A new glossy magazine aimed at young Pacific Island women is to be launched in Auckland next month.

The magazine, called Suga - Samoan slang for "girlfriend", will soon be made available to readers in New Zealand, Australia, around the Pacific and the United States.

It is pitched as being similar to Kiwi magazines Creme and Girlfriend, with fashion pages, make-up tips and profiles of international superstars, but with a distinctly island flavour.

Editor Cecilia Sagote, 33, has been working on the idea for the past few years after recognising that there were virtually no women's magazines targeting Pasifika.

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"It's just good to have a main mag for young Island women, I thought. I myself have grown up reading young women's magazines and I've always admired them, like Cleo and Cosmopolitan. But a lot of the issues weren't really relevant to us. There were lots of articles about sex and that's just not something we necessarily want to read about."

Ms Sagote said there would also be a big focus on news coming out of the various Pacific Islands and a push towards motivating young women to be comfortable in their own skin.

"I want there to be something that young Island girls can identify themselves with. I want them to see themselves on the cover - to see a curvy girl on the cover, rather than the norm.

"They see plus-size models in there ... and that's the difference. We're breaking protocol."

Ms Sagote said the move to launch the publication this spring followed some big successes achieved by young Pacific women from New Zealand and overseas.

The first issue includes a feature on South Auckland hip-hop dancing sensation Parris Goebel, who made headlines this year when Jennifer Lopez asked to work with her, and pro-files Samoan author Lani Wendt Young.

A special pre-launch event will be held tomorrow at the Otara markets, where a limited number of magazines will be sold.

For more information go to: sugamagazine.co.nz.

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