Battle of the September Issues! 5 Fat Fall Rags Face Off

Ah, August.—the month that brings us sweltering heat, smothering humidity, and an onslaught of the fattest fashion magazines of the year. While everyone else is either on vacation or anxiously awaiting the release of
The September Issue
, we've been poring over this year's stack of real-deal print versions and taking note of the things that actually matter—like those LV bunny ears, Karlie Kloss, and how many times we're told that we should probably already own an "investment camel coat." Here's our highly subjective rundown of the year's biggest fashion issues—they may be skinnier, but they're still good reads.



Harper's Bazaar

, 484 pages

Issue Mantra: "'s not so much about greed, it's about speed. We know what we want and we want it now."—Glenda Bailey
Face Time: Cover girls—Leighton Meester (newsstand) and Aggy Deyn (subscription); Model MVPs—Lara, Aggy, Naomi, Eniko…and those 35 and older that still look good sans makeup.
Most ridiculous moment: (Tie) Naomi racing a cheetah; the bizarre Photoshop job that is Leighton's "aging" editorial.
Highlight: Designers get paired with their Sesame Street spirit characters. DvF's is Big Bird because she's "leading the fashion flock."
Louis Vuitton bunny ear appearance? Check.
Pull quote: "You know, I'm trying to think of what I'm ashamed of. But, damn, I don't really have any shame." —Leighton Meester
2. Elle, 500 pages
Issue Mantra: "While designers tell us more and more that it's all about season-less dressing and that women don't shop in the same lock-step cycles they used to, they still put a lot of their big ideas on the fall runways." —Roberta Myers
Face Time: Cover girl—Jennifer Aniston; Model MVPs—Karlie Kloss, Madisyn Ritland; Celeb sightings—Jon Hamm, Andy Samberg, Ricky Gervais, Justin Timberlake
Highlight: The "Love Actually" interview actually makes us love Marc Jacobs even more.
Most ridiculous moment: Joe Zee takes on Andy Samberg in a style battle (amazing!).
Louis Vuitton bunny ear appearance? You bet.
Pull quote: "To me this look says, 'Hey, I don't suck ass,' which is an important place to start with people in general.'"—Andy Samberg on a look he styled for Joe Zee's column
3. Vogue, 588 pages
Issue Mantra: "Fashion is so often presented in the culture as a thing of froth, which, of course, it partly is; but the bubbles are blown with care and a sense of values." —Anna Wintour
Face Time: Cover girl—Charlize Theron; Model MVPs—Karlie Kloss and Liya Kebede; Celeb sightings—Hugh Jackman, Roger Federer, Eva Mendes, Marion Cotillard.
Highlight: Natalia Vodianova's "Into the Woods" editorial, shot by Mert & Marcus, makes us want a red cape.
Most ridiculous moment: (Tie) The $495 Judith Leiber lipstick case in the Index of 100 under $500; 16 pages of crazy, geometric hair.
Louis Vuitton bunny ear appearance? Yup.
Pull quote: "I'm not hearing anything you're saying. I'm looking at myself naked! I was just mesmerized by myself naked." —Charlize Theron
4. W, 340 pages
Issue Mantra: "Of course, the economy, still sputtering and wheezing, would not seem to augur well for the rag trade. If there's a winner, however, it may be she who still has a well-fortified credit card."—Julie L. Belcove
Face Time: Cover girl—Kate Moss; Model MVPs—Sasha Pivovarova, Kate Moss, Lara Stone.
Highlight: The killer, vampy '40s styling featuring exposed lingerie in "Sunday in the Park" photographed by Mert & Marcus.
Most ridiculous moment: "Paper Bag Princess," stars Sasha Pivovarova as a label-poor label whore.
Louis Vuitton bunny ear appearance? No?!
Pull quote: "I have a mutual respect for Marc Jacobs. We worked together in Venice. He's nice." — Miuccia Prada, rather back-handedly, on the designers she admires
5. V Magazine, 256 pages
Issue Mantra: "Sure there's plenty of top-notch threads from the four capitals of style, but we've tried to explore life off the beaten path." —Stephen Gan
Face Time: Cover girl—Lady Gaga; Model MVPs—Linda Evangelista, Amber Valletta, Carmen Kass, Jess Stam.
Highlight: The cover features electrostatic sunglasses that you can actually remove from Gaga's face!
Most ridiculous moment: Jess Stam as an '80s gym bunny working the treadmill in platform over-the-knee boots.
Louis Vuitton bunny ear appearance? Over it! (They already included them in issue #60 on Cameron Diaz.)

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