*This post represents my personal views, I was not paid or commissioned to read/review these magazines.
I love to read magazines and so this past month I decided to review two leading lady magazines and give my general thoughts of them. They are both equally priced (`$3), published monthly, offer a mix of business, fashion, parenting and that kind of information. I determined that they must be catering for a similar sub-set of women because there is frequent repeating of cover models for example Azania Mosaka in True Love in June/July 2013 and the Destiny cover in October 2013. The downer to this though is the fact that similar products get launched/ advertised and these are often repeated across both magazines. Sometimes, similar fashion pieces from different shops get repeated.
- Magazine begins on page 10 after a few adverts. While I understand why magazines do this, in my mind the better magazines are those that start sooner rather than later.
- Topics of a greater variety are discussed – social, economic, topical, political and it feels like the magazine is more well-rounded.
- Two opportunities for readers to send in letters and obviously win something for their efforts.
- Cover story begins earlier (page 33)
- The feature Beautiful & Powerful at any age (very inspirational and also I love how they break down a particular trend)
- Beautiful Bride feature that shows weddings from various brides.
- Has affordable fashion pieces
- More pictures of launches and social outings
- Enjoy the investment features run as advertisements by different investment firms
- The Editor/Destiny recently launched a luxury boutique Luminance. It feels like great overkill to me because there are too many pages advertising it, talking about the launch and featuring a designer (or three) each month
- Not much on Black/African natural hair besides the regular column by @Carice Anderson
- Not much on decor
- Magazine starts on page 14
- Through on-line voting, readers are able to determine some of the celebrity content – fashion/ style we liked
- Although the magazine advertises itself as providing all a woman needs, with time it has become a fashion magazine and I am forced to wonder who its’ current competitor is
- Love the reader organised events that happen across the major cities
- Salon of the month, I’m always looking for what other joints have to offer
- Street fashion – I love to people watch and South Africa has some of the most interesting people I have met yet
- Restaurant/ Chef feature and their signature dish
- View into someone’s home – although this used to be much longer and now it just shows a single room. What’s the use guys?
- Love the health and fitness features. Wish the fitness page would be drawn out with pictures and stuff.
- Love the small and big business feature, very informative to look at business from contrasting angles.
- I love the recipes and often cut them out and include them in my monthly menus.
- True Love has recently launched an on-line boutique called Spree. I love also that while its advertised in the magazine, its only on a few pages.
- The cliche make-over. You know, the one with no make-up before and then make-up, hair and new clothes sorted. We see you!
- SO MANY ADVERTS. Now,I know this is what pays the bills but how do you justify a magazine that is almost 120 pages long that almost a third of that in adverts. It interferes with stories where its a single page of story and then an advert, or sometimes a couple of adverts. I would rather read a shorter magazine than flip through endless adverts for perfume, cars, foundation, body lotion and the likes … (NB: The numbers here are hazarded guesses not the actual fact)
- The travelling feature – I loved it best when it had normal people, now it’s only got celebs which isn’t really special coz we all know they travel!
- Cover story only begins on page 114. Who was on the cover again??? And even then its all about the high fashion pics and not the substance that is the person. Great opportunity to learn about the writers but its wasted by all the fashion stuff included.
I might have grown up but I feel like I have outgrown True Love, having read it for the last 6 or so years faithfully and that now Destiny gets me and so I would rather subscribe to that. It makes me sad but I might read True Love at the shops sporadically and check on whether they have returned to their essence.
Edit: I definitely decided to cancel my True Love subscription and rather switch to Destiny.