On this episode of Behind the Cover, we go to Marie Claire South Africa and follow Editor-in-Chief Jackie May as she introduces us to her team and travels from Cape Town to Johannesburg to attend fashion weeks and meet fashion designers. We get to witness the workings of a magazine as Jackie and her teamwork tirelessly to put together the November issue of Marie Claire titled the Body Issue.




Marie Claire South Africa is the iconic, trendsetting go-to title for discerning, fashion-conscious women. They deliver sophisticated fashion and beauty trends, real women’s stories, sex, relationship and body image features, as well as entertainment and celebrity news.

Marie Claire’s motto “Look smart, think amazing” makes it much more than a beauty magazine. Having been around for almost 20 years, the magazine also delves into deeper issues that specifically concern the women of South Africa, such as HIV/AIDS and victims of violence. Established as the leading magazine for women in country, Marie Claire South Africa never fails to provide content for diverse audiences across the board.

Location of Episode: Cape Town, South Africa


It takes a team of dedicated and passionate journalists and editors to work together to create a product that our readers love. Putting together a magazine, is both a linear process, and it’s not.

While each print magazine is put together following a rigid production schedule, the teams is always thinking and scheming about issues for months down the line. And while the print issue is very important and beautifully showcases the work the team does, they are all continuously producing content and ideas for their online platforms, too.


Earlier in the year, the team decided that November would be the Body issue. Everything they considered during the planning process had some relevance to body. The final product didn’t say body on the cover, yet there is a common thread that stitches the stories and editorials together, giving the issue a real cohesion.

The features editor interviewed Ariana Huffington about the sleep revolution – Ariana is committed to the idea that we need our 8 hours of sleep a night, every night. She says we need to sleep longer to achieve more.

All fashion pages in the November issue showcased swimwear and pretty sheer looks. For all three editorials, the body wears the clothes, not the clothes the body.

Beauty is dedicated to getting the body summer ready, with tips on how to self-tan, exfoliate and smooth cellulite. The main beauty editorial showcases bold and confident on-trend make-up, perfect for the summer season.

In the features section, they investigated why women participate in mixed martial artists in South Africa. This is the fastest growing sport in the world. Here they met committed women who are competing in a largely male-dominated sport, dealing with discrepancies in pay and with online shaming. They are chipping away at our prejudices, and being taken seriously in a competitive sport challenging their bodies mentally and physically.

After considering Amy Schumer for our cover, they settled on Kate Hudson. In retrospect she was an obvious choice for the body issue. Not only did she study dance while she was growing up in Los Angeles, she has a keen in interest in well-being, always valuing her sanity over the spotlight.