List of South Korean girl groups

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K-pop girl groups refer to South Korea's all-female idol groups who account for a large portion of the K-pop industry. Korean girl groups have aided in the global spread and promotion of Korean culture through their demonstrated prominence and popularity. Generally, they are known for their interesting concepts, catchy lyrics, point-choreography and fresh visuals. First Generation groups from the late 90s and early 2000s such as S.E.S., Fin.K.L, and Baby Vox are cited as building these foundations as the first successful all-female girl groups in Korea and through their participation in the first Hallyu Wave. In the 2000s, Second Generation groups such as the Wonder Girls, Girls' Generation, 2NE1, After School, Kara and Secret revived the popularity and consumption of girls domestically in Korea as well as globally through the second phase of Hallyu, and groups that began the generation transitional shift in the early 2010s, such as Sistar, Miss A, Girl's Day, Apink, AOA and EXID helped propel that for the Third Generation with groups that debuted in 2013 onward such as Twice, Red Velvet, GFriend, Mamamoo, WJSN, Black Pink, and Loona that have risen to distinction in recent years and helped contribute to the widespread attention and appreciation of K-pop.

Profiles[edit]

Generation 1 (1996–2003)[edit]

First generation of K-pop began with the birth of the idol industry after the debut of H.O.T. in 1996 and follows the early years of K-pop with fresh, feminine girl groups debuting, and includes idol groups debuting from 1996 to 2003.[1][2] An extension of First Generation called Generation 1.5 is sometimes separated, including groups from 2000 to 2003. [3][4]

Best-selling groups
Group name Duration (Former) Members Sub-unit groups Debut single Breakthrough single Notable singles Best-selling Korean album Notable awards
S.E.S. 1997-2002 Eugene,

Bada,

Shoo

N/A "I'm Your Girl" (1997) "I'm Your Girl" (1997) "Dreams Come True" (1998)

"Twilight Zone" (1999)

"Just in Love" (2001)

Love (1999 Studio Album) see also: List of awards and nominations received by S.E.S.
Fin.K.L 1998-2005 Lee Hyori,

Lee Jin,

Sung Yu-ri,

Ock Joo-hyun

N/A "Blue Rain" (1998) "Blue Rain" (1998) "To My Boyfriend" (1998)

"Forever Love" (1999)

"Now" (2000)

"You Will Never Know" (2001)

White (1999 Studio Album) see also: List of awards and nominations received by Fin.K.L.
Baby Vox 1997-2007 Shim Eun-jin,

Lee Hee-jin,

Kan Mi-youn,

Kim E-Z,

Yoon Eun-hye

Cha Yu-mi

Jang Hyun-jung

Jung Shi-woon

Lee Gai

N/A "Hair Cut" (1997) "Ya Ya Ya" (1998) "Get Up" (1999)

"Killer" (1999), "Betrayal" (2000)

"Doll" (2001)

"Coincidence" (2002)

Special Album (1999 Compilation Album) see also: List of awards and nominations received by Baby ox

Other notable groups[edit]

Generation 2 (2004-2009)[edit]

Second Generation evolved in the early 2000s and saw K-pop spreading throughout Asia and beginning to be introduced to the West, especially with the slow rise of social media, and saw a diversification of concepts and genres, and includes idol groups that debuted from 2004 to 2009.[5]

Best-selling groups*
Group name Duration (Former) Members Sub-unit groups Debut single Breakthrough single Best-selling singles Best-selling Korean album Notable awards
Girls' Generation 2007-present Taeyeon

Yoona

Tiffany

Sunny

Hyoyeon

Yuri

Sooyoung

Seohyun

Jessica (Former)

Girls' Generation-TTS

Oh!GG

"Into the New World" (2007) "Gee" (2009) "Gee" (2009)

"Tell Me Your Wish (Genie)" (2009)

"Oh!" (2010)

"Run Devil Run" (2010)

"Hoot" (2010)

"The Boys" (2011)

"I Got A Boy" (2013)

The Boys

(2011 Studio Album)

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Girls' Generation
Wonder Girls 2007-2017 Ye-eun,

Sunmi,

Yubin,

Hye-lim,

So-hee,

Sunye,

Hyuna

N/A "Irony"

(2007)

"Tell Me" (2007) "Tell Me" (2007)

"So Hot" (2008)

"Nobody" (2008)

"2 Different Tears" (2010)

"Be My Baby" (2011)

"The DJ Is Mine" (2012)

"Like This" (2012)

"Why So Lonely" (2016)

The Wonder Years: Trilogy (2008 EP) see also: List of awards and nominations received by Wonder Girls
Kara 2007-2016 Nicole

Gyuri

Hara

Seungyeon

Jiyoung

Youngji

Sunghee

N/A "Break It"

(2007)

"Pretty Girl" (2008) "Honey" (2009)

"Wanna" (2009)

"Mister" (2009)

"Jumping" (2010)

"Step" (2011)

"Pandora" (2012)

Step

(2011 Studio Album)

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Kara
2NE1 2009-2016 CL

Park Bom

Minzy

Sandara Park

N/A "Fire"

(2009)

"Fire"

(2009)

"Fire" (2009)

"Lollipop" (2009)

"I Don't Care" (2009)

"Go Away" (2010)

"Can't Nobody" (2010)

"I Am the Best" (2011)

"Hate You" (2011)

"Lonely" (2011)

"Ugly" (2011)

2NE1

(2009 EP)[6]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by 2ne1
T-ara 2009-present Jiyeon

Qri

EunJung

Hyomin

Jiae

Jiwon

Boram

Soyeon

Hwayoung

Areum

T-ara N4

QBS

"Lie"

(2009)

"You Drive Me Crazy"

(2010)

"TTL (Time To Love)"

(2009)

"Bo Peep Bo Peep" (2009)

"Like the First Time" (2009)

"You Drive Me Crazy"

(2010)

"Roly-Poly" (2011)

"Cry Cry" (2011)

"We Were In Love" (2011)

"Lovey-Dovey" (2012)

"Day By Day" (2012)

Funky Town

(2012 Reissue Album)[12]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by T-ara
F(x) 2009-present Amber

Krystal

Luna

Victoria

Sulli

N/A "La Cha Ta"

(2009)

"Nu ABO"

(2010)

"Nu ABO"

(2010)

"Pinocchio (Danger)" (2011)

"Hot Summer" (2011)

"Electric Shock" (2012)

"Rum Pum Pum" (2013)

"Red Light" (2014)

"4 Walls" (2015)

Pinocchio

(2011 Reissue)[14][15]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by f(x)
Secret 2009-2018 Hyoseong

Hana

Sunhwa

Jieun

N/A "I Want You Back"

(2009)

"Magic"

(2010)

"Magic" (2010)

"Madonna" (2010)

"Shy Boy" (2011)

"Starlight Moonlight" (2011)

"Love Is Move" (2011)

"Poison" (2012)

"Talk That" (2012)

"Yoohoo" (2013)

Moving In Secret

(2011 Studio Album)[16]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Secret
After School 2009-2015 Nana

Raina

Kaeun

E-Young

Lizzy

Kahi

Bekah

Jungah

Uee

Jooyeon

Soyoung

Orange Caramel

After School Red

After School Blue

"Ah"

(2009)

"Because of You"

(2010)

"Because of You" (2010)

"Diva" (2009)

"Bang!" (2010)

"Shampoo" (2011)

"Flashback" (2012)

"First Love" (2013)

Virgin

(2011 Studio Album)[17]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by After School
  • 2010 Seoul Music Awards: "Best Newcomer Award"
  • 2011 Korea International Awards: Top 5 Female Groups
  • 2011 Korea International Awards: Top 5 International Artists
  • 2014 Asia Model Awards: "Popularity Award"
4Minute 2009-2016 Hyun A

Jiyoon

Gayoon

Sohyun

Jihyun

2YOON "Hot Issue" (2009) "Muzik" (2009) "Muzik" (2009)

"HuH" (2010)

"I Me Mine" (2010)

"Heart to Heart" (2011)

"Mirror Mirror" (2011)

"Volume Up" (2012)

"What's Your Name" (2013)

4Minutes Left

(2011 Studio Album)

see also: List of awards and nominations received by 4minute
* = have at least 1 single that have sold over 2,000,000 copies ; bold = best-selling single

Other notable groups[edit]

Generation 2.5 (2010-2012)[edit]

An extension of Second Generation called Generation 2.5 is typically described as the transitional period between Generations 2 and 3. This period saw a growth in the idol industry, beginning to see the start of the oversaturation of K-pop, making the industry much more competitive. This era includes idol groups debuting from 2010 to 2012.[18][19][4]

Best-selling groups*
Group name Duration (Former) Members Sub-unit groups Debut single Breakthrough single Best-selling singles Best-selling Korean album Notable awards
Sistar 2010-2017 Hyolyn

Bora

Dasom

Soyou

Sistar19 "Push Push" (2010) "How Dare You"

(2010)

"Push Push" (2010)

"Shady Girl" (2010)

"How Dare You"

(2010)

"So Cool" (2011)

"Alone" (2012)

"Loving U" (2012)

"Give It 2 Me" (2013)

"Touch My Body '(2014)

So Cool

(2011 Studio Album)[20]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Sistar
Miss A 2010-2017 Min

Jia

Suzy

Fei

N/A "Bad Girl Good Girl"

(2010)

"Bad Girl Good Girl"

(2010)

"Bad Girl Good Girl"

(2010)

"Breathe" (2010)

"Love Alone" (2011)

"Goodbye Baby" (2011)

"Touch" (2012)

"I Don't Need a Man" (2012)

"Hush" (2013)

"Only You" (2014)

A Class

(2011 Studio Album)

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Miss A
Girl's Day 2010-2019 Sojin

Yura

Minah

Hyeri

N/A "Tilt My Head" (2010) "Twinkle Twinkle" (2011) "Twinkle Twinkle" (2011)

"Hug Me Once" (2011)

"Don't Flirt" (2011)

"Oh! My God" (2012)

"Expect" (2013)

"Female President" (2013)

"Something" (2014)

"Darling" (2014)

"Ring My Bell" (2015)

Love

(2015 album)[24]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Girl's Day
Apink 2011-present Chorong

Bomi

Eunji

Naeun

Namjoo

Hayoung

Hong Yoo-kyung (Former)

N/A "I Don't Know"

(2011)

"NoNoNo" (2013) "I Don't Know" (2011)

"My My" (2011)

"Hush" (2012)

"NoNoNo" (2013)

"Mr. Chu" (2014)

"Luv" (2014)

"Remember" (2015)

"Five" (2017)

"I'm So Sick" (2018)

Pink Memory

(2015 Studio Album)

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Apink
AOA 2012-present Jimin

Yuna

Hyejeong

Seolhyun

Chanmi

Choa (Former)

Youkyung (Former)

Mina (Former)

AOA Black

AOA White

AOA Cream

"Elvis" (2012) "Miniskirt" (2014) "Miniskirt" (2014)

"Short Hair" (2014)

"Like a Cat" (2014)

"Heart Attack" (2015)

"Good Luck" (2016)

"Excuse Me" (2017)

"Bingle Bangle" (2018)

Heart Attack

(2015 EP)[25]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by AOA
EXID 2012-present Solji

LE

Hani

Hyelin

Jeonghwa

SoljiHani "Whoz That Girl" (2012) "Up & Down" (2014) "Up & Down" (2014)

"Ah Yeah" (2015)

"Hot Pink" (2015)

"L.I.E." (2016)

"DDD" (2017)

Street

(2016 Studio Album)[26]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by EXID
* = have at least 1 single that have sold over 1,000,000 copies ; bold = best-selling single

Other notable groups[edit]

Generation 3 (2013-present)[edit]

K-pop saw a revival with the Third Generation that grew in the digital age with the influence of social media and resulted in the globalization of the genre. This era also saw a growth in survival programs that pushed for more competition, and includes idol groups that primarily debuted in 2013 onward.[27][4]

Best-selling groups*
Group name Duration (Former) Members Sub-unit groups Debut single Breakthrough single Best-selling singles Best-selling Korean album Notable awards
Twice 2015-present Nayeon

Jeongyeon

Momo

Sana

Jihyo

Mina

Dahyun

Chaeyoung

Tzuyu

N/A "Like Ooh-Ahh" (2015) "Cheer Up" (2016) "Like Ooh-Ahh" (2015)

"Cheer Up" (2016)

"TT" (2016)

"Knock Knock" (2017)

"Signal" (2017)

"Likey" (2017)

"What is Love?" (2018)

"Dance The Night Away" (2018)

Twicecoaster: Lane 1

(2016 EP)[28]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Twice
  • 2016 Mnet Asian Music Awards: "Song of the Year" for "Cheer Up"[29]
  • 2016 Seoul Music Awards: "Digital Record of the Year" for "Cheer Up"[30]
  • 2016 Golden Disc Awards: "New Artist of the Year"[31]
  • 2016 Golden Disc Awards: "Digital Daesang Award" for "Cheer Up"[32]
  • 2018 Golden Disc Awards: "Digital Bonsang" for "Knock Knock"[33]
  • 2018 Mnet Asian Music Awards: "Song of the Year" for "Signal"[34]
  • 2018 Golden Disc Awards: Disc Bonsang for Twicetagram[33]
Red Velvet 2014-present Irene

Seulgi

Wendy

Joy

Yeri

N/A "Happiness" (2014) "Ice Cream Cake" (2015)

"Ice Cream Cake" (2015)

"Dumb Dumb" (2015)

"Russian Roulette" (2016)

"Rookie" (2017)"

"Red Flavor" (2017)

"Peek-a-Boo" (2017)

"Bad Boy" (2018)

"Power Up" (2018)

Summer Magic

(2018 Summer EP)[35]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Red Velvet
Black Pink 2016-present Jisoo

Jennie

Rosé

Lisa

N/A


"Boombayah" (2016) "Whistle" (2016) "Whistle" (2016)

"Boombayah" (2016)

"Playing With Fire" (2016)

"As If It's Your Last" (2017)

"DDU-DU DDU-DU" (2018)

Square Up

(2018 EP)[37]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Black Pink
Mamamoo 2014-present Solar

Moonbyul

Wheein

Hwasa

N/A "Mr. Ambiguous"

(2014)

"Um Oh Ah Yeh" (2015)

"Um Oh Ah Yeh" (2015)

"You're the Best" (2016)

"I Miss You" (2016)

"Décalcomanie" (2017)

"Yes I Am" (2017)

"Starry Night" (2018)

Purple

(2017 EP)[42]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by Mamamoo
GFriend 2015-present Sowon

Yerin

Eunha

Yuju

SinB

Umji

N/A


"Glass Bead" (2015) "Me Gustas Tu" (2015) "Glass Bead" (2015)

"Me Gustas Tu" (2015)

"Rough" (2016)

"Navillera" (2016)

"Fingertip" (2017)

"Time for the Moon Night" (2018)

Parallel

(2017 EP)[44]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by GFriend
I.O.I 2016-2017 Nayoung

Chung-ha

Sejeong

Chaeyeon

Jieqiong

Sohye

Yeonjung

Yoojung

Mina

Doyeon

Somi

N/A "Dream Girls" (2016) "Dream Girls" (2016) "Whatta Man" (2016)

"Very Very Very" (2016)

"Downpour" (2017)

Miss Me?

(2016 EP)[50]

see also: List of awards and nominations received by I.O.I
* = have at least 1 single that have sold over 1,000,000 copies ; bold = best-selling single

Other notable groups[edit]

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