Why do Korean celebrities have such great taste in clothes? While Kpop and Korean skincare has overtaken the world, Korean Fashion is not far behind. Korean fashion brands and designer brands can now be found all around the world. The primary reason for this is the rise of Kpop and Kdramas in Korea and internationally. Kpop and Kdramas could show the eclectic style of Korean fashion through Korean idols and celebrities. This helped Korean fashion trends go global.
Now Seoul is home to Seoul Fashion Week, which is gaining much attention in Asia and worldwide. There you will find the latest edgy yet affordable Korean street style Fashion. Along with high-end Korean luxury brands. The Korean government has aggressively searched for new designers to promote Korean fashion. To prepare you for the 2023 season, we have selected some of the top Korean fashion brands you should know.
STYLENANDA is the top Korean fashion brand for 2023. It was founded by 35-year-old Kim So Hee back in 2004. Fifteen years later, it was acquired by L’Oreal as they saw STYLENANDA’s influence on the younger generation in Asia, who are constantly looking for new types of fashion and beauty. The brand’s visual perspective has been influencing design in Korea to where contemporary fashion stands today. Therefore, their designs are some of the most coveted and sought-after pieces. Most of their consumers are Millennials. The brand does over $160 million in yearly sales thanks to its beauty brand 3CE. They are not only a beauty brand but also a beauty brand. It is estimated that L’Oreal paid close to $375 million to acquire STYLENANDA.
Instagram Followers: 1.6 million
Korean eyewear brand GENTLE MONSTER focuses on trendy sunglasses and optical glasses. They are known for their artistic styles and have gone outside Korea and into markets in China and Europe. Moreover, GENTLE MONSTER collaborated with Huawei by integrating cutting-edge technology and high-end fashion to create one of the best smart eyewear.
The fashion eyewear brand (founded in 2011) became a hit on social media for its futuristic looks that combined elegance and fun. They have a wide range of selections, from minimal to eye-catching styles. In addition, they have been setting up museum-like brick-and-mortar spaces where consumers can shop via their multi-sensory experiences. GENTLE MONSTER also did a collaboration with Jennie of BLACKPINK called Jentle Home. Jennie’s childhood memories inspired the design.
Instagram followers: 1 million
MINJUKIM was the winner of Netflix’s Next in Fashion series. Therefore she received $250,000 for winning the series and got to release her brand on the high fashion online mall NET-A-PORTER. She has already established herself as one of the top Korean fashion stars in the business. She has styled Kpop stars such as members of BTS. Moreover, her fashion brand is known for its imaginative collections that combine bold silhouettes with joyfulness.
In addition, before joining Next in Fashion, Minju Kim was previously the 2013 H&M Design Award winner and was shortlisted for the LVMH Prize for Young Fashion Designers in 2014.
Instagram Followers: 645,000
Korean fashion brand Hyein Seo has been worn by top international music stars such as Rihanna and G-Dragon. It was founded by Hyein Seo, a young designer, in 2014 after she graduated from the Royal Academy of Fine Arts Antwerp. The brand gained popularity after Rihanna wore one of its faux fur stoles at Paris Fashion Week the same year. The brand’s latest collection features monochromatic clothing and accessories, including oversized hoodies, wide-legged pants, crop tops, dresses, leg bags, and harnesses. The designs are inspired by jiu-jitsu students, school girls, anime characters, and action movie heroines. Seo’s clothing is aimed at women who want to feel sexy for themselves, not just for others, and is part of a growing trend of more expressive and experimental fashion in Korea.
The brand established a Seoul studio with a supportive young designers and creatives network. Surprisingly, Hyein Seo has male customers making up half of its sales.
Instagram Followers: 182,000
Andersson Bell is a Korean fashion brand that crossing fashion and street aesthetics. They were able to turn their street fashion brand into a luxury brand. The brand was founded in 2014 and is very popular among the young crowd in Asia. They offer products for men and women and have gained much traction in the west. Furthermore, they were able to enter NET-A-PORTER back in 2018. In addition, in 2019, Jungkook from BTS wore Andersson Bell sneakers for the 2019 Billboard Music Awards. Moreover, the Korean fashion brand has entered over 100 retailers in over 20 countries.
Instagram Followers: 180,000
The fashion division of Samsung C&T launched 8 Seconds back in 2012. The brand was established in 2010 and aimed to catch up with ZARA to become the third-largest fashion brand in Korea. The brand has more than 40 stores in Korea and is known for its trendy and affordable clothing for millennials and Generation Z customers. It has also collaborated with Big Bang’s GD and graphic designers SOON.EASY and Lee Yo-han to create trendy summer clothing and accessories. The brand promises to continue to offer trendy and new looks that will appeal to millennials and Generation Z customers.
Instagram Followers: 153,000
Reike Nen was launched in Seoul in 2010. It was started by Korean designer Yoon Hongmi who is known for blending silhouettes with new details effortlessly. Reike Nen is a handbag and footwear brand that combines classic and modern styles. Furthermore, the brand uses high-quality leathers, velvets, and corduroy. Moreover, all their items are handcrafted in South Korea.
Instagram Followers: 112,100
Korean fashion shoe brand YUUL YIE focuses on hand-made heels. The brand offers sculptural heels and intricate details. Therefore, it has many unorthodox designs that are worn by some of the top fashion influencers. Moreover, these designs include heels inspired by stones on streets, cubes, coral reefs, and ocean waves. YUUL YIE is sold in select trendy shops around the world.
Instagram Followers: 112,000
IMVELY was launched in 2005 and is now one of the top Korean fashion brands for young women in South Korea. It has been around for over 15 years and started taking off in 2020 with the younger generation. However, the brand is one of Korea’s most successful first-generation online fashion shopping malls. Furthermore, they have set up over 20 offline branches across Seoul.
Instagram Followers: 103,300
SJYP is a Korean streetwear fashion brand that was founded in 2013. The brand is known for its 90’s style of denim interpretations. Many of their consumers are loyal Kpop fans. This is because many Kpop idols wear SJYP. After all, it gives off a strong style statement on stage. For example, Girls Generation’s Tiffany and Yuna, 4Minutes Hyuna, and Lee Hyori are some Kpop stars that have worn SJYP. Therefore, their collection offers some of the latest trends in women’s streetwear. However, they also sell for men, so I don’t think it is solely a brand for females. It is just that close to 80% of their customers are women.
Instagram Followers: 101,000
CRES. E DIM.
Korean Fashion Brand CRES. E. DIM. was launched in 2009. The name comes from the musical term “Crescendo e diminuendo,” which means slowly getting louder and softer. Therefore, the brand aims to create directional silhouettes by experimenting with different overlaps of fabrics; shapes cut into fragments, and subtle colors.
Instagram Followers: 75,300