“Mother,” as Pat McGrath refers to herself, is a force to be reckoned with on all fronts. The fashion world’s first black female megastar makeup artist is both a consummate artist and the creative genius and businesswoman behind Pat McGrath Labs. Vogue has called her “the most influential makeup artist in the world,” and there’s not a face that has graced its covers that she hasn’t made blossom with her particular brand of magic—as demonstrated on beauties like Naomi Campbell, Joan Smalls, Duckie Thot and Oprah Winfrey.
Both Fortune 500 companies and fans from Moscow to Rio de Janeiro clamor for McGrath’s services for fashion shoots and product-development consultations. In 1999 she developed designer Giorgio Armani’s makeup line—in my opinion, still one of the top three foundation formulations and shade ranges on the market. In 2004 she was named creative director of Procter & Gamble cosmetics, which includes lines like SK-II, Dolce & Gabbana and CoverGirl. In 2013 Queen Elizabeth II named McGrath an MBE, or Member of the Order of the British Empire, for services to the fashion and beauty industries.
McGrath finally founded her own eponymous collection in 2015 based around highly pigmented lipsticks and eye shadows. Without fail, lines around the block accompany each new limited edition launch at her freestanding New York City store, and within hours, her website sells out of her flawlessly curated $125 eye shadow palettes and $38 lipsticks.
I worked with McGrath and her team a month ago for the British Fashion Awards and still missed my chance to score the last two offerings of her Matte Trance lipstick and new Lip Fetish lip balm. But my hope is that these lipsticks will make their way into a Sephora near me sometime soon because thankfully, McGrath has heard our cries for more, making a 61-piece “Unlimited” collection available at the beauty retailer last October. It was a beauty junkie’s dream come true!
Come Jan. 18, get ready to shop her next drop. “Prepare to panic!” teases McGrath, to alert us that Mother will soon be sending down the Mothership IV: Decadence eye shadow palette from her lab. So here’s my advice on how to get yours: Log on to Sephora.com at 12 p.m. EST on Jan. 18; on Jan. 19, you can head to select Sephora stores. McGrath has timed the release of these shades so that her fans can use the same makeup she’ll be using during February’s Milan Fashion Week. She’s also in keeping with the latest retail trend of “buy now, wear now”—but only if you can get it!