The Fashionista is in – Talking Beauty with Beauty Bets

Former mag editor Elizabeth Dehn on cosmetics necessary for college

by Kara Nesvig

Elizabeth Dehn has an impressive resume: stints with Target and [beauty company] Kiehl’s, writing for national publications like Rachael Ray’s magazine and formerly serving as lifestyle editor at local publication Minnesota Monthly. Add beauty blogger to that list and you have her newest endeavor, daily blog Beauty Bets. ( Since I’m always eager to chat with a fellow product junkie, the two of us bonded over talk of face masks and foundation. Tell me about your career thus far. How did your various jobs in beauty-related fields lead to the blog? I was born with some sort of gene that makes me want to put on a face mask as often as I can, to play with makeup and give my friends facials. I was at the [Minnesota Monthly] for awhile and loved my job, but I really wanted to focus on beauty and wellness. Magazines and the publishing world is shifting so much to online and it seemed like a good time to take that leap and teach myself all about online media and social media. It’s time to take a risk. I want to write the blog and do more freelance writing on beauty-related stuff. I still freelance for Minnesota Monthly and write a fashion blog for MOA. As of February, [Beauty Bets] is going well. I’m a beauty contributor for Twin Cities Live; all of those things are pieces to building your brand. How’s the blogging world different from the magazine world? I approach the blog as I would approach a magazine, by creating an editorial calendar. I follow an architecture. It shouldn’t be super obvious to the reader, but they also come to expect certain features will appear on a regular basis. That allows me to get a sense of what people get excited about. You have to work in advance if you’re gonna test a product, feature a trend or interview someone. I don’t do a lot of it on the fly unless there’s something newsworthy or I just fell in love with something yesterday and have to tell you about it. I am committed to blogging every weekday, every morning. I think that’s really essential for any blogger who is really blogging as part of their livelihood: you have to be consistent. So let’s talk makeup. What do you consider “must haves” for any makeup-wearing college student? Your skin is in its prime, so you should really focus on it and let it shine through. I would say a really dewy tinted moisturizer; you don’t want to cover up that young skin. Wear an SPF every day. Curling your eyelashes and mascara make you look super awake when you have been drinking all night and the same goes for a good under-eye concealer. A really fun bright blush is so youthful for all ages. Go for a fun bright color on your lips. At that age, you can be experimenting so much more with color. It tends to start ageing you later on in life and you look like you’re trying too hard. I think a bronzer is the best thing ever. You shouldn’t be tanning, but everyone wants to be tan when they’re in college, so get a good bronzer and you’ll always feel pretty. What should we stay away from? Fake baking on so many levels: it’s bad or your skin, it looks tacky, you look orange. Use a self-tanner, use Jergens Natural Glow. Overplucked eyebrows, don’t do it. I have spent years growing my eyebrows out; everyone starts overtweezing their brows when they get to college. Stay away from super frosted lips. Girls like the frost. Foundation that doesn’t match, I think that happens because your budget is a drugstore foundation, you don’t get to really try it in the right lighting. Don’t pick your zits. Don’t touch your face. Get on a routine with your skincare and wash your face before you go to bed. What products should we splurge on and which are OK to get from the drugstore? The only thing you need to spend money on at your age is if you have any skin problems that you can’t fix with product, then spend the money to see a dermatologist. It should be covered by insurance. I think you can find everything you need at the drugstore if you keep it simple. I know it sounds boring but Cetaphil or Purpose face wash, Neutrogena sunblocks. I like L’Oreal for drugstore makeup. The formulas are really good, especially the mascara. I think that if you’re gonna splurge in addition to the derm, good face masks and exfoliants get more powerful when you spend a little money. Buy a jar of a hydrating mask or a deep pore cleansing mask. Share it with your roommates; that jar will last you forever. What about dudes? They might try to pretend that they’re too cool and manly for products, but we know that’s not true. My husband is a total guy’s guy and yet he gets into these products because they’re hanging around the house. Guys need sunscreen too, guys should wash their face and they should definitely invest in a nose hair clipper! They should not shave between their eyebrows; have your hairstylist/barber trim your brows. l get a lot of questions about bacne. Neutrogena makes a salicylic acid body wash that’s great for clearing up body breakouts. They could invest in a deep pore cleanser or a deep pore mask. Garnier just came out with a three-way cleanser, you can scrub with it or leave it on a clay mask and it’s all in one for $7. That’s a perfect guy product.