The Beauty of Pat McGrath

Instagram's Most Influential Makeup Artist

BY: Amber Rodriguez

Scrolling through Pat McGrath’s Instagram (@patmcgrathreal) is like walking through an alien wonderland where pigments are bright, and everything sparkles. Dubbed “the most influential makeup artist in the world” by Anna Wintour and awarded a Member of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth IIPat McGrath has set the standard for beauty trends and makeup artists around the world.

Pat McGrath emerged onto the beauty scene in the early 90’s where she helped define a new artisan look. Born in Britain of Jamaican decent, Ms. McGrath credits her mother to opening her eyes to the world of fashion and beauty and cultivating her obsession with makeup. When she started working with i-D Magazine fashion director Edward Enninful, who would later become the first African born editor-in-chief of British Vogueit was like catching lightning in a bottle. The fashion director and make-up artist teamed up with world renown photographer Steven Meisel and took the fashion world by storm. Ms. McGarth became a coveted makeup artist working with international magazines, the fashion runways of all four major cities, and top ad campaigns. Along with being Meisel’s go to makeup artist, she worked with photographers Helmut Newton, Irving Penn, & Peter Lindbergh to name a few and was instrumental in creating the makeup lines for Jil Sanders, John Galliano, Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana and most recently Gucci. By 2004 she was named global creative design director of Proctor & Gamble where Ms. McGrath oversaw Max Factor and Cover Girl.

As a preeminent makeup artists and creative director, Ms. McGrath branched out on her own in the 2015 with her own line called Pat McGrath Labs. More likely to be seen on the runways of Paris rather than a department store counter, the line consists of bold hues and experimental technology that breaks from tradition. Some of her products like the Gold 001 eyeshadow pigment are released in limited quantities making them cult-like collectibles. Another signature in the collection is the Mothership V: Bronze Seduction palette which is made up of rich mattes and space age metallics. And with names like skin fetish, lust gloss, and flesh opulence you know you’re getting a sensuous look.

Browse through Ms. McGrath’s highly curated Instagram to see her latest releases, trend setting makeup (McGrath is the women who gave us all thicker brows), and inspiration. Check out the how-to videos to get luminous skin, see #McGrathMuse for who inspires her and all the latest trends in the world of beauty.


Pat McGrath jeweled red lips inspired by writer Charles Baudelaire
“And yet to wine, to opium even, I prefer the elixir of your lips on which love flaunts itself. – CHARLES BAUDELAIRE, Les Fleurs du Mal #PMGOpulence #inspiration by @moisesartnyc”


Pat McGrath celestial eyeshadow effects bronze seduction palette
“CELESTIAL EFFECTS. Fall in love with the out-of-this-world opulence of the #MOTHERSHIP V: Bronze Seduction Eye Palette”


Supermodel Kai Gerber-Green Eyemake up by Pat McGrath for Valentino Collection
KAIA GERBER-Valentino Collection


Pat McGrath red lipstick Forbidden love Matte trance
“YOUNG HEARTS RUN FREE. Consider this fair warning: You may find yourself falling for the carnally ultimate classic red of #MatteTrance FORBIDDEN LOVE. “


Pat McGrath opulence dark star eye palette
“LE GRAPHIQUE C’EST CHIC. J’ADORE this #PMGOpulence #MTHRSHP Dark Star Eye Palette #inspiration via @makeupbyfee”


Pat McGrath makeup-Double Image of the packaging artwork for the MothershipV Bronze Seduction Eye Palette
“MOTHER is OVER THE MOON about the packaging artwork for the #MothershipV #BronzeSeduction Eye Palette. Interstellar. Intergalactic. Iconic. Fierce, feminine and futuristic this is the EPITOME of SPACE AGE SENSUALITY. Succumb to the splendour of these ten extravagantly extraterrestrial shades; rocket your inner Space Queen lightyears ahead in the ultimate cosmic couture cosmetics.”


Pat McGrath Mothership eyeshadow palette of colors
“#MOTHERSHIP II: Sublime ADDICTED to the alluring lineup of POWERFUL PIGMENTS from this PRECIOUS Palette!!”


Pat McGrath Matte Trance lipstick Elson in bright red on African American model wearing oversized dangling earrings
“THE LIPS HAVE IT #McGrathMuse @leomieanderson killing it in the cult-classic #MatteTrance Lipstick Shade ‘ELSON’. Photo by @desiree_mattsson”


Black and white photograph of Pat McGrath in her youth