Irra Mor's story is no different from the millions of young hopefuls out there planning to become famous and successful. Preferably overnight.
What sets her apart is her zeal to learn, to be careful to ease herself into an actor's glamorous life and not embrace it head on. But yes, she's also enjoying the ride.
Born and raised in Agra, the wonderfully attractive actor made her presence felt in Telugu and Kannada cinema before venturing into Bollywood and she was recently seen in the Jio Web series Inspector Avinash.
As she continues to make waves in multiple film formats, Irra's outlet, from the hard work she puts in for showbiz, is her learning about fashion and building an attitude to carry her style.
Lively, friendly and cheerful, Irra talks to Mayur Sanap/Rediff.com about her glamorous life, her fleek styling and gives a whole bunch of super useful fitness, beauty and makeup gyaan.
How did you make the journey from Agra to films and was your family onboard?
I come from the Jat community based in Agra. My family is very strict. We are landlords, who are into farming.
My father was very particular about us (his children) getting higher education.
When I decided to pursue a career in acting, it created a tricky situation in my life. But after a few long conversations and discussions with my parents, they agreed to support me.
My parents still live in Agra. My mother and brother keep coming to Mumbai. Now, I have also started living in Hyderabad.
How do you always look so fit and glowing?
I thank my parents for the genes.
For me, inner beauty is something that takes care of the outer beauty. It is always the attitude you carry with yourself that makes you look good.
Your Instagram bio describes you as 'hard work and all that jazz'. Tell me what this other 'jazz' is all about for an actor?
It's a lot of hard work. For people like us who come from non-filmi backgrounds, the only way to succeed in this industry is to put in hard work.
The second thing is that one should also enjoy the process.
When both things are balanced out, the output is something pretty good.
What are your fitness fundas?
Whether (you are) someone is in the industry or not, working out and eating right are important.
For us (actors), it's even more important because we are products. We sell ourselves in front of the camera, so we must look fit.
If you're fit, you can wear whatever you want.
Workouts give me a lot of confidence.
What's your workout regime like?
I do a lot of functional training (exercise similar to daily life locomotion) as I really like that.
I do moderate weight training because I don't really believe in doing a lot of it.
For cardio, I skip the treadmill and go out for a run. If you really want to do some good cardio, then it's best to ride a bicycle or go to a park where you can do a slow jog.
What are some of the things you avoid in your diet?
I come from a family where we eat a lot.
But I really make sure that I do not eat junk food. For me, pizzas and burgers happen literally once in six months.
Eating homemade food makes a lot of difference. I eat regular Indian, home-cooked food. A little protein, carbs, salad and fruits, that's all.
Do you have a sweet tooth?
I love Indian sweets like gulab jamun and gajar ka halwa. Once I start eating, I just can't stop.
Whenever I spot sweets around me, I go close to that section, take a deep breath (she mimics herself doing that) and I tell myself, 'It smells so amazing, but I'm not eating anything' (smiles).
What is your beauty regimen?
I keep it very basic. The important thing is to eat right.
Keep yourself hydrated. Use good makeup and make sure you (take it off) before going to bed.
Keep your hairbrushes clean.
Any makeup tips that you picked up on film sets?
I learned contouring on the sets from my makeup dada.
I don't think I'm very good at makeup, but today I did it on my own.
Watch! Irra shows you a couple of her makeup hacks.
Video: Hitesh Harisinghani/Rediff.com
There is a lot of emphasis on how actresses should carry themselves. Do you give in to this pressure?
It's true, but I think it is less than before.
But no matter how you look, your face should radiate positivity and you should be happy.
Fashion has become an integral part of actor's life. What's your equation with fashion?
If you are in this industry, it's important to take fashion seriously.
But there are a lot of people who don't really care about what they're wearing.
I am a moderate person in that regard. I love both Indian and Western attire.
Going forward, I hope to take fashion more seriously. I keep watching (the red carpet) at Cannes, and it's amazing to see actors wearing designer clothes, jewellery and everything else.
Did you discover a new side to your personality with fashion?
See, (regardless of) what you're wearing, it is important to own your look and be confident. Priyanka Chopra always says the same thing.
When I was in Agra, we dressed according to societal norms.
I learned that it is great when you carry your attitude with the clothes that you are wearing. I still follow that.
Who is your ultimate fashion icon?
I like Kareena Kapoor Khan. I really love the way she carries herself.
Watch! Irra's quick workout tips for working women.
Video: Hitesh Harisinghani/Rediff.com
Workout tips you can suggest for working women
Functional training and strength training. Lift mild weights.
A little bit of cardio because girls have a tendency to put on weight quickly. We can always burn the extra calories with simple cardio, like running.
Tips for a great skin
Use cucumber on your eyes and skin. You can use potatoes and tomatoes as well. They have anti-tanning properties, hydrate well, and remove blemishes and dark circles.
Apply aloe vera gel and methi paste.
I have high volume hair, so I apply ghee before I take a shower.
Don't put a lot of makeup. Just a thin layer will do.
Cover your blemishes or the under-eye circles and just put a lip gloss, some mascara and maybe a little blush. Keep it minimum.