There’s been a lot of press about young’un Kylie Jenner being a billionaire thanks to her self-named and relentlessly promoted makeup line. But there’s another name whose cosmetics company is also valued in that stratospheric range: Pat McGrath, MBE, a 49-year-old Brit who’s a renowned makeup artist and creator of Pat McGrath Labs.
Hailed by Vogue as the most influential makeup artist of our era and a recipient of the Council of Fashion Designer’s prestigious Founder’s Award, McGrath received a minority-share investment of $60 million into her business last year from Eurazeo Brands. According to Fashionista, industry insiders calculate that the brand now enjoys a stunning billion-dollar valuation.
Her Mother’s Vision
Pat has credited her single mom with igniting her creativity and her interest in style, noting that her mother would mix her own makeup since there were few brands for black skin at the time.
As she rose to prominence in the 1990s as a makeup artist working with top magazines and designers on shows, Pat was known for her off-the-charts passion and style. She’d use her hands—not brushes and sponges—to apply makeup, possessed a bracing, bold color sense, and experimented with fanciful accessories (think petals, pearls, and feathers) as part of a look.
She launched her core beauty line in 2017. Her primer, foundation, and powder set (Skin Fetish: Sublime Perfection, $150) offers 36 shades to embrace the full spectrum of skin tones. Pat’s lipsticks range from Skin Show (nudes) to Color Blitz (brights) to Vicious Venoms (darks), and with her years of makeup-artist experience as a guide, she has engineered the products to go on and stay on beautifully.
“It has always been my dream to create an iconic beauty brand that goes beyond the usual limitations, that lives outside the parameters of what is expected,” Pat has said. And with her surging brand, it certainly looks as if she’s done just that.