Lead With Love: Pritika Swarup

The founder of the inclusive beauty brand Prakti straddles the line between tradition and technology.
“We’re leading a movement toward education and empowerment,” says Prakti founder Prikita Swarup.


Photography and interview by Cathrine White

CATHRINE WHITE: What inspired you to start your own skin care line? Why was Ayurveda such an important component of it?

PRITIKA SWARUP: I’ve practiced Ayurveda, India’s 5,000-year-old proven wellness system, my entire life and feel blessed to have been brought up with this holistic approach to beauty and wellness. I understood how powerful these rituals and remedies are and wanted to share them in a fresh, modern way that would resonate with a global audience and make Ayurveda truly accessible to all to improve overall well-being. At the same time, I’ve also always understood the power of science and technology, and how critical they are to preventing and solving health and wellness concerns. I set out to develop products that bridge the gap between tradition and technology.

In addition to this, I felt compelled to create a brand that is inclusive and offers a true representation of global beauty. From childhood, I didn’t feel represented in Western media, but I didn’t realize the extent of the lack of representation until I started modeling, and how absent so many groups were. My experiences led to my desire to use my voice and platform to advocate for change in the beauty industry: increasing diversity and inclusivity. I made it my responsibility to champion all women with Prakti. This is at Prakti’s core. Prakti champions India’s heritage, culture and sciences. It was important for me to make a place for my culture and bring it to a wider audience by drawing on my own personal experience. I’ve always felt nurtured by every part of my identity—comfortable and proud of my cultural duality: born and raised in America of Indian heritage. I never felt caught between these two worlds. That’s how Prakti’s unique hybrid concept came about—it’s meant to be a true representation of my generation as we’re all hybrids of mixed cultures, heritages, experiences and goals.

CW: What do you consider essential beauty and health routines?

PS: For me, beauty and health routines are deeply rooted in nurturing both my inner and outer well-being. Balancing the mind, body and consciousness is essential, and the foundation of the holistic philosophies of Ayurveda. There’s an interconnectedness of all aspects of our being, so I prioritize daily practices that promote harmony and balance. Self-care rituals such as meditation, working out and breathing practices really help me find balance and clarity throughout my hectic days. Daily reflection also allows me to stay attuned to my thoughts, emotions and intentions, fostering personal growth and mindfulness.

I believe that beauty comes from within, and nourishing my body with a healthy diet and drinking lots of water, preferably out of a copper water bottle (there are so many healing benefits), and keeping my skin care routine consistent is everything. Establishing a simple daily routine that you can follow morning and night is crucial. I rely on the four-step Prakti RaniRitual—I don’t have to stress about which products to use or my specific skin concerns each day. It’s the ideal routine for all skin types.

CW: What are some of the hardest challenges you’ve faced launching Prakti?

PS: I’ve faced so many, and have always aimed to embrace them as an opportunity for growth and learning. Breaking into a saturated market has been a formidable challenge. We’ve had to confront and overcome numerous obstacles every day to establish our presence and differentiate ourselves effectively. The industry is ever-changing, so it’s essential to evolve while staying true to the brand’s foundational principles. This is definitely a hard line to walk at times. 

Creating products that truly stand out in the competitive beauty landscape has taught us the importance of pushing the boundaries of innovation. Our breakthrough products like PritiPolish Instant Glow Exfoliator, SundaSkin The Essential Hydrating Serum and PaviPure Warming Detox Mask have undergone extensive iterations to meet our standards of efficacy and quality. Prakti combines cutting-edge scientific innovation with time-trusted Ayurvedic ingredients to craft clinically effective skin care products that deliver instant results and create an immersive, luxurious wellness experience. My goal from the beginning has been to create better products—ones that resonate deeply with our audience, addressing their needs and desires, while empowering them to feel their absolute best. 

CW: How do you view Prakti’s impact in the industry?

PS: At Prakti, we’ve embarked on a transformative journey to redefine the traditional definition of beauty by embracing the rich heritage of holistic beauty and wellness. Our brand’s impact on the industry stems from our pioneering role in making Ayurveda accessible and relatable to a diverse audience.

We’re not just offering products; we’re leading a movement toward education and empowerment. Our commitment to making Ayurvedic education accessible has been pivotal in reshaping industry norms. We launched our Ayurveda for All platform to provide resources for all women to easily integrate these beneficial practices into their lifestyles to improve overall health and well-being. For me personally, this isn’t just a professional endeavor but a deep-seated passion. I’m committed to furthering our educational initiatives, aiming to enlighten and empower women who might not be familiar with this beneficial wellness system that I have been practicing for my entire life. Our vision extends beyond products; it’s about enriching lives and fostering a community that values holistic well-being. We firmly believe that education is the cornerstone of change, and our dedication to Ayurvedic education represents our unwavering commitment to making a lasting impact on the industry and the lives of those we touch.

CW: How did diversity play a role growing up in Virginia?

PS: Being one of the few Indian individuals in my class at school made me acutely aware of my differences. However, my mother played a pivotal role in shaping my perspective. She instilled in me a deep sense of pride in my culture and heritage, emphasizing the richness of our history. Her teachings encouraged me to embrace my identity wholeheartedly, despite feeling different at times.

CW: What has inspired you the most through this journey?

PS: The incredible women I work with. From the very beginning, I’ve been fortunate to have remarkable mentors who have provided tremendous support and guidance. Additionally, collaborating with powerhouse partners who have worked at top beauty brands like Estée Lauder, L’Oréal, and more has continuously motivated me to grow as a founder. praktibeauty.com