The editor of UK Vogue, Alexandra Shulman, gave an interview this weekend and revealed very candidly how people who create fashion magazines like Vogue think. In an interview on BBC Radio 2, Shulman — who has been editor of UK Vogue since 1992 — spoke about what makes for a successful magazine cover. Here she is quoted by the UK’s Telegraph:
“If I knew exactly what sold it would be like having the secret of the universe, but I’d say broadly speaking, if you’re going to talk about a model or a personality, it’s kind of a quite middle view of what beauty is. Quite conventional, probably smiling, in a pretty dress; somebody looking very ‘lovely’. The most perfect girl next door.” … People always say ‘why do you have thin models? That’s not what real people look like’ But nobody really wants to see a real person looking like a real person on the cover of Vogue. I think Vogue is a magazine that’s about fantasy to some extent and dreams, and an escape from real life. People don’t want to buy a magazine like Vogue to see what they see when they look in the mirror. They can do that for free.” Keep reading »
On Monday night at a media industry event, a reporter from Capital New York asked Cosmopolitan editor-in-chief Joanna Coles about her magazine and feminism. Coles responded that Cosmo is “deeply feminist,” and covers issues like “equal pay for equal work,” “sensible control for guns,” and “access to contraception and access to abortion, should, God forbid, you need one.”
“There’s nothing more mainstream than equal pay for equal work. I mean, it’s completely obvious that’s what feminism should be for, and for women’s right to choose what happens to their own bodies. It’s unbelievable in 2013 we happen to be talking about this, but the battle over healthcare, the battle for women’s right to choose their own contraception, that ludicrous panel full of old men in Washington ruling what women could and couldn’t do—where is feminism then? Where are all the left-wing academics? Actually, Cosmo has been out there clamoring all along for this.”
Some feminists are not so happy about this, perceiving Coles’ remarks as dismissive of academics in areas like gender studies, race theory, history and others that have had a direct result on feminist advances of the 20th and 21st century. But I’m actually happy that the editor of the most major women’s mag in America didn’t run screaming in the other direction when the F-word came up.
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So I finally picked up a copy of the December/January issue of Lucky featuring that godawful photo of the divinely beautiful Kerry Washington on the cover. Normally I love the mag, but they realllllly dropped the ball with this shoot. I mean, check out this photo from inside the magazine. Kerry looks amazing in this shot, don’t get me wrong — but am I the only one who’s majorly distracted by the way those sunglasses are bizarrely perched on her head? What is this fuckery? They’re hugely off-kilter and so far forward they look about to fall off. I mean, two seconds after this photo was taken, those Ray-Bans were on the floor, mark my words. Did the stylist/photographer really not take the damn time to adjust those shades so they were placed on her head properly? Or maybe wearing your sunglasses cocked to one side a new trend for 2014. Whatever the case may be, Kerry Washington/Olivia Pope deserves better than this mess!
Why is a September issue of Vogue for sale on Craigslist for $4.5 million dollars? Because that’s the cost brands like Dior and Chanel sunk into the iconic magazine advertising in this month’s issue. If it’s your hearts desire to read the Jennifer Lawrence profile and discover how to get a better body in seven minutes, the seller has helpfully removed all the ads in Vogue, either by ripping the pages out or coloring them over in black marker. It’s 70 percent thinner and a whole purse dog lighter.
And for those of us who don’t have $4.5 mil lying around, we can buy the ad-filled version for — gulp! — $12 on newstand. What a bargain. [PSFK via Ad Week]
As we know all too well, it’s bikini body season, which means it’s time to grab a copy of your favorite women’s fitness magazine and get the scoop on all the latest, totally fresh tips and advice on everything from flat abs to hot sex! But hey, wait a second. Those two covers sure look a lot alike, don’t they? Would you believe they are two totally different magazines that were published two years apart? Because they are. Sigh. Some things — and by “things,” I mean “women’s magazines” — never change. [Reddit]
The other day, I realized that I always put on my underwear with such intense concentration and anxiety that you’d think it was some kind of perverted carnival game. Why? Because I read in Cosmopolitan like six years ago that if you let your feet touch the crotch part of your panties while you’re putting them on, you will get some horrible vaginal foot fungus (it was discussed in an article called, like, “THE LATEST WOMEN’S HEALTH SCARE YOUR DOCTOR WON’T TELL YOU ABOUT).
The truth is, between the smoky eye tutorials and charming Taylor Swift profiles, women’s magazines also excel at scaring the shit out of you. I asked the rest of The Frisky staff about the freaky things they’d learned from years of reading lady mags, and we came up with the following list. Feel free to add your own in the comments! Keep reading »
There are some things in life that just belong together. For instance: Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup, Chad Kroeger and Avril Lavigne. I’ve only been to Walmart once, when I accompanied my then-boyfriend to purchase a Bear Grylls-brand camping knife, but the politically conservative megastore definitely did not strike me as the sort that would have any feasible tie to liberal-leaning publishing goliath and Anna Wintour employer Condé Nast. And yet! Beauty Scoop, Wal-Mart’s 12-page editorial “shopazine,” exists, and it features original pieces from editors of familiar Condé glossies like Allure, Glamour, and Lucky. Keep reading »
“I am on the limit of chubbiness because I love my food and my wine. It’s not the best for fashion, but it’s good for my mood. I am happy because I eat … If you don’t eat carbs, you slow your metabolism down. And you know what? You look miserable. The truth is I just don’t have the drive to be the prettiest and the thinnest. I can be happy for other people for their beauty. Learn to be happy for others and you can never run out of happiness.”
— I guess nobody’s perfect, not even Salma Hayek: the 40-year-old actress has been going on at length recently about her “chubbiness,” even referring to herself earlier in this Harper’s Bazaar UK piece as “dyslexic, short, and chubby.” While I agree with a lot of what Salma is saying here — it’s difficult to enjoy life when you live to be thin — calling herself chubby doesn’t really accomplish anything but, um, making everyone else feel kind of awful. Seriously, a world in which Salma Hayek’s body is considered undesirable is a world I do not want to live in. [Celebitchy] [Photo: Paola Kudacki/Harper's Bazaar]
Rashida Jones? Is that you? We’ve always known the “Parks and Recreation” actress to be beautiful but restrained, given that her personal style, not to mention the type of role she generally goes for, veers more on the sweet, bookish side rather than the total bombshell she could totally be if she wanted to (no shame in not wanting to, Rashida, we love you the way you are). But if you’ve ever wondered what Rashida would look like should she decide to channel her inner vixen once in a while, you’re in luck — Flaunt Magazine got their (wet, it seems) hands on Ann Perkins for a new photoshoot and styled her all sexy-like. She looks hot, but did anyone ever doubt that she would? [Flaunt via The Gloss]
Isn’t it nice to see Keira Knightley’s pretty face adorning multiple magazine covers rather than someone like, say, Kim Kardashian? I jest, kind of, and I do know a few people who maintain that Keira is only marginally more talented than the reality star in question … but regardless, she’s definitely more likable. I’ll be honest, my affinity may have less to do with Keira’s abilities as an actress and way more to do with the fact that there was a time in my life wherein I, like, so totally wanted to be Elizabeth Swann. Keep reading »