Korean lifestyle is spreading among Indian youth after K-dramas popularity escalated

4 mn read

During the pandemic, we all explored everything that we never thought of or did not got time to. People while sitting inside shuffled all kind of content on OTT platforms and discovered their fascination towards different culture, people, language and genres. Korean dramas are among one of those, that not only succeed in rise of viewership in India but also is leaving impact on people’s lifestyle. According to a Netflix report, from 2019 to 2020 the viewership has increased by 370%. Whereas, between 2020 to 2021, six Korean dramas remained on the ‘Top 10 trending ‘list. Crash landing on you, second season of kingdom, it’s okay to not be okay are some of them.

Storylines, lifestyle, food, fashion, k-dramas are wholesome and has become a fancy love for Indian audiences. Korean actors have also gained popularity and are on the search engines every now and then. Before, it was always either an Indian series or the Hollywood, but now people are looking for new Korean content and are choosing, the third option. India’s largest streaming platform MX player in August launched V-Desi. A program that telecast international shows every week – Turkish, Japanese, Korean, Ukrainian, French, Spanish, all dubbed into Hindi, Tamil, Telugu. Following the taste of Indian audiences, last year Dish tv introduced ‘Korean drama active’ where users have access to watch Hindi dubbed Korean dramas after paying subscription fees. 

Photo: Disney+

But not only Korean dramas, skincare products, food, language and even fashion is creating a wave in India. According to a survey, about 39 percent of Indian women respondents revealed that about 25 percent of their skincare products belongs to Korean brands and about 3 percent use all products from K-beauty brands. Korean Coconut water fiber face masks, The face shop chia seed hydrating cream, Skinfood black sugar mask, Innisfree, snow-white milky pack are some of the popular products and brands people are shifting to. Which is surprising because back in last years, nobody knew k-beauty brands in India and now Indian e-commerce companies made it accessible and available for customers to traverse the world.

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Shubhangi is 25 years old and follow Korean dramas religiously. You name it and she knows it. She said, ‘I was introduced to Korean content last year when pandemic started and I almost watched the whole Netflix. That’s when my friend told me to start Crash landing on you. And since then, I am only watching Korean dramas or movies. I have developed a sense of affinity from Korean culture and lifestyle.’ Shubhangi further added, ‘Well for me, its not only the Korean dramas or another entertainment source but I want to know more about the culture and the people. Their dramas always have the touch of their culture that has ignited a light of curiosity within me about the country’s culture.’

Photo: Disney+

On asking does it impacted her in any ways, she told Eat News, ‘Oh definitely. My family noticed me doing things in a certain way. If I have to tell you in the terms of fashion, I try making my hair like them. I never use to wear caps and now I wear them everywhere. I have started looking for Korean fashion shopping applications in India to follow their fashion brands.’ She said there is no wrong in trying to understand a different culture and acknowledge it. Her parents also think alike and quoted Eat News, ‘Yes we have seen a change in her dressing style from few months. She wears light colors, caps, loose T-shirts. Also, she sometimes speaks few words in Korean language. Whenever we pass by her, she is always glued to her laptop searching about Korea, culture, language.’ While addressing this change, they continued, ‘There is nothing wrong in being curious about other cultures. Rather, we believe respecting others heritage, customs, language, is an appreciating thing.’

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Photo: Netflix

Talking about Korean food Shubhangi said, ‘Oh, and one of the main reasons why I watch Korean content is because they prioritize food too. There put lots of food in one drama and that’s simply mouthwatering. I have tried cooking Korean food, most of the times I failed, it was Bibimbap and Jajangmyeon. But then, whenever we friend hangout, we look for Korean restaurants in the area or sometimes I go solo just to treat myself with Korean food.’

20 years old Ritu is also a loyal viewer of k-dramas and said, ‘They look like us. Their features, their expressions, we look similar. Maybe because we are all Asians. If you watch carefully, the background music also gives a relatable sense just like Indian content.’ Ritu is learning Korean language online and has already spent a month taking classes. ‘I am an explorer. I don’t want to limit myself till content, I want to learn more and learning language is one of it. I have plans and I will travel South Korea soon. Definitely, Korean dramas have played a vital role in shaping my future’, said Ritu.

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Shefali Ranawat is an Eat News correspondent in India. She want to be the voice of people. Also, she aim to be a war correspondent.


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