It wasn't easy for a starlet to get through this decade with her cover-worthy popularity intact. These women survived waning attention spans and editorial capriciousness to emerge with their newsstand cred unscathed. Number one isn't who you think it is.
Will the choice of cover subjects on fashion magazines matter as much in the next decade? Probably not, not with every other medium, new and yet-to-be-invented, competing to give readers fresh images of the stars, and with all magazines struggling to survive the death of their business model. But in a decade that arguably saw the peak of their power (at least if you measure by circulation), the covers of Vogue, Elle, InStyle, Marie Claire, Harper's Bazaar, Lucky, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, and, until 2007, Jane were benchmarks of what was considered beautiful, relatable, and most of all, saleable. With the exception of top 15 runners-up Gisele Bundchen and Kate Moss, models were replaced by actresses. The key to winning this particular contest: longevity and versatility, with long-running romantic woes providing a possible alternative. Unless, of course, you're Gwyneth Paltrow or Nicole Kidman. Then your total is skewed by four to five Vogue covers.
15. Keira Knightley (12) (tied with Britney Spears)
Sexyface and exquisite bone-structure make a potent combination. But with the exception of Knightley's three Vogue covers in four years, women's magazines seemed to be constantly trying to find the cozier side of Knightley's clavicles.
14. Britney Spears (12) (tied with Keira Knightley)
Spears wasn't always a women's magazine mainstay, and even less so a fashion one, but the end of the decade saw her graduating from Rolling Stone peek-a-boo to relatable features about being a mom, including two covers of her pregnant. That, plus standing up her interviewer.