Fug or Fab The Cover: Amanda Seyfried


In a first, I DON’T prefer the subscriber’s cover. But let’s start with the newsstand:

I briefly though this was a romper, but after talking to Heather and looking closely, it is a very short dress with a kind of misleading hem. Which makes me feel so much better; if that were a romper, I’d go ballistic, but as a dress, it’s acceptably sparkly fun (although SHE looks like much less sparkly fun than I’d like, perhaps because her body looks proportioned in a somewhat unnatural way). Elle is smarter than running two Granny Panty Covers in a row. In fact, I think Elle is REALLY smart — it, and InStyle, are the only Glossy Magazines to which I still subscribe, and as I’ve said here before, I sometimes feel like Elle is one of the few “women’s magazines” on the market today that doesn’t fear having a page that’s just words. Like, words you’re supposed to read — not, like, listicals or WORDS. (Although I obviously need to take a closer look at Cosmo under the eyeballs of Joanna Coles, because we all know she’s a snarky smarty, and who doesn’t love that?) I always look forward to reading it when it arrives in my mailbox. Even when I have a negative reaction to the subscribers cover, as I fear I did this month:

ARGH. From the waist up, I actually love it — the beanie, the sort of Cool French Girl Hair, the top of the dress. It works for me, especially in that setting. And I love that the subscriber covers are always so much more interesting than Celebrity + White Background (which I’m sure they use because it sells on a newsstand). But this dress, as I believe we’ve made clear on multiple occasions, makes me want to set my face on fire. RIGHT ON FIRE. I’m sorry, Elle. I still want to read how to get perfect hair. I still love your insides. That’s what counts, right?  RIGHT??

What do you guys think?

[Photos: Elle.com]

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Comments (83):

  1. Fawn

    WHAT is happenning on her feet/shins???

  2. Sandra

    If they really loved that girl they would not have made her put that stupid garment on.

    • qwertygirl

      “Stupid” was exactly the word that came into my head too. She just looks stupid. It’s a stupid dress. She’s wearing stupid shoes/socks. Stupid stupid stupid.

  3. Kate

    I don’t want to make you go ballistic, but the red outfit is NOT a dress. It’s a “top and brief” according to Elle: http://www.elle.com/pop-culture/cover-shoots/amanda-seyfried-quotes-fashion-photos#slide-4

  4. Maria L.

    I’m sorry, but on that subscriber cover, I think she looks ridiculous from top to bottom. Especially bottom. I know those cannot be striped athletic socks, but that is all I see. Plus, she looks like a surly teen.

    • Michelle J.

      I’d look surly, too, if I was Amanda effing Seyfried and was told to wear such a ridiculous outfit in such a gorgeous setting. “You want me to wear your recycling? In your dad’s TUBE SOCKS? Here??!!!!!”

      But she’s a class act, so she said, “Um, OK.” And did it.

      • Orange Clouds

        I actually hate her beanie hat the most. She looks like she is getting ready to rob a bank. Wearing a leg curtain.

        • qwertygirl

          And then I get annoyed at that thought (which is a true thought–that is what she looks like) because NO ONE would rob a bank in that outfit–I mean, come on–”That’s right, officer, the suspect was wearing a flowered top with a sheer flowered skirt with tube socks under it.” And the cop steps out in the street, sees her fleeing down an alley wearing this outfit, and there’s no question she’s headed for the pokey. Stupid.

          • calli

            No, no, no. She wears it to ROB the bank, then does a quick change in the alley, in the baggy clothes she hid near the dumpster.

        • Emily Rang

          omg. Yes. I hattteeeee the beanie.

          • Kristin

            The beret reminds me of Rickie Lee Jones, whose “Chuck E.’s In Love” was my least favorite song in 1979.

    • Sajorina

      She’s wearing patchwork reptile boots!

  5. MG

    Her reflection looks good.

  6. Sarah Ashley

    The proportions on the newsstand version make my eyes cross. It’s like they shrunk her body below her crossed arms…

    • Tess 

      When will magazines realize that except in very, very extreme cases, humans’ heads are neither the same size nor smaller than their waists. (Some magazines would even have us believe that heads can be smaller than hips, but I’m trying not to get too riled up.)

  7. Anna Svahn

    Top and brief, boo hiss.

  8. Soop

    When I first glanced at the subscriber cover, I wondered why she was standing in a bag of candy.

  9.  lor

    For the red dress – was it really necessary to PhotoShop her hips away?

    For the beret outfit – why is she wearing a clear plastic bag of recyclables?

  10. Michelle J.

    Is it just me or is she all out of proportion on the cover (hello? her head is HUGE compared to her hips/body). And the dress (below) dear gods, it’s horrific.

  11. Callie

    Her raised eyebrows in the bottom shot really says it all. I’d quite like the dress if it wasn’t for the veil….and actually even before the veil, is it sheer? What a weird dress. Kill it with fire.

  12. bookworm1973

    Per the Elle site the second outfit is an “Embroidered organza sweater, an embroidered tulle gown, and patchwork reptile boots from Givenchy by Riccardo Tisci” So… keep the sweater, burn the dress & boots?

    • Elizabeth Gorman

      The sweater would look nice with some black leggings. I don’t know what to make of the skirt or the socks.

    • Sandra

      Well, the OED just says ” In mod. use, a garment fitting close to the upper part of the body with flowing skirts” with no mention of the see-through-edness of said skirts, so I guess that technically it can be called a gown. Still less attractive than dog-barf (the garment, not the woman), but there we are.

  13. kittenmittens

    Is she wearing tube socks or rain boots and a knit hat with and ugly evening gown. What designer made a gown that looks like a slouchy oversized sweater on top and sheer curtains on the bottom? There is no chance of that not making the wearer look frumpy and or insane. If you got rid of the bottom part and had leggings or skinny pants the top would be cute.

  14. Amanda In Austin

    At very first glance, I thought she had her pants pulled down around her ankles, so … that makes me definitely hate this cover. HATE. HATE. HATE. With flames on the sides of my face.

  15. Popcouver

    Oh god. Enough of the word “briefs” as acceptable bottoms.

    I did a closer reading of Cosmo when I heard that Joanna Coles took over and to be honest, it’s basically the same. Maybe slightly classier? Still Cosmo though.

    Elle is great! Love it.

  16. ErinE

    The second cover looks like her pants fell down and are in a pile around her ankles. EW.

  17. agliks

    Does anyone else feel like both covers are horribly photoshopped? Beyond the horrors already done to crotches everywhere by the granny-brief trend, hers just seems INSANE. It’s like they just lazily picked a spot on her thighs and lopped off the rest of them and whatever they were left with was just smoothed over in a really indecent and creepy way. And in the second cover, the lighting on her face versus the background just makes it look like they superimposed her face on to someone else’s body.

    • Brenna

      YES! I’m just staring at the top cover, trying to figure out what’s wrong with it. They did something super funky to her waist and crotch.

  18. Erin

    I’ll standby with a fire extinguisher and some aloe vera post ignition, Jessica.

  19. Emi!y

    Her face in the subscriber cover looks like it goes with the “Tired All the Time?” headline. Snooze.

  20. J. Miller

    is it just me or does her head look like it belongs on a different body?

  21. gryt

    I think the second one works better as a cover. I’ve seen the first one a million times; at least the 2nd one makes me take a second look. Yes, the outfit is crazypants, but what’s wrong with a little fantasy?

  22. Breda

    “But this dress, as I believe we’ve made clear on multiple occasions, makes me want to set my face on fire. RIGHT ON FIRE.”

    BRILLIANT sentence construction. Just perfect. That’s all.

    Also, in my Paris semester I saw so many girls with that kind of beanie + hair that their heads all started to look like jellyfish by the end, so yes, very Cool French Girl. (Amanda barely looks at all like a jellyfish here. They all had much limper hair.)

    •  jay

      ahh yes, the “I didn’t have time to wash my hair today so let me throw on a beanie to cover my roots” look. I’ve been guilty of that one many a time, but at least my hair is short enough that I can dodge the “jellyfish.”

  23. KDenae

    There is either heavy-handed photoshopping afoot, or she is losing too much weight. She is starting to look like her slightly gaunt, Parisian, runway model doppelganger. Which sounds cool but it’s not. I prefer a little plump in her face.

  24.  Courtney

    I’m upset for her over this styling, on both covers. I think she always looks so much better than this when she’s running into paparazzi walking through an airport or getting coffee. Poor execution all around, in my opinion.

  25. claire1


  26. Katie

    I love her, and I hate both of these covers. The Photoshopping on the front one reminds me of that weird sorority-girl pose trend that blew up a few years ago where everyone started jutting their top halves forward to make their legs look slimmer–it does work, but in a way that makes your ENTIRE BODY look ridiculous so how is that better?? And in the second one, even beyond the sheer insanity (yeah I went there) of the outfit, the angle of her head against that dress makes her look like a paper doll that got taped together incorrectly.

  27. Vandalfan

    I’d give her ten bucks not to pose with her mouth hanging open.

    That dreadful headgear is certainly not a beret, it’s some kind of stretched out knit cap or watch cap, or a misapplied snood. And Elle’s font is jarring.

    • bookworm1973

      According to the Elle website it’s a wool cap by Ralph Lauren (not that knowing it’s designer *helps*).

  28. HelenBackAgain

    Both outfits are terrible, but what I find really unforgivable is the de-Seyfriedizing. Everything that makes her beauty unique has been either edited out, or just really, really horribly lit and badly makeuped out. I would not have thought “Amanda Seyfried” if it weren’t there in print.

    This looks like any third-tier aspiring print model. Not that there’s anything wrong with that – but Amanda Seyfried is a bona fide movie star now. I expect a magazine that wants her on their cover to treat her like one.

  29. Esme

    Why do they think it’s desirable to have a teeny straight up-and-down body, which they obviously photoshopped her to have? Seyfried is teeny, but I think she does have hips. Really, is it considered BEAUTIFUL to look like a 12-year-old boy?

  30. Blair

    Victoria Grayson has bought up every stylish piece of clothing in the Hamptons so that Amanda and all her enemies will be left with terrible clothing options. Victoria generously gifts out lesser pieces that she doesn’t wish to wear to those who haven’t lost her favor.

  31. Blair

    Opps this was meant to be under the Revenge one. Glad to know that is a dress though

  32. Beth

    She doesn’t even look like herself on the second cover. If you had told me “Here’s a picture of some random good-looking actress,” I don’t think I would have guessed it was her.

    I do like pictures when a celebrity doesn’t look like themselves, but it’s done deliberately (remember those pictures of Tina Fey in some magazine a few months ago?). It’s refreshing and a fun way to show a different side of a celebrity. But this just looks like someone went crazy with Photoshop.

  33. Lucasta

    Something about that second one looks to me like it could be a REALLY fancy Sassy cover from about 1993.

  34. jenlwb

    Pic 1- where is her pelvis??

    Pic 2- initial reaction: why is she standing in a transparent trashbag with a bunch of soda bottle caps in the bottom?

  35. ceecee

    She looks sedated, or possibly hungover.

  36. purplehays

    Her pose says, “I know, right? They MADE me wear it.”

  37. Cristina

    Excuse the caps, but…


    I can’t fathom the conversations that occurred to make any designer think these were a good idea.

    • HelenBackAgain

      I can’t fathom the DRUGS that occurred to make anyone think of them in the first place.

  38. jc

    haha her face is very “what bitch??, yeah i got calf high socks on, whats it to ya?? fuck you don’t judge me!!!”

  39. Sajorina

    LOVE the newsstand’s cover picture… She looks GORGEOUS! The dress is pretty and sparkly, the jewelry is awesome, the hair and makeup are great, and I love that the lipstick matches the rich color of the dress! I just wish the letters weren’t so big! I like the lettering on the subscriber’s cover better! And the 2nd dress would be so pretty if it ended at the hem and didn’t have that sheer skirt! I love the fabric and the background! I give the 1st one a FAB and a ½FAB to the 2nd one!

    • Sajorina

      I still like it, even though I now know it’s a tank and briefs! She’s working it!

  40. ok

    I do abhor the sheer part of the dress on the subscriber cover, but if you lopped that off, and lined the remainder, I think the resulting look would be tres chic. Fug Nation is often way too conservative.

    I dislike the newsstand cover because it’s boring and ridiculous. People do not wear embellished granny panties outside. (Unless they are Rihanna).

    • Liz

      I agree with everything you said, except I actually like the sheer gown here. I hate these dresses on the red carpet and on the runway, but editorially, it works for me. The flowers look interesting against that rug, and the sheer part makes her legs look luminous.

      The only thing I don’t love about this one is her face, which looks oddly shaped due to all the photoshopping. I’m terrible at drawing, and her face is the weird oval shape I draw whenever I try to make a face.

  41. Odie1

    Her thighs are narrower than her face. WTF? She looks like a Bratz doll.

  42. Carole

    The bottom reminds me of those old pictures of cars with the tin cans tied to the back to make all sorts of noise as the newlyweds drove off.

    Does she have a big sign on her ass that says “JUST MARRIED”?

  43. googler

    I didn’t even like the first cover, but that 2nd one makes it look friggin amazing, which is not a good thing. I HATE this makeup on her. Way too harsh for her. I also would not have recognized that to be Amanda Seyfried.

    That second outfit, though – head to toe it’s awful. Think about it, someone DESIGNED this monstrosity. Then someone PICKED it for this shoot, and then the art director or whoever SIGNED OFF on it. How does 3 degrees of Fug like this happen?!

  44. Jerika Coleman

    I don’t like either of them, but I prefer to look at the subscriber’s cover; at least it’s interesting. She does not look like herself, though, in either picture.

  45. Tamburlaine

    I like the outfit on the newsstand cover (apart from the top/briefs thing, which shouldn’t be a thing at all) since I dig the red and the sparkles on her. The subscriber cover is better (as a cover) even though the outfit is just crazy.

    Why must these magazines photoshop everything? Why can’t Elle and Vogue and the adult fashion mags follow Seventeen’s example? These women are already gorgeous!

  46. Kris

    Recently, this has been one of my go-to’s, when I’m feeling enraged:
    Mrs. White from Clue

  47. Aurora Browne

    You make me laugh every time I read this. Yes, set your face on fire. I would rather look at artfully placed gauze bandages than these skirts.

  48. derpshooter

    I thought it was smashed Coke cans for a second, inside a net skirt. Some kind of green message type thing. Then I realized it was just ugly for no reason, not even for the sake of Earf.

  49. Livvy

    I’m going to assume they shrunk her lower half on the top cover so they could get more print in, not so they could make her look like an inverted bowling pin. Still, loathsome, to take very skinny girls and make them impossibly skinny. As if it wouldn’t be difficult to match up to a natural Amanda Seyfreid? Second cover is reprehensible for fashion reasons, at least mid-thigh down.

  50. Becca

    I secretly hoped it was a 1950s vintage swim suit. I have mixed emotions knowing it is a dress.

  51. Alice

    She looks like Olivia Thirlby instead of herself!