the result of a disease but you'd have to check the guidelines first. Assuming you still can participate, you can then search for a donor center nearest you by Googling "paid plasma donation near me" or try the following organizations:
Platelets are the blood cells that stop broken or injured skin from bleeding by forming clots, which dry out to form scabs. Like blood plasma, these cells regenerate quickly so you can donate often but you need to be screened first.
To get started, check out the websites listed above.
SELL YOUR POOP
How much can you earn?: $40 per donation
No B.S. here — labs will actually pay for super healthy poop to treat patients with tough infections like C. difficile by transferring the microorganisms from your gut to someone else via a fecal transplant. But it's not as invasive as it sounds...you simply drop off a stool sample and they do the rest.
To learn more, check out OpenBioMe.org.
ADVERTISE ON YOUR BODY
How much can you earn?: Varies
So, I thought I’d save the wonkiest for last. 😉
Have you ever thought about renting advertising space on your body? Well, if the idea of becoming a walking billboard sounds enticing, you may get lucky provided you're in the upper tier of physical attraction and aren't homebound as a result of your disability.
The best way to land these type of gigs is by partnering with a third party to help broker a deal with an ad agency like LeaseYourBody.com.
Now, the amount you can earn depends on several factors:
- The part of the body you're renting out (forehead, neck, arm, etc.)
- The length of time you're renting your body out for (one week, one month, etc.)
- Whether you choose to get a temporary henna tattoo vs. permanent tattoo (permanent tattoos pay much more)
Oftentimes, the ad agency will also require you to send photos and/or video of yourself displaying the ad as proof of commitment.
STILL LOOKING FOR MORE WAYS TO MAKE MONEY WHILE DISABLED?
While selling your body legally is a great way to get some emergency cash, there are more sustainable methods to make extra income while on disability that don't involve being poked and prodded and having to leave your ego at the door.
The one I like best is selling company products and earning commission from it. Want to find out more?...
NOW IT'S YOUR TURN!
Have you ever sold your body legally for quick cash? What was your experience like? Leave your comments below!