What Gays Can Learn From Girl Mags

READING RAINBOW — Maybe you grew up reading mom’s Redbook — because you weren’t exactly in a position to subscribe to The Advocate, let alone any dirtier fare. But before you go throwing women’s mags under the bus — even Prevention — understand this: There’s something gay about all of them. From Vogue and Elle to Oprah‘s rag and Rachael’s mag, we’ve identified the appeal these lady titles have for modern gay men such as yourselves.

  Target Audience Gay Sensibility Closest Male-Oriented Mag
Fashion forward career gals, anywhere from their 20s to 60s, who were over cosmos and Manolos before the Sex and the City DVD box set hit Amazon. They can spot a fake Louis from 30 feet. And are proud of it. It’s the bitchiest of all the fashion mags, but asserts its authority without screaming, “Heeeey, girl, did you see p. 142?” Men’s Vogue. Get it while it lasts.
Ladies who subscribe to the latest trends, no matter how outrageous, just because an editor says it’s so. More gullible than most, these 20-30-year-olds believe in women power, but want a man on their arm just the same. We’d be lying if we didn’t admit to being whores for trends, too. And the man on the arm part? Just as necessary as loving thy self. Details, a magazine that also just makes shit up to get you to buy stuff.
Better Homes & Gardens
Thirty- and forty-something women with the leisure time to spend sprucing up their homes’ entertainment spaces, but without the OCD of Martha Stewart fanatics. The most direct translation. Just swap “women” with “gay men” from the description and we’re go for launch. Dwell, but only because it’s hipper, and you care about that sort of thing.
A true beauty book, this rag goes after girls who have tested every shade of Mac foundation, and don’t buy in to Olay’s gimmicky marketing material. It’s not just for men sporting guyliner. Allure will also tell you how to cover up those zits, but more importantly, how to avoid them in the first place. Esquire‘s front of the book, where every month you learn about a new shaving product in the first few pages, jammed in there with Gucci eyewear ads and Polo cologne strips.
O, The Oprah Magazine
Moms, grandmas, and, surprisingly, your youngest sister are reading this magazine to explore empowerment, eating healthy at home, and an endless string of experts who will tell them what to do, when, and how. Did we mention this is a magazine from Oprah? Bow down, bitches. Ty Pennington At Home, except Oprah’s brand doesn’t include a drinking problem. That we know of.
A slightly more accessible brand of fashion mag, Elle targets lasses more adventurous than those paging through Vogue. And courtesy Project Runway and Stylista, a younger, hipper crowd has subscribed, who are just as interested in runway fashions as they are Forever 21’s new stock. Your fag hag — sorry, “fairy princess” — is going to ask you whether she looks fat in something. The answer is “Yes,” but Elle will teach you how to give slimming tips. GQ, which can mix Bobby De Niro with John Legend, khaki with leather, and single malts with sports cars. All it needs to be a true equivalent? A reality series.
  Target Audience Gay Sensibility Closest Male-Oriented Mag
Everyday With Rachael Ray
If you like the sound of some yum-o EVOO, then you’re the type of girl who won’t mind the chatty cathy forcing herself on to each month’s cover. Rachael’s readers are definitely interested in food — not to bring out subtle flavors, but to eat it. And then pair it with a nice bottle of grocery store wine. Deep down, every gay guy, no matter how many hours he clocks in the gym, wants to end every meal of “light tapas” with a double pepperoni pizza. Field & Stream — because we’ve never read either of these.
This glossy’s readers are Lower East Siders who don’t care what Proenza Schouler just sent down the catwalk. But is there a new line of printed tees or stylized leggings on offer from an unknown designer? Sign these girls up. This is a veritable shopping magazine. You use it to find stuff to buy. Besides what they’re doing at Men’s Health, a magazine can have no gayer mission statement. Nylon Guys, duh.
Surprisingly one of the highest-circulated magazines being published, Prevention is for women who consider “strenuous exercise” to be “walking” and whose idea of “hip activities” includes napping. Even if it’s targeted at a certain age demo, the mag is all about wellness and living longer, happier lives. That’s why you use Rogaine, isn’t it? White Crane, a relatively unknown gay men’s rag devoted to making readers better people through wellness tips and spirituality. Same wholesome mission, different uses of squatting dog position.
Stuffed fat with titillating photo spreads, W is for gals with a visual eye and who are conscious about how many bangles on her wrist is one too many. Brad Pitt has played daddy in its pages. David Beckham has stripped to his skivvies. Madonna, Madonna, Madonna. V Man, and not just ’cause they share angular titles.
For the 50+ set, this mag makes middle age about more than AARP membership. For ladies growing up but still thinking young, an active readership flips through these pages for fitness, food, and, however uncomfortable it makes you, sex advice. There’s plenty of frank discussion about erectile dysfunction. Best Life, though it’s unclear which mag has more ads for arthritis medication.