Pat McGrath and Dolce & Gabbana Makeup at Saks Fifth Avenue
By Angie W and Jessica M
This weekend many lucky ladies had a chance to meet the wonderful, renowned makeup artist Pat McGrath, as she launched the new Dolce & Gabbana makeup line at the flagship Saks Fifth Avenue store in New York City. We were happy to be able to attend so that we could try some new cosmetics, meet Pat, and report back to Annie at Blogdorf Goodman!
When we arrived at the store, we were surprised to discover that the combination of the makeup launch and Pat McGrath's visit was an Event, with a capital E, complete with live models, television crews, photographers, and reporters. The Dolce & Gabbana counter had expanded to fill a large, central area of the first floor, with a giant, revolving billboard of Scarlett Johansson looming over the scene.
We began by sitting down with two makeup artists, Spencer and Javier, at adjacent stations. Since Angie wanted to focus on experimenting with several lip colors, Spencer began by applying Devil, a vibrant siren red that Angie loved right away. (Think L’Oreal Drumbeat Red with a richer, creamier, long-lasting formula.) However, Spencer had just wiped off the Devil when Pat suddenly swept in and grabbed Angie’s hand, telling her that with her beautiful, pale skin she needed red, wine, and rich rose shades. Angie was only slightly mortified that she was meeting Pat with just-wiped-off lips. She felt she looked like the Master in "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," Episode 1. (“You have punch mouth!” – that’s for Annie!) Angie tried three colors: Devil, the much-coveted Dahlia -- which Pat specifically recommended for Angie's pale complexion -- and Ruby Sheer. In the end, she settled on Devil. The lipsticks are available in two formulations, Classic or Shine, and Devil is one of the Classics. Spencer had also paired Angie's Ruby Sheer lipstick with Nude blush and the Stromboli eye shadow duo (a shimmery nude as an all-over wash, with smoky black used as liner).
Meanwhile, Jessica was consulting with Javier about an eye-makeup look that would be soft but sophisticated. Javier went straight for the eye shadow quad called Nude, to enhance her dark brown eyes. Jessica was surprised for a second, because the Nude shades looked warmer than her usual colors, but then she was glad that she had trusted him. The orangey shade turned out to be a flattering, shimmery peach on her pale skin, and the medium brown blended into her eyelid crease with a velvety finish. Javier accentuated her lash-line with eyeliner in Coffee, a rich brown spiked with gold sparkles; it was a little bit edgy, but in a subtle, under-the-radar way. (Angie actually thought that of all the products we tried, the Coffee eyeliner was the most outstanding product in the line because its bronzy shimmer was so gorgeous.) Javier finished Jessica's look with Coffee mascara, which really did an amazing job of lengthening and emphasizing her lashes without the dreaded "spidery" look. A sweep of Nude blush and a coat of semi-frosty peach lipstick named Soirée were the final touches.
We were both dazzled by all the gold packaging and the flashing cameras, but we still managed to sight Pat McGrath a few times as she circulated from station to station. Pat was wearing all black: a flowing outfit, flat sandals with delicate straps, and a chunky, woven clutch. Her hair was long and sleek, and her skin was incredibly beautiful. Of course, the most noticeable thing about her was her warm, vibrant personality. She took time to touch up the makeup on a few customers, and to speak and shake hands with many more women around the room. It was easy to see how much these women admired her.
One of the more interesting aspects of our visit was a conversation with a New York Times reporter who asked us why we had come to the event. When we both immediately identified Pat McGrath as the main draw, the reporter was thrilled because we had confirmed her idea that Pat's celebrity status was the cause of the great enthusiasm for the event, rather than the Dolce & Gabbana brand itself or Scarlett Johannson's participation as the "face" of the products. Angie and Jessica both admire and respect Pat for her entrepreneurism, her artistic vision, and her many collaborations (including her design of the Armani cosmetics line and her involvement with Cover Girl, Max Factor, and other brands). We were sure that most of the other women in attendance were there for the same reason: to meet a woman who is a role model and unique artist.
For more information, see http://www.saksfifthavenue.com/
The phone number for the Dolce & Gabbana makeup counter at Saks is (212) 940-4949.