She rose to fame on Jersey Shore, but Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi never restricted herself to the New Jersey state lines. In addition to appearing on the show and the spin-off Snooki & JWOWW, she started her own line of beauty products and has lent her famous moniker to other brands. As a result, the pint-sized reality star has accumulated an estimated net worth of $4 million.
A large portion of her bank account is courtesy of MTV, which was reportedly paying her $150,000 per episode in the last season of Jersey Shore. The businesswoman (a term that applies to her, like it or not) didn’t squander her 15 minutes of fame, either. Instead, she capitalized on the spotlight by building her own brand.
Under the guidance of business professionals, Snooki began creating her empire shortly after Jersey Shore hit the airwaves.
“I often get asked by my fans where they buy the slippers, sunglasses and other fashions I wear on the show,” the former veterinary technician student told CNNMoney in 2011. ”I’m trying to take advantage of what’s going on in my career by offering fans some of the products that I love and use myself.”
As her star rose, Snooki also developed her own line of lip glosses, tanning lotions and jewelry — each with some variation of her name. She was even proactive about trademarking any and all potential “Snooki” variations.
In 2011, she officially trademarked the phrases “I Snook the Night,” “Snookalike,” “Team Meatball,” “Snookit,” “Snookin for Love,” and “Nicole Polizzi.”
She’s not content with simply lending her name to product, said one company she’s worked with.
“We were surprised how involved she got into the process,” Kenneth Hamlet, who worked with Snooki on a jewelry line, told the New York Post in 2011. “She said, ‘I really think we need to put an arrow through it and put some gem stones on it and bling it out,’ so we did.”
Snooki doesn’t even need to invest in a brand to make money. Earlier this year, she sold a tricked-out Escalade at $15,000 more than the market price. However, not everything she touches turns to gold. Her first book, A Shore Thing, sold extremely poorly. She also got into a legal battle with SRG Ventures, which began helping her manage her business in 2011.
Still, the bumps in the road haven’t deterred Snooki from moving forward with her branding vision. Even last weekend, she gave the public a sneak peek of what they can expect with her upcoming fashion line by wearing a self-designed dress to the MTV Video Music Awards. At least she’s still paying homage to her reality TV beginnings!