Selena Gomez's Bindi Styling: Offensive? Bollywood Star Priyanka Chopra Talks About the Star's Usage

Gwen Stefani at the 1998 MTV Music Awards, Priyanka Chopra and Katy Perry shopping in and Indian market, Azealia Banks from her video "Atlantis"

@2005 Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic.com, courtesy of Priyanka Chopra, Youtube

Priyanka Chopra talks the bindi, Katy Perry and Selena Gomez.

A traditional Hindu symbol emblematic of female energy and clarity of the third eye, the bindi has become one of the leading fashion accessories among music industry fashionistas. Artists from Katy Perry and Lady Gaga to Azealia Banks and Madonna have rocked this glittering accessory. The exotic look has also been an attraction of controversy. Hindu leaders deem singers insensitive for performing in the accessory.

Sporting the bindi both on and off the stage, Selena Gomez is the latest artist to receive backlash for adopting the accessory. She reignited controversy this past weekend wearing the bindi during an Indian-themed act during her “Come and Get It” performance at the 2013 Billboard Music Awards. Is the look insensitive? Or is it just a beautiful nod to the Hindu faith? Bollywood singer and stunner Priyanka Chopra, who is making her stateside debut this summer with her single "Exotic" with Pitbull, gives her view on this controversial trend.

What do you think about musicians wearing the bindi for fashion? 

Priyanka Chopra: I think it's great that musicians are discovering the beauty of the bindi. In today's day and age, the bindi is not restricted to religious or traditional purposes, but is actually a very popular fashion accessory. 

What do you think about Selena Gomez wearing the bindi for her performances of her new single "Come and Get It"?

I think it's very apt, especially since this track has an undeniable Indian influence and sound. Personally speaking, I think she carries it off really well.

Do you think the use of the bindi and Indian garb in American pop is a polite nod to Bollywood or insulting to traditional Hindu faith?

I would like to think of it as an embrace of Indian culture more than anything else.  The bindi has various forms and meanings, one of which is being a very popular fashion accessory for Indian women. I think it's wonderful to see more and more people around the world embracing our culture. 

Do you wear it while you perform?

Yes I do! It really depends on what I am wearing and what my performance is about. 

Do you think of musicians are using it as a symbol of sensuality rather than for a religious reference?

The bindi has various connotations and not all of them are religious. In a sense it is like a third eye, and is a symbol of female energy. I personally think, when worn appropriately, it is very sexy.

Singers from Gwen Stefani to Azealia Banks and Katy Perry have worn the bindi over the years. What musician do you think wore the bindi the best?

The bindi is such a beautiful accessory, and I think everyone rocks it in their own unique way. If I had to choose, I would probably say Katy Perry. I must admit though, I'm a little bias. We went shopping for Indian jewelry and accessories when she was in India last year. It was a lot of fun and we found some great stuff!