From humble beginnings in 1965 as Nasionale Tydskrifte's first English magazine selling for 10 cents (or R1 for a year subscription!) Fairlady has not only endured, but matured into a well-respected SA institution - and she's just in the prime of her life!
The glossy pink commemorative birthday issue goes on sale on 16 March 2005 and its pages are filled with nostalgic features which tell a story of the evolution of South African women and society through the decades.
Under the banner of 'honour the past, live the now, explore the future', the lifestyle stages, local and global trends, social and political stages and the role of a woman as partner, wife and parent that have been documented in Fairlady put the present into context while begging questions about where the women of South Africa and the world are at and where they're headed.
The 40th birthday issue is a mixed showcase including an analysis on how women have been portrayed in advertising from the early 60s to date and an entertaining feature by Adam Levin reveals how a truly South African style has evolved in the fashion arena. Regular columnist, Marianne Tham explores the development of Fairlady's political voice and how it provoked readers into thinking about issues outside of the myopic confines of their homes, and their roles as wives and mothers.
The bumper birthday issue also features retrospective glances from Fairlady's specialist editors documenting the changing trends in beauty, food and décor and some of the most revealing consumer test house trials from the past 16 years are highlighted.
"Looking back in today's context provides not only an intense nostalgia but a clear picture of how far we have come - as a society, and as women," says Fairlady editor Ann Donald. "Fairlady has not only reflected the changes in the past 40 years, but in many areas has boldly lead the way."
Fairlady's popularity has ensured a constantly high circulation and to date, is still in the top 10 selling women's glossies. Over the years Fairlady has won a number of industry awards including the Sappi PICA Award for Best General Interest Women's Magazine for the past two years and the prestigious Rossi Trophy for the Best Consumer Magazine in 2003. Fairlady also scooped double honours at the 2004 ADvantage Ad Mag Awards function, winning the Best Women's Magazine category, and editor Ann Donald being awarded the hotly contested Editor of the Year title. Ann Donald was also named one of the top 10 women in media in August 2004 by The Media magazine.