Pat McGrath is the most influential and sought-after British makeup artist in the world. The queen of American fashion, Vogue’s Anna Wintour, proclaimed her “the most influential makeup artist in the world.” Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II made her a Member of the Order of the British Empire for services to the fashion and beauty industry.
McGrath has no formal training in fashion or make-up, having completed only an art foundation course at a Northampton college. In the 80’s, she moved to London and became involved with designers such as Alexander McQueen and John Galliano.
According to Vogue, Pat McGrath is known for her unique, adventurous, and innovative make-up techniques which include using her hands as opposed to brushes. She has a talent for using bold hues and material experimentation ranging from feathers to ornaments. McGrath is limitless, a mindset that enables her boundless creativity and diverse range of looks. Her art lies within the reinvention of makeup and experimentation. She has created trends ranging from thick eyebrows to coloured lashes, making a statement out of every face. Her innovative and intuitive outlook to life help create the vibrant and legendary looks we see throughout numerous catwalks and fashion shows.
Her inspiration started with her mother, particularly her love for fashion, film and costumes. Growing up in London, they used to go makeup shopping when she was six years old. Fashion became a huge inspiration for McGrath, stimulating her creative approach. McGrath also looks to models for inspiration, because they represent a mix of ethnicities, sizes, and backgrounds, so they allow her to experiment and create the looks she dreams of in her head. She considers models Naomi Campbell, Hailey Baldwin, Paloma Elsesser, Jasmine Sanders, Mallory Merk and Ruby Aldridge as her muses.
For more than two decades, Pat McGrath has been concepting, launching and developing luxury cosmetic brands, countless runway shows, breakthrough advertising campaigns and editorial spreads.
Her ascent to the pinnacle of fashion began in the 1990s with an introduction to legendary lensman Steven Meisel by supermodel Amber Valletta. Fast friends and symbiotic collaborators, they’ve created every cover and lead editorial story for every issue of Vogue Italia, indisputably iconic images for leading global publications and countless brand-defining campaigns.
Each season, Pat McGrath conceptualizes and creates beauty looks for more than 60 Ready-to-Wear and couture shows in Milan, Paris, London and New York for a luminous roster of the world’s most prestigious brands and visionary designers: Prada, Miu Miu, Dolce & Gabbana, Givenchy, Gucci, Lanvin, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Maison Margiela, Yohji Yamamoto, Valentino, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, Nina Ricci, Calvin Klein, Loewe, and Alexander McQueen, to name a select few.
With her incomparable mastery and iconoclastic vision, Pat McGrath has transformed the beauty industry. Name any trend of the past two decades, and you’ll find her at its origin, from 1990s dewy skin to no-retouching-necessary foundation specifically designed for this decade’s selfies.
When Giorgio Armani hired her to develop and launch a line of cosmetics in 1999, the minimalist maestro said, “I was struck by the way she interpreted colour and by her ideas about beauty and femininity.”
Engaged as Global Beauty Creative Design Director by Procter & Gamble in 2004, Pat McGrath oversees Covergirl, Max Factor and created Dolce & Gabbana: The Makeup. Recently, she also designed and launched Gucci’s debut cosmetic collection. “She is a terrific business partner. Our success is her success, and vice versa,” says Esi Eggleston Bracey, Vice President and General Manager of Procter & Gamble Cosmetics.
A true creator and innovator at the forefront of the multi-billion dollar global beauty industry with an ever-expanding reach on social media, her recent blockbuster success with PAT McGRATH LABS further proves that she’s poised to elevate beauty to even headier altitudes.
With a creative vision that’s made her a tour de force that touches everything from couture to club kids and street culture; her influence is everywhere, from screen to stage to digital: it’s undeniable, Pat McGrath knows no boundaries.