We'd guess that oblivious TSA agents probably get quite distracted when they see Pat McGrath approaching. The makeup artist has 87 suitcases "full of secrets" — and high-end beauty products, of course— that she's amassed over her 25-year career and often travels with them all. Well, we're here to give JFK a heads-up, because she's consolidating in a major way.
Pat McGrath Labs is releasing a 61-piece Unlimited Edition of three Mothership Eye Palettes, PermaGel Ultra Lip Pencils and Glide Eye Pencils, Dark Star Mascara, 31 LuxeTrance Lipsticks, and 9 MatteTrance Lipsticks. But the best news? There won't be a need to fight to the digital death on release day — this collection is here to stay. We'll pause here for a second to let you catch your breath. Good? Great, because there's more to come from the line, too.
"It's a love letter to the makeup addicted. We're at a point where everyone's truly gone beyond an obsession with makeup," McGrath told a group of beauty editors at the launch yesterday. "You don't hear 'Oh, I'm afraid to wear a nude,' or 'I'm afraid to wear an eyeliner.' This feels like the right time. It doesn't feel like a hard sell. People looked at me like a loony with 87 bags, [but] it's kind of normal now!"
McGrath's followers — especially those who weren't able to get their hands on one of her previous releases — might be wondering what took Unlimited so long to land. "This was always the intention," she reveals. "Every time I came across a formula that I couldn't live without, I released it." And now, they're all in one place. We all know that McGrath is a perfectionist — at her last launch, she revealed that she carried the prototype of MatteTrance in her purse for months before releasing it. In fact, he gave the same TLC to the entire range, which she refers to as her babies.
Let's start with the palettes, shall we? Some contain older pigments from her earlier releases, like Gold 002 and Dark Star. "They're all important segments of my career, from shows, editorials, to that gorgeous, rich kind of dewy," she says. But, like the rest of her products, she had to give them a test drive before letting everyone get in on the action. For example, the Sublime palette was used to create bronzy eyes seen at Versace SS17. And Subliminal is inspired by McGrath's no-makeup makeup looks that she's done on everyone from Karen Elson to Alek Wek.
There's always a wild child of the bunch, though... and that's Subversive. "It's the crazy one," McGrath says. "It's really me having fun with the colours. [To get] the most exquisite paint, I'd have to build it out of five colours. These are all the colours I wished for and longed for. Colours that remind you of 4 AM in Paris."
As for the PermaGel Ultra Lip Pencils, McGrath wished us good luck trying to get them off (and they really do stick — after eating dinner, I had to use two makeup wipes and micellar water-soaked cotton balls). She suggests filling your whole lip with them and wearing alone, or pairing it with one of those gorgeous lipsticks that she's pushing.
The 31 LuxeTrance Lipsticks boast a creamy formula and a shinier finish — qualities that she needed on set and on the runway. "I always struggled to get a lipstick on fast," she says. "You really needed to be a real artist, a true painter, to get the greasy and slimy lipsticks to stay on. These pigments press on really quickly to get full, beautiful, professional impact."
The quality of McGrath's line is the gold standard — and so is the packaging. Gone are the sequin-filled lab bags — McGrath's babies come in boxes painted with work from some of her favourite Instagram artists. Those boxes are emblazoned with gold "modern-meets-vintage emoji" hallmarks that signify the each product's purpose and are almost too pretty to open.