Monday, June 19, 2006

Money attitude: Cosmopolitan Magazine

I have a sneaking suspicion that most of the people who will read this post, have never subscribed to Cosmo. Oh, you may have flipped through it at the hairdresser, but if you get your 'do from a barber or your mom, then you probably haven't seen inside the cover. I've subscribed for a couple of years, because it's a relatively inexpensive subscription, and as the kind of girl who will never wear one of those bikinis ANYWHERE, it's kind of a cheap thrill.

What's inside the July issue? (Yes, I know it's June.)

Myth of the Month: Women want you to spend lots of money on them.
- This bottom-of-page-58 snippet has a few quotes from women who want someone Sensitive and Creative, instead of somebody who just spends without thought. True, relationships are like most problems, that throwing money at it often doesn't really help, but I can't help wondering if women who might consider forking out $230 for a Louis Vuitton keychain (page 80) might eventually get tired of sandwich picnics in the park and free concerts. I think what they're really trying to say, is that just as having more money than necessary to cover the basics doesn't make you considerably happier, having enough money to take girls out to a $100-a-head restaurant instead of a $20-a-head restaurant won't make you a better date. But, not having enough even for the $20-a-head restaurant would put a crimp in their style.

Cosmo Shopping: 10 Things to Crave Right Now- This feature is in every Cosmo.. basically it's ten items that are very stylish right now (and may be relegated to the Not Hot bin in a few months. Cosmo does seem to attempt to put reasonably priced items in for a particular style that they think is in fashion - in this case, the "nautical-striped shirt" is from The Limited at $29.50, and "skinny white jeans" are from XOXO at $29. However, they also recommend specific items not just for style but because they are from a particular designer - "the white Miu-Miu bag" at $1095, and "the Gucci garden-print halter" at $1195. The halter is reasonably interesting, although I don't see why that particular shirt has to be The One To Get, but the bag isn't anything special and you could get a rather similar white leather bag at ebags for about $100 - probably less if you looked more than the 2 minutes that I devoted.

Don't even get me started on the fashion spreads. Yes, they are just trying to highlight what the latest styles are, and generally the latest styles are straight from the designer and still quite expensive, but the fashion editors also have a tendency to use expensive designer pieces when it doesn't really matter - like a plain belt, solid-colored shorts, or hoop earrings, that are hundreds of dollars from a designer. Anything that doesn't have a price listed is guaranteed to be redunculously expensive.

There was a piece about issues that might come between "you and your man", one of which was if you (the woman) got a raise and "your man" didn't, or had a stagnant career. One thing I find interesting about Cosmo is the way they write about careers - as if their readers are naturally predisposed to conquer the working world by force, and are automatically awesome at whatever they do. I imagine it's supposed to be a little bit of the girl power vibe, but sometimes it comes off as blindly cheerleading. Like how your mom always tells you that you look great - the advice can't really be trusted, given how badly the source wants you to feel good about yourself.

Parting shot - there's a full page ad for Sally Hansen Express Wax, which tells you that spreading hot wax on your body is Fast, Easy, and Fun! Why is it Fun? The "special White Chocolate Recipe is a rich, indulgent treat!" I don't know about you but I am not about to eat a jar of anything labeled "For Face & Body."

1 comment:

Brad said...

I'd have to pass on th 'man-o-lantern' look as well. It may have painfully worked for Steve Carrell - , but not for me (and he paid for that too.)