News & Runway

Year in Review: The Best (and Worst!) Magazine Covers of 2021

It’s no secret that due to the ongoing global health crisis, magazines have been hit hard. Despite the best efforts of editors to keep our favorite glossies afloat, there have been some changes. Which translated to historic moments down at newsstands when it came to 2021 magazine covers.

Condé Nast streamlined operations. Editions of Vogue now share content as a cost-cutting exercise resulting in some being left unable to produce localized content. Nevertheless, we encountered back-to-back British Vogue covers photographed by forum favorite Steven Meisel. Anna Wintour also appears to be shaking things up over at American Vogue with 14 of the magazine’s 20 cover stars never gracing the fashion bible before. Not to mention Emmanuelle Alt departing Vogue Paris on a high note with the unveiling of the title’s landmark 100th anniversary issue.

Meanwhile Samira Nasr continues to find her footing at American Harper’s Bazaar. Laura Brown’s InStyle remains one of the most buzzworthy publications. Michelle Lee helped Allure celebrate 30 years in print. At i-D, Alastair McKimm’s mission to reinstate the magazine as one of the most cutting-edge publications appears to be working.

From overuse of Photoshop on Madonna’s cover of V Magazine to Iman gracing British Harper’s Bazaar to diversity reigning supreme at British Vogue, here are the best and worst magazine covers of 2021.