Brooke Elliott

"Drop Dead Diva" star Brooke Elliott. Photo courtesy of Lifetime

Brooke Elliott has one of those delicious dual roles most actresses crave.

On Lifetime's surprise hit "Drop Dead Diva," Elliott plays Deb, a vapid, aspiring model who dies and hits the "return" button at heaven's gate, only to come back to life in the body of the also recently deceased Jane Bingum, a shy, plus-size attorney.

When viewers first met the reborn Jane last year, she was groping her new, more substantial body and shrieking that she had been mistakenly sent to hell.

By season's end, she was learning to reconcile her beauty queen ways with her new frame and seriously brilliant mind.

StyleList caught up with Elliott, who is also an accomplished Broadway performer, to chat about her on- and off-screen style, as well as the show's inspired message that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.

StyleList: Your character dies and comes back in a different body. Tell us what Deb has gone through.
Brooke Elliott: She's a size 0 girl trapped in a normal-size body, and the experience for her, to say the least, is a big adjustment.

SL: It's interesting that you say "normal size" because the show describes Jane as "plus size."
BE: The majority of women in America look like me. It's one of the things I love about the show. Jane's pretty and sexy just the way she is, and she's realizing that.

People have been starving for more characters like this. I don't think the show is going to stop all those stereotypes out there, but it is a step in the right direction.

SL: Jane wears some pretty frumpy work clothes. How would you dress her?
BE: I would want her to wear more low-cut tops. I think Deb is excited about having Jane's chest. I would like to see her celebrate Jane's curves and feel her new sexuality. A low-cut shirt would be a great place to start.

Brooke Elliott belted green jacket knee high black boots

Brooke Elliott strikes a pose in a belted green jacket. Photo courtesy of Lifetime

SL: Jane's love life is going to heat up this season. How would you dress her for a date?
BE: A very cute, low-cut dress, maybe with a sash tied off to the side. She would look great in that!

SL: Let's talk about your own closet. What's in it that you can't live without?
BE: I hate to say it, but I am addicted to my American Apparel lightweight T-shirts. I wear them all the time. I love the hoodies.

SL: What do you regret buying?
BE: I have these orange shoes. When I bought them I thought they were so fun, kind of Madonna in the '80s, but they don't really work. They are kind of ridiculous for every day!

SL: Is your beauty routine more or less diva?
BE: [Laughs] I would definitely say diva. I'm a girlie girl. I love makeup. I love accessories. I like to dress up and look pretty.

SL: What are some of your favorite products?
BE: I love Victoria Principal's (Principal Secret) skin-care line, and I use it pretty faithfully. I love a lot of things CoverGirl makes and I also use Armani. My makeup bag is sort of a mix of things. But one thing I swear by is my L'Oreal Double Extend Waterproof Mascara in Black/Brown. For an inexpensive mascara, it's great.

SL: What's in store for your character this season?
BE: Just when Jane's getting comfortable, just when she thinks she's got it all figured out, she gets thrown a lot of curves. Nothing for her is going to be easy!

Season 2 of "Drop Dead Diva" premieres this Sunday, June 6, at 9 pm ET on Lifetime.

In related news, read what "Mad Men" star Christina Hendricks has to say about body image.