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My Top Favorite Korean Actresses

What matters most in the world of entertainment is the impact it brings to the audience, and the power it holds to spread that impact.

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Introduction

When it comes to Korean movies and television series, there’s just way too many to choose from, so I always base my decision on which ones have my favorite actors or actresses. In my previous article, I shared my top favorite Korean actors, so it’s only fair to also share my top favorite Korean actresses. There are a lot of actresses who are exemplary, but the list that I have are the ones who made an impact through the roles they portrayed. This means that I have already watched most of their work, and I’m always looking forward to their upcoming projects. On top of them being my favorite based from their acting ability, I also think they are the most attractive Korean actresses. Most of them maybe familiar to you because they’ve been around for a long time.

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1. Park Bo-young

Park Bo-young was born on February 12, 1990 in Jeungpyeong County, North Chungcheong Province, South Korea, and has been active since 2006 under BH Entertainment. I first watched her in the movie, A Werewolf Boy (2012) and had been a fan ever since. I also watched On Your Wedding Day (2018) on Netflix. My most favorite K-Drama series are Strong Girl Bong-soon (2017), and Oh My Ghost (2015). I have also watched Abyss (2019), and her latest series, Doom at Your Service (2021).

A Werewolf Boy has gained her two awards: Best Actress at the 2012 4th Pierson Movie Festival, and 20’s Movie Star-Female category at the 2013 7th Mnet 20’s Choice Awards. She also won Excellence Award for Actress in a Miniseries at the 2015 4th APAN Star Awards for Oh My Ghost, as well as Best Chemistry with Kim Seul-gi at the 2016 tvN10 Awards. For Strong Girl Bong-soon, she earned Outstanding Korean Actress at the 2017 12th Seoul International Drama Awards, and Best Actress at the 2017 1st The Seoul Awards. She also won Best Actress at the 2018 23rd KCA Consumer Day Awards for On Your Wedding Day.

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2. Park Shin -hye

Park Shin-hye was born on February 18, 1990 in Nam District, Gwangju, South Korea, and has been active since 2003 under S.A.L.T. I’ve watched her cameo appearance in The Beauty Inside (2015), and my most favorite movie of hers are Alive (2020), and The Call (2020). My most favorite K-Drama series is Memories of the Alhambra (2018-2019), and I’ve also watched The Heirs (2013), The Doctors (2016), and her special appearance on Temperature of Love (2017). Her latest K-Drama series is Sisyphus: The Myth (2021) which I’ve also finished watching on Netflix earlier this year.

Her acting ability was recognized through many awards, but these are the ones she received for the ones that I’ve watched: For The Heirs, she received Excellence Award for Actress in a Miniseries at the 2014 3rd APAN Star Awards, Outstanding Leading Actress at the 2014 3rd Asia Rainbow TV Awards, Most Popular TV Actress at the 2014 50th Baeksang Arts Awards, Popular Foreign Actress at the 2013 4th China TV Drama Awards, and Excellence Award, Top 10 Stars, and Best Couple Award with Lee Min-ho at the 2013 21st SBS Drama Awards. For Doctors, she won Top Excellence Award and Top 10 Stars at the 2016 24th SBS Drama Awards.

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3. Ha Ji-won

Ha Ji-won was born as Jeon Hae-rim on June 28, 1978 in Seoul, South Korea, and has been active since 1996. She had been under several agencies over the years: Wellmade STARM, Haewadal Entertainment, United Talent Agency, BM + Entertainment, and Invincible Plan (China). My most favorite K-Drama series of hers is Secret Garden (2010-2011). I’ve also watched Empress Ki (2013-2014), and Chocolate (2019-2020).

She has been recognized through many awards for the K-Drama series I’ve watched. For Secret Garden, she received Top Excellence Award, Netizen Popularity Award, Best Couple Award with Hyun Bin, and Top 10 Stars at the 2010 SBS Drama Awards. For Empress Ki, she won Daesang Grand Prize, PD Award, and Popularity Award at the 2013 MBC Drama Awards.

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4. Song Hye-kyo

Song Hye-kyo was born on November 22, 1981 in Dalseo District, Daegu, South Korea, and has been active since 1996 under United Artists Agency, and Jet Tone Films. My most favorite K-Drama series of hers are That Winter, the Wind Blows (2013), and Descendants of the Sun (2016). I’ve also watched Autumn in My Heart (2000), Full House (2004), and Encounter (2018-2019).

These are her award recognitions for the K-Drama series that I have mentioned: For Autumn in My Heart, she won Photogenic Award and Popularity Award at the 2000 KBS Drama Awards, and Most Popular TV Actress at the 2001 37th Baeksang Arts Awards. For Full House, she gained Top Excellence Award, Popularity Award, and Best Couple with Rain at the 2004 KBS Drama Awards. For That Winter, the Wind Blows, she received Daesang Grand Prize at the 2013 2nd APAN Star Awards, and Top Excellence Award as well as Top 10 Stars at the 2013 21st SBS Drama Awards. For Descendants of the Sun, she got recognized as Most Popular TV Actress and iQiyi Global Star at the 2016 52nd Baeksang Arts Awards, Best Couple with Song Joong-ki at the 2016 5th APAN Star Awards, and Daesang Grand Prize, Best Couple with Song Joong-ki, and Asia Best Couple with Song Joong-ki at the 2016 30th KBS Drama Awards.

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5. Kim Seo-hyung

Kim Seo-hyung was born on October 28, 1973 in Gangneung, Gangwon Province, South Korea, and has been active as an actress since 1994 under KeyEast agency. I have watched her in Empress Ki (2013), Come and Hug Me (2018), and Mine (2021), but my ultimate favorite K-Drama series of hers is Sky Castle (2018) where she received Actress of the Year and Hot Star China Award at the 2019 12th Korea Drama Awards, as well as Prime Minister’s Commendation at the 2019 10th Korean Popular Culture & Arts Awards.

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6. Lim Soo-hyang

Lim Soo-hyang was born on April 19, 1990 in Busan, South Korea, and has been active as an actress since 2009 under FN Entertainment. I have watched her in the K-Drama series, I Do, I Do (2012), as well her cameo appearance in Criminal Minds (2017). I’ve also watched When I was the Prettiest (2020) where she received Top Excellence Award at the 2020 39th MBC Drama Awards. My most favorite K-Drama series of hers are Gangnam Beauty (2018) where she received Top Excellence Award at the 2018 26th Korea Culture and Entertainment Awards, and Graceful Family (2019).

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7. Son Ye-jin

Son Ye-jin was born as Son Eon-jin on January 11, 1982 in Suseong District, Daegu, and has been active as an actress since 1999 under MSTeam agency. I watched her in the movie, The Negotiation (2018). My most favorite K-Drama series of hers are Personal Taste (2010), Something in the Rain (2018), and Crash Landing on You (2019-2020).

For Something in the Rain, she won Outstanding Korean Actress at the 2018 13th Seoul International Drama Awards. For Crash Landing on You, she won Most Popular Actress at the 2020 56th Baeksang Arts Awards, Outstanding Korean Actress at the 2020 15th Seoul International Drama Awards, and KT Seezn Star Award at the 2020 7th APAN Star Awards.

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8. Bae Suzy

Bae Suzy was born as Bae Su-ji on October 10, 1994 in Buk District, Gwangju, South Korea, and has been active in the entertainment industry as a singer, actress, and model since 2010 under JYP and Management SOOP. She was part of the girl group, Miss A. I’ve watched her in the movie, Ashfall (2019). My most favorite K-Drama series of hers are Start-Up (2020), and Vagabond (2019), but I’ve also watched her in While You Were Sleeping (2017), Uncontrollably Fond (2016), and Gu Family Book (2013).

Her acting ability has been recognized through the following awards: For Uncontrollably Fond, she won Best Star Award at the 2016 Asia Artist Awards. For While You Were Sleeping, she was received Asia Star Award at the 2017 Asia Artist Awards, Most Popular TV Actress at the 2018 Baeksang Art Awards, Best Couple Award and Top Excellence Award at the 2017 SBS Drama Awards. For Gu Family Book, she won Best Couple Award with Lee Seung-gi and Top Excellence Award at the 2013 MBC Drama Awards, 20’s Drama Star Female at the 2013 Mnet 20’s Choice Awards, and Outstanding Korean Actress at the 2013 Seoul International Drama Awards. For Vagabond, she received Best Couple Award with Lee Seung-gi and Top Excellence Award at the 2019 SBS Drama Awards.

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9. Lee Hye-ri

Lee Hye-ri was born on June 9, 1994 in Gwangju, Gyeonggi, South Korea, and has been active in the entertainment industry as a singer and actress since 2010 under Dream T. She is part of the girl group called Girl’s Day. My most favorite K-Drama series of hers are My Roommate is a Gumiho (2021), and Reply 1988 (2015-2016) where she won the following awards: Rising Star Award at the 2016 tvN10 Awards, Acting Award at the 2016 6th Korean Wave Awards, and Best Kiss with Park Bo-gum at the 2016 4th DramaFever Awards.