Celebrity Spotlight: Pat McGrath

Pat McGrath was born on June 11, 1965 to a single mother in Northampton, England. Her mother, Jean, loved fashion and makeup and infused the importance of both art forms into McGrath. “She always put on a full face of makeup then got in the bath to get that dewy finish. It was next level, but this is where I got my makeup tips from — at seven years old,” McGrath told The Guardian. McGrath’s mother would often quiz her on different eyeshadow shades. McGrath would also watch her mother as she would mix different pigments to match her skin tone. This is what shaped McGrath, who would soon become a world-renowned makeup artist and grow to create her own inclusive makeup line.

While starting out in the beauty industry, McGrath financially supported herself by working as a receptionist. In the 1990s, McGrath’s first break came from an introduction by supermodel Amber Valleta to Steven Meisel, a well-known fashion photographer. Since McGrath and Meisel met, they have continued a strong work relationship. They have collaborated on many covers and editorial pieces of Vogue Italia and other leading publications in addition to creating iconic looks and images for brand-defining campaigns. McGrath has since been published in W, Vogue, and Harper’s Bazaar.


Pat McGrath and Steven Meisel collaboration for Vogue Italia 


Pat McGrath and Steven Meisel collaboration for Vogue Italia 

McGrath quickly made headlines and influenced the masses with her work on the runway. Some of the trends that she created include her signature dewy skin, colored eyelashes, and thick eyebrows. She is even known for using other materials, such as pearls, feathers, and more on her models.

patmcgrath british vogue

Pat McGrath for British Vogue

In 1999, Giorgio Armani hired McGrath to create and launch a line of cosmetics. Armani said, “I was struck by the way she interpreted color and by her ideas about beauty and femininity.”

In 2004, Procter & Gamble named McGrath their Global Beauty Creative Design Director. McGrath supervised Covergirl, Max Factor and crafted Dolce & Gabbana: The Makeup. McGrath later designed and introduced Gucci’s debut cosmetic collection. Esi Eggleston Bracey, the Vice President and General Manager of Procter & Gamble Cosmetics said, “She is a terrific business partner. Our success is her success, and vice versa.”

McGrath has worked for many of the most prestigious brands and designers in the world, including: Prada, Miu Miu, Dolce & Gabbana, Givenchy, Gucci, Lanvin, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Valentino, Balenciaga, Calvin Klein, Alexander McQueen, and more. She works with supermodels and celebrities such as Naomi Campbell, Kate Moss, Gigi Hadid, Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, and many more 


Kim Kardashian and Pat McGrath Collaboration



Rihanna by Pat McGrath for W’s September 2016 cover.

McGrath has become one of the most well-known and artistically inclined makeup artists from England. In 2013, McGrath was awarded a Member of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth ll. This award was for her contributions in the fashion and beauty industry.

In 2015, McGrath released 1000 units her first makeup product, Gold 001. The $40 product sold out in 6 minutes. In 2017, McGrath launched her full makeup line, Pat McGrath Labs, which includes eyeshadow palettes, lipsticks, mascaras, etc. In July 2018, Pat McGrath Labs made headlines for being worth over $1 Billion.

McGrath told InStyle,“My intention when I created Labs was that the people that used our products would be empowered to explore a fearless, daring attitude towards makeup—that’s why we always write ‘Use Without Caution’ on everything we make,” she said. “I’ve always believed that the most extraordinary results occur only when one feels unbound by any notion of constraint or limitation.”


Is there a makeup artist that inspires you? Leave your thoughts and suggestions for the next MUA Spotlight in the comment section below.

Tips & Lessons for the Aspiring Professional Makeup Artist. Sign up Today!

similar news

Scroll to Top