I can remember the first Marie Claire. I’d just graduated, moved to
London, collected my first pay cheque and snogged my first middle-aged
man. I’d grown up.
After three years of English literature, I was ready to rejoin the 80s
and rediscover a world beyond Wuthering Heights. I found it in Marie
All of it. A dizzying mix of cultures, lifestyles, attitudes and
opinions, all underpinned by the essentials of being a woman in the late
20th century: fashion, health, beauty - executed with a flair and design
more engaging and colourful than anything I’d seen in the magazines of
my pre-adulthood. I was, I quickly decided, Marie Claire Woman.
Like many women my age, I suspect, I can’t believe ten years have
passed. I’m still reading Marie Claire. Not, perhaps, with the same
reverence or hunger, more with the pleasure of meeting an old friend
whose jokes you’ve heard a hundred times before but who still makes you
Other titles have come and gone from my reading repertoire, but Marie
Claire remains. I still turn first to 101 Ideas (clothes I can afford),
plan my wardrobe with its fashion pages, lap up the beauty tips and keep
it by my bed until I’ve waded through the reportage.
The serious articles which made Marie Claire different ten years ago can
now look a little limp alongside the meaty pieces I’m used to in Vanity
Fair but, as far as women’s mags are concerned, Marie Claire still has
the edge when it comes to quality reporting.
A glance at the latest ABCs suggests Marie Claire (down 4 per cent year
on year) may not be hitting quite the right note with new recruits, but
I’m one loyal reader who’s definitely celebrating its tenth
Claire Beale is Campaign’s media editor.