As a female founded brand, BELLA's mission is to celebrate our female trailblazers to empower and inspire you along your journey. That’s why we’ve started our Monday Muse series. Each Monday, to start your week on a high, we will highlight one woman who’s paving the way in their own field and in life. Here, they’ll answer questions on everything, from how they started out to challenges and highlights, plus beauty advice they think everyone should know, along with their favourite top trick. What's better is that you can ask them anything via the comment section below! This week: Izzie Deibe, Beauty Journalist!
Tell us about yourself
I’m Izzie Deibe, a freelance beauty journalist. This means I spend most of my time learning about skincare, makeup, haircare and all things beauty, and then writing articles about what I've discovered.
Show us your best beauty hack.
My best beauty hack is creating coloured eyeliners with eyeshadows. If you’re like me and have far too many eyeshadow palettes with bright colours that you wouldn’t necessarily wash all over your lids, you’ll love this hack. Just take a thin angled brush and spray it with your favourite setting spray, dip it into the eyeshadow, and use it to draw a wing or whatever design you'd like on your eyelid. This hack is ideal if you're not very experienced with winged eyeliner because it will show up fainter than a waterproof black pen liner and is easier to remove, and it also means you don't have to own so many eyeshadows.
What is your best beauty advice?
To use everything in moderation. I often get too overexcited when I’ve found a product that I really love and then I'll be too heavy-handed and apply way too much product. Not only does this mean that you waste product and end up spending more money, but you also won't get the result you want.
For example, I used to have acne and I’d wash my face too many times a day and apply too much salicylic acid, and that made my skin angrier, and the spots kept getting worse. I'd then use way too much concealer to try and cover it up, but it didn’t cover much at all. It's much better to use less concealer and then build up the coverage with a brush and a sponge. The same goes for pretty much every product you can think of, from blusher to nail polish.
What is your go-to makeup look?
I love letting my natural skin show, so I often go foundation free and just micro conceal where I would like a little extra coverage. I'll add a little bit of bronzer to sculpt my cheekbones but right now I'm all about embracing my fair skin, so I prefer to focus on liquid or cream blusher (I'm loving striking burgundy and plum shades at the moment) and highlighter. I have three go-to brown and gold eyeshadows that really make my blue eyes pop, and I love using white eyeliner to open up my eyes even more. I'm really into mascara and even if I have no makeup on at all, I'll always apply mascara. I'm a sucker for an overlined lip, but I like to diffuse the product a little with a brush and follow with a really creamy lipstick to make my lips look more pillowy and Marilyn Monroe-esque. I'm not a big powder fan, but I will go crazy with the setting spray.
"No amount of external validation will help you beat imposter syndrome, it all starts from being authentic and owning your strengths and skills "
What has been your biggest challenge in your career?
The biggest challenge I've had to overcome in my career is imposter syndrome. I got my first journalism job while I was at university, so for a few years I was always the youngest and least experienced in the room. I felt as if I was winging everything and that I didn't deserve to be doing what I was doing at that age, and I carried this feeling with me for a long time. When somebody would congratulate me on directing a shoot or having a piece published in a newspaper or magazine, I thought they were just being nice. Or, I'd always make excuses like, "yeah, but the editor changed this bit so I must be rubbish," or "But it only took me a few hours to write, so it's not my best work".
For years, I was constantly afraid of being 'found out' for having too little experience, not being a naturally talented writer, or that somebody would notice that I had 'no clue what I was doing', which is ridiculous for someone who had a degree, an extra journalism qualification, and lots of experience to show that, in fact, I deserved to be where I was.
Eventually, I realised that if you let imposter syndrome get to you as a journalist, you end up comparing yourself to others in the industry and writing a piece in their style rather than your own. Or, you might pitch ideas that you think you 'should' write rather than writing what you actually care about, and that won't make you feel any more confident or secure in your abilities.
It's so important to know your own worth, figure out what makes you unique, and accept the fact that you do work really hard and are talented. No amount of external validation (job offers, commissions, bylines, awards, or compliments) will help you beat imposter syndrome, it all starts from being authentic and owning your strengths and skills.
What has been the highlight of your journey?
The highlight of my career so far is a specific piece I wrote for Elle about the beauty industry being inaccessible for blind people. I'd had the story in my head for years since my mum is severely sight impaired, and it felt cathartic to put it all down on paper. I put a lot of time and effort into writing this piece, and I got a lot of really incredible feedback from blind and sighted people all over the country who had read my story and felt moved by it. It's the story I'm the proudest of because it had a meaningful impact.
Who is your biggest inspiration?
Kathrine Ryan. Not only is she hilarious and incredibly glamorous, she's the definition of authentic. She always says it how it is, she’s ballsy, and I learnt a lot about being confident and standing up for what I believe in from listening to her podcast and reading her book The Audacity. She’s also paved the way for women in an industry that typically doesn’t value women, which must have taken a lot of self-belief and determination. She's an icon.
How do you love yourself?
I love myself by slowing down and taking the time to listen to my body. I have endometriosis so my body isn’t always on my side, and I often get really painful flare ups. These can come at frustrating times, when I have exciting events to go to or lots of deadlines. Sometimes, loving myself will look like sleeping in late, going for a long walk, drinking a green juice, having a bath, ordering a yummy takeaway, and doing my work in the evening instead (this is part of the reason why I went freelance). And other times, loving myself will look like wearing platform heels, a face full of makeup, going out for cocktails and staying out late dancing and socialising.
What is your daily motto?
My daily motto is "I can and I will". Every time I express a limiting self-belief (e.g. "I can't meet this deadline", "I won't get this job", "I can't get out of bed early to get a walk in before work".), I switch it to "I can and I will".
What is 'beauty' to you?
Beauty to me is about self expression, creativity, and embracing yourself fully. I don't view 'beauty' as perfecting your appearance and looking Instagram ready. I much prefer seeing everyone's unique traits and being able to get a sense of who someone is and how their feeling by just looking at how they've presented themselves. One of my close friends wears blue eyeliner and mascara and it has become her staple look. Yes, it brings out her beautiful brown eyes, but it also immediately lets you know how fun and vibrant her personality is upon first meeting her.
What insecurities have you overcome and how?
I used to be very insecure about being “weird” or "different". I grew up being very, very tall, I had a quirky sense of style and I got made fun of a lot. I was just generally thought of as a little odd by my peers. I have big Phoebe Buffay from Friends energy, and sometimes that doesn't resonate with people. I'd often leave conversations and think... "why did I say that?" because often people just didn't 'get' my sense of humour, my opinions or my taste. That can feel quite isolating and it can be tempting to just fake it and try and fit in.
Instead, I just started taking inspiration from the people that I really admire who are also considered "weird" or "different". I'd ask myself "What would Lady Gaga do?", and the answer was always "she'd definitely wear that crazy eye makeup look" or something to that effect. I also got the chance to interview Tan France and he told me "if you wouldn't take fashion advice from that person, then why do you care what they think?" and I now apply that to all aspects of life.
What advice would you give to yourself if you were starting all over again?
Just be yourself. You'll be rewarded with amazing, like-minded friends and a career that literally pays you to think outside of the box and express yourself. Your quirks are your USP. Don’t dull your sparkle to make others feel more comfortable!
You can invite any 3 people to dinner, who has made the guestlist and why?
James Acaster (because he’s my celebrity crush and we have very similar personalities, so I think we’d get on well), Harry Styles (he’s iconic, I love his style and we have the same birthday, so I’ve always felt a connection with him), and Lana Del Rey (one of the greatest songwriters ever, and I also need to know her beauty secrets).
What is on the horizon for 2023?
I'd like to focus more on writing investigative beauty features and show my face more on social media by making my own beauty content. This year is all about creativity, trying new things, and being a little more audacious.