Image: AP

Priyanka Chopra, the 35-year-old actress who’s best known for her work in Quantico, as well as her friendship with Meghan Markle and for winning Miss World in 2000, is on the cover for Allure’s first digital cover—a fun experiment by which the brand intends to make clear what its refreshed, outward-facing image is.

Following in the footsteps of editor-in-chief Michelle Lee, who has featured three Asian models in three separate issues intentionally in an attempt to diversify, digital editorial director Kelly Bales explains their choice to feature one of the most well-known Indian women in the world, saying: “If we can diversify the imagery of beauty, maybe there won’t be such a limited definition of what is considered beautiful.”

In conversation with Teen Vogue’s new executive editor Samhita Mukhopadhyay, Chopra opens up about her thoughts on pageants, society’s beauty standards, and more.

On caring about her experience:

“It’s a necessary evil to look the best that you can. But I’m also the kind of girl who likes to be turned out. I like to get dressed up,” she explains. For Chopra, it’s not just pressure, spending time on her appearance is a form of self-care. She tells me that as women we don’t prioritize ourselves enough. “I’m not saying become vain and narcissistic. But I’m saying sometimes, you just need a moment. And give yourself that minute. Just that minute helps so much.”

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On whether present beauty-standards are inclusive enough:

“You see so many women, different sizes, modeling, acting, taking their strength, but it’s the mindset that needs to change, of society, of men, of people — that view where a woman in a plus size should not be a check in the box. Or a woman of color should not be a check in the box. Or a woman shouldn’t be a check in the box.

“Beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder. And everyone doesn’t look the same way, so the world needs to be trained to see beauty differently.”

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On how she feels about pageants today:

“I feel like in an evolved world, where we are today, as long as a woman understands that that’s not [her] only option. And then chooses to do it. Who is anyone to judge her?” She continues, “But when women are made to feel like your only option to succeed is to be OK with being objectified or being made to feel stupid...then it’s wrong.”

Chopra’s candor is refreshing—perhaps she saw herself reflected in Mukhopadhyay, who was literally wearing the same outfit as the actress when they met up. It’s nice to see her get some well-deserved attention and admiration—especially from someone who understands her background and can do her talent justice. And isn’t it truly lovely to see a headline about Chopra with zero mention of that Nick person she’s dating?

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Read the full story here.