The mangalsutra is a sacred and symbolic piece of jewelry in traditional Indian culture, and nobody wears it better than Bollywood actresses. With expensive budgets and extravagant weddings common amongst Bollywood stars, it’s only fitting that some of India’s most famous and admired mangalsutras were worn by the country’s most beloved big screen actresses.

So, what are the most famous mangalsutras worn by actresses in Indian cinematography, and what did they look like? In this blog, we’re going to explore some of our favorites, while also giving you some tips when it comes to choosing your own – so let’s get started!


The mangalsutra is a sacred Hindu necklace gifted to the bride during a traditional Indian wedding ceremony. The mangalsutra usually consists of two strands: a black thread or beads and a gold pendant embellished with diamonds or other precious gemstones. According to Indian tradition, the bride must wear her mangalsutra for the full duration of her marriage, and only remove the mangalsutra upon the death of her spouse.

The mangalsutra was traditionally fashioned with 3 knots: one symbolized the bride’s commitment and love for her new spouse, one represented her respect and commitment to her groom’s parents, and the final knot was said to represent her devotion to God. While traditional mangalsutra necklaces were often incredibly long and fashioned with elaborate threads, modern mangalsutras – such as those worn by Indian actresses – are now more contemporary, and better suited to everyday wear.


From Shilpa Shetty to Priyanka Chopra, here are some of our favorite Mangalsutra designs from India’s biggest on screen stars:


Sonam Kapoor married Anand Ahuja in 2018, and decided to sideline tradition by designing her mangalsutra herself (typically, the bride’s mangalsutra is designed and gifted by the groom’s family.) Kapoor wore a beautiful mangalsutra necklace adorned with both her and her husband’s astrological sun signs, Leo and Gemini, as well as a solitaire charm in the middle. Not only is Kapoor’s design one of the most unique modern Mangalsutras – thanks to the added astrological charms – but


Deepika Padukone married Ranveer Singh in 2018, and opted for a minimalist yet incredibly elegant mangalsutra necklace. With thin black beads and a gorgeous solo diamond pendant, Padukone’s 22k gold mangalsutra is sure to have inspired thousands of other modern Indian brides.


Priyanka Chopra married Nick Jonas in 2018, and the two enjoyed both a traditional American White Wedding, as well as a traditional Indian wedding in Jodhpur. As well as enjoying two extravagant wedding ceremonies, Chopra also wore two mangalsutras! One, which was designed by Bvlgari, features a delicate gold chain and just six black beads, along with six other circular charms in the center. The other mangalsutra was designed by Sabyasachi, and featured a similar design, but this mangalsutra featured a larger diamond pendant.


Aishwarya Rai’s mangalsutra was slightly more traditional than other more contemporary examples, and was so long that the actress actually ended up shortening it a few years after her wedding! Featuring a long chain and a trio pendant of dazzling diamonds, Rai’s original mangalsutra sat just above the ribcage; after modification, it now sits comfortably around the neck and atop her chest.


Shilpa Shetty married Raj Kundra in 2009, and is one of the first Bollywood stars to wear her mangalsutra on her wrist. Shetty’s mangalsutra features a string of traditional black beads on a gold bracelet chain, and a single coin-shaped charm ties the design together. While it’s not customary for Indian brides to wear their mangalsutras on their wrists, there’s no explicit law against it, and given that Shetty’s job as an actress involves plenty of physical movement and travel, a wrist mangalsutra is likely more convenient.


  • Make yours unique. Just like Sonam Kapoor, many brides are now opting to add their own personal touches to their mangalsutras – so why not get creative and add something sentimental and personal to yours?
  • Don’t be afraid to modernize. Just like Aishwarya Rai shortening her mangalsutra, or Shilpa Shetty opting to wear hers on her wrist, there are plenty of ways for you to modernize your design for practicality.
  • Consider a pendant. While a mangalsutra can consist of a string of black beads alone, a pendant adds that all-important touch of class and elegance, whether it be a diamond pendant, a gold pendant, or a gemstone.