6:00AM The time-honoured saying “The early bird catches the worm” rings true for me. When I’m home in New York, I wake up early so I can check emails and call my London agent, and start my day with a cup of Ristretto coffee from my Nespresso machine.
7:15AM I step into my heated blacktile bathroom to get ready for the day and run a hot bath. Next, I drink Juice Press Aloe Water to dehydrate, and I take David Kirsch Wellness Co. Muscle Restore. I’ve worked out with him once or twice, but his supplements are beyond [good]. This one supports muscle recovery and reduces fatigue and soreness. I also love coconut water from Juice Press, but one of my absolute favourite drinks is the all-green juice. It provides the skin with the ultimate hydration. We all know that’s the beginning of everything anyway: Beautiful skin.
7:30AM My beauty regimen is simple but concise: I exfoliate my face twice a week, then cleanse. If my skin needs an extra boost, I use SK-II Facial Treatment Mask for about 20 minutes. It’s the best thing for a healthy, glowing complexion. My makeup routine is a small amount of base, a mascara, nude eye shadow, and a lip balm or gloss. When I go out at night, I wear a blusher and tons and tons of mascara—very easy, very fresh, very light. I can’t sit around doing my own makeup all day—I wish I could.
For fragrance, I apply a custom blend of essential oils and perfumes. I love spritzing Michelle Roques-O’Neil’s Restore Therapie Aura Spray, which is an infusion that instantly rebuilds your energy. Then I dress in my signature black outfit. This usually involves a headband, a blouse, a cashmere sweater from Lainey of Ireland, and Lululemon pants. I top it all off with my Lorraine Schwartz diamond earrings and bangles and a jade ring I found in a market in China. I throw on custom black New Balance sneakers and off I go! I always wear black; I’m so busy working, and makeup gets quite messy. I use my fi ngertips instead of brushes; it creates a better look and blending using the heat of my fingertips also allows more control over the pressure against the skin. The work we do is tough, you know! I’ve seen team members become paralysed for the whole day when some eye shadow falls on them. And I know how that feels—you feel grimy, there’s powder and foundation on you. So at least with black, you can easily disguise or wipe it off . It helps you look a little more pulled together when you’re working like crazy.
I didn’t wear much makeup growing up, but my mother was obsessed. She would take me shopping on the weekends to search for new beauty products. There wasn’t much out there for black skin, so we would mix colours to create the proper shade. Wanting to improve the inclusion of various skin colours in makeup has been a huge motivation in my career. I work with Proctor & Gamble Beauty, CoverGirl, Max Factor, Dolce&Gabbana… Each brand is unique and committed to creating the best products, so I am always ensuring their goals are kept in mind.
7:45AM During Fashion Weeks, I typically work with 30 to 50 assistants, all of whom are extremely talented and quick-handed. We travel with up to 75 bags loaded with materials and products, so that we are prepared in any situation. Think 2,000 pairs of false eyelashes, 50 shades of foundation, powders, lipsticks, glosses, glitter, sequins, body makeup, rhinestones, latex, and masks. To top it off, we also bring a library of reference books for inspiration. When I’m travelling to and from shows, it’s quite a spectacle: We usually book two vans, a car, and three motorcycles in case we need to dart in and out of traffic. Fashion waits for no one!
9:00AM My days are full of creative collaboration and intense teamwork. I am blessed to work with the best hairstylists, editors, publications, models, and designers. I met Steven Miesel in the early ’90s, and we have a very special friendship and lots of crazy memories. At one photo shoot we had such extreme heat that the makeup melted and we had to use a portable icebox to save the lipsticks.
1:00PM Lunch is served. I usually bring my own, which consists of lentil soup, a tuna salad, or a grilled fish dish.
6:00PM Shooting typically wraps around this time, and I head back home in my car. When I leave, I make sure I have all my devices. It’s quite a feat keeping track of my BlackBerry, iPad Mini, and iPhone 5, but I love them all! I have the Zinio app, so I buy and read all my magazines on my iPhone. I am obsessed with architecture, interiors, decorating magazines…
6:15 – 8:15PM When I arrive home, I turn on the BBC to catch up on the news. Most evenings, before dinner or going out to meet friends, I finish up any additional projects I am working on, such as taking interviews, testing new makeup, creating face charts, colour testing, or reviewing images from my library of art and fashion books.
8:30PM If I’m having dinner at home, I usually have grilled sea bass with fennel, colourful vegetables, and quinoa. I love dark chocolate. I’ve got a thing for Lindt 70 percent [cocoa]—I’m getting ready for 85 percent. I have a lot of indulgences, but that’s not what I’m doing at the moment. I like to stay at home and relax or have dinner out with friends, though I don’t count that as “relaxing” because I’m running everywhere. If I have dinner plans or want to go out for a drink, I make reservations at different restaurants in the city. I adore Sant Ambroeus, Omar’s La Ranita, Crown, The Waverly Inn, and,The Mark Restaurant by Jean-Georges. I always carry a few go-to beauty essentials: mascara, foundation, lipstick, eyeliner, and lip balm. A few of my favourites are CoverGirl Bombshell Volume Mascara and Dolce&Gabbana Smooth Eye Colour Quad in Stromboli.
10:00PM I try to get home by this time to unwind with a relaxing bath. I love spas, but I rarely go anymore. I haven’t been to the Mandarin Oriental for about 900 years. I add a capful of Aromatherapy Associates in Relax Deep to my bath for a calm and restful night. I also use products from Santa Maria Novella; their Garnedia Milk Soap is luxurious and instantly softens your skin, and their Idrasol body cream smells beyond delicious. Really, it’s amazing. Finally, a bath is not complete without Diptyque or Agraria candles.
10:30PM Friends rave about my comfortable sofa. It’s famous. I curl up on it to catch up on episodes of Mad Men, Scandal, The Good Wife, Downton Abbey, or Game of Thrones. Also, I’ve been known to shop online—Polyvore, Net-a-Porter, ShopStyle… I look for shoes at Saks and Bergdorf Goodman online. I may wear black most of the time, but everybody sells black.
11:00PM I check my agenda for the next day and review my tentative schedule.
12:00AM If I’m lucky, I’m in bed by midnight and [try to] get at least five hours of sleep.
- Pat McGrath