Sales of women’s health and beauty titles were down 8 per cent year-on-year, despite the national obsession with dieting. All five titles in the sector posted falls.
Top SantÃ© recorded an 8.5 per cent drop, down a further 15.5 per cent period-on-period to 130,830 despite a relaunch. Shape fell 8.7 per cent to 69,480 and Zest tumbled 8.7 per cent to 105,058.
Group publishing director of Zest, Justine Southall, blamed the decline on popularity of the Atkins diet.
“Part of what happened to this market was the impact of the dieting frenzy on mainstream media,” she said. “The Atkins explosion was everywhere – it was in every newspaper and the book was a bestseller and that had an impact on the magazines that talk about diet and wellbeing.”
Southall predicted circulation would start to climb again in the next few months. “As Atkins goes out of favour, the market will pick up for the first half of this year.”