Say what you want about Cosmopolitan magazine, but there’s no denying its longtime editor, Helen Gurley Brown, who passed away today at 90, revolutionized women’s magazines forever. While some of the cover lines may be a bit trite and predictable (really, how many different positions are there?!), it got women reading and talking about a topic that many considered taboo and rarely discussed before she took over Cosmo in the 1960s.
I’ve been a loyal Cosmo subscriber since college, when it was time to pack away my beloved teenage magazines and put on some big girl panties. And I enjoy reading the articles every month. Is it full of Pultizer-prize winning investigative journalism? Most of the time, no. But that’s not why I read it.
For me, Cosmo is about entertainment, mixed with relationship, career and beauty advice. It’s like having a conversation with your best girl friends about topics that matter to you: dating, sex, fashion and financial advice, etc…and not necessarily in that order. But there are also life-saving stories about how to defend yourself against an attacker, how to detect breast and skin cancers and how to ask for a raise or promotion. In other words, it’s filled with everything every 20- to 30-something girl needs or wants to know.
If you want something more serious and poignant, may I suggest Vogue or GQ. But if you, like me, are just looking to have a good time and maybe learn a thing or two, you can’t go wrong with Cosmo. Rest in peace, Helen Gurley Brown, and thank you for all that you’ve done for womankind.