Lee Hye-ri

Lee Hye-ri (Hangul: 이혜리; born June 9, 1994),[2] better known mononymously as Hyeri, is a South Korean singer and actress. She is the youngest member of girl group Girl's Day and is known for her leading role in television drama Reply 1988 (2015). She ranked third in Forbes Korea Power Celebrity list in 2016.[3]

Lee Hye-ri
KCON 17 LA P1030747 (36028703843).jpg
Lee Hye-ri at KCON 2017
Lee Hye-ri

(1994-06-09) June 9, 1994 (age 26)
Gwangju, Gyeonggi, South Korea
EducationKonkuk University
  • Singer
  • actress
AgentCreative Group ING
Musical career
Years active2010–present
LabelsDream T
Associated actsGirl's Day
Korean name
Revised RomanizationI Hye-ri
McCune–ReischauerYi Hyeri

Early life and educationEdit

Hyeri was born in Gwangju, Gyeonggi, South Korea.[4] She has a sister, Hye-rim, who is two years younger.[5] Hyeri grew up in poverty, staying with her grandmother in the countryside while her mother was working in a factory.[6][7]

When she was in middle school, Hyeri was scouted by Dream T Entertainment at a talent show and consequently joined Girl's Day.[8] She later attended Seoul School of Performing Arts, and then majored in Film at Konkuk University.[9]


2010–present: Girl's DayEdit

In September 2010, Hyeri was announced as a new member of Girl's Day alongside Yura when Jiin and Jisun left the group, just two months after the group debuted.[10][11] The revamped group released a single titled "Nothing Lasts Forever".[12]

After her exclusive contract with Dream T Entertainment ended in 2019, Hyeri joined a newly-set up agency Creative Group ING.[13] Although all four members joined separate agencies, they have stated that the group has not disbanded.[14]

2012–2014: Acting debut and rising popularityEdit

At a promotional concert for Lotte Gimhae Water Park, July 2014

In 2012, Hyeri made her acting debut in the SBS weekend drama Tasty Life, where she played the youngest in a family of four daughters.[15]

After her 4-day long appearance on Real Men in August 2014, a brief clip of her showing aegyo at her instructor went viral in South Korea, reaching one million views in a day.[16][17][18][19] She consequently shot to stardom overnight and was named as the "Nation's Little Sister" by the South Korean media due to her overwhelming popularity.[20][21] Later that year, she won Best Female Newcomer award at the MBC Entertainment Awards.[22]

Hyeri was later cast as one of the main characters in the teen drama Schoolgirl Detectives, which began airing on cable channel jTBC in December 2014.[23] In late 2014, she was cast in the mystery rom-com drama Hyde, Jekyll, Me, which began airing on SBS in January 2015.[24]

2015–present: Leading rolesEdit

In 2015, Hyeri was cast as the lead of the tvN drama Reply 1988.[25] The drama premiered in November and went on to become a success with audience ratings peaking at 18.8%, making it one of the highest rated dramas in Korean cable television history.[26] Hyeri received critical and audience acclaim for her award-winning portrayal of the female protagonist.[27][28]

In 2016, Hyeri was cast as the lead in the SBS drama Entertainer along with actor Ji Sung and CNBLUE member Kang Min-hyuk,[29][30] which began airing on April 20 and for which she won "New Star Award" at 2016 SBS Drama Awards.[31]

In March 2017, it was announced that Hyeri will be making her big screen debut as the female lead in Monstrum; filming began in April and premiered in September 2018.[32][33] The same year, she starred in the police comedy drama Two Cops alongside Jo Jung-suk.[34]

In 2018, she was cast in My Punch-Drunk Boxer, a boxing comedy drama film.[35] The film was released in October, 2019.[36] In 2019, Hyeri was cast in tvN's office comedy drama Miss Lee.[37]

Besides acting, Hyeri frequently guests on variety shows. She has been described as a "blue chip" in the entertainment industry due to her "frank and easy-going charms, bright energy and flexible chemistry with other cast members".[38][39] Since 2018, Hyeri has been a regular cast member of DoReMi Market, a weekly television program currently airing on tvN.[40]

In the mediaEdit

At Reply 1988 fan signing event in Ssangmun-dong, February 2016


The success of Reply 1988 combined with Hyeri's status as an icon of aegyo led to her becoming one of the most in-demand advertising models in South Korea.[41][42][43] By the start of 2016, she had shot over 30 advertisements for brands such as Puma, Lotte Confectionery's Ghana, Bohae, Amore Pacific's Happy Bath, and was consequently given the title of "₩10 billion girl (ko: 100억 소녀)" by the South Korean media.[44][45][46]

The sales of products such as 7-Eleven lunch boxes and Nongshim ramen increased by 78% and 50% respectively after Hyeri's endorsement.[46][47] Similarly, the page views of Dabang (ko: 다방), a mobile app that Hyeri has endorsed since 2015, grew from 5 million to 15 million, and weekly active users increased from 600,000 to 1.5 million after a new ad featuring Hyeri as Harley Quinn was released in 2017.[48]

Following her appointment as the model for Albamon (ko: 알바몬), a part-time job recruiting site, Hyeri was awarded with the plaque of appreciation by the Ministry of Employment and Labour for "promoting minimum wage awareness and compliance" in March 2015.[49] In January 2017, Albamon received "Consumer Choice Best Brand Award" for "its efforts to improve the rights of the public by providing high quality part-time job announcements" after an ad featuring Hyeri and Im Chang-jung reached over 10 million views in just a month after its release.[50]

In July 2017, she received the Female Commercial Film Star Award at MTN Broadcast Advertising Awards Festival.[51]


On the Lunar New Year of 2016, Hyeri donated ₩50 million to Community Chest of Korea towards improving elderly welfare.[52] Later that year, she donated ₩50 million to Korea Disaster Relief Organisation for the victims of the Seomun Market fire.[53]

In 2019, Hyeri became a member of UNICEF's Honours Club, having donated more than ₩100 million "to run educational programs for underprivileged children and AIDS-prevention campaigns in underdeveloped nations in Asia". A membership ceremony took place on July 26.[54]

In February 2020, Hyeri donated ₩100 million to Save the Children to help those affected by COVID-19.[55]

Ambassadorial rolesEdit

Hyeri was appointed as the ambassador for 'Free Semester Program' by the Ministry of Education in September 2016.[56] In February 2017, Hyeri was appointed as one of the ambassadors for the Count Every Child birth registration campaign as part of her NGO partnership with Plan Korea.[57]

Personal lifeEdit

In January 2014, Hyeri fainted on stage during a Girl's Day live performance and had to be carried off-stage by M Countdown staff. She was later diagnosed with swine flu.[58]

In March 2016, Hyeri was hospitalised after being diagnosed with meningitis due to busy schedules and lack of rest.[59][60][61]




During a 7-Eleven Lunchbox fan-signing event in September, 2016
Year Title Role Notes
2018 Monstrum Myung [32]
2019 My Punch-Drunk Boxer Minji [35]

Television seriesEdit

Year Title Network Role Ref.
2012 Tasty Life SBS Jang Mi-hyun [15]
2014–2015 Schoolgirl Detectives JTBC Lee Ye-hee [23]
2015 Hyde Jekyll, Me SBS Min Woo-jung [24]
2015–2016 Reply 1988 tvN Sung Duk-seon/Sung Soo-yeon [25]
2016 Entertainer SBS Jung Geu-rin [29]
2017–2018 Two Cops MBC Song Ji-an [34]
2019 Miss Lee tvN Lee Seon-shim [37]

Variety showEdit

Year Title Network Role Notes
2014 Real Men MBC Cast Women's Army Special (Season 1)[62]
2018–present Amazing Saturday tvN Cast member[40]


Year Title Network Notes
2011 The Show SBS MTV with BAP's Himchan (Season 1)
2014 MBC Gayo Daejejeon MBC with Kim Sung-joo, Jun Hyun-moo, Soyou (Sistar), Lee Yoo-ri
2014–15 The Show SBS MTV with T-ara's Jiyeon, Jung Wook (Season 3) and Super Junior-M's Zhou Mi (Season 4)
2015 4th Gaon Chart K-Pop Awards[63] KBS2 with Leeteuk (Super Junior)
2016 Idol Star Athletics Championships[64] MBC with Jun Hyun-moo, Lee Soo-geun (Chuseok Special), Jo Kwon (Lunar New Year Special)
15th KBS Entertainment Awards[65] KBS2 with Lee Hwi-jae and You Hee-yeol
2018 MBC Entertainment Awards MBC with Jun Hyun-moo, Seungri[66]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Nominated work Result Ref.
2014 MBC Entertainment Awards Best Female Newcomer Real Men: Female Special Won [22]
2015 Daum Awards Rising Idol Actress N/A Won [67]
2016 8th Style Icon Asia Idol Actress Award N/A Won [68]
Style Icon N/A Nominated
52nd Baeksang Arts Awards Best New Actress (TV) Reply 1988 Nominated [69]
5th APAN Star Awards Best New Actress Won [70]
9th Korea Drama Awards Nominated [71]
tvN10 Awards Made in tvn, Actress in Drama Nominated
Rising Star Award, actress Won [72]
Best Kiss (with Park Bo-gum) Nominated
1st Asia Artist Awards Most Popular Actress Nominated
6th Korean Wave Awards Acting Award Won [73]
4th DramaFever Awards Best Kiss (with Park Bo-gum) Won [74]
SBS Drama Awards New Star Award Entertainer Won [31]
Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Romantic-Comedy Drama Nominated
2017 MTN Broadcast Advertising Awards Female Commercial Film Star Award N/A Won [51]
MBC Drama Awards Top Excellence Award, Actress in a Monday-Tuesday Drama Two Cops Nominated [75]
Most Popular Actress Nominated
2018 2nd The Seoul Awards Most Popular Actress Monstrum Nominated
Korea First Brand Awards Female Idol Variety Star N/A Won [76]
2019 Brand of the Year Awards Female Variety Idol N/A Won [77]


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External linksEdit