Teen Magazines That Defined Our Youth
There used to be a time when you could go to Barnes & Noble, or even your local corner store, and browse magazine titles for hours. There were countless options in every genre imaginable: teen mags, high fashion, fitness, food and recipes, dating and sex, beauty, home, automobiles, wedding, parenting, gossip etc. It wasn't uncommon to splurge and head home with a handful that had catchy covers.
Now that media has shifted greatly in the digital age, print magazines have rapidly been closing up shop. Some offer online versions for die-hard fans, but most have thrown their hands up and called it a day. There are, of course, still very big titles available. It doesn't seem like Vogue, Glamour, or People magazine are going anywhere anytime soon. But gone are the days of having innumerable options from which to choose.
For many people, print magazines defined our youth. We had subscriptions and pulled pictures and posters out of them every month just to hang on our walls. We ogled the pop stars, movie stars, and boy bands that hung over our beds. We voraciously read about their lives and their favorite foods and their pets' names. The magazines that delivered these precious tidbits, that ultimately made us feel closer to our star crushes, were priceless.
Here are some magazine titles that defined several generations when print was king.
While short-lived (from 1988-1996), Sassy made its mark on a generation of girls who turned to magazines for entertainment. It featured, like every other teen mag, tons of content on celebrities, but it also pushed the limits and introduced articles on sexuality. It wasn't uncommon for it to include a sex survey, or something similar. This detail alienated certain audiences, but it was a huge draw for others who were not yet mature enough for mags like Cosmopolitan.
Aimed at a slightly younger audience (around 10 years old and up), Bop kept it pretty simple. It had mini-interviews, tons of photos, and the Fly Free to Hollywood contest. Here readers had to guess which star they were looking at in pictures with different parts of their face blacked out. Could you identify Kirk Cameron just by his eyes? Or Corey Haim simply by his hair?
4. Teen Beat
In print for 40 years, Teen Beat delivered much of the same content as Tiger Beat. Over the few decades that it existed, it featured everyone from John Travolta to the New Kids on the Block to *NSYNC. If you wanted to know what kind of perfume Debbie Gibson loved, or what Corey Feldman liked to have for a snack, then you turned to Teen Beat.