When I tell people that I work at a fashion magazine they automatically see me as Anne Hathaway working for Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada. As glamorous and terrifying as that film makes the fashion world seem, I hate to burst your bubble, but working at a fashion magazine is nothing like the movies.
For starters, my boss is not terrifying, cruel, or manipulative. Have I been borderline afraid of certain fashion editors before? Yes. Do they scrutinize what I wear to work? No. Just be smart about it and don’t show up in your sweats and you’ll be fine. After all, working at a fashion magazine requires some style on your part.
Deadlines are a serious thing, if you don’t get your work in when you’re told, that’s a problem. And you had better use the right format when you fact-check and spell-check your work or you’re pretty much screwed. I have a background in writing, which is extremely important because if you don’t enjoy writing or the culture of fashion, you may be barking up the wrong tree.
I have never had to grab coffee, order someone’s meal, or pick up anyone’s dry cleaning.
To be honest, I can’t imagine anyone realistically giving minimalist chores to someone in this industry and getting away with it. They’d much rather fill your work load with actually work, especially since the work never stops while working at a fashion magazine.
My day-to-day job consists of lurking the web for news stories about the fashion, beauty, or celeb world. I’m constantly on Twitter and Instagram, and have become a pro with WordPress. If you don’t know how to use that or Photoshop: learn. Now. You’ve got to stay up-to-date with everything that may be relevant for your magazine’s audience, and get used to your editors rejecting pitch ideas — that’s just life.
To work at a fashion magazine you’ve got to have tough skin and be able to roll with the punches.
And above all else, be confident and memorable, because if not you’ll just get lost in the crowd. Be a quick learner: there’s a lot of information to retain and if you don’t keep up. You can feel left behind. Most people in the industry are nice and want to see you succeed, but if you come across those that don’t you just have to work twice as hard to prove them wrong.
The biggest tip I can leave you with is to manage your time well.
Sometimes you’ll be so busy that you can’t function, so try and keep yourself organized and on task. People may add more and more things to your plate and you’ve got to find some way to make it all work.
The thing about the fashion industry is that there’s always something to talk about, so make sure you’re well informed and get the scoop first before someone else does. You may have to get used to working a full day and then going to an event; putting on a smile and snoozing until 12 at night. Then you have to wake up at 6am and do it all over again. That’s just life, baby.
Like any job, working at a fashion magazine is tough work, but it’s totally worth it. I can’t tell you how many pairs of shoes, free products, and lunches I get. And on top of that you meet some pretty kick ass celebs! No Devil Wears Prada here, just good old fashion hard work.
Would you ever want to work at a fashion magazine?
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