The magazine was first published in 1886 under the name Das Blatt der Hausfrau (meaning Housewife’s Journal in English). Its target audience was the middle-classbourgeois housewife and the magazine often covered articles about child-rearing and foods. During World War II it stopped publication.
The magazine was relaunched in 1949 and was renamed as Brigitte in 1954.Brigitte merged with another women's magazine Constanze in 1969.
Brigitte is published every two weeks by Gruner + Jahr. The headquarters is in Hamburg. The magazine launched its website in April 1997. The target audience of the magazine is both housewives and working women.
Andreas Lebert and Brigitte Huber served as co-editors of Brigitte. Lebert, after serving in the post from 2002 to 2012, left the magazine to become editor-in-chief of Zeit Wissen magazine.
In 2010 the magazine began to employ women who were not professional models.
Brigitte had a circulation of 150,000 copies in 1926. It was 940,700 copies in 1999. During the fourth quarter of 2000 its circulation rose to 958,258 copies. In 2001 it was one of top 50 women's magazine worldwide with a circulation of 958,000 copies. In 2004 the magazine had a circulation of 771,281 copies. Its circulation was 693,248 copies in 2010.
^Katharina M. Dallmann (2001). "Targeting women in German and Japanese magazine advertising: A difference‐in‐differences approach". European Journal of Marketing. 35 (11/12): 1320–1341. doi:10.1108/EUM0000000006478. ISSN0309-0566.
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