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Abby roberts morphe
Courtesy of Morphe

Abby Roberts had her Morphe palette planned years before they asked her

The TikTok make-up artist chats Halloween, Halsey, and iPad palette designs from years past as she marks this milestone beauty guru rite of passage

Are you even a beauty guru without a Morphe collection? From James Charles to Jaclyn Hill, Morphe has consistently helped to make household names out of MUAs, working with them to release products that remain staples in tutorials to this day. To the generation brought up on YouTube beauty, the brand was a fundamental building block of any make-up artist’s kit – a rite of passage to collect, and a sign of industry recognition to be able to put your name on their products. In the age of TikTok, this legacy now extends to star MUA and musician Abby Roberts, who today announces a partnership years in the making.

“Back in the day, when I was getting into make-up, watching beauty gurus and stuff on YouTube, it was all like Morphe, Morphe, Morphe,” says Roberts of her longstanding loyalty. “I was with them from the beginning.” Marking a major milestone in the make-up obsessive’s decade-long trajectory from 11-year-old fan to creative collaborator, Roberts has come a long way from setting up American P.O. boxes just to work around the brand not actually shipping to the UK yet, her perseverance in emailing them (and amassing 17 million followers on TikTok alone in the meantime) prevailing in the end. “I’d had this palette planned on my iPad for years, even before Morphe ever approached me,” she admits about the story behind her go-to piece from the collection. “I was like, ‘I’m planning my Morphe palette, and if they ever approach me, I’m just gonna hand this straight over and have it all ready to go.’” 

Years of research and development later, here we are. With the crucial “best friend seal of approval” behind it, Abby Roberts x Morphe is an invitation to get stuck into the bold beauty looks she’s built her brand on – just in time for Halloween, a favourite holiday of hers, and a particularly creative time for the make-up community at large. A curation of “The Abby Roberts Essentials”, this is a toolkit for self-expression made in Morphe’s enduring spirit of championing internet beauty talent.

Here, Roberts speaks on working with Morphe, the intersection of her interest in make-up and music, and what makes the best Halloween costume.

What did you have in mind when making the collection? 

Abby Roberts: I wanted to make something that was like the only products that I need to carry around with me because I travel a lot and I’m always having to do creative make-up looks for photo shoots, or gigs, or TikTok and everything like that as well. So I just wanted to make something that had my full artists’ palette: like all the colours that I would ever need, so I could create basically any look with it. And something super creative as well that fits in with the style of make-up that I do. 

The Abby Roberts Essentials Kit.

Abby Roberts: Yes, exactly! 

What’s one product you couldn’t travel without? 

Abby Roberts: Definitely the palette – I’ve been travelling with it for like most of this year now. I took it on the Halsey tour with me [Roberts opened for Halsey for her US tour this summer] and did my make-up with it like every single day so yeah, I’ve really been getting some use out of it.

How does your creativity in music and make-up intersect? 

Abby Roberts: I love visuals so much and I think that’s such an important part of my world and also of being an artist and a musician as well, with music videos and stuff. It’s all about creating your own little visual world, and I think make-up is a super important part of that to me as well. I can express myself and create looks that will show up nicely on camera and on stage and stuff. It’s a fun little creative challenge for me.

What’s your ideal tour make-up?

Abby Roberts: I try to do something different every single night on stage of the Halsey tour. I kind of match it to my outfit a lot of the time as well – but just anything that’s like a lot of sparkles I think shows up nicely, bold colours, big eyes... I’m very big on eye make-up.

Who would you say this collection is for? 

Abby Roberts: I think people who are expressive and want to challenge themselves with make-up. It’s not for your everyday make-up, I would say, but definitely, if you’re going out and you want to make a statement, this collection is for you.

What advice would you give to someone who was picking it up for the first time?

Abby Roberts: I’d say, just don’t be afraid to experiment! There are a lot of bold colours – don’t be scared by that, just like go in, have a play about. You can do it in your own home, you don’t have to go straight away with it. It’s fun to play around with.

Did you have any favourite early beauty guru Morphe collaborations when you were learning make-up from the internet? 

Abby Roberts: I really loved the James Charles collaboration. I feel like the James Charles palette really, changed the face of the make-up community – it got everyone into experimenting with colour. I owe a lot of my artistry to that palette, I’ve been getting some use out of it for a while. The Jaclyn Hill one as well, years ago when they first did that one – I loved that palette too.

What do you hope to see from people trying your products?

Abby Roberts: I hope to get people out of their comfort zone a little bit. I definitely included neutrals as well, and a lot of the browns in the palette are kind of like everyday eye contour shades because I hope that it’s a palette that everyone feels comfortable using, whether they just want to stick to the neutrals or have a little play about as well.

This is released around Halloween which is obviously such a big holiday for the make-up community. What have you got planned?

Abby Roberts: I want to really bring back the super creative looks that I became big for on TikTok for Halloween this year because I’ve been focusing on music a lot this year and last. I didn’t really have time to do these insane looks, so I want to do more of those. Feed the people on TikTok!

I want to do a lot of collaborations with some of my favourite creators and get them trying out the palette and stuff as well. I want to see what other people think because nobody’s really tried it, yet – apart from me and my best friend. I want to know what everyone else thinks of it.

I love that, your best friend is always your best sample. 

Abby Roberts: Absolutely! I’m like, ‘I trust your opinion, tell me if it’s shit!’ You need best friend approval. 

Any specific favourite past Halloween looks? 

Abby Roberts: Monster High for sure, I’m bringing that back this year as well. Me and my sister are gonna do like a few more characters who are collaborations, so keep an eye out for that. 

What do you think makes the perfect Halloween look?

Abby Roberts: I think you just gotta go all out, man. People try to do sexy Halloween looks and just put a black lip on. I’m like, ‘No! I want to see full costume, full commitment.’ I’m going to be painting myself all blue or something like that. You gotta commit to it, be scary! Literally, when I’m cleaning up my wardrobe, I’m like ‘I should keep this because I could use it as a costume!’ and I end up with like four wardrobes, but it is what it is. 

Obviously, social media is a huge part of what you do – is there a challenge planned for your products or are you just excited to see what people do on TikTok? 

Abby Roberts: You might have given me an idea there. I’m gonna have to jump on that for sure... [laughs] Nah, I’m just excited to see people actually using it, because it feels like it’s been something that I’ve had to keep a secret for so long. I’m just excited to have it out in the world with people!

What other collaborations are you planning for the future? 

Abby Roberts: Product-wise, I’m going to stick with Morphe for a while. I’m going to let that chill for a minute and let people enjoy it, but music-wise I definitely want to collab with a lot of artists next year… I think it’s going to be exciting!