Attic Futura’s new bi-monthly is entitled Real Health & Beauty.
No prize there for the most inspiring magazine title of 1998.
First impressions tell me it is aimed at women like me - those crying
out for yet more advice on how best to eat well, exercise regularly, be
organised at work, give up fags, drink less and keep smiling all at the
same time. Will this magazine actually make me feel like doing any of
the above? Cynically, I glance over the front cover.
’The woman with two vaginas’ and ’Quit smoking and stay slim’ stand out,
the former in particular. Instead, I’m drawn into the first main feature
on women with some ’medical secrets’. A woman who can’t stop swearing,
one who feels like sleeping all the time and another who just can’t get
enough sex. ’Perhaps I’m normal after all,’ I think as I absorb every
The main features are very well written and make an interesting change
to the usual type of material one gets in such a title.
What really lets the title down is the rest of the content: uninspiring
and basic editorial on the trivial issues regularly covered in every
other women’s magazine. Real Health & Beauty fails to combine its tales
of the weird and wonderful with any new information.
What makes the title readable is that it succeeds in tapping into
people’s fascination with others’ misfortunes. But the main problem is
the appearance of the magazine - thin from the outside, bitty on the
inside. Given the intense competition on the shelves, it lacks the
immediate appeal essential for impulse purchase and it isn’t substantial
enough to warrant the cover price of pounds 2.20. I predict that in this
format, Real Health & Beauty will have a short lifespan.