Friday, January 07, 2005

2) For Women

Celebrating three decades of porn mags for women

For Women wanted you to be a BITCH. A Bold, Intelligent, Tough, Cool and Horny woman, that is. For the first issue in 1992, Kevin Costner showed some skin, the magazine asked whether vibrators could replace men, and nude guys were (ironically) photographed by ex-Penthouse models-turned-photographers. There was even a short story by Anais Nin. It sold 400,000 copies, and publisher Northern and Shell, immediately rushed out two other female porn magazines: Women On Top (a "hen party glossy for ladies who like to dance round their handbags") and Women Only ("A sexy version of Marie Claire".) The publisher of all three, Isabel Koprowski, became the acceptable face of porn in the media, casually dropping quotes like how she used to have a "cast-iron, Victorian fantasy hymen”. But Playgirl hardbody syndrome struck again. For Women's Editor Ruth Corbett even admitted that lots of the models were gay, because "gay men are the ones who look after their bodies." But apart from all these downfalls, the most simple one, as one For Women reader put it, was "not only did you have to build up the courage to brazenly stare at the Top Shelf with all the dirty raincoat brigade, I often had to ask them to pass down my porn, as I wasn't tall enough."


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