Esquire magazine’s covers always vary when it comes to the type of pictures and the designs they use. Mainly, when it comes to men being in the cover, they will be wearing tuxedos or suits and will be looking their sharpest while also looking empowered and the type of man other men want to be. When it comes to women being in the cover, women will be wearing close to nothing and will be in sensual poses. However, although it might seem objectifying (and I still think it is), they also show a woman who owns her sexuality and is confident. Esquire always tries to invite their readers with women they find sexy or men who are idolized. The visuals in the covers will reflect the type of articles to be found inside.
For example, the issue of February has a very dramatic, and black and white picture of Donald Trump’s face who is looking away from the camera. This picture portrays that most of the articles found inside will be political and controversial. The February issue will be a more serious issue.
Usually, Esquire will represent from five to six, sometimes seven, stories on their covers. However, these will all range depending on the issue and the month. The March issue of Esquire peaks into stories about the Oscars, fitness, guns, and fashion, while the November 2015 issue with Emilia Clarke on the cover shows peaks of stories about sex, cars, and food. The hierarchy of the stories presented also depends on the person on the cover. Because Emilia Clarke was on the November issue, sex, food and cars are more important than their guide on how to not die. Also, with Trevor Noah being on their cover for March, his story and the epidemic of guns in America are more important.
Personally I don’t see much consistency in their issue covers, except in the use of women in provocative poses and men in empowering and quirky ones. The small blurbs that refer to the stories within the issue are always surrounding the person on the cover, be it at the sides, under them or over them. However, the use of typography is consistent with the mood and the tone of the issue that month. When a quirky person is on the cover, they will use quirky and fun typography, when its women or someone of great influence such as Donald Trump, their typography will change to clean and straight-forward typography. Sometimes they will also try and fit another story representation on top of the person on the cover and the title of the magazine in a box, which then makes it look crowded if the magazine cover is also crowded with typography. An example of this being the March issue. However, that’s part of their design.
This sometimes overcrowding of the cover can say that they don’t follow the grid on their covers as it is difficult to see why an element might start where it does. When it comes to their title, Esquire will let it bleed off the page but the rest is enclosed with a margin of approximately an inch wide. Depending on the picture, they will use a grid of probably six to 12 columns.