You might want to give yourself an extra little lie-in, or maybe even take the whole day off on November 10. You probably don’t need me to remind you: it’s Equal Pay Day. This day marks the fact that women in the UK earn an average of 18.1% less than men for doing the same jobs – and so, from that date, anyone missing a penis is working for the rest of the year for free.
That’s an improvement on the 2015 figure of a 19.3% pay gap but, you know, much like Miranda Priestly, I am less than thrilled with this glacial pace of change. I’m sure you feel the same. This conversation was high on the agenda earlier this year, when I met with all the Editors-In-Chief of every edition of Glamour from around the world. How could we, as a collective, add to the forces of change in this area? How could we really do our part and make sure that we are all hiring women and paying them fairly?
As the ‘American me’, Editor-In-Chief of US Glamour Cindi Leive, said, “Feminism starts by looking at your own shop.” And so the concept was born: all 17 global editions of Glamour would hire only women to produce this special November issue. For every assignment devised from scratch, we hired only women. That’s photographers, writers, make-up artists, hairstylists, set designers, you name it.*
I have to be honest and tell you that it was a startling exercise for me to really look at the imbalance of male and female contributors. Consider the cover photograph alone: there’s usually a less than 40% chance that it’s been photographed by a woman; or is shot on sets designed by a woman. Critics of feminism are quick to point out that favouring employing women is not equality. But until the cards are stacked in such a way that we have an equal amount of men and women in a position to be employed, we do need to consider how we level that playing field from the beginning.
At Glamour we can’t change everything. But we are proud to play a part in increasing the visibility of more women, on a global scale, via our pages. Of course, this is not the job done. Glamour has always been committed to seeking out and celebrating female talent, but this exercise and the lessons we’ve learnt from it mean that going forward, we will be redoubling our efforts on that front.
I hope you enjoy this special, celebratory issue.
Jo Elvin, Editor-In-Chief
Disclaimer: The wonderfully talented men on staff at Glamour did not get the month off – though they thought they might! The ‘women only’ project refers to all the assignments we created for this issue. No male staff were sacked or harmed in any other way during the creation of this magazine.
Stella McCartney designed a bespoke T-shirt especially for Glamour’s cover. The amazing Zendaya’s rocking
it (above) and you can too, because we have five to give away. All you have to do is answer one simple question, and your entry will raise money for a fantastic cause.
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