K-Pop Fashion Icon: SHINee’s Key

SHINee‘s Key is already a K-Pop Fashion Icon among international fans since he’s definitely one of the most avant-garde fashionistas who stand out in the industry.

And even though most of the idols’ looks are curated by fashion stylists (Choi Minhye has been in charge of SHINee’s styling for a few years now), Key is one of the few that you can genuinely tell loves fashion. But can we really say that Key has his own style, even if it was advised by a stylist?  Yes, we can!  Not everyone has the opportunity to have a stylist advising them and he surely takes advantage of its perks. So how can we define Key’s style?

Key Wearing Jeremy Scott Bart Simpson Sweater

Throughout the years, we have always seen Key stand out from the rest of his band members. When he’s not part of a performance or music video, he always takes the fashion runways to the streets. Key’s style is a perfect mixture of new and old trends, and he not only follows them but sets them. Key is not afraid of mixing a classic Burberry coat with ripped denim jeans, a KTZ shirt, and Underground creepers. He loves to mix different styles like punk, preppy, and Gothic together to create a very fun and original look.

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In order to properly define his style, one word does not suffice for he’s constantly changing and mixing his looks. He loves his androgynous features and embraces his feminine side. He is not afraid of wearing women clothes and making them his own.

Key’s wardrobe contains many designers that he loves. You can always spot him wearing Jeremy Scott, KTZ, Givenchy, Moschino, Cheap Monday, CassettePlaya, and many more.

BLONDE KEY LONDON STYLE

SHINee’s busy schedule never stops Key from attending Fashion Week.  He even walked the Jarret show at Seoul’s Fashion Week alongside his on-screen wife Yagi Arisa. 

Every time I see a new episode of We Got Married Global Edition, or SHINee at the airport, I can’t wait to see what Key is wearing.  He has become a fashion icon for many fans around the world. There are series of Tumblrs and fan pages dedicated to his style and many fashionistas acknowledge him as an inspiration.

The mixture of styles in his looks makes it easy for anyone to recreate them. Websites like YesStyle and Virgin Black carry amazing Korean fashion at very affordable prices.

key at fashion show

When it comes to his hair, Key has done it all. From pink to blonde, from black to brown, and every other color of the rainbow. And not only does he change the color of his hair constantly, but he is always changing his hair styles.  My personal favorite one is the blonde parted in the middle look à la Leonardo DiCaprio in Titanic.

SHINEE KEY BLONDE PARTED IN THE MIDDLE

He even dyes his own hair sometimes. Here’s footage from SHINee’s One Fine Day:

Need more proof of Key’s undeniable fashion icon status, or just want to delve in cool pictures of him? Check out this gallery of my favorite looks:

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There is no stop for Key! His fashion is so fun, and we can’t wait to see how his style continues to evolve!

Share with us your K-Pop Fashion Icon in our comment section below, we might showcase her/him too! And don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

4 Female K-Pop Idols With Unique Beauty

There’s one image that comes to mind when we think about female K-Pop idols: super skinny and very feminine. And while we may like and respect the predominant image in the genre, there are also other women who stand out for their unique beauty and are equally loved and accepted by the public.

Of course, not all artists want to be role models for fans, but being an idol comes with responsibilities, given that they have influence over large groups of impressionable kids. Here’s a list of four women who set good examples in terms of embracing their unique and natural beauty:

1amber

f(x)'s Amber tomboy

In an industry plagued by the über feminine and lady-like image, f(x)’s rapper stands out for being a tomboy and one of the very few you’ll ever see in the field. You will always find Amber wearing shorts or pants with loose shirts and short hair, even when the rest of the group members wear short skirts and heels.

Amber not only stands out within f(x), but in all of K-Pop.

Coming from the same company that produced Girls’ Generation, I find it fascinating how SM Entertainment decided to show the llama’s personal style and personality as is, rather than overwrite it completely and sell us something generic. Amber goes against the conventional K-Pop female idol image, “what works,” and guess what? She’s one of the most popular members among international fans! She’s the perfect example that there’s a market for every style and that individuality also works.

2nada

Wassup's Nada Curvy

This rookie group’s company also decided to go against the current and debut a group who dances, sings, and looks different than most. But the one who stands out the most is Nada, Wassup’s rapper. This girl was blessed with an S line even Western artists can envy. Moreover, she flaunts what her momma gave her with flattering, form-fitting ensembles that are also very badass.

And this might not be twerking per se, but she does make movements with her booty no other female group attempts yet.

Let them haters hate and eat their hearts out.

Sadly, WASSUP deals with the scrutiny of a culture that doesn’t fully embrace sexy images and is often slut-shamed. But just as one equally criticized and fierce diva once said,

Can’t nobody stop the fire. Let them haters sit n’ stare.

So grab your popcorn and pick a comfy seat because it doesn’t seem like the group’s stopping anytime soon. Curvy Korean girls can now be represented in the K-Pop sphere without having to turn to Western artists who might resemble them better.

3gain

ga in smokey eye

Ga In has lots of things going for her, including a great body and being very sexy. In a country where getting double eye-lid surgery is equivalent to getting a new iPad in the West for good grades, Ga In embraced her small eyes by opting out of the procedure and showing off her iconic smokey eyed makeup.

Her eyes are adorable and convey as much emotion of those with double eye-lids.

While this woman is not shy in flaunting her sexiness, she joins Soo Hyun in promoting self-image acceptance, which is crucial for young fans who look up to them.

4soohyun

Lee Soo Hyun Looks

I fully understand that the K-Pop Star winner is only 15-years-young and she still has a lot of growing up (mentally and physically) to do, but it seems like she and her brother have a good idea or the route they want to embark within the music industry.

Akdong Musician revealed on an interview the plastic surgery clause in their contract with YG Entertainment. Chan Hyuk, Soo Hyun’s brother, commented that they amended their contract to include that they would not undergo any plastic surgery. And while there really isn’t anything wrong with K-Pop idols with plastic surgery, it’s really refreshing to see artists with enough self-esteem to accept how they look naturally. Soo Hyun’s super cute as is right now and she still has to finish puberty, but the fact that she’s taking precautions with the possibility of her agency making her alter her looks is commendable.

Precious and perfect just the way she is.

The siblings’ success goes beyond their looks, for they have just formally debuted and have slayed all of K-Pop with their hits “200%” and “Play.” Soo Hyun is the best example of how talent triumphs looks any day.

Who do you think stands out for their non-conventional looks? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

What’s Wrong With “Plastic” K-Pop Idols?

Far too often have we seen a tabloid published about an idol‘s “shocking” confession of plastic surgery, whether it’s a full-on transformation or a tweaking of the nose. While some fans support their idols’ decisions, others resort to complaints and hate messages. Given that South Korea is one of the top countries in terms of the best plastic surgeons and the most cosmetic surgery procedures, why are people surprised when they find out about these “scandals?”

Granted, just because a country is popular for a certain practice, it doesn’t mean that such a practice is justified. However, when it comes to cosmetic surgery, people tend to have a negative perspective on the matter. But just what are their reasons for this negativity?

In my opinion, plastic surgery should not be considered a crime. First of all, it is generally an individual’s decision. What they choose to do with their bodies should be their choice, not yours. Second of all, unless they plan to go through drastic measures (like injecting cooking oil into their face) that may be life threatening, they should be allowed the right to change what they don’t like. Yes, some people may be able to live with their flaws, but self-esteem varies. Just because you can handle that your nose is a little flat, or your eyes a little uneven, doesn’t mean that your idol should be able to handle it too. They are not the same person as you, and they will never be, so why expect them to have the same rationality as yours?

Honestly, a lot of the work done on South Korean idols tends to improve their aesthetic appeal; in a country and career field where looks can mean everything, it should be no surprise that people fix some of their flaws. Sometimes they are persuaded by their agencies to get surgery, and sometimes they choose that road themselves. This does not mean that you should stop supporting their work!

Many K-Pop idols have no qualms about plastic surgery, and some even go out of their way to tell their fans that they’ve gotten work done. Just take a look at Kwanghee from ZE:A and Goo Hara from Kara:

ZEA Kwanghee Plastic Surgery

Kara Goo Hara Plastic Surgery

They’ve admitted that they had a some help in the beauty department. Kwanghee himself occasionally jokes about his multiple cosmetic procedures, giving a lighthearted air to the touchy subject.

Does this mean that all idols need to get plastic surgery in order to be popular? No. But they should not be judged for trying to make a living out of their looks! Even extending from idols, there are many actors and actresses of whom have gone under the knife. Like I said, given that the entertainment business is highly focused on appearances, this should not be a surprise.

The plastic surgery trend branches out to high school students looking towards improving their looks for a better social life, more job opportunities, or just a plain old self-esteem boost. I myself have a friend who went through double eyelid surgery after our sophomore year (to set matters straight, she is Korean), and she perceived the ordeal as a perfectly normal thing to do. Did it change her appearance? A little bit, but her personality remained the same.

Some may argue that this may prove to be detrimental to the fragile self-esteem of young people, but I believe that a cosmetic surgery is just like more intense makeup, or a tattoo, or a new change in style. Everyone has their reasons for wearing makeup; to look pretty, to clean up their appearance, or to capture the attention of someone special. Those very reasons can correlate to plastic surgery all the same.

One of the issues I can see, besides the dangerous aspect of some plastic surgeries, is how certain idols are promoted as “all-natural” when it’s obvious that they have had work done. But, once again, that is how the industry works. What you see on the screen may not be who that person is in real life, and that’s reality. One of the functions of popular culture tends to be the advertisement of ideal people and values in a world that is far from ideal.

Am I saying that everyone should accept plastic surgery? No. If you have issues accepting it, then that’s ok. What’s not ok is forcing your belief on someone who thinks differently than you. If a friend decides to get surgery, and the result turns out pretty well, do not be a sour grape and tell them that they looked better before. Sometimes it’s better to just be a kind human being.

What are your thoughts on idols with plastic surgery? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

Taeyang’s Music Video Style Evolution: Real or Fake?

Following last year’s success with Ringa Linga, YG Entertainment announced early last week Taeyang’s upcoming comeback Rise, which comes out on June 2nd. And while the suspense for the beat, lyrics, music video, and choreography builds among fans, I’m left wondering about the overall style concept

Taeyang has had a few changes in fashion as a solo artist and within the group, but it’s safe to say that, up until BIGBANG’s Alive, the R&B influence in his style was there: from the snap backs to the baggy jeans to the fedoras. But then he made a major turn with Monster, which back then, I thought was just due to the music video’s plot line. Ringa Linga proved that this trendier version of Taeyang was staying. And while fans (me included) loved it and everyone received it well, including the media, it was hard not to notice G-Dragon’s staple all over it. This made me wonder, is Taeyang maturing as an artist or is he allowing his fellow BIGBANG member or YG Entertainment to craft him into a brand name similar to G-Dragon? Let’s take a detailed look at his solo concepts over the years:

His first mini album Hot was released in 2008.  His singles were Prayer and Only Look at Me, written and produced by Teddy. The R&B track displayed Taeyang in the music video shirtless, in jeans, diamond earrings, snapback cocked to the side –very à la Usher.

Then came his first full-length album Solar in 2010, also R&B, where he delivered hits like I Need a Girl, Where U At?, Wedding Dress, and I’ll Be There. Most of the aforementioned songs were produced by Teddy again, while I Need a Girl was not only co-written by G-Dragon but he also appeared in the music video and featured on the song. In this music video, we see a more sartorial look to Taeyang with the R&B-Soul flow. Wedding Dress has a good balance of casual and formal (I mean, he is at a wedding after all).

Wedding-dress-taeyang

I-need-a-girl-gif

The last sighting of the Usher-esque Taeyang was probably in BIGBANG’S Fantastic Baby, where we saw him incorporate more color and vividness to his attire. It was then definitely gone by Monster. But I digress; I won’t reference BIGBANG’s concepts and genre too much since that’s a whole different thing.

Taeyang-Fantastic-Baby

Monster marked the pivotal moment where Taeyang switched styles, going from soulful R&B to electronic glam Hip Hop –or G-Dragon-fied. Yes, by Ringa Linga, his influence was apparent and probably due to G-Dragon himself producing and writing the song. The BIGBANG leader also had a few cameos in the music video.

g-dragon-taeyang-ringa-linga

Ringa Linga mixes EDM with Hip Hop and loses track of the R&B influence he previously had, musically and fashion-wise. On his behalf, it came at a time where R&B lost its popularity of the 2000’s and Hip Hop resurfaced in mainstream music. The only traces of the Usher-esque Taeyang are the vocals and dance moves –but even that became stronger and focused more on the choreography itself as an art than being sex on a stick.

Furthermore, both guys collaborated and created the TY & GD for the Stampd collection that included a series of shirts, snapbacks, and sweatshirts they sported on the video. They also wore pieces by Rick Owens and Givenchy to create a ghetto gothic look.

However, this change did not hit us with surprise. The boys had long paraded themselves last summer at Paris Fashion Week, where we spotted Taeyang wearing outfits that were far trendier than baggy jeans and a crisp white tee. Taeyang and G-Dragon attended all the hot ticket shows such as Rick Owens, Givenchy (his favorite brand), Kenzo, and more.

Rise will mark Taeyang’s third solo project, so what can we expect? I believe it will probably be the same ghetto gothic concept with some sort of twist. Maybe adding more trap like in CL’s solo MTBD. And, while I completely dig this look and sound since I am a fan, I have to wonder about the authenticity of it all.

Sure, K-Pop idols are known to be plastic figurines put on stage by the companies that manufactured them. But YG Entertainment artists are equally known for having creative freedom –or more so than most. Taeyang must have some say in his solo projects, right? After all, he did compose and co-write Solar, Wedding Dress, and Where U At and wrote the lyrics for Take it Slow on his own from the Solar album. Ringa Linga, on the other hand and as mentioned before, was written and produced by G-Dragon and another producer.

As I said previously, I’m a fan of this ghetto gothic plus the Hip Hop/EDM concept Taeyang has embarked with,  but I would love it even more if it came from his own creativity and being inspired by G-Dragon or other artists, rather than recreating what people in control tell him to. Maybe Taeyang has matured into a trendier, more playful style. Or maybe YG noticed that G-Dragon’s Coup d’état and One of a Kind were well received around the world and want to cash in on Taeyang as well. I guess we’ll have to wait until June 2nd to see what Taeyang, G-Dragon, Teddy, Choice37, and/or anyone else working for YG have in store for us. I know I’m eager to find out.

What do you think of Taeyang’s style, is it fabricated by someone at YG or authentically his own? Don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.

2NE1 Style: Top 5 Music Video Fashion

We already know that when it comes to fashion, 2NE1 has done it all. They’ve showed us from punk to glamorous femme fatale styles.   And to celebrate 2NE1’s fifth anniversary, we’ll take look back at their best music video fashion.

YG Entertainment is a trend setter; 2NE1 became the first female K-pop group to show us a different style than the cookie cutter cutesy style. The always bad ass members CL, Bom, Minzy and Dara never seize to amaze us with their transformations.

Here are my top five options of the best outfits worn by the girls:

5

2ne1 Scream Fashion Outfits

This is not only my favorite song, but the styling for all the girls is simply amazing. We get to see both sides of 2NE1: their badass, I-don’t-care-I’m-the-best attitude, and the ultra chic one.  They wear outfits from designer houses like KTZ, Versace, Balmain, Givenchy, and Burberry Prorsum. Check out the video below, you need to see it in full to appreciate all the outfits.

42NE1

From Rapunzel length hair to feathers and green wigs, 2NE1 looks fabulous while being sad. The Tim Burton-inspired video has the girls adopting a very gothic look.  Those huge braids that Dara sports in the video gives me life! They could have gone another route with the style and concept of the video, and I’m glad they went this way. The Gothic Lolita trend was very popular in 2010 and 2NE1 adapted the concept very well. Take a look at the amazing piece of art below.

 

32ne1

Dara Purple and Magenta Hair

After many years of telling boys to go away and telling them they don’t care, 2NE1 came back with I Love You, and we fell head-over-heels in love with them once again.  Who could forget all those gorgeous Versace  pieces paired with Chanel and Roberto Cavalli? Plus, the  Mary Katrantzou  pieces at the dancing scene were to die for! Two of my favorite looks where CL in the all black unitard dropped it low scene. Dara looked amazing with the purple and magenta wig. Love, love. love!

CL Unitard I Love You

22ne1

2ne1 Come Back Home Fashion

2NE1 took us to the future with Come Back Home. People are obsessed with the virtual world and our girls hack into that world and destroy it.  Our lady rebels were decked out in AMBUSH, HOOD by AIR, Alexander McQueen, and Rick Owens for ADIDAS. Once again, Dara takes credit for the best hair in the video.  They also took us back to the 1990’s by channeling Seo Taiji and the Boys, with the beanie and blue wig. Even the YG Entertainment building sported the same beanie during promotions for the song.

Dara Come Back Home Beanie

12ne1

2NE1 Missing You Wearing Saint Laurent

The number one spot goes to all the fashion on the Missing You music video.  The video has really beautiful visuals that are paired perfectly with an amazing styling. It’s nothing new that the ladies love Versace, but this time around, the Saint Laurent pieces stole the show. The styling for each members is flawless. It makes me think that we are watching a fashion spread from Vogue. Even the only male in the video is styled perfectly, wearing a Maison Martin Margiela mask that makes his scenes that more dramatic.

Maison Marting Margiela Mask DramaticMaison Martin Margiela Hat

CL in Versace Fur Coat

2NE1 always surprises us with amazing fashion, not only on their videos but also in their live performances and on the streets.

To continue 2NE1’s fifth anniversary celebration in good spirits, here is a bonus entry for Happy. I really love the styling on this video  and I couldn’t pick a spot on the countdown. The video even has a cameo from their good  friend and designer Jeremy Scott.

2ne1 Happy Jeremy Scott

What was your favorite styling? Did I leave out one of your favorites looks from 2NE1? Let us know! And don’t forget to subscribe to the site and follow us on Facebook, TwitterInstagram, Tumblr, and Bloglovin’ so you can keep up with all our posts.