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Before we get into this, let's just make it known that here at Allure, we consider Pat McGrath to be one of the most (if not the most) iconic makeup artists of all time. In case you need some back up for that statement, here are just a couple of lines from her resume: McGrath invented "Euphoria makeup" before the TV show even came out, became the first makeup artist to be recognized as a Dame, is now our February 2021 cover star for our Business of Beauty issue, and in 2016, McGrath brought her runway art to the shelves with the launch of Pat McGrath Labs and turned it into a billion-dollar business in just two years.
You may be familiar with the award-winning brand, but did you know that prior to the products being available to consumers, the makeup artist was giving us sneak peeks at them during fashion month over the years? For instance, back in March 2020, we saw the Pat McGrath Labs Dark Star Volumizing Mascara giving models a fluttery lash look at Versace's fall/winter 2020 show before it officially launched to the masses in July of that year. Same with the Mothership VIII: Divine Rose II Palette: the iridescent shade Sextraterrestrial was showcased at Prada's fall/winter 2020 show in February 2020, although the eye shadow wasn't for sale until June 2020.
But that's just two of over a dozen instances of McGrath's sly-yet-genius business tactic. Here, Allure editors share their favorite Pat McGrath Labs products and reminisce on the first time saw them on the runway.
The Divine Rose Collection at Anna Sui Fall/Winter 2004
"In 2004, Pat McGrath brought monochromatic makeup to the runway at the fall/winter Anna Sui show. Fourteen years later, I'm still thinking about the romantic rosy tones in glossy finishes swept across models' eyes, lips, and cheeks.
While I may not have the skills or the stamina to replicate McGrath's full runway look, I've certainly tried my hand at crafting a more subdued version at home — muted rose shadow on my lids, pinky-peach gloss on my lips, and a soft sheen on my cheeks — with the Mothership VII: Divine Rose, a 10-shade palette with pinky, pearly matte and irrideiscent finishes, along with the Lust: Lip Gloss in Peach Perversion." — Sarah Kinonen, associate beauty director
Pat McGrath Labs Mothership VII: Divine Rose
Pat McGrath Labs Lust Gloss Divine Rose Collection: Peach Perversion
Lust 004 at Christian Dior Spring Couture 2013
"I'm sure many of my Allure colleagues would agree that red lipstick isn't so much a statement item as it is an everyday wardrobe staple. We've all seen (and worn) just about every type of bright, dark, bold, and muted take on a red lip in existence — yet still, to this day, I constantly dream about Pat McGrath Labs' Lust 004, a now-discontinued lip kit that I've sadly never tried.
Proven by McGrath's work on Christian Dior spring 2013 couture, a red-orange lip becomes certified art when it's doused in reflective glitters and chunky gems. I'd probably ruin it in 10 seconds flat by accidentally rubbing my lips together, but a girl can still dream, right?" — Nicola Dall'Asen, staff writer
Pat McGrath Labs Lust 004
Gold 001 at Prada Spring 2016
"Picture it: Milan, September 2015. Backstage at Prada's spring show, Pat McGrath is using an unmarked tin of golden pigment to gild the lips of dozens of models. The crowd rejoices, beauty editors swoon, and the world at large is left wondering: Where can I get that stuff? The answer is revealed one month later when McGrath debuts Gold 001, the very first product in her eponymous line.
Although only 1,000 were made, she released her Eyedol Eye Shadows, and the hue Gold Standard has a similar metallic effect. Apply it to your lids for a flash of the brightest, truest gold you've ever seen, or dust it across your cheekbones for an otherworldly highlight." — Dianna Mazzone, senior beauty editor
Pat McGrath Labs Eyedols Eye Shadow in Gold Standard
MatteTrance in Full Panic at Maison Margiela Spring 2018
"Fuchsia lips are like red for me. I love. And McGrath served us some by using a mix of her Full Panic and Psycho Candy hues. Full Panic is one of my favorite lip colors ever, and I love the negative space she created on the model's lips here. " — Jihan Forbes, staff editor
Pat McGrath Labs MatteTrance in "Full Panic"
MatteTrance in Guinevere at the Miu Miu Cruise 2019
"Although McGrath chose to debut the MatteTrance Lipstick in Guinevere in unison with a preexisting shade, Vendetta (deep red), during Miu Miu's 2019 cruise show, the daring bloodied-crimson medley mesmerized the audience's attention in mere seconds. Models and celebrities alike, including Kate Bosworth and Gwendoline Christie, wore the mysterious new color before it was finally revealed to the public.
My lipstick philosophy has always been the bolder, the better, and Guinevere absolutely brings her A-game. Its creamy formula glides on like a dream and imparts an opaque, long-lasting wash of warm-toned crimson with nary an ounce of pressure. It's enough to make me sit up a little straighter and, despite my Zoom fatigue, arrange a call just to show it off." — Sarah Han, senior commerce writer
Pat McGrath Labs MatteTrance in "Guinevere"
Sextraterrestrial in Mothership VIII: Divine Rose II at Prada Fall/Winter 2020
"Not only was I blown away by how the simplicity of the rectangular eye makeup at Prada, but I was also mesmerized by the prismatic shadow the sharp shapes were crafted with. Depending on how the light hit the models' lids, it gleamed purple, green, and gold. I don't mean this lightly when I say it was love at first sight for me.
Months later, Pat revealed it to be a one-of-a-kind formula featured in the Divine Rose II Palette, called Sextraterrestrial. Now, you can often find me painting on bold designs with it or buffing it out into a sheer, mystical wash of color on my eyes." — Devon Abelman, beauty editor
Pat McGrath Labs Divine Rose II Palette
Dark Star Volumizing Mascara at Versace Fall/Winter 2020
"If you look closely at the models' lashes at this Versace show, you'll want to know what mascara that is, too. McGrath brought lashes to new lengths (literally) with the unveiling of the Dark Star Volumizing Mascara at fall/winter 2020 shows.
Its creamy formula glides onto lashes while the bristles grip onto each and every lash, never leaving even the sparsest ones behind. With just one coat of this magical formula and people will wonder if you're wearing falsies. Seriously, it's happened to me." — Angela Trakoshis, commerce writer
Pat McGrath Labs Dark Star Volumizing Mascara
Lip Fetish Divinyl Lip Shine at Maison Margiela Fall 2020 Artisanal Couture Show
"I'm not saying Lip Fetish Divinyl Lip Shine was the nail in matte liquid lipstick's coffin, but it did gently nudge it in the general direction of pine box during the Maison Margiela fall/winter 2020 artisanal couture show.
Although it's available in a range of bold shades, McGrath introduced it on the models with a soft, subtle whisper of a hello — one that showed off its unstoppable gleam and what looked like (and, confirmed, is) truly comfortable wear." — Marci Robin, contributing editor
Pat McGrath Labs Lip Fetish Divinyl Lip Shine
Skin Fetish: Sublime Skin Highlighter at Miu Miu Spring 2021
"Though much of the coverage of the beauty look at Miu Miu's spring/summer 2021 show was focused on the eyes and brows, McGrath also used the occasion to launch a new iteration of her highly lauded highlighter range.
I fell hard for the original trio of Sublime Skin Highlighters — they offer a barely-there shine that's all glow, not sparkle — so a larger, single shade compact had me weak with excitement. (And, in true Pat McGrath fashion, one shade is all you need, since the Miu Miu show proved it looks amazing on a wide range of skin tones.)" — Kara McGrath, deputy editor
Pat McGrath Labs Sublime Skin Highlighter
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