LONDON — The British women’s fashion magazine sector saw a modest decline in the June through December 2014 period, with a few titles — among them InStyle U.K., Good Housekeeping and Tatler — bucking the downward trend.
According to figures published Thursday by the U.K.’s Audit Bureau of Circulations, women’s fashion titles as a sector declined 0.9 percent compared to the same period last year, to a circulation of 5.83 million, a figure that combines print and digital editions. Print circulation for the sector fell 0.9 percent to 5.75 million, while digital circulation was down 3.3 percent to 70,280.
Among the women’s titles that saw their combined digital and print circulations shrink in the period — compared to the same period last year — were Glamour, down 2.5 percent to 405,053; Marie Claire, which dropped 12.9 percent to 198,420; Elle, 5 percent to 163,498 (though its circulation rose 5.3 percent period-on-period) ; Vogue, 0.5 percent to 200,141 (rising 0.1 percent on the previous six months) and Red, 5.4 percent to 192,437 (but up 0.2 percent on the previous six months.)
Those titles that posted gains for their combined digital and print editions included Good Housekeeping, with a rise of 1.2 percent year-on-year to 419,575; Harper’s Bazaar, 0.6 percent to 111,691; Tatler, 1.2 percent to 84,218 and Women’s Health, 5 percent to 118,118. InStyle U.K. saw the biggest increase in the women’s fashion market year-on-year, with its combined circulation up 3.5 percent to 151,584.
InStyle U.K.’s publishing director Julie Lavington pointed to editor Charlotte Moore’s influence on growing circulation since she joined the title a year ago. “Charlotte and the team have re-focused InStyle brilliantly,” said Lavington, noting the title’s “expert fashion edit, delivered with warmth and humor.”
Men’s lifestyle titles as a sector had a better six months, with the category’s combined digital and print circulation up 1 percent to 1.79 million. In that category, GQ’s combined circulation was down 1.5 percent year-on-year, but rose 0.1 percent on the previous six months, to 125,090. And lad mag Zoo — a title in decline in recent years — saw its combined circulation rise 9.9 percent year-on-year to 32,449. Of paid-for men’s titles, Men’s Health had the highest combined circulation, down 6.2 percent year-on-year to 200,156, followed by GQ, while Esquire’s combined circulation fell 2.3 percent to 58,576, but rose 0.1 percent on the previous six months.
Anna Jones, chief executive officer of Hearst Magazines U.K. — whose titles include Good Housekeeping, Esquire, Elle, Harper’s and Red — said the publisher was “very pleased” with the results, noting “it is great to see such a strong print performance at the same times as we continue to grow our overall audience digitally.” Meanwhile Nicholas Coleridge, managing director of Condé Nast U.K., publisher of Vogue, GQ and Tatler, described its ABC performance as “reassuringly resilient.”