19 builds on 'pillars' in bid to stop sales slide

Teen magazine 19 has increased its coverage of fashion, beauty, celebrities and men in a bid to reverse its continued sales decline.

The changes coincide with a redesign in the April issue, featuring a new “Radar” section upfront and the reintroduction of regular health pages.

Editor Helen Bazuaye said the revamp was in response to reader research. “We have upped the fashion, beauty, celebrity and men content – our four core pillars – but we have kept our strong heritage of investigative journalism and real life,” she told Press Gazette.

The extra elements include two sixpage fashion stories and a regular budget fashion feature telling readers how they can put an outfit together for less than £50.

The magazine tested the idea of the budget feature before Christmas and Bazuaye said the response from teenagers had been encouraging.

A new beauty section called “Beauty insider” has been added with tips, products and advice on how to apply make-up. It will also feature a twopage practical beauty story and a fourpage trend-led story every month.

Bazuaye has re-introduced a twopage health feature and “body” page, having pulled the regular “wellbeing” health section when she took over as editor. “With the onslaught of Atkins and celebrities talking about their diets, health has come back on the agenda,” she said.

“But I don’t think 19 readers want something that is going to make them feel really bad about themselves and make them take health too seriously.

So our first health report will be debunking the myths about health, for example that you can’t have takeaways and you have to drink loads and loads of water. It is turning health on its head and making it a lot more fun.”

IPC’s 19 reported a fall of 26.2 per cent to 81,800 in the latest ABCs, having lost readers to titles such as More!, which relaunched with huge investment.

Bazuaye said: “Obviously we were aware that it was not going to be a great ABC for us, but the good thing I always knew was that we were concentrating on the April relaunch. Yes, it’s disappointing, but when that April issue comes out, people will see it is something to get excited about.”

The magazine is in the process of recruiting a deputy editor and a senior writer to replace its award-winning writer Suzy Cox, who has been poached by Cosmopolitan.

By Ruth Addicott

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