Priyanka Chopra Jonas: ‘I’m A Less-Is-More Kind Of Person’

From Miss World to The Matrix, Max Factor and beyond, Priyanka Chopra Jonas has come a long way, says Annie Vischer

Priyanka Chopra Jonas

by Annie Vischer |

As years go, 2022 is set to be a vintage one for Priyanka Chopra Jonas. The global star welcomed her first child with music star Nick Jonas, her husband of three years, via a surrogate in January and will celebrate her 40th birthday in July. Her new Prime Video series, Citadel, is set for release later this year, a big-budget spy drama starring Richard Madden and Stanley Tucci, which Priyanka spent a large portion of 2021 filming in the UK.

As well as her gruelling filming schedule, in 2021 Priyanka launched a haircare line, Anomaly, available in the US (‘Good, environmentally-friendly products were missing from the market, so I set out to create a sustainable haircare brand’) and published her memoir, Unfinished, now a New York Times best-seller.

With 76.8m followers onInstagramand as one half of an A-list couple, it’s easy to forget the 39-year-old has been in the business for over two decades.

At just 18, Priyanka won Miss World 2000 under the bright lights of London’s Millennium Dome. ‘There were 96 of us getting ready backstage,’ she recalls. ‘I was curling my hair but I got jostled and burnt my forehead. I put so much make-up on that injury and pulled my hair over it to hide it,’ she laughs, ‘it was terrifying, but when I walked out I put my armour on. I knew I had to appear confident.’

When I walk out of the door I wear a shield, I become a different person

Over 20 years on and Priyanka channels the same energy. ‘When I walk out of the door I wear a shield, I become a different person. In the public eye you have to have your guard up,’ she says. But there is some respite. ‘There’s this ritual I’ve always had. I take off my make-up and feel, spiritually, like I’m taking off my day. That lightens me,’ she smiles. ‘When I come back home I go back to being my most vulnerable self, I get into my jammies and relax.’

Priyanka Chopra Jonas
©Max Factor

Priyanka’s Miss World title taught her everything she knows about the beauty industry today. ‘I was still figuring out who I was,’ she says, ‘so I tried everything. I used to wear so much make-up.’ And now? ‘I’m a less-is-more kind of person,’ she says, but skincare is important to her. ‘My mum always had a wonderful skincare routine and I inherited that. I used to watch her do it, fascinated. She always made time for self-care.’ Priyanka’s own look – kohled eyes, killer eyebrows, glossy hair – caught the attention of Max Factor, who made her its global brand ambassador in 2021. ‘It’s such a legacy brand, it’s been around for decades and the only way you can survive for decades is if you’re open to evolution,’ she says.

Heritage has always been important to her. Born in India, she moved to the US aged 12, where she lived for three years with extended family. In Unfinished, Priyanka reveals the racially-charged bullying she experienced, her classmates shouting insults as she walked the school corridors. She returned to India to finish her education, where her confidence grew. ‘I was a real ’90s kid – loose jeans, puffer jackets, dark lip liner with a frosty mouth, really thin eyebrows and lots of hair.’ She shakes her head. ‘I was that girl with hoop earrings roller-blading to school.’

India’s fifth Miss World title shot her to near instantaneous Bollywood fame. And after 10 years, Priyanka was a bona fide Bollywood star before Hollywood beckoned. Though she made her transition to Hollywood look easy – first playing an FBI agent in series Quantico in 2015 and picking up two People’s Choice Awards – she encountered cultural challenges. ‘Generally, Indian movies have a lot more heart and emotion, they’re driven by feelings and music,’ she says. ‘American movies are focused much more on the internal, so physically, as an actor, balancing the two was difficult at first.’

I want to be at the helm of telling South Asian stories

Priyanka’s perseverance paid off. Last year she starred alongside Keanu Reeves in The Matrix Resurrections. ‘Growing up I watched The Matrix so many times! It was surreal working with the original cast.’ Next year will see her star with Celine Dion in romantic comedy It’s All Coming Back To Me and collaborate with Mindy Kaling on a wedding movie set in India and America. Universal Pictures won the rights to the comedy, which will be written by Mindy and star Priyanka. ‘I want to be at the helm of telling South Asian stories,’ says Priyanka. ‘We don’t tell enough of them in global entertainment, and I have a part to play in creating inclusion for my community.’

As she approaches her milestone birthday, Priyanka has definitely hit her stride. ‘If I could tell my younger self anything,’ she says, ‘it would be to not fret about things that are out of my control.’

Inside Priyanka Chopra Jonas' Bathroom Cabinet


Priyanka Chopra Jonas' Favourite Beauty Products - Grazia 2022

Kilian Forbidden Games eau de parfum
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'This is my go-to scent at the moment. I like to mix up my fragrances, whether that's trying out new ones or wearing a couple together.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

Max Factor Facefinity Foundation
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'It's a primer, concealer and a foundation – I use it for all three and a little goes a long way. My shade is Warm Caramel.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

111Skin Celestial Black Diamond Eye Cream
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'I love this. I apply it before I go to bed.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

111Skin Vitamin C Brightening Booster
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'This brightens my face and helps with uneven skin tone.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

Max Factor Divine Lashes Mascara
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'It has to be shade Rich Black.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

Max Factor Colour Elixir Lipstick
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'My favourite shade is Chilli.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

Dr Barbara Sturm Cleanser, £45
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'My skin is on the dry side, so I often use this brand – the cleanser to wash off my day before bed, even if I'm not wearing make-up.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

Dr Barbara Sturm Hyaluronic Acid Serum, £235
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'My skin is on the dry side, so I often use this brand – the cleanser to wash off my day before bed, even if I'm not wearing make-up.' - Priyanka Chopra Jonas.

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