Taapsee was born on 1 August 1987 in New Delhi. She has a younger sister named Shagun Pannu and plans to launch her into films as well. She did her schooling at the Mata Jai Kaur Public School in Ashok Vihar, Delhi. After completing her graduation in Computer Science Engineering from the Guru Tegh Bahadur Institute of Technology in New Delhi, she worked as a software engineer. She became a full-time model after she auditioned and was selected for Channel V's talent show Get Gorgeous, which eventually led her to acting. Taapsee has appeared in numerous print and television commercials and won several titles during her modelling days, including "Pantaloons Femina Miss Fresh Face" and "Safi Femina Miss Beautiful Skin" at the 2008 Femina Miss India contest. As a model, she endorsed brands such as Reliance Trends, Red FM 93. 5, UniStyle Image, Coca-Cola, Motorola, Pantaloon, PVR Cinemas, Standard Chartered Bank, Dabur, Airtel, Tata Docomo, World Gold Council, Havells and Vardhman. She has also been featured on the cover of magazines Just For Women and MaaStars. After a few years, she lost interest in modelling as she thought that she could never gain proper recognition through modelling, but only through films, and finally decided to act.