‘Cosmo’ (The Bible)
Cosmopolitan is an international magazine for women. It was first published in 1886 in the United States as a family magazine, was later transformed into a literary magazine and eventually became a women’s magazine in the late 1960s. Also known as ‘Cosmo’.
Cosmopolitan began as a family magazine, launched in 1886 by Schlicht & Field as The Cosmopolitan.
Paul Schlicht told his first-issue readers that his publication was a “first-class family magazine”, adding, “There will be a department devoted exclusively to the interests of women, with articles on fashions, on household decoration, on cooking, and the care and management of children.
With a circulation of 1,700,000 in the 1930s, Cosmopolitan had an advertising income of $5,000,000. Emphasizing fiction in the 1940s, it was subtitled The Four-Book Magazine since the first section had one novelette, six or eight short stories, two serials, six to eight articles and eight or nine special features, while the other three sections featured two novels and a digest of current non-fiction books. During World War II, sales peaked at 2,000,000.
Helen Gurley Brown became chief editor in 1965 and remodeled the magazine as New Cosmopolitan. it was refocused as a magazine for women. The magazine eventually adopted a cover format consisting of a usually young female model typically in a low cut dress or bikini. The magazine focused on young women and published articles that openly talked about sexual issues.
Back in the ’60s, young, single women were enjoying a new level of freedom. For the first time, they were beginning to bust their butts in formerly male-dominated fields and explore premarital sex. But the phenomenon was still so new that nobody was really talking about it — at least not in public. Although these forward-thinking women were definitely enjoying themselves, there was a small part of them that needed to know they weren’t alone.
Brown sent the message that a woman should have men complement her life, not take it over. Enjoying sex without shame was also a message she incorporated in both publications.
‘Sex is one of the three best things out there, and I don’t even know what the other two are.”
In Brown’s early years as editor, the magazine received heavy criticism. The magazine ran a near-nude centerfold of actor Burt Reynolds in April 1972, causing great controversy and attracting much attention.
The name of the magazine is displayed in a specific typeface. This is the visual branding of the title and is often done in a specially designed typeface to be easily recognised and unique. The masthead – also called a title – is usually used on the contents page inside as well as the front cover, and as a logo for advertising and branding purposes.
The image is used in a classic way, the face is big enough to stand out on the news-stand, with the model making full eye-contact
Coverlines, From the 1950s, greater competition on the newsstands resulted in more cover lines.Today, some magazines print special covers for subscribers’ copies that use few cover lines. Cosmopolitan magazine uses a lot of cover lines, which are distributed around the main image without detracting from it too much.
Main Cover Line, This is very large – taking up almost a quarter of the magazine cover – and comes in three layers, each with a different colour. It promotes the use of naked male centrefolds, a feature of Cosmopolitan in the UK since its first issue. Note the main cover line is positioned against the model’s shoulder so it shows up clearly.
Cosmopolitan has 63 international editions, is printed in 32 languages and is distributed in more than 100 countries.