Glamour Releases First Issue Produced Entirely by Women

The cast of “Girls” on Glamour’s cover

Glamour magazine is trying to put its masthead where its mouth is. “Gender equality is on all of our minds. It’s really important to me that Glamour not just talk the talk about female empowerment, but that we also walk the walk,” the magazine’s editor, Cindi Leive, told USA Today. Accordingly, the Photoshop-free February issue of the women’s mag was produced entirely by women. Every reporter, makeup artist, stylist, designer, and photographer who contributed to the issue, featuring the cast of “Girls” on the cover, is a woman.

While Glamour is catered to a female readership, the publication doesn’t have the best record when it comes to actually employing women. Leive “discovered in fall 2016 that 63 percent of the photographers Glamour paid for print work were male,” Slate reports. “So were 68 percent of the hairstylists. Just under half the print magazine’s makeup artists were female, but they were far more likely to work on the smaller stories than male makeup artists, who got the big-time spreads.” So Leive decided to do something about it. She addressed the issue head-on in the magazine’s own pages.

“While we employed female writers almost exclusively, the visual content of the magazine — the stuff you look at — was more likely to be made by men,” Leive writes in February’s editor’s note. Gender equality is on all our minds, and gender equality doesn’t just happen at the CEO or president-of-America level. It starts at home, and as I looked at those numbers, it was pretty clear: Our home could use a shake-up.”

The shake-up entailed focusing on Glamour’s hiring. As Leive explains, “We wanted to ensure that everybody we employed for the issue content was female.” And those featured posing in the magazine were “given free rein to choose whatever fashion items they liked.”

The all-female February issue is more than just a hollow gesture. It shows a commitment to changing the future of the mag. “Glamour plans to continue to increase our representation of women in creative-contributor roles meaningfully throughout 2017 and beyond; we’ll report back to you on how we’re doing,” Leive promises.

“We’re a brand that cries foul when there are not enough women represented” in the upper echelons of business,” Leive told WWD. “Glamour is the first to talk about why that should change.” We’d love to see other publications follow suit.

One of the women featured on the February cover, “Girls” creator-writer-director-star Lena Dunham, shared a message on Instagram about how much the issue means to her. “Thank you to the women in Hollywood (and on Instagram!) leading the way, inspiring and normalizing the female form in EVERY form, and thank you to [Glamour] for letting my cellulite do the damn thing on news stands everywhere today,” the Golden Globe winner wrote.

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