If you've come out of watching a K-drama suddenly wanting a brand new hair color, don't fret—you're absolutely not alone. Because next to their glowing skin and stellar fashion sense, we always find ourselves inspired by our favorite Korean celebrities' expertly-styled locks, whether it's a DIY-able brown or a potentially lifestyle-altering blonde. We've built quite the wishlist over the years, and along the way, noticed that Hallyu stars favor some shades more than others. Take a look at some of the most popular ones below!
Most Popular Korean Hair Colors to Try
1. Dark Brown
Dark brown is definitely the default choice for Korean stars who want to take a breather from experimental hues. A warm version of this color would look amazing on cool skin tones, while a dark, cool-toned brown will suit those with more of a golden tone to their complexion.
2. Black/Midnight Blue
Though brown hair is generally more preferred among K-celebs, black remains a popular choice for creating a stronger look and achieving a flattering contrast against fair or warm-toned skin. Some stars even go for a black shade with a bluish tinge, although this would require pre-lightening (read: bleaching) to make the cool tones stand out.
Having some reddish tones in your hair can instantly liven up a dull-looking complexion and make you look fresher even while barefaced. But in case you're not ready to go all out with an Ariel red, a dye job in the light reddish brown spectrum like copper is your best bet that's also favored by stars.
4. Sand Beige
Not too keen on reds? Try a sand beige hair color, which is basically ash brown's more yellow-toned cousin. Celebrity hairstylist Cha Hong recommends this hue for women with tan and deep skin tones, but notes that anyone can pull it off. After all, it's still up to your colorist to make your dream color work for your features!
5. Pale Honey Blonde
K-pop stars are known for their vibrant, ever-changing hair colors, but when it comes to a bold yet classic shade, there's nothing quite like a pale blonde. In Asia, warm, honey-like shades of blonde are generally preferred for a softer look. This hue also complements the warm colors of our skin better than, say, a platinum blonde, and can be easier to maintain as well.
6. Mushroom Brown
Asian hair is notorious for turning brassy easily when colored. Fortunately, we can curb that by going for a color like mushroom brown, which is a type of light brown that's neither too cool or too warm-toned. It's the perfect neutral shade, suiting many different skin tones and requiring less upkeep than its brighter alternatives.
7. Tangerine Brown
You've probably seen this color on your favorite K-drama actress before—it's just that popular in Korea and in Asia in general. It's generally recommended for fair skin with yellowish undertones, since the strong brown tinge in this hue can add the kind of warmth you'd usually turn to a bronzer for. The best part? It looks lowkey indoors but appears vibrant under direct sunlight!
If you've tried enough browns and want something a little more experimental, a wine-colored mane is definitely worth considering. Think of it as a beginner's introduction to red hair—subtle, but still enough to make quite the statement. For a subtler look, ask your colorist for a rich mahogany, which will still give you a purplish tint but won't require too much processing.
9. Rose Brown
The perk of already having light-colored hair is that it isn't too much of a hassle to go even brighter. A well-loved choice that we've seen on actresses like Lee Sung Kyung and Han So Hee is a bright, rosy brown that's only a couple of shades shy of red. It might not be the lowest-maintenance color out there, but we can't deny that it's one of the most photogenic!
When it comes to pastel hair colors, lavender is the chic shade we've seen K-pop stars like IU and BLACKPINK's Rosé pull off effortlessly after going blonde. Their pictures speak for themselves, so to anyone out there looking for their next life-changing dye job, here's the sign you've been looking for!