Magazine Cover Staff Blog

Is going make-up free on a magazine cover newsworthy?


Every so often a leading women’s mag will declare they are trailblazing by featuring a celebrity on their cover with – shock horror – no make-up!  As thousands of women leave their homes every day without a hint of foundation, mascara or blush on, I think it’s time to question – is this really newsworthy?

French actress Léa Seydoux features on the September 2013 cover of forward-thinking French glossy Jalouse. Whilst the magazine is known for mixing cutesy grunge and gritty photography, I think the latest cover just looks like the editor was a tad lazy. Whilst HuffPost Style declared the cover “beyond refreshing to see a magazine take such a staunch stance against all of the fuss” all I can see is that it looks like they ran out of budget and scrimped on the hair and make-up artists for this candid shot of Lea looking half bored/half tired (I can’t decide which).

Jessica Simpson went fresh-faced on the May 2010 cover of Marie Claire with the headlines declaring ‘The Real Jessica. No make-up. No retouching. No regrets!’. I just wonder who was void of regrets – the editor or Jessica?

Whilst the editor would like us to think it was their revolutionary idea to feature Jessica on the cover, I think it may have been more to do with her multimillion dollar contract with Proactiv Solutions and potential advertising dollars the Guthy-Renker company had been investing in the magazine for years. Proactiv Solutions is a  line of skin-care products promising teenage kids world-wide clear skin and confidence to match – perhaps even the confidence to go bare faced on the cover of Marie Claire?

An ethereal Lady Gaga featured on the October 2011 of Harper’s BAZAAR with the headline Lady Gaga bares all’.  When you read between the lines though, the magazine had a novel suggestion for getting Gaga’s no make up look; ‘try Studio Sculpt SPF 15 Foundation, Prep + Prime Highlighter Brow Gel….’ the list of make-up went on. Not quite the naked and natural look the headline would make you believe. In a moment of clarity Gaga nicely summed up the argument for and against make-up telling readers ‘whether I’m wearing lots of make-up or no make-up, I’m always the same person inside’.

Comments are closed.