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Turia and The Weekly win praise for cover

The July issue of The Australian Women's Weekly on newsstands tomorrow is winning praise both in Australia and around the world for featuring inspirational burns survivor Turia Pitt on its cover.

The Weekly's July cover and (right) Turia and her partner Michael Hoskin.

The decision to have the impressive 26-year-old as the cover girl of the country's biggest-selling magazine is one that has been hailed as "ground breaking" and an important step for the magazine world.

"This is an industry that retouches even the most physically perfect women. Models, actresses and reality stars usually, whose careers are defined by their physical beauty," says Mamamia's Kate Leaver.

"And yet. Here’s Turia Pitt. On the cover of AWW. Beautiful, strong, brave – and physically scarred. Visibly scarred, but refusing to be defined by it."

BuzzFeed describes it as "probably the best women's magazine cover ever", while Today Show co-host, Lisa Wilkinson says Turia's place on the cover of The Weekly is well-deserved.

"Turia is quite simply one of the most beautiful women I have ever met. And her story - from her incredible bravery and determination to make a difference, to the beautiful bond she shares with Michael – is one that's impossible not to be moved and inspired by," says Lisa.

ABC anchor and journalist Leigh Sales thanked Turia for sending "the message to all Australians, especially women, that character is what really matters."

"With this cover, The Weekly is saying what we admire in women is courage, resilience and strength," says Leigh.

The new July cover also appears to have resonated with The Weekly's 2.4 million readers - thousands have taken to social media to commend Turia and editor-in-chief Helen McCabe.

"Turia owns this cover in a truly empowering portrait – a woman looking confident and assured – no pity, no sadness, no condescension. I love it on so many levels!" Catia Malaquias wrote on Facebook.

"Well done The Australian Women's Weekly. It's great to see a true hero and role model on the cover of your magazine," Rebecca Patterson posted.

Yet, according to Weekly editor-in-chief Helen McCabe, when it came time to decide who would take the coveted July cover slot, there was never any doubt.

"Any attempt to describe the magic and beauty of Turia seems to get lost in platitudes or clichés. Yet I have never met a more remarkable person," says Helen.

"I have been overwhelmed by the response. The Twitter, Instagram and personal calls and emails have been incredible. I am very proud of the magazine, I am very proud to work for the publisher Matt Stanton and I love the readers for their responses," she adds.

"But it has not been lost on me that the response partially ignores the fact that we are not the ones who are brave. The star in all of this is Turia who as we go on sale tomorrow is recovering from yet another operation. So I want to say a giant thank you to her. I also want to say to everyone who loves this cover – you have to buy it. We cannot change the way we think about beauty and magazine if people don't put their money where their mouth is."

In a special, July edition of The Australian Women's Weekly, the mining engineer joins the judging panel of the magazine's annual Women of the Future scholarship awards and reflects on the past three years of her life – from surviving the bushfire that almost killed her, to the remarkable love of her partner, Michael Hoskin that did so much to underpin her recovery – and says she feels like "the luckiest girl in the world."

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