A confidence-boosting finishing touch, a statement-making pop of colour, a complementary accessory… Lipstick isn’t just a multi-action makeup weapon that many wield on the daily—it’s the one product the seamlessly blends the worlds of beauty and style in a single bullet. Encapsulating this is Givenchy’s Le Rouge lipstick collection, with rich shades in three different textures that emulate key fashion elements of the house: Le Rouge, a high coverage, creamy, luminous formula housed in a black leather case; Deep Velvet, with powdery matte, intense pigment reflecting its suedine case; and Night Noir, where sheer dark colour comes flecked with a constellation of glitter, as does its glimmering black case. These long-wearing formulas come packed with nourishing ingredients, like moisturising hyaluronic acid spheres that deliver a plumping action, smoothing Acmella oleracea flowers, and mango butter for complete comfort throughout the day.
Reflecting the couture spirit and luxurious beauty that this line of lipsticks encapsulates, Willabelle Ong shares her personal style thoughts, makeup musings, fashion favourites and how she gets all dressed up in Le Rouge.
How would you sum up your personal style and its evolution over the years?
My mood always affects what I wear, and my style does change a little from city to city. In Paris, for example, I naturally gravitate towards neutral shades and tailored pieces, while my colour palette and wardrobe options tend to be more eclectic in Tokyo. Right now, I am obsessed with black leather everything, but just three years ago I had sworn off wearing black.
How does makeup play a part in your overall look and style?
For me, makeup is the cherry on top as it can elevate a look, and also either dress it up or down. I love how a smokey eye delivers impact, while a slick cat-eye liner and statement red lip instantly polishes and pulls together an outfit.
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What’s your first memory of beauty?
Putting on mum’s red lipstick at age six and wanting to keep it on forever.
What power does a lipstick hold to you?
Lipstick makes me feel invincible. I notice that I walk a little taller, smile more, and I always feel put together with lipstick on.
The Le Rouge lipstick collection allows everyone to have a piece of “couture” from the house of Givenchy, would you agree? Why?
In a way, yes! It truly is the smallest Givenchy couture accessory.
Having tried all 3 textures (Rich & shiny Le Rouge, ultra matte Deep Velvet, and sheer & glittery Night Noir), which is your favourite and why?
I adore them all but Le Rouge Deep Velvet has to be my favourite. It’s perfectly powdery matte, highly pigmented and glides on smoothly without cracking.
How would you wear the different textures according to your style and lifestyle?
Le Rouge Deep Velvet for day meetings and errands, rich and shiny Le Rouge in shade L’Interdit for dinner and drinks, and sparkly Le Rouge Night Noir for a girls’ night out. The colors can be played around, of course. That’s the beauty of lipstick!
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Who are your beauty and style icons?
For beauty, the seemingly ageless Tilda Swinton and Cate Blanchett. Style-wise, I love Anna Dello Russo and Daphne Guinness. Lady Gaga is also definitely iconic in many, many ways.
What’s the most extravagant fashion item you own? What’s the story behind it?
Many years ago, I would buy and collect shoes that were embellished or spiked, or even of a certain platform height. Tragically most of them are simply impossible to walk in, so now they sit on the shelves as décor. I also have a separate wardrobe for outerwear because I’m a huge fan of feather and fur (mostly faux).
What’s your most memorable fashion experience so far?
Definitely visiting the ateliers of couture designers who have dressed everyone from the likes of Beyonce to Madonna, and Lady Gaga to Rihanna. I am so intrigued by their creative process—it’s incredible.
What does couture mean to you?
When you buy couture, you are essentially getting a one-in-the-world exquisite made-to-measure piece that demonstrates a remarkable level of craftsmanship.
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What makes you feel “couture”?
Red lipstick, vases of fresh flowers, candles, handwritten notes, coffee table books and long warm baths.
Would you say social media and the blogosphere has helped to shape who you are and what you do? How so?
Through my social media and blog, I’ve had the chance to meet so many incredibly talented and creative individuals. Whether I’m on set for a huge campaign or simply meeting a client to bounce off ideas, I see every encounter as a learning opportunity. I truly feel blessed to be able to do what I do, and at the same time, be able to share it with an international audience.
What’s next for Willabelle Ong?
Other than upcoming travel plans and new campaign launches for the rest of the year, I’m looking forward to the holiday season and also excited to see what the New Year will bring!
Videographer: Mark Chan
Video Editor: Ewan Lim
Creative Director: Windy Aulia
Producer & Beauty Editor: Dana Koh
Hair and makeup: Marc Teng
Manicure: Audrey Wee
Styling assistant: Margaux Levy