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Idol Focus: Miss Popularity vs. Miss Congeniality

If you have a popular girl group, there’s usually going to be one girl who gets proportionally more attention than the others in the group, but does that mean she’s also popular inside of the group?

Check out the break down of some of these female idol groups with their respective Miss Popularity and Miss Congeniality.

There are many reasons why any one girl will get most of the spotlight in a girl group as Miss Popularity, be it her pretty face, her ample appearances on variety shows, her acting activities, commercial activities, or even her talent. In the end, that doesn’t always mean that she’s the most popular amongst group members (Miss Congeniality).

How do some of you favorite idol groups break down these roles?


Considered 2NE1‘s beauty Sandara Park gains most of the popularity amongst fans. With plenty of commercial and some drama appearances, Dara’s face is well-known amongst the public. But, within the hip pop group, it’s the group’s unni Park Bom who is most popular within the group members. As the oldest, Park Bom is said to be quite caring of her dongsaengs and all-around kind-hearted to everyone. Not only that, but Park Bom’s hard-work attitude and “veteran” voice helps guide the other members.


4Minute‘s Hyuna shares both the Miss Popularity and the Miss Congeniality titles. As she first debuted with the Wondergirls, Hyuna already had a bit of recognition in the pop sphere, but she gained even more during her solo activities with the single “Change.” Hyuna was known for being friendly amongst trainees and her hard-working attitude helps her to get along well with the other members.

After School

At After School‘s debut, their association with Son Dambi frankly made it hard for any single member to stand out (as Son Dambi stood out in front of all the members), but in the end UEE got her big break with a certain soju commercial for Cheo-eum Cheo-reom Cool featuring the long-legged member doing a “Cool Shot” dance in booty shorts, giving her the nickname “Honey Thighs.” (This commercial was played relentlessly in Seoul subways.) After that, UEE became the lead rival in the idol drama “You’re Beautiful,” gaining her more recognition. Even though UEE is known for being friendly with other idol stars and close to members Nana and Lizzy, it’s leader Kahi, who holds the Miss Congeniality title, as she calmly and gracefully leads the other members.


These days, with the popularity of the Khun-toria couple on “We Got Married,” flexible Victoria is considered to hold the most popularity ahead of the other f(x) girls. Although Sulli was gaining recognition for being an ulzzang and appearing in a commercial or two, for now, Victoria is f(x)’s most recognizable member, especially with her high kicking. But not so fast, the most popular between the group members is in fact Sulli, who has an out-going and cheerful personality, it has been said that Sulli is equally close to all members.

Brown Eyed Girls

In this case, two girls share both titles. Brown Eyed Girls members Ga-in and Narsha are equally popular — Ga-in with “We Got Married” and Narsha’s countless variety show appearances, both were able to hold their own with near-simultaneous solo activities. Though it is known that all the Brown Eyed Girl members are quite close, Ga-in’s sweet personality and Narsha’s fun and straight-forward personality also make them key players for the teamwork inside the group.


Even though Nicole and Park Gyuri both have plenty of popularity on variety shows, in the end, for this girl group it comes down to the face. Gu Hara shares most of the popularity because of her innocent face and doll-like (skinny) body line. The Kara singer has her share of famous admirers, and she also will be co-starring in the upcoming drama “City Hunter” with Lee Min-ho. Yet, with a sweet personality and the leader position, it’s the kind Han Seung-yeon who is most popular inside of the group.


Rainbow, full of pretty girls, has one special “pretty girl” leader Kim Jae-kyung holds most of the public popularity. Lead vocalist and lead dancer, Jae-kyung also appeared in SS501‘s music video for “Love Like This.” The most popular member inside the group belongs to their lovely mangnae, Jo Hyun-young, who wins over all her unnis.


Secret‘s most popular member is none other than Han Sun-hwa, another “pretty girl” taking the Miss Popularity title. Han Sun-hwa was considered so pretty and so spunky that she was picked up for the variety show “Invincible Youth even before the debut of Secret. Han Sun-hwa is known for appearing on variety shows and having a bit of a “stupid girl” persona, not knowing facts like what “FTA” stands for, but most people believe it is just an act. However, the Miss Congeniality of Secret is Jun Hyo-sung, who is both reliable and hard-working.

Girls Generation

Probably not surprising to POPSEOUL readers, Yoona is Girls Generation‘s popular girl to the public, appearing as a regular on the variety show “Family 2 and various commercials. Fans say her appeal is in her pure look and bright smile. Yet, the member popular amongst members is leader Taeyeon who members decided multiple times is good for her to have that title. Taeyeon’s talent is believed to be rather high amongst the other girls and she carries a good number of their songs.


In Sistar, main rapper and dancer Bora garners a lot of attention with her rapping solos and center position. Many fans liked her fresh smile and personality that delivers while performing. Coincidentally, she is also popular amongst the group members, giving Bora the two-for Miss Popularity and Miss Congeniality.

Miss A

Another girl who gets the double crown is Miss A‘s Suzy. During “Bad Girl, Good Girl” promotions, while as a whole, the group gave off a cool, sexy vibe, Suzy had an innately cute and innocent look making her stand out as Miss’s “pretty girl.” Also, she gained more popularity with her role in the popular drama “Dream High.” Consequently, this mangnae is also well-loved by her fellow idol members for her kind demeanor and ability to perform well at such a young age.


For the T-ara girls, the popularity star is Ji-yeon, who first gained recognition for her resemblance to Kim Tae-hee. She was also chosen from the T-ara girls to join up with Seeya and Davichi for the singles “Woman’s Generation,” “Forever Love,” and “Wonder Woman.” She also appeared in the school drama with Yoo Seung-ho in “God of Study” and sang songs for its OST. Yet, the popularity within the group goes to probably the second (or third) most publicly popular member, the lead vocalist Eun-jung, who appeared in “Dream High” and “Coffee House” dramas (though many say her acting isn’t as good as Ji-yeon’s). Eun-jung also treats all her members well and has good singing ability essential to the group.


The Wondergirls most popular member is none other than So-hee. Even among her own members, So-hee’s style and look has a different feel to it. She gained a lot of attention for her extra cute “omona” in the music video and dance for the single “Tell Me.” She also dipped into acting with the film “Some Like It Hot” with Kim Bum and also appeared in 8eight‘s popular first music video “Without a Heart.” The sweet and cute So-hee is also popular within the girl group. Though she looks very young and innocent, So-hee is really dedicated to improving her acting and performing.

Sometimes the public and the group don’t agree in the popularity contest, but sometimes the public will show the same kind of respect as the actual group members. In the end, public popularity spells out to be appearances in commercials, variety shows, and dramas — domains outside of just the groups fans. On the other hand, within the group, members tend to respect dedication to the group, which doesn’t always line up with solo activities, such as acting.

However, the Miss Popularity side can change (even though it’s slowly) over time, the Miss Congeniality tends to rest on the same person throughout the life of the girl group.

Which do you tend to side with, the public opinion or the group opinion, when you’re deciding on your favorite member?


35 Comments on “Idol Focus: Miss Popularity vs. Miss Congeniality”

  1. King Pop says:

    People, just ignore any negative, ignorant, racist, insulting, stupid comments from Chequebook, Plaster, Cake, Box, WheelOfCheese, Wood, Torch, Geoff & many other names etc. etc. etc. (all same person with multiple names). This moron is actually replying to his/her own comments using multiple names, pretending to be someone else…How pathetic!

    There’s a difference between expressing your opinion and just being ignorant, racist, insulting & stupid…

    Don’t even bother…Don’t respond…

    This moron is so angry and jealous because K-Pop & Korean Entertainment Culture (Korean Wave) has become so popular all over Asia, especially in China and Japan.
    That’s why this idiot is attacking K-Pop, Korean Entertainment and South Korea.

    Just ignore this FOOL!!! Just feel sorry for this person and move on!

  2. peace & love for jay! says:

    Hmm….I think for f(x) it should be the other way round, ie Victoria is Miss Congeniality and Sulli is Miss Popularity. Everybody knows that Vic is loved my her younger members.

    The rest, I don’t really know. From which source your research is based?

    • HUUH says:

      I agree about f’x)!!! Sully is Miss popularity, she did a lot of things as MC…..& boys of others bands love her!!

    • theblackcat1236 says:

      I don’t know about Victoria as f(x)’s favorite, but she’s definently the most popular. Outside of singing, Sulli has landed acting roles but most of them were minor and didn’t get much recognition. Victoria’s on Invincable Youth and We Got Married, which are more popular. They’ve done four promotions each, but Victoria’s were more recognized since she collaborated with SHINee, Lee JunKi, Rain, and other big name stars. Her flexibility is also popular on the Internet.

  3. American Girl says:

    why is eunjung on here its supposed to be soyeon and jiyeon. eun jung hasnt entertained like soyeon.

  4. Eunsoo says:

    For Kara, I think Gu Hara and Nicole does more variety shows than Park Gyuri. Gu Hara is huge in Japan, I went to Japan for few weeks in January and I was shocked how popular Gu Hara and Kara were. I wonder if Gu Hara makes a lot more than other members. I know Kara donated to Japanese earthquake victims but Gu Hara has donated her own money, W100 million, this is like almost $100,000 US dollars.

    • ashley says:

      but weren’t they complaining that they weren’t getting paid enough?

      • theblackcat1236 says:

        They weren’t complaining they didn’t get paid enough, they were complaining about percentage. Sure, they may make more than the average idol but that’s because they sell more and promote more and altogether have a larger gross profit. Like TVXQ, they make more than any other KPop idol group but that’s because they earn more and therefore should have more.

    • SuperJuniorLover6666666666 says:

      aww lucky… i wanna go to Japan!!

  5. Jules says:

    I agree with almost all of them.. haha, good thinking..

  6. gtl says:

    All of are so true but if the only most popular was the most talented…sigh

    But for BEG they are both powerhouse independently so it is good the group has harmony shit like does not fly in America. Usually the most popular has the most lines and really overshadows the other members like Destiny Child or The Pussycat dolls even Spice girls.

  7. Ria Ria says:

    I don’t agree with the author of this article about Miss Congeniality in 2NE1.
    From all the episodes I have seen from 2NE1 TV, as well as variety shows, I believe it is CL that deserves Miss Congeniality title. Park Bom is caring unnie only towards Minzy (ever heard of Bomzy? XD), whereas CL treats everyone as equals & is a true leader.

    Besides, during the “Win Win” show, members were asked to evaluate each other & CL got the most points as the leader she is, whereas Park Bom explained why she couldn’t be and wasn’t offered leader’s position, so, yeah, in my opinion….

    CL is the true Miss Congeniality!

    • Geoff says:

      Like most TV shows in Korea, that TV show will also be scripted and anything you watch from your TV in the Phils will be scripted and cut in order to provide you with a particular message. Because you’re probably quite uneducated, gullible and ignorant you’ll watch the show and immediately believe that everything you see on the show will be ‘reality’.

      This is how koreans use your educational levels to manipulate you into spending your savings on relentless amounts of sh!t talent-free formulaic pop.

      • Ria Ria says:

        Hello, Geoff.

        I am educated, actually I hold more than one degree, have a good job, and I am anything, but ignorant.
        Glad we have covered that.

        Now, if you please, consider that this article was written using info gathered from TV shows and interviews, which brings us back to my previously stated opinion, i.e., from what can be seen on TV shows, CL is Miss Congeniality.

        P.S. Think twice before you label someone as “ignorant” and “uneducated”, mkey?

        • maria says:

          he’s the troll that’s been provoking people around these parts for quite a bit now. he’s very biased against certain things, races, ideas– you’ll soon easily recognize his usual prattle. just don’t mind him and his snide, ignorant remarks, and go about your usual business. no need telling him off, or arguing with him, i think he already KNOWS that not everything he says is true, but to concede defeat and dialogue is not really part of a troll’s M.O., right? don’t worry about him. 🙂

      • Geoff's nightmare says:

        Hey dude-who-hates-all-this-but-cares-enough-AND-KNOWS-ENOUGH-to-comment-on-everything, i know it’s all immaterial to you, but somewhere in your fun tirades, you crossed the line into being deeply offensive. you’re not even attacking the posts anymore, you’re attacking the people. people are offended by your racism, your backwards generalizations, your unwarranted provocation that all hurt on a very fundamentally human level. that you even think these things is YOUR business, but to come on here where people are peacefully trying to have some fun at the end of their long days, and for you to step all over that just because something rubs you the wrong way? that’s HARASSMENT. and it becomes OUR business now.

        you think that will go by unattended? I got a really good friend to find out your real-world whereabouts. my friend? he’s kind of amazing. and because you’re so damn thoughtless and crass, i will not lose a wink of sleep knowing that i have finally HAD it with you racism, and have finally made a way to make a faceless bastard like you responsible for the shit you insist on rubbing on our faces. you think, it’s the internet, so you won’t be held responsible for your discourtesy? we don’t deserve the shit you type, man. you’re obviously smart, coz you push really good buttons, but does it matter to you that they actually very much hurt some people?
        yunno, i don’t care what your answer to that is. the moment i get wind of who you are, i’m sending someone to erm.. take proper action. 😀 you don’t get to step on other people’s fun when they’re not doing anything to hurt you. you don’t get to get away with that. you’re the one who thoughtlessly poked fun at people you thought deserved it, and with them, you put down people who were just innocently trying to be part of a good community here.

        i don’t even care if or what you reply to this– it’s ON.
        just remember, you made your bed.

        we’re gonna get you, asshole. i DARE YOU to call us half of the things you call us when i finally find out who you are. *excited*

        • ara says:

          wow. that’s a good writing…. seriously. I enjoyed it a lot. despite the accusations (which i do agree), but imho it’s well written. go line up to write at popseoul, eh ?

          good luck then.

        • toph says:

          post his address here so we can all pay him a friendly visit ^^

        • ana says:

          And what exactly are you going to do to him once you “get him”? I’m sorry, but as much as I don’t like the troll either, this sounds like a direct threat.

          • Geoff's nightmare says:

            sue his ass for defamation and violation against the CDA and blacklist him from a whoooooole lot of things he might be presently enjoying. 🙂 even the internet has rules, honey.

            • veronica says:

              does it apply consistently internationally? I mean, suppose someone was from a different country with different internet laws. For instance, in some countries, you can’t even “sue”, so how would that work?

    • wt4y54u65i says:

      yeah I think CL should be Miss congeniality instead.. I still love Bom though, she’s so adorable but no one can deny that CL really takes care and maintain the status of the group. 😀

  8. ara says:

    not really sure about this.. but.. uh.. agree about uee and kahi.
    i even surprised when uee popped out as cameo in My Girlfriend is a Gumiho. she’s so well known in acting right now, apparently.

    oh, and about addressing someone as uneducated bla bla, i probably should remind you, whoever you are, that the “higher” you praised yourself (by bashing people like that), the more hurt you’ll feel when you fall someday. I hope it doesn’t seem as if i’m trying to judge you. sorry for that. but i guess you should really know it before it came too late.

  9. chelai xoo says:

    Sistar Second Single!! ♥

  10. sinbb2011 says:


  11. tiffany says:

    that picture posted of Taeyeon makes me want to barf. Miss congeniality my ass, she use to bully one of her dormmates predebut.

  12. ariana says:

    Haha, is Geoff like the Keys/Spoon/toilet of this site? I will be happy when he’s officially busted!

  13. KSalice~ says:

    LOL. 🙂 “the greatest love” is making me research all these kcelebs 🙂
    To the hard working ones, good job, and 화이팅~ ^^

  14. Good blog! I really love how it is easy on my eyes as well as the details are well written. I am wondering how I might be notified whenever a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your rss feed which ought to do the trick! Have a nice day!

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