magazines: an A to Z
Men's magazines, lads magazines, glamour magazines, pin-up magazines
and top-shelf magazines covered alphabetically. This page addresses T3 to Zoo
Weekly via Town, Tit-Bits and Viz. On
- 3D titles to Boys Toys
- Carnival to Cut
- Deluxe to Esquire
- Fable to Front
- The Gentleman's Magazine to The
- Ice to London Opinion
- Man to Maxim
- Mayfair to Monkey
- Nine to Playboy
- Razzle to Stuff
- T3 to Zoo Weekly (this page)
first issue of the men's magazine that focuses on gadgets
Future, November 1996-
T3 - 'Tomorrow's Technology Today' - was launched in the
same year as Dennis gave up on Stuff and sold it to Haymarket
(a move Felix Dennis has since regretted, saying he sold it too
from December 3 1955 in a tabloid newspaper format when it
was at a peak, selling about 1.2m copies a week
from December 16 1961. The style of cover had hardly changed, though
the paper quality was better and printing had shifted to Sun Printers
Titbits - note the subtle name change - from 13 January
1973. By this stage it had adopted colour covers and looked more
like a magazine than a newspaper
Titbits from May 1984. This issue
carried an advert for Parade - with raunchy nudes, local
girls and readers' wives
George Newnes/IPC. October 1881-1984
Tit-Bits was launched by George Newnes and established
a model of rewriting material from many sources, using cheap newsprint
and selling in volume. It was quite open about this - the masthead
proclaimed 'From all the most interesting books, periodicals and
contributors in the world.' The strategy can be seen today in The
Week from Dennis.
It was the first popular paper to sell 1m copies a week and its
circulation peaked in 1955 at 1,150,000.* Contributors included
Alfred Harmsworth (later Lord Northcliffe) and Winston Churchill.
Titbits ran a contest in the first world war for a song
that could be sung by soldiers at the front: Ivor Novello won it
with 'Keep the Home Fires Burning.'
Tit-Bits spawned many imitators, including
It specialised in 'human interest' snippets with short stories
and full-length serials by authors such as Rider Haggard. Pin-ups
appeared on its covers from 1939.
- In the 1950s, George Newnes was at Tower House, Southampton
St, Strand, London WC2. Tit-Bits was printed by W.
Speaight, Exmoor St, W10. It came out on Mondays. In 1959,
it was selling about 904,000 copies.
- By 1961, it was printed by Sun Printers, Watford & London.
- Newnes became part of IPC Magazines at Kings Reach Tower, London.
It took over rival Reveille. In the 1980s, it was published on
Titbits was taken over by Associated Newspapers' Weekend on
18 July 1984 with sales of 170,000
copies. The last editor was Paul Hopkins. Its main competitors
were not other magazines but popular daily papers such as the Sun.
Ron Chilton, chief executive of IPC Magazines, said the popular tabloids
were 'just daily Titbits with a bit of news added on
to the front'.
In reporting the closure, the Financial Times* described Titbits as
'the 103-year-old progenitor of Britain's popular press'. It went
'The ploys used by newspapers today to boost circulation - even
Top People now have bingo with their current affairs - were nearly
all pioneered by Titbits. Titbits was running
competitions, with what were then fabulous prizes, decades ago; Titbits was
first to put a glamour girl, albeit with clothes, on the front
page; Titbits serialised H. Rider Haggard's 'She;' and
it was Titbits that first thought of launching a national
The FT also reported: 'Chilton made it clear that
Titbits would never again come out as a separate publication.
Apart from anything else, IPC would
not wish the old logo to fall in to the hands of pornographers.'
However, Titbits was
later sold to Sport Newspapers, which then sold it on. The name
lives on as a glossy adult monthly Titbits
*Cameron, S., Fishlock, D. and Cottrell, R. (1984) 'The inevitable
death of Titbits,' Financial Times,
30 June, p17
the quintessential men's magazine of the 1960s
Cornmarket/ Haymarket -1968
Cornmarket bought Man About Town from Tailor &
Cutter and abbreviated to About Town (and later Town).
At one stage it became a quintessential 1960s magazine, under art
director Tom Wolsey, helping to establish photographers such as
Terence Donovan and Don McCullin. However, like IPC's ground-breaking
women’s monthly Nova, it was not very profitable
and closed in 1968.
was originally launched in London as True
True Inc., New York, 1995- (as True in London)
Having changed the name ito Trace a year after the 1995
launch, Claude Grunitsky moved his base to New York in 1998. Trace
sees itself as a transcultural magazine about style and ideas.
Coverage includes music, fashion, film, art and politics with
an emphasis on urban street culture. Trace is published six times
a year. In September 2003, a French edition was launched.
(French and English)
grew out of a protest about a lack of hip-hop coverage in The
True Magazine Ltd, Jul/Aug 1995
Founder Claude Grunitsky starts his editorial by saying that he
wrote a letter to Sheryl Garratt at The Face in 1993
about its lack of hip hop coverage. True was about
him putting his belief on the line with hip hop as an agent
of social change. It covered music, fashion and film. True changed its name a year later to Trace.
magazine for black men
Untold Magazine, London.June/July 1998-?
Excellent editorial, design, cover - which used metallic inks -
and production made this black male lifestyle magazine by editor/publisher:
Peter Akinti stand out on the news shelves. Government minister
Paul Boateng, comedian Lenny Henry, athlete Linford Christie,
designer Ozwald Boateng and R & B producer were interviewed
for the first issue, and four of them modelled for the cover.
Untold was distributed by Time Out but folded after
a couple of years.
‘The UK’s first fully interactive magazine on CD-Rom’
was the claim for this product. The content was based on New
Scientist (which was then an IPC title) and music magazines
NME and Vox. Zone did the technical work. The
image of the head divided into marked areas was used as the graphical
interface for accessing parts of the content. The Unzip CD-Rom
came in a box with a 15 age label at £9.99 as an introductory
offer (usually £15.99). Zone's managing director was Raja
Choudhury (interviewed in Creative Technology April 1995)
in November 2006, the 18th issue
Westmag Ltd/Upstreet Artwall Ltd, London. July 2001-
Upstreet is an international cultural and urban men's magazine
in English and French editions.
in May 1983 on its way to selling a million
IFG introduced colour to Viz covers
Chris Donald/House of Viz/John Brown/IFG/Dennis, 1979-
This comic was founded by former DSS clerk Chris Donald in 1979
in Newcastle (aged 19). He started selling photocopies in pubs and
describes it as 'puerile and inane'. It earned a position on the
top-shelf for its foul language and humour, rather than naked women.
Characters such The Fat Slags, Black Bag (a binliner
that acts like sheepdog Black Bob, a former Beano
hero), Billy the Fish, Johnny Fartpants and Buster
Gonad became very widely known.
The fortnightly was bought by contract publisher John Brown. Distribution
expanded when it was bought up as John Brown Publishing's first
news-stand title. In 1989, sales peaked at a million before falling
to about 200,000 by 2002. The magazine was sold to IFG - run by
Loaded founder James Brown who had acknowledged Viz
as an inspiration for the lad's mag concept. IFG improved the
paper quality and repositioned the title alongside men's lifestyle
magazines, rather than on the top shelf, where it had sat in most
newsagents. It began to attract substantial advertising, such as
for vodka. In 2001 IFG folded and sold the title to Dennis. Still
produced by cartoonists in Newcastle
design awards special with four vertical layers on cover
licensed Wallpaper to Axel Springer Russia in 2005
Wallpaper Group/Time Inc/IPC Media, September/October 96-
For men who saw themselves as even more upmarket of Arena,
Wallpaper appeared in London, the brainchild of Tyler Brûlé.
Its Canadian founder sold it to Time Inc in June 97. Time backed
Brûlé in two launches: sports gear fashion magazine
Line in 2000, and fashion quarterly Spruce in
2001. However both failed. Brûlé left after Wallpaper
was put under the control of IPC, which AOL-Time Warner had
bought in 2001, to concentrate on his consultancy, Wink Media, and
freelance writing, including a column in the Saturday Financial
Times. In 2006, he announced plans for an international business
Wink Media website
Northcliffe House, London EC4. - 1989?
Weekly collection of news, stories and pin-ups. In the 1960s, published
as a tabloid newspaper with a colour cover. Ran a 'Pop Spot' feature
each issue with the lyrics for a chart single. Later adopted a magazine
format. Took over Titbits in 1984.
Final issue of Wide World in 19655
George Newnes Ltd, Tower House, Southampton Street, WC2. 1898-December 1965
After 67 years and 807 issues, Wide World was incorporated into Geographical magazine. Del Cooper was the last editor. The title described itself as 'The true adventure magazine for men.' The final issue included:
- Passage to Cartagena by Harry Reisberg about searching for underwater treasure trove;
- Catalina flying boats;
- Industrial espionage;
- The musclemen of Iran;
- Archimede, the French bathyscape that explored 5 miles below the Atlantic;
- 'No place for men' by Peter Mulgrew. Part 3 of a book serialisation.
a luxury men's magazine focusing on contemporary visual culture
Visual Talent, London. Sept/Oct 2005-
This luxury magazine that came about as a result of a TV programme,
BBC2's The Dragon's Den, to find young entrepreneurs. Huw
Gwyther, who had been a studio manager for photographer Mario Testino,
received £175,000 in backing from telecoms millionaire Peter
Jones after appearing on the show, but the total launch budget was
only £250,000. The launch PR was by Max Clifford Associates.
The bi-monthly's print run was set at 140,000 copies with target
sales of 100,000, about half of which were expected in the UK. The
content was based on contemporary visual culture - art, film and
design - for both men and women.
caused a stir with its CD-Rom full of links to adult websites
Instant Access Ltd, London. Jan/Feb 1997
A bi-monthly, which came with a CD-Rom and a cover price of £7.95
for 100 pages. It featured the popular pin-up Jo Guest and carried
hundreds of addresses for pornographic as well as sport, comedy
and car websites. It claimed to have sold more than 30,000 copies
of the first issue, even though some retailers refused to stock
it. There was no age warning on the cover. The CD-Rom held more
than 300 links to websites and used the sales line: 'Babe Fest!
Interview the girls, then watch them strip.' It caused a furore,
to which its editor, Dominic Handy, responded in the Guardian*:
'We did not go out to publish a porn mag, we wanted to publish Loaded
for the internet.'
*Millar, S. (1997) 'Anger over net 'porn' magazine,'
Guardian, 8 April: 5
was for ‘men who live on the edge'
Xtreme Publications. April 1997-?
Editor Jerome Smail aimed for ‘men who live on the edge’
with this extreme sports title.
National Magazines, Autumn/Winter 1998-?
Paul Colbert was editor of this men's health title with the selling
line 'For the man with everything'. (NatMags had launched Zest,
a Cosmopolitan health and beauty spin-off in Autumn 1994).
went head-to-head with Nuts to gain leadership in the weekly
men's magazine market
Emap, 24 January 2004-
IPC's Nuts beat Emap's Zoo to the news-stands
by a week. The latter made more use of female flesh - far more of
it, including bare nipples. Emap's 'Project Tyson' had pinched Chat
editor Paul Merrill from IPC in December. Both publishers claimed
investments of £8m. Emap sought to attract initial sales of
150,000 by targeting 16-30-year-olds. Emap had a stranglehold on
the monthly men's market with FHM selling more than twice
as many copies as IPC's Loaded. Both monthlies suffered
at the hands of the weeklies.
Breakdown of Zoo