There was a solid two-year period in my life where I wore red lipstick almost every single day, without fail. It was one of the first things my ex-boyfriend’s angelic mum noted about her son’s new squeeze, and with justifiable reason. I was indiscriminate when it came to where I’d wear it — I painted my lips when I went to the bank, during my uni classes, while I waited tables, to meet friends for coffee, and before I headed off to partake in dimly-lit, casual activities that certainly did not call for it, like going to the movies, or for a classy dine-in Guzman y Gomez meal. I wore lipstick almost everywhere I went, the two exceptions to the rule being the beach and my bed. Retrospectively, I think this may have had something to do with mum’s ~subtle~ and constant encouragements to “liven up your face!” with a slap of rouge. It also seemed like the perfect accessory for someone who was navigating the weird space between being not a girl, not yet a woman.

That chapter of my life came to an end, as all good things must. At current, my lips may as well be rebranded a nudist colony — 99% of the time they stay bare, save for when I feel fabulous or bothered enough to deal with the unwavering commitment of a day/night on the lipstick. Instead, I’ve just been dabbling in lipgloss, halter-tops, and blue eyeshadow, all in a desperate bid to relive my fifteenth (and best) year on Earth.

In a bid to live in the now, I decided to give Linda Rodin’s Olio Lusso Lipstick a red hot go. It couldn’t have come more highly recommended from my boss, and I’d be crazy not to heed the advice of one of the most clued-up beauty editors on the block. Denying my lips the luxury of Linda Rodin’s treatment would also be, as put by Ashanti, “foolish.”

First up, I introduced my face to the Rodin lip pencil in Red Hedy. I walked into the experience assuming I’d emerge a dead ringer for actress/inventor, Hedy Lamarr, after which the lip pencil is named. I didn’t, but I did look like a nicer version of myself, which is the ultimate end goal of make-up, right? The pencil is enriched with jasmine and neroli oils, which left my mouth pillows feeling hydrated and supple. I decided to do as Linda does, and filled my lips in completely with the lip pencil before I moved onto the lipstick, with very satisfying results.

Next up, I treated my lips to the Red Hedy lipstick. Maybe now I’ll look like Hedy? Nope. Shouldn’t have thought so. Applying the lip pencil before the lipstick proves to be quite fruitful, though — the colour is insanely vibrant. This is seriously one of the most pigmented lipsticks in the business (maybe even the most!), and left my lips feeling soft, smooth, and lush to boot for hours. Unlike a lot of lipsticks I’ve put to the test, Rodin’s doesn’t dry out my lips. There’s not a crack in sight! This is nothing short of a miracle, considering I am v forgetful when it comes to applying lip balm, and we are well into winter — also known as the most terrible time for lips — here in Australia.

After getting a feel for each of them, I took Linda’s lip duo out for the only road-test fitting — a night on the town. The iconic combo passed many obstacles, including pashing a boy without turning his face into a crime scene, and not transferring onto the rim of my martini glass. It didn’t feather or bleed as the hours flew by, and stayed put for the entire duration of my YOLOing, with minimal touch-ups.

Thanks to Linda, I’m 1000% ready to return to wearing lipstick almost every day. In fact, I’m going to start right now. Care to join? Buy the lip pencil and red lipstick here and here. Kisses!

Words, Madeleine Woon.