And the Tiara Goes to: Why Glamour Magazine Deserves Its “Magazine of the Year” Crown

glamour_july2010.jpgOK, I have a confession to make. I almost didn’t get
around to writing this entry, and it’s all because of Glamour
. Every time I sat down at my keyboard to write, my eyes would
wander over to my July 2010 issue, which recently arrived in the mail. It’s been only a few days since I finished my June
issue, and I follow the magazine’s daily Twitter updates, so it’s not
like I haven’t had my Glamour fix. Still I couldn’t stop sneaking peeks
at July’s story lineup and skimming my favorite columns along with the
celebrity profile (Jessica Biel).

When people ask what my
favorite magazine is, they’re usually surprised to hear me say Glamour. Because I’m a magazine writer by trade, I think
they expect me to choose something more intellectual (Time),
global (National Geographic) or literary (The New Yorker). While all these publications have their merits, they don’t give
me the burning desire to stand in front of a newsstand rack until my feet hurt just so I can browse the features, or rip into an issue before I ever make it back from the mailbox.
Glamour magazine does.
Magazine industry insiders were just as surprised
recently when Glamour took the American Society of Magazine Editors (ASME)
top honor at the 2010 National Magazine Awards, winning the coveted and first-ever “Magazine of the Year” award. Glamour’s win was quite a
coup, considering that women’s magazines have been traditionally
underrepresented among ASME winners.

With print
magazines going out of business as fast as last season’s harem pants,
fashion glossies are struggling to stay relevant in a market where
digital and social media rule. So what did a glossy, female-focused fashion magazine
like Glamour do to earn such a prestigious award? Here are the top three reasons why I think Glamour
deserves its “Magazine of the Year” title.     

  1. It keeps it real. Yes, you’ll
    find all the topics you would expect most woman’s fashion magazines
    to cover–beauty, fashion, health, men, love and life–but
    you’ll also find relevant stories that are rare in other magazines,
    like details on what every woman should know about health-care
    reform, how to dress rich on a real girl’s salary and secrets to staying classy in a society where etiquette is a lost art.

  2. It also breaks the rules. The magazine has its share of lifestyle features and fashion shoots, but editors
    aren’t afraid to shake up the formula and experiment with content. From
    monthly departments like the “How to Do Anything Better Guide” to June 2010′s “Bridesmaid’s Bill of Rights,” stories follow a fun, interactive format. In June’s feature on
    finding a swimsuit for every body type, the magazine opted to use mostly plus-size models rather than stick-skinny ones.

  3. It speaks to all women (through all kinds of media). The magazine does a great job of linking its print content to its website
    and finding creative ways to drive readers online. It finds women where they are, at whatever medium they prefer, and uses social networking websites Twitter and Facebook to connect to them, solicit feedback and ideas, and inspire them to pick up
    the magazine.  

So what do you think? Did Glamour magazine deserve its big win?

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Emily McMackin

About Emily McMackin

Emily McMackin is an editor, writer and perpetual storyteller with an incurable addiction to coffee, magazines, Neil Diamond and Caribbean travel. She resides in Music City USA (that's Nashville, Tenn., ya'll!), where you'll find her staking out live music, salsa dancing, scouring town for the best latte and working on her first No. 1 (book that is).