From Northampton, England, Pat McGrath is considered one of the top makeup artists in the world. Pat is currently Global Cosmetics Creative Design Director for Procter and Gamble behind some of the world’s most glamorous and powerful make up brand names-Max Factor, CoverGirl, SK-II and the recently launched Dolce and Gabanna.
Previously, Giorgio Armani hired Pat to design his makeup line. Constantly in demand by top celebrities such as Madonna, Oprah, Jennifer Lopez, Scarlett Johansson and Jennifer Aniston Pat McGrath’s editorial work with top photographers like Steven Meisel for Italian Vogue and American Vogue continually breaks new ground. She collaborates on major fashion advertising campaigns such as Prada, Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga, Calvin Klein, Versace, Valentino, Dolce & Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, YSL and Lanvin.
She also dispenses her sought after knowledge in the expert advice pages of Allure and as a Beauty Director of i-D magazine. Pat currently creates the catwalk make up for a plethora of world class designers. She designed the make up for an astonishing 35 women’s ready-to- wear shows for A/W 2008 including: Prada, Miu Miu Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga Christian Dior, John Galliano, Calvin Klein, Bottega Veneta, Versace, Valentino, Dolce & Gabanna, Lanvin, Stella McCartney, Yohji Yamamoto, and Viktor & Rolf
McGrath was born in 1970 in Northampton, England to Jean McGrath, a Jamaican immigrant. Jean was a single mother who raised McGrath in Northhampton. McGrath credits her mother for her love of fashion and make-up, saying that Jean would comment on clothes as they watched classic movies together.
McGrath has no formal training in fashion or make-up, having completed only an art foundation course at a Northampton college. Of her career, she has said, “I really love being a makeup artist. It never gets mundane or predictable and every shoot and show is different.
McGrath’s career breakthrough came while working with Edward Enninful (then fashion editor of i-D magazine) in the early 1990s, when her innovative use of color “brilliantly solved the world’s ennui with grunge” and helped launch i-D to a position of international importance. In the mid-1990s, she worked both with minimalist Jil Sander and with surrealist John Galliano, where she became known for her “latex petals stuck to faces, vinyl lips, bodies drenched in powder paint, [and] stylized Kabuki physiognomies.”
Since then, McGrath has worked with photographers including Steven Meisel (who now rarely shoots without her), Paolo Roversi, Helmut Newton, and Peter Lindbergh. In addition to appearing in i-D, photos of her work have been published in fashion magazines including American, English, and French Vogue, W, and Harper’s Bazaar.
She attends four fashion show seasons (counting couture) each year and has worked with designers including Prada, Miu Miu, Comme des Garçons, and Dolce and Gabbana. Additionally, she designed Armani’s cosmetics line in 1999 and in 2004 was named global creative-design director for Procter and Gamble, where she is in charge of Max Factor and Cover Girl cosmetics, among other brands. During McGrath’s constant travels to work locations, she takes between thirty and fifty bags of materials, tools, and reference materials.