• Anastasia Pentias

TBN: Super Hyped Products Edition- Pat McGrath MatteTrance Review

I've noticed a prevalent trend in recent years. There seems to be an unspoken picking of sides among American beauty mega-influencers. They rarely speak about Charlotte Tilbury products, if at all; the smaller-audience influencers are the only ones who do. How is it that people with millions of followers don't deem it necessary to inform their audience on the products of one of the most popular brands? In contrast, they rave about Pat McGrath Labs; all products are reviewed extensively and celebrated without exception. This, despite the fact that Pat McGrath's line is inaccessible to the vast majority of beauty consumers. At 140 euros for an eyeshadow palette, the brand inevitably excludes most of us.

Having tried both lines, I can assure you they are firmly on the same league. These are both premium-quality brands, despite their big price gap. For me personally, Charlotte Tilbury products work much better. Her eyeshadows (at half the price of Pat McGrath Labs) stay truer, for longer. I own more than half of her lipsticks, that's surely proof of approval. Pat McGrath's Elson lipstick, on the other hand, is my favourite red ever. I'm on the umpteenth tube. Alas, at a 50% higher price than Charlotte Tilbury's lipsticks, I get through them at three times the speed. I suspect their super-soft, velvety texture is due to the formula being thoroughly whipped with air, like sumptious cream. The unknown reason for this huge disparity in media coverage by mega-influencers is not about how good the brands truly are.

Ever since last spring, the brand has been available at Selfridge's. European influencers have followed with reviews at a very logical pace and intensity. They love them, yes, but they also love and review Tilbury, not like their American counterparts.

If you went by what the mega-influencers said, you'd think the Pat Mc Grath matte lipsticks, called MatteTrance, are the best invention since sliced bread. Such are the rave reviews about this formula, that Jeffree Star has called them the best matte lipstick ever! I have been a huge fan of Pat McGrath's work for decades, ever since I lived and breathed fashion and worked as a stylist. But is her line that amazing, compared to Charlotte Tilbury that is rarely even mentioned by Big Beauty?

I haven't tried the foundation because the price is beyond my means. I love luxury beauty and I prefer it, but there is a cut-off point beyond which I never go. 80 euros for foundation is not even a remote possibility. Her brightly-coloured matte lipsticks for me are the best in the game. They are vibrant, smooth, very pigmented, non-drying and very stable. Both Elson shades, Extravaganza, Obsessed and especially Full Panic are divine. You can buy them here and if you also buy their 10 euros VIP delivery once, you get free delivery for everything for a full year!

The dark, goth shades were patchy on me. She also has a wide variety of nude shades. When I tried them, I thought they weren't for me; they lacked dimension and they don't bring your face to life like Tilbury shades. When I recently posted about my favourite reds, however, I received requests to properly review them. Despite my initial impression, I ordered a trio of mini lipsticks. The set contains two nude shades ('IMO' and '1995') and a darker, warm brown ('Flesh 3'). I tested them throroughly. The photo below is of IMO. The colours are smooth, stable for hours, fade out very evenly and don't bleed into wrinkles. They also cost 42 euros and are identical to Catrice's Ultimate Matt lipsticks that cost 4 euros. I wrote a review on them here

The colours are not special. They do a fine job but they don't make my lips look bigger like Tibury's Matte Revolution. They lay flat on my lips, no sumptiouness in sight. They are powdery and comfortable but not flattering. How are these hailed as 'the best matte ever'?

Lesson learned, for me at least. Take everything you hear from the social media beauty titans with a grain of salt. Their word is not gospel. You must experiment with brands yourself. Because at the end of the day, it's your own money and enjoyment on the line.

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