K-culture, K-beauty, K-dramas, K-fashion, K-food, K-pop. Korean culture and trends are becoming a huge influence to people all around the world.
In America, Korean pop has become a big influence. For example, a boy group, BTS, became a big hit and eventually won awards at the 2017 Billboard Music Awards and American Music Awards. Additionally, a BT21 pop up shop has opened in Hollywood which follows the shop opened in New York. The pop up shop sells Line characters of BTS’s BT21 merchandise. The shop has apparently attracted more than 15,000 shoppers so far. According to fans, the shops almost always run out of merchandise due to their undying popularity.
With much improved social media, K-beauty has been able to spread to many. Companies like Ulta have partnered with others to release products in different countries. For example, Ulta sells products from brands such as Tonymoly, Skinfood, Missha, SkinRX, CosRX, LAB, and many more. On social media, popular K-beauty styles like fruity makeup or gradient lips have been spreading fast.
In addition, KCON LA 2018 was held on August 11-12. In 2016 more than 76,000 fans attended which is a large jump from 58,000 in 2015. In KCON 2017, there were 128,000 fans who attended, which made it the biggest Korean culture festival in the world. This year, many more than anticipated attended. KCON influences Korean culture to fans by introducing K-beauty, K-food, K-fashion, K-dramas, and K-pop.
According to Alexis Tabibian, a junior at Academy of the Canyons, “Korean culture is definitely more prominent due to the increasingly popular K-pop groups whose music is shared orally and through social media. A lot of my friends talk about K-pop groups and Korean fashion these days. For example, many of my friends are considering taking a trip to South Korea for the sake of experiencing the culture and food. On top of that, I have heard about K-dramas becoming popular in America.” When the culture was not considered mainstream, I had not heard about big groups such as BTS or Twice, but these days I hear their music in cafes and restaurants. In terms of K-beauty, there are many people starting to wear the peachy natural tones with ombre lips rather than the common instagram makeup with intense eyeliner and bold lips.”
Another student, Natalie Choo, stated “I do feel like Korean culture is becoming more popular around the world. For example, lots of people have heard of K-pop groups, K-dramas, K-beauty, etc. I can often see Korean trends appearing in America which is pretty interesting. When I go through clothing stores, I see many styles that have been and are mainstream in Korea. Additionally, Kcon is interesting because it gathers people of all ethnicities and really shows how Korean culture has been able to reach people who do not have Korean roots.”
Interest towards Korean culture is rising at an advanced rate as there are more and more collaborations between Korean companies and companies around the world. Moreover, Kcon is partnered with several Korean companies, such as Laneige, Innisfree, and Stone Music Entertainment. With the help of social media, music, and interest, Korean culture is becoming influential to people all around the world.
Susie Song, Grade 11
Academy of the Canyons