Freida Pinto Covers InStyle U.K., Talks Skype, Dev Patel, and Karl Lagerfeld

frieda pinto instyle uk cover
Photo courtesy of InStyle U.K.
Freida Pinto on the September
cover of InStyle U.K.

She may be monkeying around in Rise of the Planet of the Apes, but Freida Pinto is strictly business (and seriously sexy) in black lace Emilio Pucci for the September cover of InStyle U.K.

Photographed by Alan Gelati, the British beauty dons sleek and sophisticated designs from Gucci, Chanel, Givenchy, and Jonathan Saunders for her accompanying fashion spread set in an elegant home.

But the actress doesn't just keep the couture around when she's on set. Despite admitting to a sweet 40-percent discount at Topshop (yes, we're jealous), she's got a weakness for high-end labels like Prabal Gurung ("I don't get into ethnicity, but I think he's got some Southeast Asian heritage"), Sanchita Ajjampur (an Indian designer consulting for Lanvin), and, her favorite, Chanel.

"I tell you why I like Chanel so much: When I started off, no one wanted to give me clothes to wear," she tells the magazine. "Absolutely no one! All the labels said, ‘Who is she?’ But Chanel believed in me from the very beginning. For the very first red carpet I did at the Toronto Film Festival [2008], they dressed me up in their very current season collection. It’s a massive brand: Why would they invest in someone who is nobody?”

frieda pinto instyle u.k
Photo courtesy of InStyle U.K.
 Pinto rocks a leggy look for InStyle U.K.

Of course, we'd hardly call anyone who hangs out with Karl Lagerfeld when she happens to be in Paris a "nobody."

"I always have a good time with Karl because he’s so appreciative and he wants me to try different things," Pinto says.

When it comes to her boyfriend (and Slumdog Millionaire co-star) Dev Patel, however, his style suggestions aren't always welcome.

"He’s not always bang-on," the L'Oréal brand ambassador says. "I buy for him all the time–I got him some Sanchita and he really likes it. He’s got his own very good sense of fashion. He loves his Burberry; he wears it to most events–Burberry should give him a contract.”

Here's hoping Christopher Bailey is listening. In the meantime, the couple keep their long-distance relationship going the same way the rest of us do: via Skype.

“We use it a lot–and we hate it as well," she admits. "It’s like a tease. I also feel it’s this pressure: ‘Oh my God, he’s seeing me after two weeks, I hope my hair is okay.' It’s just hideous. I think even the most beautiful person looks stupid on Skype.”

Well, that's reassuring.

For more of Freida Pinto's shoot, visit InStyle U.K. online and pick up the September issue, on sale August 11.