Korean media have analyzed the reasons why high-fashion brands are increasingly paying attention to Korean idols. In particular, G-Dragon is said to occupy a very important role.
In the past, Kpop idols only needed to focus on vocals, performance skills on stage, or sometimes acting skills. But now, an idol’s reputation is also judged by their influence in the fashion world.
In recent years, Kpop idols have gradually been favored by high-end fashion brands. They are called by brands such as “best friend”, “muse” or even “house ambassador”, “global ambassador”.
This has gradually formed an “underground war” between Kpop fandoms. Every Kpop fan wants high-end fashion brands to pay attention to their idols. Because many people think that the higher the title an idol gets, the more it proves her/his level.
However, when did this trend start and who initiated it? Why are high-end fashion brands increasingly paying attention to Kpop idols when their customers are not mainly concentrated in this area? Recently, reporter Woo Hyung-jun has analyzed the history of connections between Korean idols and luxury brands to clarify these questions.
The article emphasizes that G-Dragon’s appearance at Chanel’s 2015 Paris Fashion Week is of great significance. It was the first time that an Asian star was invited to an important fashion event. G-Dragon’s appearance became a hot topic at that time. Recalling this event, reporter Woo Hyung Jun wrote, “Since then, domestic idols began to appear as representatives in the luxury goods industry”.
At that time, G-Dragon was no longer a new face in the fashion world. In 2009, leader BIGBANG was sponsored by French fashion brand Louis Vuitton for his debut album project. It is also the first time in history has this luxury brand sponsored costumes for a Korean artist.
In 2016, G-Dragon officially became the representative face of Chanel. He and supermodel Cara and actress Kristen Stewart have become the inspiration for Karl Lagerfeld to create impressive outfits for the French fashion house. After many years, the relationship between G-Dragon and Chanel has grown closer and closer. Obviously, G-Dragon’s charisma and style are in line with the youthful, modern and trendy vibe of this famous fashion house.
After that, many high-end fashion brands gradually set their sights on Kpop artists. Louis Vuitton chose A-list actress Bae Doona to become their “muse”. Meanwhile, Kai (EXO) has successfully become the Ambassador of GUCCI. Even now, when looking at Kai’s fashion sense, the audience will clearly feel the “GUCCI vibe”. On the contrary, when looking at the newly launched costumes of GUCCI, many people will immediately think of Kai’s image.
Especially BLACKPINK is a group of 4 girls who are currently ambassadors for different high-end fashion brands. Jennie is the second Korean star to become Chanel’s House Ambassador (the highest title for Chanel’s ambassador) after G-Dragon. Jisoo became the global ambassador for both Dior fashion and beauty. Rosé became the first global brand ambassador after 59 years of Saint Laurent. Meanwhile, the maknae Lisa is not inferior to the other members. She has become Celine’s first global ambassador after 75 years.
Recently, BTS also officially had the first position in the fashion field. All 7 BTS members have become House Ambassadors for Louis Vuitton by Virgil Abloh – LV’s creative director. Up to now, BTS has often been controversial about its unimpressive fashion style. However, it is undeniable that the 7 boys will contribute significantly to helping the brand’s products be sold out quickly.
Increasingly, Kpop idols receive more and more fashion resources. The reason is probably that brands are targeting young customers via Kpop artists and their community of fans. Indeed, the Kpop fan community with its strength has contributed to spreading and bringing luxury brands closer to the public. In the past, many people just listened to music and followed K-pop artists. However, at the moment, they have started to pay more attention to fashion. They pay attention to what their idols wear today and those items will be sold out immediately.
Many data reports also show that working with Kpop artists also contributes to bringing huge attraction to the brand on social networks, which is an important part of the promotion process. According to ListenFirst, on the day that Tiffany & Co. followed Rosé on Instagram, 60,188 tweets mentioned this brand, a 506% increase compared to a day before.
In addition, the cooperation with Lisa and Jisoo (BLACKPINK) has also helped two high-end jewelry brands BVLGARI and Cartier achieve the highest media index in 2020. Moreover, Jisoo also proved her influence when contributed to a 250% increase in Dior’s net income over the past year.
Obviously, the fashion house Chanel must have predicted the strength of Kpop fans early when deciding to become a pioneer brand cooperating with Kpop artists like G-Dragon. As Kpop grows and reaches the international level, many other brands also start to pay attention and choose Kpop artists, who both match the brand’s criteria and have an influence on social networks.
If Chanel does not achieve success after collaborating with G-Dragon, will other brands keep their eyes on Kpop artists? Therefore, it is not exaggerating to think that G-Dragon has paved the way, contributed to bring Kpop closer to the fashion world. However, it is undeniable that the influence of current Kpop artists such as BLACKPINK, BTS, EXO, .. must be truly amazing to be favored by many high-end fashion brands at the moment.