Chuck Norris turned 78 years old on March 10, and the iconic “Walker, Texas Ranger” star is surely karate-chopping his way to the bank, thanks in part to his willingness to lend his face and name to TV infomercials. Decades of carving out a tough-guy persona have allowed Norris to gain a cult-like following, which has proven lucrative in more ways than one.
Companies know that having a celebrity endorsement can skyrocket sales, so many are willing to shell out serious cash to create a TV infomercial featuring a beloved star.
Click through to find out which celebrity endorsements had major payouts.
1. Chuck Norris
First and foremost, Chuck Norris is an iconic actor who’s starred in “The Expendables 2,” “Sidekicks” and “The Way of the Dragon.” His overall net worth is $70 million.
When he’s not fighting crime onscreen, Norris is busy making the world a better place. He co-founded Kickstart Kids — a martial arts program in public schools — along with his wife, Gena. Not everyone can be as solid as Norris — find out which athletes lost their major endorsement deals.
Known for his muscular physique, it’s only fitting that Chuck Norris has endorsed Total Gym for more than 30 years. Marketed as an all-in-one home gym, this celebrity-endorsed product contains more than 80 exercises and claims to reshape the body with 10 to 20 minutes of daily exercise. Some workout trends are cheaper than going to the gym.
An entrepreneur in his own right, Norris has his CFORCE water, straight from his Lone Wolf Ranch in Navasota, Texas. He also founded United Fighting Arts Federation, a worldwide martial arts organization.
2. Christie Brinkley
In 2017, then-63-year-old Christie Brinkley posed for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue — it was not her first rodeo. One of the biggest supermodels in history, Brinkley appeared on the cover of the Swimsuit Issue — arguably the most coveted gig in modeling — a record three times in a row in 1979, 1980 and 1981.
Brinkley’s younger audiences might know her as the lady from the Total Gym infomercials, but she’s also made tons of money in real estate.
She lent the brand her celebrity, as well her almost superhuman resistance to aging, in a string of videos starting in 1997, sometimes alongside Chuck Norris, sometimes solo. Although it’s unclear how much of her $80 million fortune she owes to her fitness contraption infomercials, Forbes gushed over her “real estate empire” — as well as her successful skin care line — when in 2016 she sold two $25 million-plus homes in less than five months.
3. Suzanne Somers
She rose to fame as Chrissy Snow on “Three’s Company,” and was also the star of the 1990s sitcom “Step by Step.” But Suzanne Somers has turned herself into an infomercial machine.
In fact, in 2014, her celebrity infomercial efforts culminated in an induction into the Direct Response Hall of Fame — another name for “infomercial.”
Somers’ most notorious endorsement is the ThighMaster, which she has put her name behind since 1990. From makeup and skin care items to jewelry and weight loss supplements, Somers’ website contains celebrity-endorsed products for a slew of women-centric categories. Although not all of her side projects have been hits, she’s done just fine with the ones that have succeeded.
She hasn’t taken an acting job since 2001. A breakdown of Somers’ celebrity endorsement earnings isn’t available, but her total net worth is $100 million.
4. Cindy Crawford
Cindy Crawford rose to fame as a teen model, but she’s more than just a pretty face. Now one of the most iconic supermodels of all time, Crawford has made beauty her business by becoming a TV infomercial queen.
You’ve likely seen at least one infomercial for Crawford’s Meaningful Beauty skin care line, which promises to help reduce the visible signs of natural aging. Beyond infomercials, she also sells a Cindy Crawford Home line in stores.
Earnings details from Crawford’s celebrity-endorsed product lines haven’t been made public, but they factor into her $100 million net worth. A business-savvy family, husband Randy Gerber started Casamigos Tequila with George Clooney and Michael Meldman, and he is a co-owner of the Malibu, Calif., restaurant Café Habana.
5. Nick Lachey
His vocal skills made him a household name, but Nick Lachey is also known for his handsome looks and toned physique. His turn to the TV infomercial world came on the heels of his high-profile divorce announcement from first wife, Jessica Simpson.
In 2006, the 98 Degrees singer put his abs to work to star in an infomercial for celebrity trainer Gunnar Peterson’s “Core Secrets” DVD series. Lachey reportedly earned $500,000 for his celebrity endorsement, according to Gawker.
Married to Vanessa (Minnillo) Lachey since July 2011, Lachey’s net worth is an estimated $20 million. Since he’s been off the 2016 MY2K Tour with 98 Degrees, he appeared on “Dancing With the Stars” in 2017 alongside his wife.
6. Justin Bieber
Justin Bieber was discovered on YouTube at 12 years old — which means he’s been in the music industry for half his life, as he’s now 24. With one Grammy under his belt and plenty of hit songs, the singer is hardly hurting for success.
Like millions of teens and adults, Justin Bieber battled acne during his formative years. However, unlike most adolescents, his complexion woes landed him a multimillion-dollar celebrity infomercial.
In 2010, Bieber joined the list of celebrities who have starred in an infomercial for skin care line Proactiv. He reportedly signed a two-year endorsement deal worth $3 million, according to Billboard.
His manager, Scooter Braun, told Billboard the celebrity infomercial only happened because Proactiv was a product the “Love Yourself” singer actually used. Now an adult with a net worth of $265 million, he seems to be doing just fine since ending his relationship with the company.
7. Alex Trebek
Alex Trebek has been hosting “Jeopardy!” since 1984, but he also endorsed the WordSmart program. He didn’t need the money from the endorsement, as he’s making an annual salary of $10 million for hosting “Jeopardy!”
He appeared in his first celebrity infomercial for the company back in 2007.
WordSmart made headlines in October 2014 when it settled deceptive marketing allegations — including an advertisement featuring Trebek — brought by the Federal Trade Commission for $147,400. The game show host’s endorsement fees haven’t been made public.
Trebek certainly isn’t hurting for cash. His net worth is $50 million and growing.
8. Alyssa Milano
Alyssa Milano grew up in front of the camera with her role on “Who’s the Boss?” that ended in 1992. Her lengthy on-screen resume includes an infomercial for Wen hair care, created by celebrity hairstylist Chaz Dean.
Wen Hair Care
In the TV infomercial, Milano touts the benefits of Wen. However, hundreds of women have joined together in a class-action lawsuit against Dean and Guthy-Renker, claiming the product caused severe damage to their hair. Amid a December 2015 media frenzy over the lawsuit, Milano debuted a brand new pixie cut on Instagram.
Milano’s celebrity endorsement fee for Wen hasn’t been released, but her net worth is $10 million.
9. Leeza Gibbons
She was crowned “Celebrity Apprentice” in 2015, but that isn’t the only honor Leeza Gibbons received for the year. The former talk show host was also given the Direct Response Icon Award for her extensive work in direct response marketing.
Serving as the face of her beauty company, Sheer Cover, Gibbons has starred in several infomercials for the brand. She also partners with other companies, including Senior Helpers, Philips Lifeline and Dr. Denese Skin Care and has her own Wishes and Dreams jewelry line at Kohl’s.
Gibbons’ net worth is $20 million. A breakdown of her celebrity endorsement earnings is not available.
10. George Foreman
George Foreman fought his way to fame through a boxing career that began in 1969, which was highlighted by legendary bouts against the likes of Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali, included 76 wins and 68 knockouts in 81 fights and culminated in 1994 when he shocked the world and beat Michael Moorer at age 45 to become the oldest heavyweight champion in history — but that was just his first career.
The Foreman Grill
The bulk of Big George’s $300 million net worth can be traced to his namesake grills. In a deal that CNBC once nominated as possibly the “best in sports marketing history,” Foreman agreed to endorse a small electric grill made by a company called Salton. Foreman’s name — and his series of infomercials — earned him 45 percent of the profits, which weren’t expected to make any waves. In 1997 at age 48, Foreman was still fighting when he was surprised with a $1 million check — more than he ever expected. A year later, it seemed that a Foreman Grill was in every kitchen in America, and Salton bought out the former champ’s share in a deal worth a total of roughly $200 million.
Click through to see more celebrity endorsement deals with insane payouts.
Photos are for illustrative purposes only. Some of the photos might not reflect the specific products described in this article.
All net worth information sourced from Celebrity Net Worth.