For the kids who have a soft spot for Song Joong Ki, Seventeen and everyone in between
There’s a lot to be said about the Korean wave. A bottomless motherlode of catchy music, inexplicably addictive shows and pretty boys aplenty, it’s a worldwide phenomenon that has gradually been stealing hearts since the 90s. While some are capable of dipping their toes in Hallyu waters and plunging no deeper, some of us aren’t quite as lucky, diving head-first into the trap of K-music and drama. A star-studded, emotion-riddled collision of both good things and bad, here are five things all fans of K-Pop and K-Drama find out first-hand:
Big (Beauty) Bang
Consider this prediction fact: whatever Jun Jihyun’s got on her lips will be the next lipstick shade to sell out. It’s a tried and tested cause-and-effect K-Drama fans know all too well: oftentimes, the beauty products used and sometimes advertised within shows, by female leads have all the potential to become Korea’s next product du jour. Case in point: at least one unit of the Laneige Water Sleeping Mask advertised by fresh-faced Descendants of the Sun lead Song Hye Kyo sells every 15 seconds.
While not quite as rampant, a similar effect carries over to the world of K-Pop stars. Undoubtedly the most popular makeup models, big-name idol groups are often chosen as endorsers because of the spike in sales they’re expected to bring.
Real Boys Wear Makeup
From your Kim Soohyuns to your G-Dragons, chances are the first reaction these boys elicited from your family or friends was something along the lines of, “Babae ba ‘yan?” Whether you chose to brush them off with an eye roll or still bothered to correct them, chances are their jeers had something to do with the makeup the boys on your desktop or phone wallpaper had on. While the makeup artists of Asian stars tend to be a little more open-handed with their routines compared to stars from the West, K-fans know there’s no shame in that fact. After all, with new batches of beauty pegs pouring in every day, who are we to complain?
Across the Border
Love knows no bounds, not even the linguistic sort. Perhaps one of the biggest woes of fans of anything non-English, trying to understand any song or scene sans translations can prove to be a challenge. For those who can’t quite relate, imagine a constant hunt for context clues and telling facial expressions. But alas, most of us have learned to take our biggest problem and turn into the fuel backing our hustle. For fear of delayed subtitles, most K-fangirls and fanboys start to pick up on basic vocabulary, with a fraction hell-bent on going beyond the typical annyeong or saranghae and taking the whole language––grammar, conjugation and street slang––head-on.
The Waiting Game
Despite the small time difference between Manila and Seoul, our battle scars come in the form of dark circles and hefty eye bags. Fangirling or fanboying can mean hard work: staying up to wait for music videos, anticipating the newest drama episode and dispelling any and all feelings with fellow fans in the aftermath.
The End of an Era
Low spirits kick in when the last few performances of a current track or a trenchant plot twist cue the tail end of an era. Sure, goodbye stages are high time for idols to make changes to their otherwise to-a-tee choreography and the last few episodes of any series are typically the most exciting. However, fans attribute this short stretch to the bittersweet feelings that take over without fail. Call us dramatic, but it signals another period of waiting, sometimes indefinitely, for the return of singers and actors who’ve won us over.
Thankfully, when one door closes, another opens.
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