PATI DUBROFF ON SETTING THE MOOD
How the makeup artist creates her freshest looks
I don’t want to be bored when I look at my makeup kit. I want to be inspired.”
“I WAS OBSESSED WITH MAKEUP at 10 years old,” says Pati Dubroff. “I remember sitting in front of my mother’s mirror, captivated by the potions. Whatever was there, I would put it on myself, ask to put it on her, and eventually put it on all of my friends.” Dubroff, who works with stars like Priyanka Chopra Jonas and Kate Bosworth, got her start behind the beauty counter at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City when she was a teen. From there she hustled to build her portfolio, even taking jobs on low-budget MTV music videos. “Shoots would go on for, like, 18 hours, and I would get paid $200 or $150,” she says. “I was just thrilled I was doing makeup!” It wasn’t long before the driven young artist caught the attention of industry giants like François Nars, who hired her as his first assistant on runway shows for fashion houses like Valentino, Prada, and Marc Jacobs in the early ’90s. “The makeup that François would do was very relatable to me,” she says. “It was [about] taking a real woman and making her a better version of herself. I really cherish that.” Today, the L.a.-based makeup pro is praised for enhancing her clients’ natural beauty. “No one makes skin look better, healthier, and happier,” raves Laura Dern.
This summer Dubroff also generated buzz for creating Margot Robbie’s warm, glowy looks on the Once Upon a Time in Hollywood press tour. “We always try to come to Margot with a mood board that could be a steppingoff point with room to grow,” Dubroff says.
Her boards, like the one pictured at right, can feature anything from classic movie stars to lightning bolts—as long as they evoke the right feeling.
After taking a few days to recharge post–press tour (“I literally stayed in a tent in Italy,” she says. “I hung out with goats, went on hikes, and swam”), Dubroff jumped back into action. She says she’s excited by the “Euphoria effect,” referring to the HBO show known for its characters’ daring eye makeup. “I’m seeing people really have fun right now,” she says. “I love when people show up on a carpet with something a little bit edgy, a little bit unexpected.”
Dubroff with Priyanka Chopra Jonas
Dubroff’s mood board