News / Features / Editorial

K-Pop Wardrobe Inspection: The Uniform Concept

By Nikole S. | November 08, 2014 12:41 PM EST


The uniform concept is something that has been seen throughout K-Pop for a number of years. Some may think that it is overdone whereas others may believe it is a classic style that most groups try at least once. At this point in K-Pop, having a uniform themed concept now seems like it's becoming a rite of passage for both girl and guy groups. Below are some of the groups that best executed their uniform concepts.

The first group of uniforms is the one that is seen the most frequently in the K-Pop world: School Uniforms. There is wide range of concepts dealing with school uniforms. There different colors whether it's colorful or grayscale; style whether it's the clean cut model student uniform or the grungy rebel look; even the cute school girl style. These have all been played with through various different groups.

"Hug" by TVXQ!

One of the early school uniforms looks comes from none other than K-Pop seniors, TVXQ! During the music, video of their 2003 hit debut song, "Hug", the boys are seen singing in their high-collared navy blue uniforms. This is one of the more early variations of the school uniform and has since evolved into a more modern style.

"Ah!" by After School

A later style that came around in 2008 was the evolved school girl uniform executed by After School. For the release of their album, 'New Schoolgirl', After School dressed in a cute yet more hip-hop street style of the school uniform concept.

"Twinkle Twinkle" by Girls Day

Contrary to After School's hip-hop school girl looks, Girl's Day came around later with a cute version for their "Twinkle Twinkle" comeback.

"Growl" by EXO

The million seller hit, "Growl", not only had an attention grabbing music video but the boys also had the attire to match. For the one-shot music video, EXO sported grayscale school-boy uniforms with small accents of blues and reds. Rather than being the buttoned-up clean cut style, EXO's uniforms were more relaxed and loose.

"Boy in Luv" by BTS

The boys of BTS went for the more aggressive schoolboy style in contrast to EXO. Paired with powerful dancing, BTS's performance certainly suits their strong school appearance.


Most recently Woolim and SM C&C have introduced a new 8-member girl group that goes by the name Lovelyz. In their very first teaser photos the eight girls are seen in identical school style uniforms. It looks like this new group is getting their uniform concept out of the way early!

The next concept is the Military Uniform. This uniform include the uniforms itself as well as the camouflage military pattern that is often seen wiggling its way into performances and music videos. This style is seen as often as the school uniform but it definitely has a presence.

"Genie" by Girls Generation

A good chunk of the military and camouflage style has been done predominately by S.M. Entertainment; these also happen to be the most memorable. One of the most well-known comebacks was the return of Girls Generation and their promotions for "Genie". Their naval uniforms were known for accentuating their long legs and figures. During the performances they had many color variations and style yet maintained the naval look as well as a hint of sailor.

"Everybody" by SHINee

The next military themed concept of S.M. Entertainment was through SHINEE and their fourth comeback of 2013, "Everybody". SHINee donned another variation of the classic naval uniform paired with face piercings and bold makeup.

"Red Light" by f(x)

Even f(x) wasn't safe from the ever growing trend of camouflage. For f(x)'s most recent hit, "Red Light", the group of five suited up in camo print and military gear for the more intense parts of the music videos. A more charismatic and strong look was achieved through this style for f(x).

"I MY ME MINE" by 4Minute

Aside from S.M. Entertainment applying the military concept to the artists, 4minute also tried their hand at the army look for their song "I MY ME MINE" from 2010. A neat aspect about 4minute's concept was that their uniforms looks almost like a hybrid between the army and a scout uniform.

Military and school uniforms tend to be top two that dominate the uniform concept; however, occasionally there are times when other types of uniforms will appear for a brief period. Here are some of the less popular uniform themes that have occurred in the past.

"Snake" by A-JAX

The Boy Scout uniform is rarely ever seen in the K-pop world but A-JAX had their comeback with "Snake" showing that the Boy Scout uniforms may not be as outdated as we believed.

Another uniform look seen a few times in multiple concepts is the sports look. This includes jerseys and athletic themed gear. The catchiest of them was none other that our favorite helmet wearing Crayon Pop! For their "Bar Bar Bar" promotions, the five suited up in sweat pants, golf shirts and helmets for their sporty pop jam.

"Bar Bar Bar" by Crayon Pop

The song that took the K-Pop world by storm also had quite the fashion sense. Many fans questioned the strange sweats uniform but others couldn't get enough; helmets included!

"Lipstick" by Orange Caramel

For a brief period in the "Lipstick" music video, Orange Caramel is seen sporting bright orange colored jersey dresses. While wearing the outfits, the three ladies are engaged in an intense game Ping Pong against a fierce competitor.

What is your favorite uniform concept? Share it in the comment section below!

Tagged :  hug, TVXQ, ah, After School, Twinkle Twinkle, Girls Day, Growl, EXO, Boy in Luv, BTS, bangtan, lovelyz, Genie, tell me your wish, SNSD, Girls Generation, Everybody, SHINee, Red Light, f(x), 4minute, i my me mine, Snake, A-JAX, AJAX, Bar Bar Bar, Crayon Pop, Lipstick, Orange Caramel, fashion, uniforms, concepts, wardrobe inspection


06.15.18 | 02:18AM EDT

'M Countdown' Wanna One Ranks Top

Wanna One became first place in "M Countdown" in the second week of June.

Concert / Event 06.11.18 | 10:05PM EDT

UP10TION to Embark on '1st US Meet and Live Tour: Candyland' This Summer

After performing in the States for the first time last Summer at KCON, the boys of UP10TION will make their return on U.S. grounds and Puerto Rico this June.

See Now: BTS: 41 Fun Facts You Must Know About The Most Successful Kpop Boy Band (Bangtan Sonyeondan)

Real Time Analytics