M.A.C (1984)

M.A.C: the favorite brand of fashion make-up artists.

M.A.C Cosmetics is the acronym of Make-up Art Cosmetics. It is a cosmetics company of Canadian origin, but now famous and loved all over the world by make-up artists of models and celebrities, but also by make-up lovers and all fashionistas. To date, the brand is listed among the top 10 ID makeup brands in the world.



M.A.C Cosmetics was born in Toronto in 1984.

It was founded by entrepreneurs Frank Toskan and Frank Angelo. Both already had a strong passion for aesthetics.

Indeed, Toskan was already a make-up artist and a photographer. He meets Angelo in the 70s and a splendid collaboration is born immediately.

Angelo, from an early age, had shown his makings and his interest in becoming an entrepreneur, so much so that, in 1969, after being the founder and member of a traveling band, he moved to Toronto. It is here that he decides to open a hair salon, naming it “The Hair Cutting Place“.

Angelo e Toskan

But, when their paths crossed, the two dedicated themselves to the birth of brand

The company was founded in Toronto, but then their market has expanded internationally to a global level.

M.A.C proves to be a unique market of its kind for the quality of its products and the general identity of the brand. In fact, both entrepreneurs are determined to create something innovative and that no one has thought of yet: a line of cosmetics dedicated to models. The main goal was to create products that were able to adapt to all skin types and colors and perform at their best in photo shoots. Success starts right from the wide range of colors offered and the unique packaging of their products. At first, the two developed their own cosmetics in their kitchen, then sold them in the beauty salon owned by Angelo.

In fact, their first buyers were make-up artists, photographers, models, stylists, and editors, in any case, people from the fashion industry.

THE 80s

The management was divided between the two entrepreneurs: Toskan at the top as creative director and Angelo as head of the marketing department. Moreover, with their unconventional choices, they make a big revolution in the eighties market. They decide to promote their line with Ru Paul, a transvestite comedian, and KD Lang, a homosexual singer.


This promotion choice is certainly bold for the times. It’s the 80s: the world is shocked by the Cold War and the Berlin Wall. The discovery of AIDS is the basis of the marginalization of sexual minorities and of the narrow-mindedness of society. Everyday life is afflicted by a feeling of inequality and injustice, of submission of the disadvantaged to the will of the majority. But Angelo and Toskan are not there, and in their small way, they are in opposition, in a revolutionary attitude that can shake up the times.


Their commercial choice proves to work. Their particular sensitivity to the LGBT community led to the foundation of the M.A.C AIDS Fund, to help people with AIDS and to react to the discrimination they suffer. The foundation raises $5.5 million over three years, which goes towards AIDS awareness and prevention and humanitarian and health relief. Revenue is guaranteed by the sale of M.A.C brand products such as the Viva Glam tickets Helping Kids, an association that takes care of children affected by the disease. Thus, the Viva Glam advertising campaign.


In addition to these initiatives, in recent years MAC has also carried out the MAC Cruelty-Free Beauty which prohibits testing on animals, both the finished product and the raw material, and the Back2M.AC which consists of giving away lipstick from the permanent line to customers who bring 6 empty packs of containers back to the shop.

Also in 1994, the Estée Lauder Companies acquired MAC thanks to a proposal that the two entrepreneurs could not refuse, with the promise of expanding the market abroad.

However, the condition is that control of the creative side of the business remains with Angelo and Toskan. After four years, in 1998, the French company completed the acquisition.



Unfortunately, Frank Angelo’s professional and personal contributions were lost early. At only 49 years old, in 1997, while he was in Florida with his partner to plan the opening of an M.A.C boutique in Miami Beach, he suffered a cardiac arrest caused by complications of surgery. But the memory of Angelo remains in the brand identity. Visionary and sensitive, he remains an inspiration for all people who intend to do business in a world that, in a certain sense, has many features in common with the 1980s which served as the backdrop for the founding of MAC.

Subsequently, Toskan leaves the company to pursue charity work with his brother-in-law.


In 2003, the first M.A.C store was opened in New York City, in Greenwich Village.

From this moment on, the brand became well-known everywhere and began various collaborations with other brands, artists, and celebrities.


2015 is a year of many collaborations for MAC, which drives all makeup fans crazy. Even Vogue magazine announced them in preview, to keep all fans updated.

These are important collections since they are mainly Limited Edition capsules, which are not re-proposed for subsequent seasons, especially suitable for collectors who keep the packaging unique.


The first to mention is the partnership with Bao Bao Wan.

Bao Bao Wan is a woman of many talents: artist, pop philosopher, muse, and jewelry designer.

MAC doesn’t randomly choose her as his partner. In fact, the brand – always attentive to those who don’t follow fashion, but create it – has chosen the Chinese it-girl as the face of a new collection made available from March 2015. The protagonist of this line is the face, thanks to the combination of metallic gold tones and rich jewels, inspired by the decorative designs that identify the star’s style.


The designer said:

“Gemstones and sensuality are the key elements of the M.A.C Bao Bao Wan collection.

It has been an amazing experience working with M.A.C. on creating this makeup collection. They have created a collection that perfectly interprets my vision. I was inspired by the concepts that characterize me as a jewelry designer. The collection offers shades that recall my favorite and rare gemstones, modulated with multiple applications of gold”.

The collection consisted of nine products: Beauty Powder for the face, Veluxe Pearl Fusion for the eyes (five shades), four Lipsticks for the lips, and three Nail Lacquers for the nails.


Philip Treacy is the hat designer most loved by celebrities, and again in 2015, he signed a Limited Edition collection with M.A.C.


Philip Treacy is a magician and the nickname is not given to him by chance: there is his mastery behind the hats from the Harry Potter film saga.

Furthermore, collaborations with McQueen, Lagerfeld, and Givenchy appear in his curriculum.

Treacy has always been intrigued by Mac’s identity:

“I’ve always admired the creativity and vision of the brand which is always pushing the envelope and has always encouraged creative talent. So when they approached me about this project, I immediately agreed. With M.A.C., I had absolute freedom and collaboration from the shades to the looks, to the spirit, up to the visual. I must admit that the visual is the part of the collaboration that exalted me the most. We stylists take care of the photos, almost as if they were Ferraris”.

There were twelve products in the collection: among them Highlight Powders, Fluidlines, Paint Pots, Mascara, Lipsticks, and Brushes.


The couturièr launches a collection signed by him for Mac, in which the packaging of the products (mainly lipsticks) bears his signature. The line refers to the delicate colors loved by the Maison and also incorporates them in the same structure of the packaging, differentiating them from the classic Mac products which are usually black.



Prabal Gurung is an extremely visionary designer. He has an exotic appeal to Westerners as he was born in Singapore and raised in Nepal. He launched his career as a stylist in New Delhi and later moved to New York.

M.A.C has the identity of an avant-garde brand and has found a kindred soul in Gurung.

Gurung’s collection is opulent, with many smokey shades and luxurious and exclusive packaging.



Isabel and Ruben Toledo have been married since 1984, but they are also partners and collaborators, in short, a couple in all respects. They draw, illustrate, and create, always done together. They are a fashion presidential couple. Michelle Obama herself has worn some of their creations. Since they are a Golden couple as what they touch turns to gold, this shade could not be missing in their collaboration with M.A.C The collaboration aims to combine Isabel’s sensational sensibility for color with Ruben’s vibrant energy, in a palette of shades designed to sculpt, give color and transform the face. The unique white packaging is enlivened by Ruben’s illustrations, a series of graphic lines and red-lipped faces.


M.A.C has also collaborated for advertising campaigns and capsule collections with various influencers from all over the world such as Alessandra Steinherr, British, Beauty Director of Glamor UK, Caroline Daur, beauty and lifestyle blogger, Paola Turani, Italian model and influencer but also many others.


The program is aimed at specialists in the cosmetics sector and guarantees discounts and benefits to its members. In order to be a member, it is necessary to provide professional certificates and employment contracts. Applications for admission are evaluated at the company’s headquarters. The company also offers discounts to students of professional cosmetic schools.


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